Friday, June 17, 2011
Choosing your shipping container
Points on how to choose your shipping container
Shipping Containers can be used for so many different purposes that it is easy to forget that you need to start with a good condition container before you start anything. Obviously if you are using a new/once used container this is easy as they should come with a full guarantee. If however, you like the eco-friendly approach or are budget conscious obviously a second hand shipping container is going to be your choice and therefore you need to make sure you get a good quality one.
• The normal length of a shipping container is either 20ft or 40ft but basically containers can be made any length up to 40ft. The standard width is 8ft. Cabins are available in various sizes the most standard being 32ft long by 10ft wide.
• All shipping containers should be guaranteed as being wind and watertight. If you can go and visit the depot to select the container yourself or ask for photographs of the actual unit.
• When you receive delivery of your container take a good look round it. Pull the door to and see if there are any pinpricks of light shining through indicating that there are small holes. Don’t forget to look up at the ceiling !! Don’t shut the door completely as could be difficult to get out!
• Just as people forget to look at the roof many fail to take a good look at the floor. Check to see whether there are any “soft” areas or patches in the floor.
• Containers can often smell of the goods it has been transporting – make sure yours isn’t too overpowering
• Look for how badly the sides are dented from handling. 20fts are often more sound in this respect than 40fts which have less support per foot down the side due to the extra length. Every second hand container will have a few dents but where these are actually sited can be really important for a shipping container conversion.
• Check how well the locking mechanism on the door works
• Open and shut the doors and see whether the rubber seals are in good condition
• Make sure the container is sited on level ground so that it doesn’t “rack” and cause problems later on.
Bear these points in mind when you choose your container and hopefully you will be able to ensure that you always have a container that you can use, trouble free, for years to come.