Sail To Get Your Mail?!

4 Materials
3 Days

Here in Florida, it's not uncommon to see fun and whimsical mailboxes. I just finished this custom Pirate Ship Mailbox and it's sailing all the way to Homestead, Fl. !!
This was a fun project! Because I was making this for someone else, and was on a schedule, I forgot to take all the pictures along the way, but will give you what I have. First I started out by using a standard metal mailbox, 1/2" Severe weather, pressure treated plywood, 5/8" Oak dowels, Two 3/8" flanges, 3/16" clothes line, 2" x 1" lumber, Copper sheets, stain, wood glue, poly seal, and a whole lot of imagination.
I traced out the general ship design and cut it out with my jigsaw. I made two panels.
Then I cut out the back panel and Deck and attached them using wood glue and screws. I also used L brackets for better stability. I marked where the holes in the mailbox lined up with the bottom of the boat and drilled the holes so later it could attach to the mailbox post.
For the door, I used two pieces of wood I had left over from the center of a wood spool. It was curved and worked perfect. I attached the wood from the inside of the mailbox door. I cut my trim from the 2x1 lumber then stained the boat and all my pieces. To get different shades of gray on the trim, I just put on the stain and wiped it off after a few seconds.
Next I decided where I wanted the dowels to go and used the flanges to hold my dowels. I cut the dowels to resemble a cross, drilled a hole through the intersection of the cross, and used a bolt and nut to join them. . I stood on either side of the flange to put my weight on the dowels to screw them in. The sheets of copper were already the size I needed. I drilled holes in each corner and screwed them to the dowels.
I cut out my railing from a piece of leftover spool wood, drilled holes and used old foam paint brush handles for the dowels. (I save everything) I know nothing about rigging a boat. ( I was hoping the recipient didn't either)! So I looked and looked at pictures, but they made me go cross eyed, so I just took the general idea and did my own thing.
The sail on the front is hanging on the clothes line. The bow sprite is just two dowels cut on an angle and screwed together, then wrapped in clothes line. Last, I cut out my flags, painted and drilled holes in the top of the dowels to put in place.
So there you have it! A fun and whimsical way to get your mail! This ended up being rather large. 38" L x 14" W x 38" H. Sorry I didn't get better "during" pictures, but I had a deadline to meet. Thanks for lookin' :)
I forgot to add this photo, sorry for any confusion it may have caused!
This is the 3rd custom pirate ship mailbox I've made.
This one was for a stuntman /Actor is Los Angeles!!

Suggested materials:

  • Mailbox  (Lowe's)
  • 1/2" Plywood, 2"x1" lumber, 5/8" Oak Dowels  (Lowe's)
  • Copper Sheets  (Ace Hardware)
See all materials

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Have a question about this project?

3 of 7 questions
  • Karen Black
    on Nov 19, 2016

    I don't have a question but just wanted to say, I am in Homestead this week for the race. We are staying in the Keys and there are some ugly mailboxes. I see many Manatees. This one, you constructed, is such a breath of fresh air. I hope the folks down here take note of your masterpiece and contact you.

    • Jewellmartin
      on Aug 28, 2019

      This was almost three years ago. I bet many people tried to copy this and failed. But if your ship inspired others to refresh their manatees, it’s good for Homestead. When we lived in the country, there were many barn, church, and schoolhouse mailboxes. Jewell

  • Diane Gidaro
    on Dec 15, 2016

    Is there any concern that the pole and rod sticking out in the front might poke the mailman in the eye or face?

    • Jewellmartin
      on Aug 28, 2019

      Carriers change, but the angle looks obtuse enough to be out of danger. As long as the USPS approves it, it should be fine. Jewell

  • Rebecca godfrey
    on Jul 12, 2017

    Would u have instructions for a stage coach.

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