Container 101

Understanding containers and the ways they are used in building are fundamental to a successful shipping container project. Let us show you how to create your dreams with shipping containers.

A shipping container is a container with strength suitable to withstand shipment, storage, and handling. Shipping containers range from large reusable steel boxes used for intermodal shipments to the ubiquitous corrugated boxes.

Container Dinensions

Containers are most commonly found in 6m or 12m length x 2.44m width. The height is the main difference between the GP and HC units with High Cube containers being the most commonly used containers for container housing. This means that our container modular building blocks are available in these sizes.

6m GP General Purpose

Size: 6m x 2.44m (14m2)

Height: 2.39m (interior); 2.59m (exterior)

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6m HC High Cube

Size: 6m x 2.44m (14m2)

Height: 2.4m (interior); 2.9m (exterior)

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12m GP General Purpose

Size: 12m x 2.44m (14m2)

Height: 2.4m (interior); 2.7m (exterior)

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12m HC High Cube

Size: 12m x 2.44m (14m2)

Height: 2.4m (interior); 2.7m (exterior)

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Container Heights

The difference between a GP and HC container is mostly in the height.  GP stands for General Purpose whereas HC stands for High Cube.

The HC containers are 30cm higher than the GP containers and are far more suitable for housing given the extra ceiling height.

Containers can be used on their own, joined together with other container structures or joined with other building methods (this being what we refer to as a hybrid structure)

Individual Containers

Standalone container that is not connected to any other container or structure

Joined Containers

Container can be joined to other containers to create your ideal modular space

Hybrid Structures

When containers are joined to other buildings constructed from other traditional or non-traditional materials is known to us as a hybrid structure

Ground Preparation

Before the containers arrive it is crucial that the site is prepared perfectly for the containers.
There are various different options for the site preparation to suit almost any terrain, a few of the more common examples are listed below

Footings / Plinths

Steel Support System

Stacking Containers

Now let's look inside a typical container home

Use the slider in the middle to slide between the interior & exterior views of a typical 12m 1 bedroom container home

The Process

In order to get beautiful and perfect end products, the process below should be followed.

Just like with any type of construction, there is a lot to think about when building with containers so its important to have already defined your needs to make the process go as smoothly as possible.

From start to finish, we’re right here with you making sure the best decisions are made at all times.

We’ve tried to make things as easy as possible by splitting the process into the 4 main stages below.

  • Land, Design & Plans

    Lets get the basics

  • Planning

    Proper planning is needed for perfect execution

  • Site Preparation & Manufacturing

    Get your site ready and let manufacturing in the factory begin

  • Assembly & Connections

    Units are delivered to the prepared site & Connected accordingly

Step 1 – Land & Design

The very first step is to identify the geographical area you wish to place your container home as well as an overall idea of the size of the house as well as numbers of bedroom and bathroom requirements.

Next we need to consider aspects such as services (water & electricity); site preparation; building approvals; access for delivery, etc.

We work with an architect that can draw and submit plans on your behalf if need be.  This will be an additional cost payable directly to the architect for their services but this will ensure things are in a position to be handed back to us for manufacturing and keeps a strong coordination between the various stages of your container project.  We will always have a set of detailed manufacturing plans for your project.

This is the ideal stage to let out your creativity so we can create your perfect home.

Its time to start thinking about how best to use the spaces available most efficiently.

Step 2 – Planning

We have a range of standard singular and double container units available with some customisations available.

If our standard products are not being used, plans need to be finalised which will allow a cost to be finalised.

Estimations are available online but may not factor in all the items you are wanting for your container home, in this case we will manually adjust the pricing to be in line with your requirements.

Usually projects of more than 2 containers becomes a custom design.

A final costing can only be provided once a full set of plans has been generated.

At the end of this stage things should be ready or almost ready to commence manufacturing.

Step 3 – Site Preparation & Manufacturing

Prepare your site in accordance with the specifications and arrange the container delivery.

In cases where municipal permissions have been obtained, part of this requirement will be to have an engineer provide specifications for the construction of the foundation or footings for the container(s) and these will need to be built accordingly.

In cases where no municipal permission is needed, we can provide basic specifications for the preparation of your site.

While your final arrangements are made for the preparation of your site, the containers are being manufactured in the factory.  We usually try to coordinate the manufacturing processes with the final site preparation to ensure minimal time between completion of site preparation and final delivery.

Step 4 – Assembly & Connections

Containers are delivered to your site in the order that they are needed and are then placed with a crane into their final position and should only to be joined and sealed for use.

After modular assembly is complete your home will be ready for occupancy.

Singular units don’t require much intervention from us during the installation processes.  Multi-Container project require some sealing and joining to allow for the various internal elements to function properly.

Optional extras are usually installed at this stage.  Examples of these include cladding, deck, roof, geysers, solar electricity, rainwater harvesting systems, etc.

Our Digital Showroom

We can proudly say that we have the most advanced digital container showroom anywhere in the world.  We have spent years learning and evolving to bring you exactly what you want to see in the very best and beautiful of shipping container homes & structures and designs.

Container Papercraft

Do you love playing with shipping container designs?  We have created printable papercraft versions of our containers so you can start planning your dream multi-container home with ease.