loading

Step 9: Comfort

If you're going to have a personal factory, you're going to need to make it enjoyable to work in.
  • Furniture: make your own, sized to your body and oriented to your working preference (sitting vs. standing, etc.)
  • Paint: all my containers are coated with white, high-reflectivity roof coating to keep them from getting too hot in the sun. Having just painted the inside of Shop-In-A-Box #002, I highly recommend it: it feels way bigger than it did with the gray original. Also, this paint is supposedly more resistant to mold than the original coating (we had some serious growth after leaving the container sealed with the lights on and water from the water table evaporating for several weeks)
  • Floor: standard containers have some wacky plywood treated to make it insect-, flame-, and rot-resistant. It's really nasty to get a splinter from; if you care, I recommend floor tiles or a garage paint (may or may not work on wood; lemme know your results if try it) 
  • Airflow: get big fans, and get more than one. Plasma cutting and most other processes that are any fun produce nasty fumes. Circulate clean air in from the outside and push the dirty out. This is as if not more relevant to safety than comfort. Here's a useful EPA document on air quality (pdf); go well above their recommended CFMs per square foot, and keep in mind that a fan's CFM rating is going to be far higher than the actual amount fresh air it delivers in real-world conditins
  • Roof: the ladder mounted on the interior of my door is the most useful thing I have ever made:)
  • Cord management: I have extension cords with outlets every several feet run inside along the ceiling's edge
  • Orientation: this matters for solar gain and prevailing wind if you're outside. Whether inside or outside, think about the positioning of your container's entrance relative to other tools and/or workspaces that you'll access. If you're going to repeatedly use a press brake 
  • Climate: toughness combined with attention to the above will be enough for most people. If you're getting hot in the container, get more fans: more airflow is going to improve your air quality, and the only downside is that you'll scatter papers. I don't like living in cold locations, so I haven't had to deal with a heating system. When I do, it'll most likely be a small, DIY wood stove surrounded by some rammed earth for thermal mass and located near the middle of the container.

<p>Plazma Solutions provides cnc plasma gas cutting machine services &amp; suppliers of metals. We use high end technology for plasma cutting in our workshop.</p><p>http://plazmasolutions.com/cnc-plasma-gas-cutting-machine-services-and-suppliers</p>
<p>Plazma Solutions provides cnc plasma gas cutting machine services &amp; suppliers of metals. We use high end technology for plasma cutting in our workshop.</p><p>http://plazmasolutions.com/cnc-plasma-gas-cutting-machine-services-and-suppliers</p>
<p>Plazma Solutions provides cnc plasma gas cutting machine services &amp; suppliers of metals. We use high end technology for plasma cutting in our workshop.</p><p>http://plazmasolutions.com/cnc-plasma-gas-cutting-machine-services-and-suppliers</p>
<p>Plazma Solutions provides cnc plasma gas cutting machine services &amp; suppliers of metals. We use high end technology for plasma cutting in our workshop.</p><p>http://plazmasolutions.com/cnc-plasma-gas-cutting-machine-services-and-suppliers</p>
I have a 40' container to build my workshop in. still no real electric just extension cords, no real lights yet either. On a high note it only cost $7000.
great!
I love the shop in a box idea. I look forward to seeing more!!!! B
Nice work
When I finally get the cash saved to buy my land,these are what Im going to use for my home,with some work of course.When I get finished,it will be hard to tell that they were once shipping containers.
Very nice! We use a container for a workshop, too.
A few pics...
Hello.Great idea and realization of it. <br> Have you thought about producing biogas to run your generator,and anything else that gas is good for ?
Heh. Good look with your anthromophic data in Kenya. They have the Maasai, the tallest people in the world and IIRC even some small number of Pygmy peoples.
Model thrice, cut once is good advice but I would modify it to &quot;Model on computer once, cardboard once, wood/plastic once, cut in steel.&quot; That is especially true with a tight space, mobile project.<br> <br> No matter how good our computer modeling tools, nothing beats physical model. It is easy to have something offset or protruding by 1/2&quot;/1cm be invisible in the model but be blocking in use.<br> <br> I once built a workbench with a foot locking/leveling bolt sticking out sideways maybe an inch. It look okay in the cad as I had placed it above the toe kick so my foot would slide under it and it was shorter than the toe kick. &nbsp;However, depending on what boots I wore, the bolt hit the top of my foot on the upper arch just where it rises to join the ankle. It made the workbench almost unusable because every few minutes I would bang into that bolt.&nbsp;<br> <br> You don't want to get out into the back beyond and find you can't use a tool because another tool or structural component is poking you in the back.&nbsp;
Word of advice from my cowboy/barnstoming-pilot/roughneck grandfather who had done and see it all: <em><strong>&quot;The powerful the tool, the easier it is to cut your own head off with it.&quot;</strong></em><br> <br> This type of small mobile factory might be a way around the endemic corruption in the 3rd world that strangles off most technical development. People can't import components and tools because corrupt officials place staggeringly high du jure and de facto tariffs on imported items. They like tariffs because shipping ports and airports are choke points in the distribution system they can easily control.&nbsp;<br> <br> A blogmate of mine worked with a charity shipping prefab building panels to disaster areas. Following the Haiti earthquake they tried to send some but corrupt officials levied a 200% tariff on the panels! &nbsp;<br> <br> The problem is so bad in some places that the people revert to techniques like hand filing matching bolts and nuts (each pair hand made and uniquely mated to each other.) It's more cost effective to have a guy stand there with a file all day essentially whittling steel and producing a noninterchangeable nut and bolt pair than it is to try and import a box of manufactured interchangeable nuts and bolts we'd by $10 for down at the hardware store.&nbsp;<br> <br> With the DIY factory, you might have to pay through the nose to get the factory in the country but once you did, you could manufacture essential products at reasonable prices. Considering how many people in the 3rd world die owing to a lack of basic technological infrastructure, you could save a lot of lives.&nbsp;
Are there any problems regarding condensation?
Hey Luke - what an amazing project! Congratulations on maximizing your useful work and storage spaces. A 40 ft container feels really big. Very inspiring and you're a good teacher.
1,000kWh+ battery <br>That would probably take one more container just for the batteries :D <br>
Very good job, I'm pretty impress by all you have done. Can you tell me why you do not use two containers side by side with the CNC in the middle to have almost 8' of space ? <br>Thank you for sharing ! <br>
This is great! I love what you have done here (specifically, providing the opportunity for a third-world locality to help build themselves up.) This looks like it would fit in perfectly with a missionary approach based on the Book of James in the Bible (don't say to a hungry man, &quot;God loves you&quot; and ignore his physical needs, but rather help him with food (clothing, charcoal making, etc.) and then tell him &quot;God loves you.&quot; <br> <br>Have you had any troubles with finding local workers with the talent to run the equipment? Also, are the raw materials available, in Kenya, for your production runs? Is it easy to get hold of those materials? How about training/coordination at the Kenyan end of things? Did you already have local contacts with whom you worked, or what? <br> <br>Perhaps this would be better moved to a Private Message (or direct email) conversation. I would like to discuss this with you further.
Wow... This is epic!! <br>Looks like you had more than a container's load of fun.. :D <br> <br>Question: would it be possible to make windows in a way that the container still meets the shipping codes/requirements? <br> <br>Thanks for sharing and inspiring !!
Walking a container would first require that we have an appropriate walking song. Probably something country/western, since containers are associated with trucks, but with a little Polynesian flavor to honor the inspiration, and of course, it would need a &quot;Yo-heave-ho&quot; beat :-)
Great read! Really interesting story and details.
Fun stuff, I'm tempted to vote for this just because of the entertainment factor xD
Great documentation, and a perfect community building project even in developed nations. I look forward to following the evolution of Shop In A Box. Thanks!
This is great stuff! My own particular interest is homebuilt aircraft, but I am very interested in this sort of small, lean, low-cost, off-the-grid manufacturing to reduce costs. I am also a container architechure fan. I would love to learn more about the specifics of your DIY factory design--footing and solar electric specs, etc. By the way, I happen to be living in Nairobi at the moment, so shoot me a message next time you're in town. Cheers, Matthew
This is awesome! Thank you so much for sharing all of these with us.

About This Instructable

43,302views

420favorites

License:

Bio: bicycles, gardening, and other important stuff
More by liseman:3D Print A Splint DIY Factory How To Get A Shipping Container 
Add instructable to: