Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Shipping containers

So I've been obsessing about building something with shipping containers lately.

For those of you unfamiliar with containers, here is a basic rundown:

  • Containers are cheap and easy to come by. They hit a point where it makes more sense for an importer to buy a new one with their cargo coming from overseas than to rehab the old one and send it back empty. 
  • Containers are very sturdy, so your structural design is already done for you. 
  • They can be stacked in almost any way imaginable. Think of them as giant Legos for adults. (I think that's why I like them so much)
  • Doors and windows can easily be cut in with a cutting torch or wheel. 
  • They don't have any insulation, so you have to get creative, especially if you want to maintain the container look. 
  • Typical external dimensions are 8' 6" H, 8' W, and 20' or 40' L.
  • Typical internal dimensions are 7' 8" H, 7' 6" W, and 19' 2" or 39' 1" L. 

I have a few ideas for something on our own property, which I'll try to put into Sketchup and post later on. In the meantime, here are a few of my favorite shipping container projects:

Container City

A Google search will come up with tons of results, including design and construction companies, architects, blogs, and photo galleries.

I like almost everything I've seen, but there are some projects that simply use the containers for their structural value and not for design. To each his own, and if it saves money, go for it, but I personally think that it defeats a lot of the purpose if you don't incorporate the container's existing look into the design. 

No comments:

Post a Comment