Snowplow, Meet Mailbox

Sometimes when you live in Maine, things happen to your mailbox. Snow happens to your mailbox. Rust happens to your mailbox. A snowplow happens to your mailbox. When your mailbox was already mediocre to start with, after 6 winters it can end up looking rough, as an understatement. A few of the storms this year added a little blush to the prom queen we had hanging up, by way of a snowplow. She’s a beauty (*dripping with sarcasm*).

DSC_8253-01Anyone who lives in a cold snowy climate on a normal road knows it’s inevitable a plow is at some point during the season going to either plow snow all up against your mailbox and/or smash into it. This is why our mailbox hangs off a post versus is stationary on the top of one. From the get go our mailbox wasn’t the bell of the ball, and time didn’t do any favors. Last fall Andy and I decided we needed to replace it. We had debated on doing a completely different post system until the front quite literally was ripped off, leaving frequent damp or wet mail behind.

DSC_8256-01Aside from needing a box that was functional, we really wanted a much bigger one. We get packages a lot and this tiny thing just wasn’t holding up.

DSC_8268-01One snowy day recently we finally got around to replacing this decrepit piece of work. Here’s Andy demonstrating how flimsy the metal had become.

DSC_8269-01 DSC_8271-01 DSC_8272-01 Given the snowy conditions and frozen ground we knew we had to stick with our current post. Our new post design we originally planned on was going to include a similar hanging system, so switching the mailbox over in the future (if we decide to not refinish our current post) won’t be a big deal if we ever do go that route. For this route though we decided to stick with what worked before and utilize the old chain. (It might seem like a system that didn’t work, but it actually is the best system for our situation.)

First, we went to our used bolt/fastner collection in the garage and picked out two pieces along with a nuts for the top and locking nuts for the inside which fit the bill. Once we figured out where we wanted the two pieces of hardware and marked them off with a sharpie, Andy drilled holes. The hardware we chose each had two insertion points, so we put one piece of hardware evenly on the top front and top back.

DSC_8271A quick test fit and we were good to go.

DSC_8265 (2)-01We knew drilling the holes and putting everything together would still mean water could leak down, so the next part was putting a clear epoxy on, putting in the hardware, and making sure the epoxy was around it solidly. I should note the mistake below: I put the back hardware on and got it almost all the way screwed down before I realized I hadn’t slipped the chain onto the hardware. Thankfully the epoxy has a set time so I was able to unscrew everything and then slip the chain back on.

DSC_8268 (2)-01After that, it was just a matter of tightening everything down.

DSC_8279 DSC_8278 DSC_8282We let everything set up for just a few minutes, and then took it back outside to install.

DSC_8283Once outside we decided to shorten the chain a little bit before putting it back on. We secured the chain on the same way it had been before: with zip ties. They work, we had them, decision made.

DSC_8288 DSC_8289Voila! The new mailbox pre-numbers.

DSC_8294Zip ties or not. Old post or not. I’d consider this a needed and good update.




One thought on “Snowplow, Meet Mailbox

  1. Beautiful and functional! I’m sure the door on the mailbox makes a huge difference. I have a few very wrinkled magazines from rainy days when our flap has come open.

    When we first moved to the farm, the mailbox was flopping off its post. We reused the same box with a new post, but I was sure it wouldn’t make it through the winter. I bought all kinds of reflectors, but never got around to installing them. Now we’re in our second winter and so far, the snowploughs have missed it. Watching how close the plows come, I’m super impressed by the skills of the operators.

    Your hanging box seems like a really good solution. Our mailbox is rubbery plastic, so that might be a solution for you. It can get hit but not dent.

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