Anyone Here dUsing One Of These?

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I'm supposed to be getting a 20X24 garage up, that would be sed for some woodworking also - mainly boatbuilding dI hope. However life is biting me in the ass on that for now, and no money isn't the problem. So I'm starting to think quite seriously about getting one of these steel shipping containers. Price is in the $1500 to $2000 USD range, and delivery can be arranged. I'd say that's a very reasonable price for an instant shop that size. I need something for working on automotive projects in the very ner future, and this would seem to be the best choice. I could also shift a lot of stuff out of my shop, my arc welder for example, and that'd free up a whol load of space there. I'd prefer a wood structure, but plan on a LOT of welding and grinding, and afraid I'd wind up burning a wood shop down, no matter how well it was prepared inside. Be pretty hard to burn one of these up. without using thermite anyway. And once the vehicle projects are out of the way, that'd free space for a wooden boat build.
We used them for various uses in the miliitary, including storage, offices, and work spaces. So I've familiar with them. A bit limited for side to side space with a vehicle, but loads better than what I've got just now - which is work outside on the ground, or nothing. I can cope.
However, the only space I have that I can reasonably put one at this time is on a minor grade. I think I can level a bit, end to end, but not all. So, looks like Illd have to someone jack idt up on one side, and short it up. So, if any of you have one of thes, and had to shore it up, I'd like to know how you did it, and is it holding up well?
JOAT I do things I don't know how to do, so that I might learn how to do them. - Picasso
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J T wrote:

I've often thought about those things too. For the same reasons as you. Almost an instant shop. I wouldn't be worrying about the flammability aspect, and I don't care about getting a vehicle in one.
My situation would be the same as yours. Wherever I put it, it would be on a slight grade. Around here, if a so-called building can be moved easily, it's termed "portable" and doesn't have to adhere to local codes as thoroughly. Although the container doesn't have wheels, I think it would still qualify because all you'd need to do is hook it with a cable and pull it onto a flatbed.
If that were the case, I would likely shore it with 8x8s where it needed it and skirt the bottom. If the local bldg code people insisted it was truly a building, it would be back to sono tubes and proper support.
I'm guessing you're wondering about the spacing of the shoring? I'd wonder about that too. The things are designed to lie flat on a bed or on pavement, so they might warp in the middle. I'd space the 8x8s pretty close together, but maybe the mfgr can advise on what that spacing would be.
Methinks the local bldg code people in NC aren't ever gonna find out about yours tho.
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I don't think you need to worry about warping unless you plan a tremendous load. Loook at the structure of the outside walls. There are square tubes on top which would be under compression in order to sag and the structures at the bottom of the walls (typically I-beams) would be under strain. The top beam and the bottom beam cannot separate since there is a constant weld seam connecting the side panels and the beams. As long as the load is straight down, it's a 8-9' tall 40' long beam. I have a 40' high-cube used-to-be-a-Hanjin container and the only way it's not really solid is in a twisting fashion (opposite corners). Also, the lift points are at the corners -- so when four points are hooked up to pull a container off a boat the middle is wholly unsupported. I supported the ends of the container and have a thousand or so BF of QSWO and probably 500 bf of misc hardwood stacked on top right now. Also, some miscellaneous sheet metal (say 1000#) and probably 1000# of other miscellany. Probably 3-4 tons of stuff inside. If I remember I'll site down the edge and check the deflection. SWMBO mandated that I keep the container inside the pole building -- it doesn't waste that much space if you stack stuff on top.
I use mine for storage not as a workspace -- it'd be pretty tight as workspace. As storage, however, it's great; if you don't open the doors much, a dehumidifier only pulls out a few (<4) gallons a month in the summer. Critter tight -- I have never replaced the open packet of mouse poison in the corner.
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Mon, Dec 17, 2007, 2:07pm (EST-3) snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com (hex) doth sayeth: <snip> it'd be pretty tight as workspace. <snip> Ah, but it's all relative. Even with my project vehcle in, which would be on those roller thingies so could have one side next to the wall, there'd be approx 30" of side space, which is actually more than I have in my hallway - due to bookcases along one wall. The vehicle also wouldn't take up but about half the length. Beats the Hell out of working outside, on the ground, especially in the cold, and/or wet. And, once the vehicle is out, if you consider that my present shop is 8'X12', that'd be a major space gain for me. I found out long ago, you've got to look on the bright side. Actually, once the vehicle stuff is done it'll be space to make a boat or two, and after that for storage and metal working - welding, forging, put my metal lathe in, engine builds, engine storage, and so on. Hell, just the thought of all this makes me so happy I may decide to paint the inside yellow instead of white. LOL
JOAT I do things I don't know how to do, so that I might learn how to do them. - Picasso
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On Dec 17, 7:00 pm, snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (J T) wrote:

I hear you -- my first woodshop space was half a one-carriage garage. ("Carriage" because it was old and you had to park just right so the car door would open into the walk door on the side to avoid crawling out the window.) But that's what was available and I'd have jumped for joy at the thought of 8w x9h x 40l and probably wondered what steps I'd have to take to keep from getting lost in there.
Still, go with a high-cube if you can -- the extra height makes it easier to light and you'll use the space. Here's a tip: most containers have internal tie-down points about every 5 feet (maybe 2 meters) -- given some chain or rope and a flat piece of plywood or a hollow core door with some 2x2's supports you can make suspended shelving which folds up for cheap -- and it doesn't eat up any floor space. (ascii art below). Maybe that's obvious, but I was happy when I figured that out rather than putting conventional shelving in.
------ ceiling/roof----- o | \ | \ | \ | \ ===== clear
space
here
------floor --------------------------
hex -30-
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wrote:

Wow.. you just produced a flashback, Hex..
The old detached garage at my folks house was so narrow that the only car the family ever had that would fit in it was my 31 ford coupe..lol
mac
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Is yellow one of the three colors they will paint it? I know you will want to torch in some windows or vents for summer use. A man in my area along the coast had inserted a roll-up door in one which made it neat looking. He had repainted it all Hanjin blue over the Logos and it looked great. Gone now or I would snap a picture for you.
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Sun, Dec 16, 2007, 7:10am (EST-3) snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com (bookman) doth query: Is yellow one of the three colors they will paint it? I know you will want to torch in some windows or vents for summer use. A man in my area along the coast had inserted a roll-up door in one which made it neat looking. He had repainted it all Hanjin blue over the Logos and it looked great. Gone now or I would snap a picture for you.
If I get one I'll paint it myself. May well paint the inside yellow, but thinking northern hemisphere woodland camouflage for the outside - I've got a lot of trees. Vents, maybe; windows, doubt it. I figure a big fan at the back would do. Shipping containers have double doors. Some storage containers are available with roll-up doors, and some are even 10' wide. Those don't seem to be near as available tho.
JOAT I do things I don't know how to do, so that I might learn how to do them. - Picasso
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"J T" wrote

Limited experience with helping move one in. My Dad has had a steel one for storing feed on his race horse farm for five or six years now. Being a farm and having a tractor available made it relatively easy .... would definitely want to have one available. Leveling wasn't a big problem because the land is flat and we graded the spot it was put in beforehand. Surprising how easy it was to jockey into position with one of the smaller tractors and front loader bucket to put it on blocks/cross ties ... it was obvious the floor would eventually rot/cross members rust if put directly on that gumbo clay. The last few trips up there I've noticed that rust has been a slight problem.
Secure and weather proof, for storage they're great, but having been in and out of one in all sorts of weather, I would not want to work in a steel one in any weather and would seriously consider one of the insulated reefers for that purpose.
Same, same as being in one of those "Conex" containers in the rainy season in RVN ... if you ever experienced trying to sleep in one to get away from the rain/rats.
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Sun, Dec 16, 2007, 9:28am (EST-1) snipped-for-privacy@nospam.com (Swingman) doth sayeth: Limited experience with helping move one in. My <snip> I would not want to work in a steel one in any weather and would seriously consider one of the insulated reefers for that purpose. Same, same as being in one of those "Conex" containers in the rainy season in RVN ... if you ever experienced trying to sleep in one to get away from the rain/rats.
If I get one I'd arrange for delivery, I'd think they'd put it where I wanted I hope.
Usually pretty moderate weather here. It'd be in shade about 75% of the day in the summer, and I think a big fan would work. At the state fair one year, found a farm exhibit with a torpedo heater running outside a tend, with some empty chairs. My youngr son and I spend about half an hour there, in the wind, and it was like sitting in a warm, but breezy, room. Amazing the heat that sucker put out. I'm sure a smaller version would work just fine. I figure coud always insulate one without too much prolems if called for.
I looked up CONEX. It means 'container express' and it's what the military call their shipping containers - which are identical with the civilian versions, except for the color. We had deluxe hootches, with tin roofs, that completely insulated the sound of the rain. LMAO First time I saw one of those rats was at night, almust startled the crap out of me. I didn't know what the Hell the damn thing was, just knew it wasn't any kind of animal I'd ever seen, and almost shot it with a .45. Damn thing was about as long as my forearm, and that's not including the tail. Man alone coulda been in a heap of trouble if those things traveled in packs.
JOAT I do things I don't know how to do, so that I might learn how to do them. - Picasso
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if you have room for 2 of them, put them side by side with 20 or so feet between. build a roof over the top, a fence across the back and a gate across the front and you now have a semi- secure outdoor workspace and 2 nice secure places to lock up your tools. if the space for the second container isn't there, put one end of the roof on posts and wrap the fence around that side.
the roof is probably pushing the definition of temporary storage as far as your local building codes are concerned, but it'd be a quick and cheap way to get some space.
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On Dec 16, 10:54 am, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

A local company turned one into an office.
They cut a whole in the side for a window and window shaker (A/C). The inside was insulated and sheetrocked. It was just sitting in the parking lot of the local industrial complex for a while. I'm not sure how they dealt with power, but they were definitely connected somewhere.
It would be tight working inside IMHO. Jim
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Sun, Dec 16, 2007, 7:54am (EST-3) snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com doth sayeth: if you have room for 2 of them, put them side by side with 20 or so feet between. build a roof over the top <snip of the rest>
Then I'd be damn well moving into permit territory. If I was gonna use a permit, I'd just build in the first place. In fact that's what I'd do now, if I had the space free. I can upt up a structur 16X16 feet, or the equivalent square feet, or less, with no permit required. That 256 squart feet. I could put in two of the 20' shipping containers, no prob. The second I joing them, I'm waaay over the legal limit, and the fine is a lot more costly than the permits would be. I found out how they check on stuff like this. Satellite photos. Dam Big Brother.
JOAT I do things I don't know how to do, so that I might learn how to do them. - Picasso
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On Dec 16, 11:56 pm, snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (J T) wrote:

You're down in tarheel country, right? Don't you have the same deal we have, no permits for agricultural uses? Get yourself a couple chickens and call it a farm. I could have saved a couple hundred bucks when building my shop a decade ago if I'd done that. Now, my wife is agitating for chickens because she doesn't like WalMart eggs with those pale yellow yolks...right at the time my doctor is telling me I should eat just the damned whites!
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I use 2 of them, one for long term storage with heavy duty shelves down one side, the other for everyday storage & even decanting bulk flammables, it has been equipped with static protection, rubber mats, grounded & exhaust fans fitted......I have thought of insulating one & putting windows & a man door in but as yet they are as they arrived. Very secure but freezing in the winter, one is in the shade & does not get too hot in the summer, the other in the open is not bad in the winter as long as there is sun. The only pain in the butt is opening & closing them as is, some days I can't be bothered. :-)
Jon~

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On Dec 16, 3:19 am, snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (J T) wrote:

I'm not sure these are the same things as the military metal buildings...the ones I saw had a window or two and a door. These have got end doors, and zip else, as you know. I have a friend who has two of them. He bought them to store half-burned gear when his shop went up in flames a year ago June. He sprayed them green, which is better than blue with signs, but they don't exactly look wonderful anyway. Not that he cares. I think your pricing is about what he paid, not quite two grand delivered for each one. Hot as blue blazing hell in summer, I can tell you that, and kind of tight, side-to-side, but otherwise, as a temp shop, a decent idea.
Have you thought about buying a used trailer (mobile home, for the PC) from one of the installers around? If you get it before they haul it off, they might bring it in, set it up, and the total cost shouldn't be over $2,000, giving you at least a semblance of heat and electricity. Low ceilings, though. A local instrument maker started out in a trailer as he built his current shop (he's been in that more than 15 years, though).
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'm not sure these are the same things as the military metal buildings...the ones I saw had a window or two and a door. These have got end doors, and zip else, <snip> Have you thought about buying a used trailer <snip>
Same same, just that the military name is CONEX - container express. If they had windows and doors, they must have been customized.
If I was just after more wood shop space, yep, I'd be happy to opt for a trailer. But I want to be able to do some vehicle work inside, and can't see getting a vehicle in one. I could take it all apart and go thru the door, but then I'd have to take it apart again to get it out.
JOAT I do things I don't know how to do, so that I might learn how to do them. - Picasso
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On Dec 16, 3:19 am, snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (J T) wrote:

A double layer of cementitious board, at least 5/8" thick per layer, should do the trick on the floor, one layer walls, maybe 3/8" ceiling if you're really going to be flinging fire.
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I am not aware of any 5/8" cement board. Who makes it? A single layer of drywall does a better job than the cement board as the gypsum releases moisture when it is near combustible temperatures. Sort of a self-extinguishing feature. It's also a lot easier to work with and a lot cheaper, plus it looks better, reflects more light, can be painted more easily, etc.
R
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"RicodJour" wrote

DAGS: "Permabase"
I use it in lieu of Hardibacker for shower and tub enclosures for two reasons ... it is less expensive than Hardibacker and equally effective, and our City building code requires "5/8 drywall in any occupied building, including the garage on property where an occupied building exits" so it is easier to keep wall surfaces consistent with 5/8" Permabase.
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