We are covering the major aspects of building with shipping containers in this section. The initial factors you should be thinking when looking at this type of project are firstly a place to buy new or used shipping containers. If your near a port worth giving them a call to ask who they recommend in the area, otherwise do a bit of searching online for the nearest places as well as stick a few Free advertisements online. Once you have located a container before agreeing to purchase the unit its worth checking the unit out to see if its received any damage or rust. The next issue will always be transportation and handling. Here in the Philippines that can be 25% of the cost of the shipping container.
The location of where you are putting the shipping container is also important to make sure its level and accessible. This is where a cost many people don’t look at comes in which is the unloading of the shipping container which may not be covered by the seller offering transportation and handling of the shipping containers as the handling may come down to getting it to site and expecting you to crane lift them, pull them with a backhoe or some other way of getting them off the truck beds. DOUBLE CHECK WITH YOUR TRANSPORT COMPANY IN ADVANCE.
Once they arrive on site you can start looking at dropping them into position and always worth noting and making sure the ground is prepared to receive them and in the order you want. E.g. no point getting the 20ft shipping container you want to stick on top of your 40ft first if you have limited space to move. Make sure you build a foundation ready in advance and that the concrete mix is consistent to the requirements of the structure. On top of that a good time to lay any pipework or electrics to allow quick feeds into the shipping containers. The foundation can be different in design generally I would go for a suspended unit as it allows air movement to help prevent corrosive effects of moisture. But also you can carry out routine maintenance when needed.
Once in place you can start to cut the steel sections for your doors and windows but also remember the scrap steel is worth something or can even be utilized as security shutters etc. Adding the windows and doors are an important factor in getting the new building functional asap and also starts to give a look of a home rather than shipping containers left on a lot. Make sure you get the dimensions right on the doors and windows though to match in with your stud partitions as well as getting the correct depth of insulation if your going to insulate the interior of the shipping container.
I know some people are using a spray foam insulation for the exterior which is why I mentioned “IF” your going to insulate the interior. There is also the need to add extra supports as well as a roof frame and maybe even decking areas. I advise doing a bit of research to get the correct basic steps as this needs to be done a specific way to reduce risk of damage to the shipping containers and avoid accidents.