Making Your DIY Parcel Drop Off Box
Dropboxes are handy things to have if you're not always home to receive deliveries.
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If you previously watched our guide on how to build your own DIY garden shed, you may be on the lookout for a new project. Well, how about building a matching dropbox for handling parcel deliveries?
Sound of interest, then follow this handy guide to find out how.
As you might have guessed, you are going to need some stuff before you attempt this project for yourself.
Tools and equipment needed
- Sheet timber
- Table saw
- Power drill
- Pocket hole jig
- Old length of uPVC pipe
- Tree slices
- Belt sander
- Clear liquid epoxy
- Wood glue
- Piece of continuous pin hinge
- Angle grinder
- Exteriorproof cladding
- Piston hinges
- Door hinges
- Roofing felt and underlay
- L-bar steel/aluminum
- Various nuts and bolts and screws
Step 1: Prepare the ground and build the foundations
The first step is to grab some scrap wood, measure it to size and cut it down with your table saw. With these pieces, you will be building a frame for the footprint of the drop-off box cement foundation.
With your bits cut to size, you can then drill some holes using a pocket hole jig, and begin to assemble the frame of the drop-off box. Be sure to use clamps to hold the frame together to help you out.
With the basic footprint of your drop-off box complete, you can now prepare the ground where you want it to be sited. Remove any turf, and level off the soil.
Lay the frame on the ground, ensure it is perfectly level, and then fill the frame with some gravel. Tap it down as much as you can and then pour ready-mixed concrete on top of it. Once the frame is filled with concrete, plane it off flat.
Leave the concrete to cure for about 48 hours and then remove the frame to expose the concrete foundation.
Step 2: Mark out the footprint of your drop-off box and make the feet
With the concrete now solid enough to build on, mark out the footprint of the drop-box to your liking. Use a tape measure to record the dimensions ready to make the pieces back in your workshop.
Next, it is time to make the feet. Grab your length of old uPVC pipe and cut out four equally sized disks of it. Then, place a piece of tree slice of the same height into the pipe disk and submerge in some epoxy resin.
Leave to cure, and then sand off the plastic pipe using sandpaper or a belt sander.
With the feet complete, place them on your concrete foundation where you want them to go. Drill holes through the very center of each foot in preparation for mounting them.
Then, drill matching holes into the concrete foundation and bolt the feet into place.
Step 3: Build the main dropbox
Next, grab your timber sheets of choice, measure, and cut to size using a circular saw or hand saw. As with the frame for the foundation, the dimensions will depend entirely on the size you want the dropbox to be.
For this particular design, be sure to slightly angle the "top" end of two main vertical portions of the box. Also, you will want to include an opening in the front face for adding a door later to access the storage compartment of the dropbox.
Once cut, add pocket screw holes, and then begin to assemble the frame, as needed.
Use a mixture of wood glue and suitable screws to do so.
Once assembled, plane off any excess wood to all sides, if needed. Paint the inside, and outside, of the box if you wish.
Step 4: Begin to assemble your drop box's "trap door"
With the main body of the box built, we can now begin to build the internal lift mechanism. Take a length of timber the same width as the box, and mount it to the inside of the "back" of the dropbox as shown below.
Next, grab your continuous pin hinge length and cut it down to the same width as the box using an angle grinder.
Mount the hinge to the uppermost edge of the timber piece you previously mounted inside the box. This trap door should be able to freely swing downwards under its own weight. This is to all the parcel to fall inside the box when the lid is closed.
Next, cut another piece of timber sheet to just smaller than the inner dimensions of the box. Attach this piece to the other side of the hinge to form a "trap door".
Step 5: Clad the box and add the lid
Next, cut your wood cladding to size, cut the edges at 45-degrees, and begin to clad the outside of the box.
Continue until all the areas of the box you want to be clad have been covered.
Now take a length of timber and mount it to the rear of the box just below the lip of the rim. This will be used to attach the hinge for the lid in a little bit.
With that complete, next cut another piece of wood sheet to the same dimensions as the angled opening at the top of the box. Add hinges, and mount the lid to the piece of timber you previously attached to the rear of the box.
With the lid in place, add a pair of piston hinges on either side of the box and a length of cord long enough to lift the trap door to a horizontal position with the lid open.
Step 6: Build the rear door and add waterproofing to the lid
With that complete, you can now begin to build the rear access door. Cut a piece of sheet timber to the same dimensions as the opening to the front of the dropbox.
Then add a pair of door hinges, and mount the door to the front of the dropbox.
With that complete, you can now begin to add waterproofing to the lid. Make small lengths of timber the same dimensions as the outer perimeter of the box. These will be used to secure the roofing felt in place on the lid.
Then cover the lid with roofing felt underlay, and secure it into place using the wood battens you previously cut.
With that complete, trim off any excess roofing felt underlay as needed. Then add lengths of L-bar metal to form flashings to the rear of the lid.
Next cover the entire lid in the roofing felt. Nail into place, and trim off any excess as needed.
Step 7: Secure your dropbox into place
With that complete, you can now maneuver your dropbox into position on top of its feet. Ensure it is in the final position you want, and then mount the box to its feet using long enough screws.
Fill or paint over drill holes as needed. With that, your dropbox is basically complete.
You may also want to add a locking mechanism of some kind to the access door, but other than that this build is now complete.
Now all you need to do is order some stuff ready to be freshly delivered to your fancy-pants dropbox. How exciting!
If you have no been bitten by the DIY building bug, why not test your skills on your own DIY dresser?
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