Caskets vs. Coffins
If you’ve ever watched an old western movie or something from the golden age of cinema, you’ve most likely heard the term coffin. A question we sometimes hear from families is a casket vs coffin, what is the difference? The easy answer to this is the appearance of a casket and a coffin. Coffins are a different shape and have a different number of sides than a casket.
Coffin vs Casket
Both a casket and a coffin are a burial container used to hold the remains of the deceased. Each type of container may be used to bury the deceased and display during a funeral service. In modern society, caskets have become the preferred type of container. In the United States, it is quite uncommon for a family to purchase a casket. Choosing a casket or coffin ultimately comes down to the family’s preference. In addition to the less modern design of a coffin, finding a supplier can be even more difficult.
A casket is a specially designed box used to hold the remains of the deceased. It is a rectangular shaped container with four sides and a lid on hinges. Rails that are used as handles when moving the casket are placed along each side of the casket. Caskets can be used for both burials and cremations depending upon the type.
Caskets are commonly distinguished and categorized by the material used to construct them. The two groups being metal and wooden caskets. Within each group, different types of that material may be used such as stainless steel, oak or mahogany. Caskets are lined with a cloth interior to create a soft and relaxing place for the deceased to rest.
A coffin is similar to a casket as it is also a specially designed box used to hold, transport and bury the remains. The major difference comes in the shape of the container. Unlike a casket, a coffin has six sides and the top of the container is wide than the bottom. The container is tapered to conform to the shape of a human’s body. Another difference is the lid. Unlike a casket where the lid is hinged, most coffins feature a lid that is removable and lifted off of the container.
Coffins are typically constructed from wood and also have a cloth interior similar to a casket. The fittings on the exterior of the coffin are also different than the rails used on a casket. The handles and decorations are known as coffin furniture and used to provide information about the wealth of the deceased.
Casket or Coffin – The Difference in Price
The cost of a casket or coffin is also something used to differentiate the two. Coffins are usually cheaper as they require less material. The tapered shape requires less wood to be used and thus affects the overall price. In either case, choosing between a casket and coffin is entirely up to you and your family. However, please keep in mind that finding a coffin manufacture may prove difficult and bring extra costs such as shipping and processing.
To view our selection of caskets available at our funeral home, please click here. If you have any other questions or would like to learn more, please feel free to contact us at any time. We would be happy to assist you and provide further information.