Archive for Shipping Container Homes

Shipping Container Building

Follow Building Codes When Building A Shipping Container Home

shipping container building

Bob Vila, from This Old House, used shipping containers in a project to create affordable housing for the poor in Tampa.  These shipping container homes are both durable and economical.

Home construction with recycled used shipping containers is eco friendly and the construction cost is much lower than conventional construction with block or wood.  A shipping container building is a very cost effective form of construction.

Following your local building codes is crucial when planning your shipping container home.  It’s very helpful to be able to provide professional architectural designs for the house.  These are not too difficult to create using specialized software such as that provided by Containers 4 Homes.

A main concern of using steel containers for a house, particularly in wet areas, is corrosion resistance. You need a durable outer coating to make sure the steel is protected, or you could have serious rust issues in a couple years.  Here’s an example of how to put an exterior stucco finish on a shipping container building.

If you’re looking for more tips on eco-friendly construction and shipping container building, the Green Building Council is a good resource.

 

Unique Shipping Container Homes

Ways To Make Your Shipping Container Home Unique

Shipping containers, you all know the ones I am talking about. Massive rectangular blocks of steel, used to transport items can be found by the bucketload in ports all around the world. There are literally millions of these things in use at the moment.

One of the most creative ideas to come out of the architectural and building industries in recent years, is the conversion of these containers into either studio units, or even full blown houses. These are known as shipping container homes and they can range from the boring ‘site shed’, nothing done to it unit, to creative, crazy and ingenius container home designs that leave you wishing you house was made of them.

So what is the difference between a boring container home and a unique one?

If you are looking at building a house from one or more of these containers, then here are a couple of simple design changes you can make that will really make your new home stand out.

  • Stagger Containers to Create BalconiesIf you are creating a two story construction, one of the things I love about shipping containers is that since they are so long, you can cantilever the top container to create a lower level balcony with a roof, and an open balcony on the second floor for your main bedroom. Not needing support posts can really give your container home a really sleek look.
  • Incorporate Containers into a Regular ConstructionContainer homes do not need to be made solely from containers. Incorporating several of these containers into a regular stick frame construction can really make your design ‘pop’ and allows the containers to become the feature.
  • A Roof Top GardenOne thing that a container home has that most regular homes don’t, is a flat roof. This opens up a lot of opportunities to create a roof top entertaining area – either covered or open. This would be perfect for a single container unit, as a simple ladder doubles your living area.
  • Space Saving IngenuitiesUnless you are using a lot of shipping containers, or designing a combined ‘stick frame and container’ home, chances are you are going to be a little tight on space. A lot of these homes that are smaller, incorporating space saving features such as wall beds, hidden cupboards and pull-out tables.

Now there is basically an unending list of different features and style changes that you can make that will make your container home unique, but hopefully the suggestions I have made will be enough to get your creative juices flowing, so that you can come up with your own ideas.

Thomas runs a website that looks at the granny flat and small home market in Australia. Visit the site to learn more..

How to Stucco A Shipping Container

Exterior Stucco Finish For A Container Home

There are a variety of ways to finish the outside of a shipping container home to both make it more attractive and to protect the metal surface from the elements.  One way to apply an exterior finish to a shipping container is to use stucco.  A stucco finish can make a shipping container home look more like a traditional home and blend into the surrounding homes.  The stucco may be painted after applied and allowed to dry.  This video shows how to stucco a shipping container.  Here papercrete is mixed with portland and a small amount of latex paint are used to spray several layers on stucco on a shipping container used for a tool shed.

How To Stucco a Shipping Container

Shipping Container Homes And Designs:

Shipping Container Crush Strength

Crush Resistance of a Shipping Container

What is the load bearing weight of a standard 20 foot shipping container?

I am thinking of placing three 20 foot shipping containers 6 feet in the ground and then using fill dirt on top of them. How much load bearing weight can shipping containers safely withstand?

The tare weight is listed on the sides of most cargo containers. I believe that for a typical 20 foot cargo container it’s something in the area of 36,000 pounds.  Of course you’ll want to have load limits like this verified before building a container home.  In many locations you will have to submit a home plan containing this information before being issued a building permit to construct your container home.

All of this type of engineering information as well as CAD design for container homes, container home plans and more are contained in the Containers 4 Homes package.

shipping container

Shipping Container House Construction

Shipping Container Homes And Designs:

Shipping Container House Plans

Shipping Container Home Plans

What happens to all those empty shipping containers once they are no longer needed? Shipping containers travel across the world carrying goods that are loaded at the starting point and emptied at the destination point. 20 foot and 40 foot containers are reusable up to a point, and then have to be disposed of.  Many people have put those shipping containers to work as homes using shipping container house plans designed with the aid of CAD software specifically for designing container homes taking into account the unique building properties of cargo containers.

Statistics on the lifespan of shipping containers shows that cargo containers are built tough to last long. Life expectancy for a typical shipping container can range from 10 to 20 years. A long time indeed, but containers spend on average, over 50 percent of their lifespan idle or repositioned. When a container’s usefulness is over, it would appear it is simply abandoned to the mercy of the elements.  Of course shipping containers can last much longer than this when used in construction and given the proper exterior finish.

In many shipyards around the world, there are piles of shipping containers rusting their way to eternity. An eyesore that just keeps growing bigger and getting worse with the passing of time! Take China for example, the country is so heavily into manufacturing and exporting goods, that the Chinese are shipping enormous numbers of cargo containers to the U.S. on a daily basis.

Shipping Container House Plans

One eco-friendly solution to the glut of shipping containers that abound is using them for shipping container homes! Quite a jaw dropping answer indeed – but one has to admit that it’s a very simple and practical solution to affordable and green housing. New Age, an Australia newspaper, ran an article fairly recently on the provision of cargo container housing for victims of the quake and tsunami disaster in Japan. A team of architects designed simple shipping container house plans and quickly converted shipping containers into housing for thousands of displaced people in Japan.  There’s also some good information available on shipping container homes from the Green Building Council

Affordable Shipping Container Homes

Interest in shipping container homes first began with the world waking up to the fact that these cargo containers were piling up, literally in every sea port in the world. It’s estimated that there are over one million surplus shipping containers in the United States alone. Through the efforts of eco organizations, builders and designers, many of the surplus shipping containers are now being used to construct affordable housing, apartments, offices and more with unique shipping container architecture.

The realization of the enormity of the potential of shipping containers as homes has given impetus to the creation of shipping container house plans and the construction of increasing numbers of these prefab homes. The incredible strength of the shipping containers and the relative ease of cargo container construction, has led to one of the fastest growing building trends which seems certain not to let up anytime soon.

Consider using the Constructure Guide when drawing up your shipping house plans so you’ll be sure to take into consideration the unique engineering properties of cargo containers and factor in the applicable building codes.

Shipping Container Homes And Designs:

Shipping Container Homes and Humidity Problems

Avoid Humidity Problems In a Shipping Container Home

Prior to building your shipping container home be sure to take into account the unique construction properties of the materials you’re working with.  A shipping container home can be very susceptible to humidity and moisture problems if you don’t plan ahead when designing your container home.

You should insulate the shipping container on both the outside and inside.  Many people then line the inside of the container with plaster and insulation rockwall. However moisture can be trapped behind the gypsum board and the steel surface.

You should plan on installing a vapor barrier. It can be as simple as a sheet of plastic which prevents the moisture from entering the interior of the home. Construction steel makers have the same problems to deal with and it’s instructive to take a look at the type of insulation and moisture barriers they use.

All of these types of details are covered in a good manual on building a shipping container home such as the container home plan designs provided by Containers4homes.

 

Shipping Container Homes And Designs:

Shipping Container Home Plans

Build A Large Underground Bunker With Shipping Containers

The Bunker Ark2 in Canada, was built with about 40 buses and houses around 400 people. Something similar could be built using shipping containers although most people wouldn’t need something so large.

How many shipping containers would you need to use to house 100 people with adequate kitchen facilities, rooms, bathrooms, etc.  What would a shipping container project like this cost?shipping container home plans

This could probably be done for around $300,000. Here is a cost breakdown: A shipping container is 8 feet in width and 40 feet long. That is 320 square meters and could consist of 1 bedroom, a bathroom, kitchen and living room. Assuming 2 people sleeping in the bedroom and one sleeping on a pull out bed in the living room. A cargo containers can usually be purchased for $2400 or less used. Accommodating 100 people would require 34 containers. So, 34 x $2,400 = $81,600. The containers will have to be connected, insulated, etc.  Estimate $4000 per finished unit. $4000 x 34 = $136.000 $81.600 + $136.000 = $217,600 That gives you over $80 for concrete footings and other miscellaneous costs.

Shipping Container Home plans

From Containerhome.biz

Shipping Container Homes And Designs: