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You are currently viewing How Are Shipping Containers Made?

How Are Shipping Containers Made?

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At first glance a shipping container just looks like a big, but very simple, metal box with sides, a roof and a floor. However, there’s more to putting one of these metal boxes together than meets the eye. Shipping containers have to be made from certain materials and constructed in such a way as to withstand the rigours of regular loading, unloading and transportation over many years. There is also a variety of shipping containers, like the refrigerated container. So if you’ve ever wondered how the humble shipping container is made and how this process benefits you, read on to find out.

Have you ever wondered how a shipping container is made?

At a glance they just look like a huge metal box, but there’s more to putting one together than meets the eye, and there are different types of shipping container as well, such as the refrigerated shipping container.

But generally speaking there are 3 main types, or sizes of shipping container, and they are:

  1. 10 foot container
  2. 20 foot container
  3. 40 foot container

There is a huge international demand for cargo containers in the modern age, and not solely for transporting or storing cargo either. These days people build all sorts of things out of containers, such us mini shops, bars, cafes, restaurants, even houses.

We won’t delve into the building of specialised uses for shipping containers, but how they construct your basic cargo container.



Steel is the main component that makes up a shipping container, but there are other components and materials as well that go into the building of them.

Aluminium is also used, along with fibre-reinforced polymer. Or even a combination of all three materials.How Shipping Containers Are Made

Before a container can even start to remotely resemble the finished product, first big rolls of steel need to be cut to size. Advanced machinery run by computers takes care of the process. The cut steel is then sandblasted to remove any surface rust or contaminants, and then primed to seal it.

Cargo containers have to be super strong and durable, and to help increase their rigidity, the steel sheets are then corrugated for added strength.

The panelling for the roof and the floor bracing are made separately, then the walls are all welded into place forming a crude rectangle.

The next step is to weld square tubing on top of the walls. After this part of the process is done, the floor panels are put together to form a frame for the floor.

The container doors and the corner assemblies are a little more intricate, and these are completed as a totally separate process. Once the door assemblies are ready, they are attached to the frame of the container, followed by the wall panels.

All corner posts, the door assembly and the wall panels are then welded together to form a cohesive and very strong unit.

Once this is all complete, the actual container roof is then all welded together and secured to the top of the shipping container.

Now it’s time for some more priming and the actual painting of the container.

The wooden framework for the flooring is put in place, followed by the drilling of holes so the floor panels can be firmly attached to the frame.

The doors themselves are now installed and attached with rubber seals intact. The idea is for the entire container to be air tight and water tight. The container will be tested for this and finally inspected by a quality control expert.

If it passes the test, the completed shipping container will then be ready for sale or hire.

How Do You Assemble A Shipping Container



Sea containers have proved to be a popular choice for the construction of pop-up shops due to their natural mobility and ease to customise for varied needs. Additionally, repurposing/upcycling a used shipping container for your pop-up store is more sustainable than constructing your space using new materials. Otherwise, these still-structurally-sound metal boxes would end up sitting idle and abandoned in a port somewhere.

"Pop-Up Clothes Store" Made from A Shipping Container

“Pop-Up Clothes Store” Made from A Shipping Container

Shipping container pop-up shops provide several benefits that help them edge out other temporary store construction alternatives. They are:

  • Robust and secure. Cargo containers are made tough which means they will keep your property safe from burglars as well as the weather elements. Lockable windows and doors can be installed on your unit to ensure your stuff remains safe when you lock up at the end of the day.
  • Highly portable. Containers are designed with ease of mobility built into their core. So, when your campaign is done, you can easily move your pop-up shop to a new location without much hassle.
  • Super-fast construction. Your container store can be customized and fitted out in an offsite workshop and then delivered to the location of use ready for operation. The customisation work takes very little time ranging from a few days to a couple of weeks depending on the complexity of the modifications you need to be installed.
  • Deployable anywhere. Whether it’s in a parking lot, a garden or even an indoor exhibition hall, your shipping container pop-up shop can be deployed anywhere provided there is enough space. No preliminary preparation work is required for the site, just deploy and use. Additionally, you can choose from a variety of container sizes depending on your needs.
  • Unique experience. For a brand to be successful, it needs to set itself apart from the competition. A shipping container pop-up shop helps you achieve this with minimal effort and provides your customers with an impressive unique experience worth sharing with their friends.

The pop-up retail space enables you to invigorate energy around your brand while enabling your customers to discover and interact with your products. Building your pop-up space using a modified shipping container helps you achieve this easily with maximum value for your investment.

(Images from https://www.gopopup.com/en/pop-up-container/)

Read about pop up shipping container cafes >

6 benefits of using shipping containers for a pop up retail space

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