Because Chesed v'Emet offers caskets for much less than traditional funeral homes, some families have chosen to purchase the casket from us and have it delivered to the funeral home that is handling the arrangements, even if they didn't select us to handle all the funeral arrangements. This also applies to our burial vaults. Basically, there are only two types of caskets, those made of wood and those made of metal.
Within this category, there are two types of caskets. Standard wood caskets and what's known as orthodox or traditional caskets. Wood caskets are made from almost any trees, such as pine, oak, mahogany, or poplar. Wood caskets range from the most plain, unadorned to magnificent ornate caskets made in the style of fine quality furniture. So, what's the difference between a standard wood casket and a traditional wood casket?
That's simple. A traditional (or orthodox) wood casket is one that is made out of wood with no metal or animal material. Instead of using metal screws, wood dowels are used and in place of metal hinges, traditional wood caskets have hand-made wood hinges. Anyone can select a traditional wood casket, regardless of their religious affiliation. A person who wants to follow Jewish funeral traditions would choose an all wooded casket. As with all of the caskets that Chesed v'Emet offers, there is either a standard wood casket or a traditional wood casket in any price range that a family chooses.
Metal caskets are divided into two types- warrentied (also known as protective caskets)and non-warrentied (non-protective). A warrantied casket is designed to be air and water resistant. This is accomplished by having a specially treated rubber gasket placed where the lid of the casket meets with the base of the casket. Additionally, some protective metal caskets have full weld seams, rather than spot welds. Metal caskets are made from three basic materials- steel, stainless steel, and precious metals. The precious metals are solid copper and solid bronze, and are the most expensive of the metal caskets. Stainless steel are the middle priced metal caskets. Steel caskets are categorized by gauge. The usual gauge steel caskets are 16, 18, and 20 gauge steel. Gauged steel is measured by how many sheets of steel are needed to make an inch. A 20 gauge steel casket is made from steel that has 20 sheets of steel to the inch and a 16 gauge steel casket only needs 16 sheets of steel to make an inch. Therefore, the lower numbered gauge steel is the thickest steel. The lower the number, therefore, affords more “protection” and are therefore more expensive than the higher numbered gauge steel caskets. As with our wood caskets, Chesed v'Emet offers any type of steel casket in almost any price range.