In Brookline, the most popular target is the green mailbox. These aren’t the mailboxes you put letters into. These are the ones that have locks on them that the post office uses to store mail. I often call them “Relay Boxes” as some of them are labeled this.
They are all the same underneath the paint. However, I have found there are four types, which differ by how much green is in them. I will cover each and how to handle them.
- Very old bronze ones. These have absolutely no green in them. Brookline doesn’t have many of these. Maybe 10. They are pretty easy to clean off, but old graffiti is often impossible to remove. The good news is that the Rustoleum spray enamel Anodized Bronze is a perfect match!
- Old green ones. They are kind of an olive drab color. (This is the second picture above.) Most of the relay boxes in Brookline are this color. The good news is that they are pretty easy to clean. However, if you can’t get them clean, you have to paint them. The closest spray paint for the very dark ones is the Rustoleum Gloss Charleston Green. It isn’t easy to find, but Lowe’s carries it, and you can order it from Amazon.com.
- Newer bright green enamel. (This is the first picture above.) These are wonderful to clean. You can get almost anything off them if you scrub long enough. Only certain black markers will leave any kind of shadow. In the unlikely event that you want to paint, the closest spray paint I have seen is the Krylon Hasta Leaf paint. It’s not perfect, but good enough. I will post an exact match when I have one.
- Other odd greens. So I have noticed a small number of green mailboxes that are somewhere between the dark olive and the bright enamel green. It’s like the post office, for several years in the 1990s, couldn’t decide what the new green was going to be. You’re on your own dealing with these, and better hope you can just clean stuff off without painting.