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 Post subject: Self Containered
PostPosted: Wed Dec 21, 2011 9:06 pm 
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Joined: Sat Feb 05, 2011 4:18 pm
Posts: 33
Obviously a mistake.


Last edited by Terry on Sat Dec 24, 2011 11:33 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Self Containered
PostPosted: Thu Dec 22, 2011 4:53 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jun 10, 2005 11:43 am
Posts: 310
Location: Perth, Western Australia
Terry wrote:
As a sculptor I really need to use my hands, so as a substitute for my inability to get on and start building, I decided to make a model of the house. It's a fairly simple cardboard and glue-stick effort - but it really helps me get a good idea of what the house will hopefully be like. The scale is 1:50.


Man, you have way to much time on your hands!

Very nice job.

I know we have been here before, but I can't help myself - do you really think you need the containers? Looking at the finished product the original containers are almost invisible, I can't help wondering what advantage it has over framed construction...

I like the style though. You might consider folding the insulated envelope around the water tank, since you are almost there anyway. I like the idea of using water for thermal mass, especially on a lightweight structure like this.

What's the bet it all changes when you have an actual site to consider? :-)

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Bruce
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 Post subject: Re: Self Containered
PostPosted: Fri Dec 23, 2011 8:43 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 25, 2009 8:51 pm
Posts: 104
Location: Tungkillo, South Australia
Very cool modelling Terry. As Bruce suggests, since you have removed so much of the containers from the structure of the building, perhaps you can move away from them altogether.

I can see the engineering of such a building being a nightmare. You may even preclude yourself from secondhand containers as weathering and age will affect structural strength and slicing them apart as your design looks to do would destroy structural integrity.


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 Post subject: Re: Self Containered
PostPosted: Fri Dec 23, 2011 12:40 pm 
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Joined: Sat Feb 05, 2011 4:18 pm
Posts: 33
.


Last edited by Terry on Sat Dec 24, 2011 11:33 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Self Containered
PostPosted: Sat Dec 24, 2011 8:51 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 25, 2009 8:51 pm
Posts: 104
Location: Tungkillo, South Australia
Hey Terry, don't take the questioning as my asking if you know what you're doing or proposing. It's good to get outside feedback that asks questions and poses problems you may not have yet thought about or found a solution to.

I think the idea of recycling and reusing is a noble goal, and we are doing that with our own build. There is also a massive surplus of containers world wide at the minute as you say.

I work for a company that imports/exports and I've seen these containers suffer structural failure when incorrectly loaded for lifting and stacking purposes. That second container with both long sides removed in your exploded view is likely to need some serious reinforcing work across the width of all three containers to stop your roof from bowing inwards.

Bruce's idea about using prefab steel (or wood) frames with suspended floor might be worth a further look just to compare costs of having a team on site for a 1-2 days to erect it versus the shipping containers and engineering costs. Since you are going to skin both sides (and floor/roof?) of the shipping containers anyway, you'd be comparing apples with apples in terms of the finished product.


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 Post subject: Re: Self Containered
PostPosted: Sat Dec 24, 2011 9:43 am 
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Joined: Sat Feb 05, 2011 4:18 pm
Posts: 33
.


Last edited by Terry on Sat Dec 24, 2011 11:34 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Self Containered
PostPosted: Sat Dec 24, 2011 11:18 am 
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Joined: Fri Jun 10, 2005 11:43 am
Posts: 310
Location: Perth, Western Australia
Terry wrote:
As I mentioned on earlier posts, the primary reason for using them came from being faced with the prospect of being the sole builder in the countryside without being able to call on friends for assistance. Apart from the obvious skills needed in constructing structurally sound timber framing (as opposed to mainly cladding-frames) most other forms of build (such as kit homes) really depend heavily on more than one person on site.


Just to continue advocating for the devil...

Building structurally sound steel or timber stud frames does not need sophisticated skills. For steel you would need basic welding skills, a one-day workshop or a few hours with an experienced welder would be more than ample. For timber the ability to point a nail gun is about it. In either case the most important thing is careful measurement.

My dad built all his steel frames himself on site without assistance. He had done a few small welding projects (shelving mostly) but that was about it. He was in his 70's. Dad, my brother-in-law and myself raised all the frames in about 3hrs. With care you could probably raise the frames on your own - just make sure that you keep frame modules to a modest size. Once you get one corner right you are set.

Quote:
I've done considerable research on this and the use of containers as a modular structural unit allows me to work on cladding the exterior and interior to my liking. Why do you see using containers as being any different to a steel framed kit home? Having the containers simply gives me a shortcut to the basic structure.


I am sure you have put a lot of research into this, but have you put as much research into conventional framing? And the most important piece of research - what does your engineer say?

Look closely at this photo:
Image

And you will see that all the interior walls are steel stud frame anyway. The exterior walls are steel stud too - add a few noggins and some diagonal straps and the containers become redundant. What the containers are actually contributing to this building is floor and roof framing (but you still need to install flooring and roofing).

Quote:
Also I am interested in the ideology of recycling - shipping containers are amassing at an alarming rate due to their cost in returning empty containers to port of origin. I would like to try and use as much recycled material in my build as possible.


The containers in your example do not make any significant reduction to the use of new steel in the building. The issue of stockpiled shipping containers is interesting, but only if you live somewhere where this is the case (in which case you will presumably be able to get the containers for free). Using shipping containers in an area where there is a demand for shipping containers for conventional use is not really recycling - it just means more new containers will be built.

Quote:
Another advantage of using containers is they can sit on posts which does away with the need for a concrete slab. Not only is concrete one of the most 'ungreen' building products, the cost of a slab alone that is the sq. metre size of my design is way over the cost of buying and having delivered, all 4 containers plus the posts for them to sit on!


This is a good point. Much will depend on your site, but there are several alternatives to building on a concrete slab, framed construction being the obvious candidate. Your containers will save you in bearers and joists, but you will still need footings.

Having said all that, if you want to build your house out of shipping containers more strength to your arm! My comments are not so much addressed to you as to other readers who may be tossing up various construction approaches.

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Bruce
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 Post subject: Re: Self Containered
PostPosted: Mon Dec 26, 2011 12:32 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jun 10, 2005 11:43 am
Posts: 310
Location: Perth, Western Australia
Terry wrote:
Obviously a mistake.


Please accept my apologies Terry, the mistake was mine. I knew that you were not interested in dissenting views but I pressed on anyway.

I really like your design, I think you did a great job of modelling it and I am impressed with the amount of research you have put into it. Really, I only disagreed with one small aspect of your proposed construction (keeping in mind that once you have your house to lockup - walls, roof, floor, windows, door - you are less than halfway there). I didn't disagree because it was unconventional, I disagreed because I thought it was expensive, restrictive, slow and possibly not as environmentally sound as it first appears. I could be wrong, and I am open to that, but if everyone treats their preferred construction technology as a religion then it is hard for any of us to change and really hard for new members to make any sort of objective assessment.

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Bruce
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