Ocean Going Containers
An ocean going
container makes a great storage space. They are weatherproof,
pest proof, secure, maintenance free and virtually indestructible.
It is not for urban or suburban settings since homeowners
will not want that industrial rail yard look.
Unless put under a roof, hidden or
camouflaged somehow, the neighbors will not like it. The only other
down side is that the summer sun beating on it will cause the interior
temperature to soar.
||These containers have thick unitized steel
bodies that make them incredibly strong. They are built to be
stacked on top of one another. They can be supported on just
the four corners or placed directly in contact with ground.
A 20’ container weighs about 5000 lbs and can hold up
to 36,000 lbs of cargo.
I live in a rural setting so ocean
going container was the way to go for me. I settled on a 20’
since they had enough volume and were manageable in size, you can
pick an end up with a car jack, put rollers like logs under it and
pull it around with a pick up truck. The most common are 40’
but they are too big, once set down they will take specialized heavy
equipment to move.
I looked at some that were for sale
in the Spokane WA area and did not like what I saw. Depending on
the condition, 20’ containers were anywhere from $1500 to
$3000 not including the delivery charge of $1500 for a 100 mile
trip. The cheaper ones looked like they were winched up from Davy
Jones’s locker. They were banged up, doors tweaked and required
great strength or a sledge hammer to open and filthy inside with
big rust spots on the exterior. Surprisingly the higher priced units
were just marginally better than the cheapest. They appeared to
be the same lower end units with rust spots spray painted over and
the inside swept.
Well I did not want to spend thousands
of dollars to make my place look like the beginnings of an industrial
waste land. I looked for containers in better condition and to my
surprise I found that I was able to buy a new 20’ container
for $2500, this was in 2005. Don't bother with local dealers, go
big, there are millions of containers in circulation globally. I
found a company online headquartered in Houston TX called ContainerSales.com,
"the worlds largest used shipping container outlet". They
found a new container in Seattle WA for me and arranged the delivery
for an additional $700 right to the spot I wanted it put. New in
the container business means the unit has hauled something once.
They are built overseas and to make the trip cost effective they
The container was as advertised, new.
I really liked the tongue and groove hardwood flooring. It was even
certified with a certification plate on the door, meaning I could
theoretically load it up with something and ship the whole thing
to anywhere in the world. The container has a weather proof vent
at each corner but as mentioned earlier it gets boiling hot inside
in the summer sun unless the door is left cracked opened. A better
solution is to put it in the shade or have a roof over it.
©Eerik Jaspers |
©Ken Munyard |
My container was transported on a special
flatbed truck built for the purpose and work in the ports. I placed
four concrete filled small tires at the corners as pads to keep
the unit off the ground. The truck driver backed up to about 30
feet from where I wanted it, got out a gallon jug of liquid soap
and liberally applied it to the sides of the flatbed where the container
would come in contact. He then gunned his engine, backed up at speed
and slammed on his brakes. The inertia slid the container on that
soapy deck until it was teetering on the back 8’ of the bed
which was a hydraulic lift gate.
|He then backed the container over the pads,
tilted the gate so the container end dropped and made contact
with the pads, then he gunned the truck forward, dropping the
other end perfectly on their pads. I was impressed, he was obviously
an expert. The whole operation took only a few minutes after
he lined the truck up.
There are companies that specialize
in customizing containers. They can install windows, garage type
doors, regular doors, lights, heating cooling units, you name it.
I will probably build my own shelves along the inside walls and
set up lights and maybe a receptacle for power. one.
20' container used for home storage.
City Containers as innovative modular
systems for affordable solutions to a wide range of urban
needs including office space, studios and even apartments.
Check out the photo gallery,
a real eye opener.
West A list of suggested storage solutions using containers
for farmers, loggers, contractors and just about anyone who
need secure storage.
"the worlds largest used shipping container outlet".