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Shipping Container Part Names and Pictures

05.09.2022 - Posted by Updated On 14.10.2022    

A shipping container is a relatively simple piece of equipment. It's limited in terms of parts, as it has four walls, a floor and ceiling, and doors on one end. However, the parts that you don't initially notice are where the container derives all of its strength.

Let's start with the basic components of a container – steel and wood. With the exception of the flooring, the nearly the entire container is made of steel; and some shipping lines are currently experimenting with replacing wooden floors with steel.  A little while ago we published this article on shipping container diagram and parts; this time we're going to take a more practical approach with pictures.

Shipping Container Walls and Ceiling/Roof

The walls and ceiling of a shipping container are constructed from COR-TEN steel. COR-TEN steel, also called weathering steel, is processed in such a way that helps to prevent it from rusting, which is very helpful as a container spends a majority of its time on the ocean.

Shipping Container Roof

Corner Castings

The corner castings are located on each corner of the container, just as you'd expect from the name. There are eight in total, and they connect the rails. If you think of the corner pieces on an Erector set, they behave much in the same way. The corner castings are made of poured steel.

Shipping Container Corner Castings

Top and Bottom Rails

The rails of a shipping container are welded to the corner castings and provide the framework that the walls, ceiling and floor are attached to. The run the length of all sides and are the key source of strength in the container.

Shipping Container Rails

Door Construction

Conventional shipping containers, both 20' and 40' units, have doors located on one end of the container. There are two doors, and each has locking gear that bolts the top and bottom of each door closed.

Shipping Container Doors

Floor Construction

The floor is typically constructed of wood, either bamboo or marine grade plywood, however as mentioned before there are a few shipping lines currently experimenting with steel flooring. The flooring material is supported by cross members, just as the flooring in a house is supported by a joist system.

Shipping Container Floors

If you're looking for shipping containers for sale, new or used, and have questions about how to inspect, purchase, or arrange delivery of a shipping container, we invite you to contact any of the sellers on Our sellers have shipping containers available throughout the United States, and around the world and they are available to both wholesale and retail buyers.

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