Discover Copper Online

Spring 1995

Copper, Brass and Bronze Go Underground

The concrete vault from Wilbert, Inc., contains a copper liner. The carapace on the lid is made of copper. The copper casket (right) is Aurora Casket. The bronze urn (inset is from Batesville Casket.
Copper and its alloys are widely used for coffins, vaults, plaques on monuments and cremation urns. Competition from other materials, however, is intense. Wood, of course, is most commonly used for coffins, but the hardware is sometimes made of brass or bronze.

The copper casket is from Aurora Casket. The bronze urn (inset) is from Batesville Casket. The concrete vault at right from Wilbert, Inc., is lined with ABS and copper. The carapace on top of the lid is also made of copper.

"Starting about three years ago, there was an increase in demand for copper coffins," says Maryann Lynn. She's the Marketing Manager for Batesville Casket, Batesville, Indiana, the nation's largest supplier of coffins.

Many manufacturers supply coffins of copper or bronze. Some cost as much as $15,000. Often, the metal coffins are shaded or painted, according to David A. Lane, spokesman for Aurora Casket Company, Aurora, Indiana. Caskets from Aurora come in 10 different colors and 6 brushed finishes. Aurora's copper caskets are made of 32-ounce copper, while its bronze caskets are made of commercial bronze.

Bronze is one of the most popular materials for cremation urns. Wilbert, Inc., Broadview, Illinois, which claims to be the nation's largest supplier of urns, makes them out of commercial bronze, according to Mike Pasar, plant manager.

Wilbert also manufactures the vaults in which many coffins are interred. These vaults are made of concrete, lined with ABS plastic and, in many instances, with a metal. The metal liners are made of C12200 copper or C22000 commercial bronze. In addition, the metal carapace attached to the concrete lid of the vault is often made of commercial bronze.

Wilbert also supplies plaques made of commercial bronze for monuments. Revere Copper Products, Inc., Rome, New York, is a major supplier of copper and copper alloys to the industry.

Auroa Caskey (Aurora, Indiana): 800/457-1195
Batesville Casket (Batesville, Indiana): 818/934-7500
Revere Copper (Rome, New York): 800/448-1776
Wilbert, Inc. (Broadview, Illinois): 800/323-7188

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