Building a “Container Castle” for fun… well, not much fun…

21 Jul

Welcome to ALTERNATIVE HOUSING 101.7:

For those of you following along…

(I keep picturing school kids marching up the street, tied to each other with ribbons, like you see in the movies! Stop that! It’s spooky!) LOL!

… I’m building a house out of “garbage.” Actually, it’s a house built out of “recycled materials.”

But the word “garbage” is the one bandied about by the local authorities, when they try to describe it, especially in hearings, to determine it’s worth.

By now, you’d have to be living under a rock to have avoided all my previous rants, at the sorry state of my family’s living conditions, as I write this.

Suffice to say, I hope that He whacks “my slumlord” a good one, with the “You’re a real idiot!” stick…

Desperate times call for desperate and creative measures.

And since I didn’t have the “gray matter” required to pull something truly spectacular out of my butt… I came up with this brainstorm.

I’m going to move my family into a house built out of “shipping containers.”

(NO! Stop that! I LOVE my family. I do TOO! They’re the best! I just have no other real choices left to make!)

Last time we talked about the house, we started building “the box that the boxes will sit on top of,” to form the house. Now, you normally call this a foundation. I call it a backbreaking pile of concrete and cement, whose secret goal is to kill me before I can get finished with the house. Talk about labor! Oy Vay!

The next time my wife talks about “labor,” I’m gonna wave this in her face, like it was the flag!

“Labor? You only labored for 36 hours, with Joshua. I labored for a week! A week! He only weighed 7 pounds! My stuff weighed tons… So there! My back is killing me! LOL!

Where was I? Oh yeah… (Senility is a terrible disease, huh?)

I think that the house is going to look something like this;


As you can see, it’s just a pile of boxes, with decks attached at every conceivable point, to allow the people inside to get outside, probably away from us! LOL!

(Plus, it gives us several “high points” to drop those pesky “Jehovah’s Witnesses” off of! It’ll give “The Watchtower” a whole new meaning, eh? Only Kidding! We’ll drop Mormons off it, too… LOL! Of course I’m not serious… can’t anybody take a joke around here?  Oy Vay!)

I’m KIDDING… Perhaps. Perhaps not…

Like I said in the last post, the “ground floor” is basically just garage space, storage, and workshops. Because we’re in “Hurricane Country” it’s important to get the “life spaces” up in the air, as high as safely possible. That way, when the storm surge starts to crest, we might lose a tool or two, but the house and the inhabitants will be “high and dry.” (We hope!)

So, foundation firmly in place, we start going “up.”

Okay, okay… First impressions. The box is literally “two connected shoeboxes.” The walls and ceilings get sheet rocked and insulated, and that leaves the floors. All of the flooring will be concrete, with “radiant heating’ installed. This way,  I can finish the floors using contractor tricks I’ve picked up,  and save some cash on flooring costs. I may even use pigmented concrete and stamping frames, to simulate “tiles.”

We’ll use carpets and rugs (and even some rubber “tiles”) in some traffic areas, for comfort.

I had the rubber tiles left over from a home gym I built once, that I never used except for “storage…”  Did you know that a treadmill makes a dandy place to hang a sports coat, until the wrinkles fall out of it? Hmmm? LOL!

The 5th “floor” is actually just a 192 square foot “staircase lobby,” that dumps out onto the roof. The lobby is just a “secret loft” hide-away place, filled with books and magazines, and hopefully it will be fairly quiet. Looking through the french doors, you’ll see the place the 16’x16′ Greenhouse, some planters, and a hot tub reside. It’s “Mom and Dad” space, up away from everything. Not exactly an oasis, but close enough…

The goal here was to get the greenhouse up in the air as high as possible, to maximize exposure to the sun. The “spa space” is just gravy… I’m still debating enclosing the area in a screen lanai.

As you can see, the building itself will take on a rather “minimalist” modular appearance, boxy, with siding and trim defining areas. We haven’t decided on “cladding” yet, but I suspect it will be stucco and siding.  And, as I’ve said before (weren’t you listening?) wrap-around decks will allow a lot of “exterior living space,” to allow us to enjoy the elements, when mother nature allows.

Talk about “blank slates!“ The “general boxiness” (not to be confused with “Major Boxiness…) of the residence allows us to make it “look” like just about anything we want.

I’m thinking 17th Century Moorish, right about now. If I shoot it with stucco coats (at least three, 3/8ths of an inch thick) and smooth out the finish, it’ll look like a big sandstone palace…  I think… I hope… or my wife will kill me…

Next time, we’ll start hitting the staircase, to explore each floor. Better eat your “Wheaties!”

Stay tuned!

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