How to Build a Custom Mailbox
Update your mailbox, plus increase its function, with this custom building project.
Every home needs a mailbox—you might as well make yours stand out! Build your own mailbox station with our expert tips. This model conveniently holds two mailboxes and includes a newspaper slot.
But first, if you don’t already have a mailbox post in place, you’ll want to make sure that your hole is dug no more than two feet deep. A curbside mailbox must be six to eight inches from the curb, with the door panel 41 to 45 inches from the ground. When painting your address numbers on your mailbox, make sure they are at least 1 inch tall on the front side (or flag side) of the box. Your mail carrier will thank you!
How to Make a Mailbox Station
Boost the look of your home with this intermediate building project.
- Table saw
- Sawhorse (2 or 4)
- Power drill
- 1-inch x 8-inch x 8-foot boards, we used 3/4-inch cedar (11)
- 1-1/2-inch x 1-1/2-inch x 8-foot board, we used 2 x 2 cedar (1)
- Exterior glue
- 1-1/4-inch exterior screws
- 1-5/8-inch exterior screws, or up to 2-inch
- Mailboxes (2)
- Exterior deck and fence stain, optional
- 2-1/2-inch lag bolts (3)
Note: Complete Step 1 before making your cuts.
Pole box (2):
- 26-1/2 x 52-inch boards
- 5-1/4 x 52-inch boards
Cubby dividers (3): 6-1/2 x 19-inch
Top of cubbies (1): 26-1/2 x 19-3/4-inch
Bottom of cubbies (1): 25 x 15-1/4-inch
Back of cubbies (1): 6-1/2 x 23-1/2-inch
Pole box cleats (2): 3/4 x 3/4 x 26-1/2-inch
- 7-1/4 x 30-inch
- 5-1/4 x 28-inch
- 3-1/2 x 30-inch
- 3-1/2 x 8-inch
Angle cleats (2): 1-1/2 x 1-1/2-inch x 24-inch, cut at a 45-degree angle so that the long edges are 24 inches
Spacer under mailbox (this measurement will vary depending on your mailbox size) (2): 3/4 x 6-7/16 x 16-15/16
3-1/2 x 29-1/2-inch
3-1/2 x 5-1/4-inch
Follow our steps for building a mailbox cover. You may need to adjust dimensions based on your mailbox. This project is for intermediate or advanced DIYers.
Step 1: Glue and Cut the Boards
Line up four 1-inch x 8-inch x 8-foot boards side by side. Glue them together at the edges. Clamp them together and let dry. Repeat with four more 8-foot boards. Once both are dry, use a table saw to cut them down to size, starting with your largest cuts.
Step 2: Measure and Cut Cubby Dividers
Use trammel points to mark a rounded edge (an arc with a 7-1/2-inch radius) on three 6-1/2 x 19-inch boards. The arc should end at one corner of the board. (You can also use a 5-gallon bucket to trace an arc.) Use a jigsaw to cut out the rounded edges.
Step 3: Assemble the Cubby Box
Align the three cubby dividers on edge, perpendicular to the backboard of the cubbies, with two of the dividers as the sides (positioned on either side of the backboard) and the third centered in the middle. Drill pilot holes, glue with exterior glue, and attach using 1-1/4-inch exterior screws.
With the cubby box upside down (so the longer edges of the cubby dividers are down), align the board for the bottom of the cubbies along the sides. Drill through the top of the board into the sides of the cubby dividers and backboard to attach with 1-1/4-inch screws. Flip the box over, and repeat with the board for the top of the cubby box. (There will be an overhang of about 3/4 inch on either side of the top.)
Step 4: Assemble the Pole Box
Align the front, back, and two side pieces for the pole box, with the two side pieces on either end of the front and back pieces. Pre-drill pilot holes, glue, clamp, and screw together with 1-1/4-inch exterior screws. Attach the two pole box cleats to the top inside of box with 1-1/4-inch screws.
Step 5: Attach the Cubbies
Measure and center the cubbies 10 inches below the top of the pole box. Attach the cubbies to the box using 1-1/4-inch screws. Drill from the inside of the cubby box into the front side of the pole box.
Step 6: Attach the Angle Cleats
Measure 14 inches below the edge of the cubbies and mark. Attach the angle cleats at the mark and below the cubbies with 1-5/8-inch screws for support.
Step 7: Attach Mailboxes
Add house numbers to the fronts and sides of your mailboxes. Screw in spacers with 1-1/4-inch screws to the bottoms of the mailboxes. (This is so the mailboxes are raised enough from the top of the cubbies to allow for the door panel to open.) Screw the mailboxes to the top of the cubby box with a right angle drill or screw in by hand.
Step 8: Add Caps and Trim
Center the 30-inch long cap board to the top of the box and attach using 1-1/4-inch screws. Center and attach the 28-inch long cap board to finish the top of the box. Add trim pieces to the base of the pole box, with the shorter pieces inside the longer pieces. (Sand or cut these pieces down, if needed.) Use 1-1/4-inch screws to attach.
Step 9: Install the Mailbox Cover
Stain the mailbox cover and let dry, if desired. Grab a friend to help you carry the cover outside and lift it over your existing mailbox pole. Make sure it’s centered and level, then attach the box to the pole using lag bolts.