Shipping containers are incredibly versatile and long-lasting if properly maintained. They are effectively giant metal boxes with doors, so it makes sense that they are often used as custom storage containers. As valuable and adaptable as shipping containers are, most people do not think much about their construction. They probably figure the containers are from steel and leave it at that.

Custom Storage Containers: Corten Steel

Custom storage containers are made from weathering steel. The metal is called Corten steel, and it’s a special alloy that is perfect for the creation of shipping containers. Corten steel alloy is designed to prevent the need for paint, improved protection from the elements, be easy to weld, and be rust-resistant. Since it’s rust-resistant and not rust-proof, some owners still paint their custom storage containers, though they often do so for promotional or logistical reasons. Under most conditions, the rust won’t progress enough to cause severe damage.

Other Metal Parts

Though the central portion of a container will be made from Corten steel, other metals can be used in the overall construction. Some parts are cast, such as the reinforced corner pieces.
There are doors, hinges, and slots for forklifts, all of which may be made of different metals.
These parts are usually more susceptible to rust and require regular maintenance.

The bottom of the container is supported with beams and joists which hold it above ground level. This construction style is why placing containers on level ground is necessary to prevent bending or twisting of the metal because these containers rest on just their corners.

Container Interior

The interior flooring of most containers is constructed from plywood. These floors are marine-grade plywood to avoid water damage and prevent the products inside from getting scraped or scratched on the metal.


Corten steel is an easy to work, valuable alloy designed to resist weather damage. Still, if neglected, shipping containers can break down. When maintained and adequately stored, though, custom storage containers can last for decades. In addition, their versatility and durability make them outstanding in a variety of fields, not just cargo transport. This success is in large part due to corten steel.

Carolina Containers

Is your business in need of custom storage containers? Carolina Containers can help. Our large variety of new containers for sale can be customized to your business’s specific needs. Contact us at 919-562-9187 and see what we can do for you.