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  • Prebury Project Information


This Prebury Planning Guide has been designed to help you understand the Prebury concept, familiarize you with the design and construction of Christy Garden Crypts, assist you in the planning process of your Prebury project, and to describe the entire installation process.

By Presenting this information to you, we hope to answer many commonly asked questions and to eliminate any surprises. With over 50 years of experience preburying Christy Garden Crypts, our goal is to help make your prebury projects run smoothly from the planning stages to the final internment and beyond.

The prebury concept

Reasons for Preburing Christy Companion Garden Crypts is to maximize the number of interments that can be placed in a given area, to minimize the amount of labor necessary at the time of interment and to take advantage of purchasing Christy Garden Crypts at today's prices.

A large area will be excavated, have Christy Garden Crypts placed in rows very close to each other, and be covered with a beautiful lawn before any interment has taken place.

At the time of the first interment, your field crew will remove the sod, dig only 18 to 24 inches down to cover the unite and remove the cover and inner shutter (the shelf that will separate the two caskets). The first casket is lowered into the bottom portion of the Garden Crypt. The inner shutter is placed on supports over the first casket to act as the floor for the second casket, when it is interred at a later date. The cover is placed on the unit. The same soil is backfilled over the Garden Crypt and the sod is put back in place.

At the time of the second interment the sod and soil are removed, the Garden Crypt is opened and the second casket is placed onto the inner shutter. The cover, soil and sod are placed.

Some of the advantages of Preburying Christy Garden Crypts are that your field crew no longer has to dispose of the excess soil at each interment. No handling of the complete unit or shoring of the grave is necessary. Minimizing the amount of labor also means minimizing the potential for injury and worker's compensation claims.

The planning process

With many years of experience Preburying Christy Garden Crypts, Christy Vault Company has gained invaluable knowledge and expertise to assist you in planning your Prebury project.

The enclosed Example Prebury Project shares with you our recommendations for the project layout, grave size (3' x 8' to maximize your space), placement and spacing of the garden crypts, the user of drain rock and pea grave, the depth of the excavation, and the depth of the earth covering over the units. California State Law requires a minimum earth covering of 18 inches over single depth graves and 12 inches over double depth graves. We recommend anywhere from 18 to 24 inches for both single and double depth graves.

Other things to consider during the planning process are the placement of sprinkler systems, ddesigning around existing trees, and buffer zones between the units and existing graves, roads, buildings or cemetery features. Be aware of any local easement laws that may affect your project.

Within this Planning Guide is a Prebury Project Site Survey. It has been designed to assist us in our ability to provide you with optimal service and an accurate quote for your project. With your assistance it provides us with information regarding the terrain, soil composition, what we might encouter while excavating the area, truck access, and what you would like us to do with the large amount of excess soil that will be generated.

Place provide us with a completed Site Survey and a drawing of the project showing the proposed orientation of the garden crypts. A Christy Representative can visit your cemetery to assit you with your product planning and with completion of your Site Survey.

Remember, the earlier we are involved with your Prebury project, the fewer bumps there'll be in the road to completion.

The outer burial receptacles

Christy Companion Garden Crypts have been constructed to provide you with the finest long lasting quality available and designed to avoid any surprises at that critical time of interment.

Our G3086-4 (Straight Wall Companion Garden Crypt) perimeter unit is constructed with thick quality concrete and 2" thick walls from top to bottom to withstand the external pressures on the outside edges of the project. This eliminates the concern for any bowing or breakage that might have occured when the crypt is opened for interment. These units are the best for sustaining long term extra pressure exerted on the crypt wall from heavy wet soil long after the final interment.

With our Straight Wall Companion Garden Crypts withstanding the perimeter pressures, our Standard Companion Garden Crypts (G3086-5) can be installed in the interior of the project for additional savings.

Christy's proven Garden Crypt design incorporates the consistent 30" x 86" internal dimensions (with +/- 1/4" tolerances) from top to bottom to ensure the lowering of slightly larger caskets and convenient removal of the inner shutter and casket lowering straps. Our Shutter rod Support System eliminates any concern for the lowered casket hanging up on any shelf designs and any difficulty with removal of the inner shutter. We want your graveside services to run as smoothly as possible.


The installation process involves a series of steps that are designed to minimize the amount of disruption to your cemetery

  • 1
    Christy Garden Crypts will be delivered to your cemetery and stored in a staging area close to the Prebury site.
  • 2
    After, or during the delivery of the Garden Crypts, we will excavate the entire area to the appropriate depth.
  • 3
    A temporary permimeter fence will be placed around the entire excavated area for safety purposes.
  • 4
    The large amount of excess soil that will be excavated can be transported to or spread over to a different location on the cemetery grounds or completely removed. Each of these options would require additional charges based on your requirements.
  • 5
    A temporary stockpile of excess soil will be placed adjacent to the Prebury site for the final backfill of soil.
  • 6
    A 5 to 6 inch base of drain rock will be installed to provide appropriate drainage. Depending on your groundwater conditions, additional sumps or pipe drainage systems can be installed at a nominal charge.
  • 7
    Christy Companion Garden Crypts will be placed in a configuration that maximizes your space (each grave being no more than 3' x 8').
  • 8
    Identification numbers can be marked on the covers of each Garden Crypt for grave space verification.
  • 9
    Pea gravel will be placed between the units for more efficient drainage and to relieve any hydrostatic pressure between units.
  • 10
    The temporary stockpile of excess soil will be backfilled over the Garden Crypts to attain 18 to 24 inches of coverage with wheel roll compaction.

An important benefit of our installation crew is that they shut down operations for any funeral procession that could be disturbed by the noise of their construction equipment.

*Our guidelines represent the correct and proper procedures for a successful project. If a contractor other than a Christy Vault installer does not follow our recommended guidelines, Christy Vault Company, Inc., claims no responsibility for the result(s) of the prebury project.

Example Companion Garden Crypt preburial arrangement (100 Companion units, 200 spaces)

  • 3' x 8' grave spaces
  • 6" layer of 3/4" to 1" drain rock
  • (90) Standard Companion Crypts (G3086-5)
  • (10) Straight Wall Companion Crypts (G3086-4)
  • 1/4" Pea gravel backfill between units
  • Total excavation 40' x 60' x 6' - 6'7" deep
  • 5 rows of 20 units each
  • Units are 2" apart side-to-side, 6" apart end-to-end
  • 18" of top soil recommended, 30" maximum

"X" marked units represent five straight-walled companion units at each end of excavation to eliminate need for retaining walls against backfill side pressures.

Lawn Crypt Preburial Arrangement

Companion Garden Crypt preburial detail

Companion Garden Crypt Preburial Detail
Companion Garden Crypt Preburial Detail

Shutter rod support system

Shutter Rod support System

  1. Rods made of a strong pultruded composite
  2. Rod insert tool provided
  3. Design maintains the consistent 30" x 86" internal dimensions from top to bottom for convenient casket lowering and easy inner shutter handling *+/- 1/4" tolerances

Prebury project site survey

This form is an aid for cemetery personnel planning for a prebury project. Christy Vault Company has prepared a full set of prebury spcifications to assit you in your planning process.

Wilbert Direct

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