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Shipping Container Parts and Assembly

11.08.2013 - Posted by Updated On 11.08.2013    

Shipping containers aren’t high tech, and there are relatively few parts and components that can break or be damaged beyond repair.  For the most part, all standard dry shipping containers, 20’ or 40’, have the same core parts.  To accurately explain and document any damage or questions regarding a container it is convenient to be able to reference the parts by their accepted name.  Without naming all of them, we have compiled a list of the most frequently discussed parts.

Shipping Container Assembly Container Door Assembly

Basic Container Terminology

Front End:   When referring to the “front end” of a shipping container, it means the end that’s opposite the doors.  When a container is on a truck, the doors are to the rear so that makes the non-door and the front.

Rear End:  The end of the container that has the doors.

Curb Side:  When facing the rear end of the container the right side is the curb side, as this would be the side of the container facing the curb when traveling in North America.

Road Side: When facing the rear end of the container the left side is the curb side, as this would be the side of the container facing the road when traveling in North America.

Corner Fitting: The standard fitting (casting) located on all eight corners of the container structure.  The castings are important for the stacking, handling, and securing of the container.

Corner Post: The vertical structural component that is located at the four corners of the container.  The corner fittings are joined through the corner posts.

Door Header: The lateral piece situated over the door opening.

Door Sill:  The lateral piece situated at the bottom of the door opening.

Top End Rail: The lateral piece that’s situated at the top edge of the front end

Bottom End Rail: The lateral piece situated at the bottom edge of the front end.

Top Side Rail: The rail that runs along the top end of the two long sides of the container.

Bottom Side Rail: The rail that runs along the bottom end of the two long sides of the container.

Cross Member:  The lateral structure that connects the bottom end rails and provides support for the flooring.

Forklift Pockets:  The reinforced tunnels, or pockets, that run laterally under the container, installed in the bottom side rails.  These pockets provide for easier loading and unloading by forklifts.

Locking Bar: The vertical rod located on the door that allows the doors to be secured when closed.

Ventilator: Two or more devices permanently attached to the side or end wall panel that allow air to circulate in and out of the container



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