Tag Archives: foundation

Containers next week end!

An un-expected business trip and a long weekend have combined to create what may be a perfect storm.  The plan is to have the containers delivered next Monday (the 17th) assuming that the teamsters work on MLK day.  If they do (which I will find out tomorrow), or if I can get them to deliver the containers on Saturday or Sunday (again, we’ll see what the Union has to say about that), then we should have them in position by Monday evening.

This does lead to one interesting question: How do I best provide a foundation for them?

Given the location in and amongst a beautiful oak grove that I don’t want to destroy, the only way short of heli-lift to get them in place is to drag them to their destination. This is certainly feasible but it means that I can’t easily lift them to put them in place. The area is tight enough that even the idea of getting them in line and then pushing then lifting them just a bit isn’t going to work either, as there isn’t enough room to have the container next to a foundation.

Actually, as I’m thinking about it. I have enough room for two containers in line.  Just barely.  As I think of this more, it looks like were going to have to push the containers into place, then jack them up (possibly manually), and we’ll likely then just set them on cinder-block for the near term.  Longer term, I expect we’ll jack them up another 6 inches, dig ~1′ deep holes, put in short footer pilings (using the cardboard piling tubes), and pour 4 level posts/container, and then let the container back down on the posts.

The other question is wether to try to level the location first (or provide an almost level but sloped downhill spot). The thought is that it would dramaticaly simplify the install and leveling of the container if I don’t have dramatically different heights on each corner to deal with, but I also like the ~zero land impact of just setting the containers there and worst case poking some regional holes in the ground.  I think we’ll have to see how uneven the soil really is when I get something flat and “level” in place.

At this point, I’m planning on acquiring a couple 8′ 4×4 posts that will be cut down to 2′ lengths to provide a crib under the lowest corner so that we can get the container approximately level before placing it on the cinder or concrete. We’ll be able to re-use these as posts for the decking that will sit in front of the containers by the end of the spring. I’ll also pick up 12 6×6 cinder blocks and a few of the 6×12 cap-stone pieces to set up the foundation.  Worst case scenario, there’s actually a home depot ~30 minutes away, so it’s not impossible to go pick up some extra bits.  Once we’ve gone through this process, I’ll put together a concise list of what we really used, as next time, we may not have a large building store so near by!

Current materials list:

  • 4x 8’x4″x4″ (for cribbing under the container)
  • 1x 8’x2″x6″ (for jack suport, etc.)
  • 12x 6″x6″x6″ cinder-block (for temporary foundation)

Current rental list:

  • Large tractor (we’ll find out tomorrow how big we can reasonably expect to get up to the property)
  • Chains to move the containers around with
  • 20 ton jack

Lastly, if there are folks that might be available to help with the install (either with experience, or just to experience this), leave me a comment, and I’ll get in touch with you about the particulars of exactly when and where to meet.