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People are talking about building tiny houses and cabins out of containers a lot recently. I built a cabin from a shipping container in 2012 to use as my primary (tiny) home. I only got it to fairly basic standards (basically an insulated box with two sets of doors) before the community I was living in collapsed and I moved out and sold it.
I’ve written my thoughts up for a couple of friends but have been meaning to do a better write up for ages. Here are the basic lessons I learned:
Overall I wouldn’t do it again unless for some reason I needed something fast and wanted to be able to sell it off fairly easily later. The research I did on toxicity didn’t leave me feeling comfortable, but I may be precious.
If I was going to build something like this again I would do it differently:
My analysis is that containers fall in the worst gaps of all of those. They aren’t particularly cheap, they aren’t particularly easy or cheap to move and they are potentially toxic.
One awesome thing you can do with containers is cantilever them. I have two designs that I’d love to build that would be super easy with containers … but over all I think it will be better to do it another way.
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