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admin | Category: Living Container | 08.07.2015
In the course of the shipping container housing for Haiti thread there have been a number of suggested ways to anchor them. One of the advantages all along has been that the shipping containers require less foundation than most anything else.
First set of suggestions for anchoring, or tying them down were derived from standard operating procedures as applied to mobile homes in other places like Florida. Many long tent type stakes with birds mouth catches into the ground with sledge hammers were suggested. I've thought of pile driving steel posts cut from the end pieces of the culled containers and welding or strap rigging options.
In the end I myself am still for what is fastest and most simple that utilizes nothing that has to be bought or shipped in. Hence I continue to recommend determining what the best shape might be that could be cut for shakes from whatever steel is available, and pounding that into the earth to lip grab or provide anchoring strap points similar to what is common to be used to hold down trailer homes in hurricane zones such as encountered in South Florida. The orientation of the shipping containers, or tents, or whatever will be important as prevailing winds and expected wind directions will have bearing on whether or not anchoring of any sort possible in time available, will have success.
I have suggested three crews for shipping container shelter and eventual homes, one being the Foundation prep, and installation crew. Of the ideas for anchoring I've read of, well the bury of scrap wheels and other junk on the horizontal wire rope or steel strapped sound awfully good, though I wonder if there is on hand time and tools for that. I have taken a break from my editing project to have a look at wind effects on the layout of a shipping container village, that can give us some ideas on what is required for anchoring forces, and what effects the actual layout has on the forces imposed by the wind.
I wanted to see what effect staggering the containers would have, versus a rigid military style layout.

Note that this analysis is very preliminary and the numbers derived from this particular analysis should not be used for serious design work at this stage. If I had to live in Haiti I would choose to be above grade, for comfort & resistance to flooding. My vague impression is that the hurricanes don't always come from the atlantic side many circle throught the gulf 1st, making predictions of wind direction problematic at best.
Have a look at the wagon wheel concept Chris has posted- there is a central courtyard as you suggest.
Australian Standard for wind loadings takes account of the wind shadow effect for buildings in a built up area. We divide the country into 3 areas, one is normal, one is tropical cyclone and the third is severe tropical cyclone, with design wind speeds going up accordingly. During Larry, it started about 90 degrees to the north of normal wind direction (the eye didn't pass over us), swinging about 180 degrees as it progressed.
Since digging is involved, and machines are in short supply starting first with the obvious. For the tie down of the Containers, I'm not yet married to any standard way of doing it, but one system I'm leaning towards is to tie down the ends using steel cable, wirerope, or polypropeline rope, whatever stretches least, and we can use. So then, we dig holes at the four corners, as Garthh has suggested, and put something like Septic suggests, like junked car wheel rims and mechanically attach the wire rope, and or whatever we've got across the tops of the ends to what we set in the ground, using U bolt fasteners turned back to the loops.
Pulling tight could be a problem, and we may expect some settling, so some hefty turnbuckles might be a solution if the loops from the anchor points under ground were left long and terminated above ground. Of course concrete in these anchor holes would be real nice, but if we don't have that, bits of rebar pounded into the holes horizontally to hold stuff down would be recommended.

I've thought about the rust likely for terminus ends of steel wire rope underground, and considered slathering that with axlegrease, as a cheap rust inhibitor.
Wire rope is hard to cut with hand tools, but I think you can cut it with big bolt cutters.
If we have to use some sort of just plain old rope, to be able to cinch it all down tight we can put a truckers hitch in it. Far as these hand tools, well someone on the Foundation Anchor Crew ought to be designated as the toolmaster, and responsible for keeping track of them. I'm thinking that this sort of anchoring in principle would be an A type procedure, and a B type procedure, would be long metal stakes with birdsmouth cuts designed to catch the bottom edges of the containers. With the goal to re-define the notion of the ‘Florida House’ for the 21st century, the Florida Foundation for Architecture embarked on a design competition program in the summer of 2011  to explore the concept of integrating affordability and sustainability in the design of single family infill housing for neighborhoods and communities throughout Florida. Design for typical lot dimensions of at least 30 feet wide and 130 feet deep, with 5 foot side yard setbacks and 10 foot front & rear setbacks. A realistic cost per square foot budget analysis demonstrating that the entrant’s design can conceivably be constructed within a $60 to $70 per square foot cost range.
Utilization of sustainable construction materials, methods and details must be incorporated. This entry was posted in Residential, Shipping Containers and tagged Competitions, Containers by lance.

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Comments »

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