Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Tiny Home Tuesday ~ The Rhino, a Container Home

I don't usually t'eef whole blog posts, but in this case I'm going to do just that. The explanations far outweigh anything I could come up with on this very cool re-use of a shipping container. 

Though a little more modern than my taste - the inside, not the outside! - it is a great example of the possible options with containers as homes. A 20 foot container is usually about $2000.00, give or take depending on where you find one and might cost around $35,000 by the time all the work is done. Or a whole lot less or more, depending on how the materials and labor are sourced. 

The photos and info below were posted on Tiny House Listings by Steven.

Rhino Cubes range in size from 160 square feet up to 640 square feet, depending on the plan. Each unit can be purchased in an “on-grid” or “off-grid” configuration. For those looking to minimize their environmental footprint on the earth, the off-grid solution comes equipped with solar appliances, a composting toilet, self-contained water tanks and various energy-efficient heating options.

Rhino Cubed’s most recent build is affectionately named “Nola,” after one of the last five remaining northern white rhinos on the planet. The real Nola, age 41, resides at the San Diego Zoo. Nola the Cube is just as tough and resilient as the live Rhino. She is a 24-foot container with a full size shower and complete kitchen. She boasts closed-cell foam insulation, providing R54 on the roof and R22 on the walls – exceeding the most stringent American requirements for wind, heat and cold. Unlike many tiny homes today, she is also built to code.

You can visit Nola (the Cube) in person at the Tiny House Jamboree in Colorado Springs, August 7-9, 2015. (that would be a great jamboree to see!)


There is more to read about the owners of Rhino Cubed on the above site and/or you can also just go right to the Rhino Cubed site itself for more detailed information.

If your interest is stoked and you want to know more, there are a lot of people writing about shipping container transformations. An article posted on the Dwell site called How to Buy a Shipping Container gives some basic 'what to look for' ideas. Container Home Plans has more with 23 actual owners/builders saying what they wished they'd known before they started their buy and build. I learned a few things here, which usually happens when you go to the source. 

Have a tip top tin-can of a Tuesday. Do something truly thinkanddoable. 


  1. I have been pondering (a word I love, almost as much as betwixt) container living for many years. I use shipping containers for material storage on jobsites for their security against weather and scoundrels. All you need to make them a home is imagination, ability, and choice of location with land to put it on. Oh yeah, I forgot one thing, money, but not a lot, much less than building from scratch. I have three....still pondering on the fourth.

    1. Yes, pondering does have an elegance that just makes you slow down when reading it (or doing it). As I've seen in Culebra and also my brother, building of course takes money but! things can be done over time once the initial land is located. Well, in the right place where they don't make you do things in a year or less. In brown. With no trucks in the driveway.

  2. I could see myself using a container as a tiny art gallery or beading studio!

    1. Exactly! Guest house or gallery or so many things in between. I have some friends who started using theirs as a cute garden shed. Now it's transformed into a little stay-cation getaway on their otherwise short-term rental property. Imagination is key.

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  4. I can't answer those questions with 100% surety but have no doubt the company would be aware of those issues and probably happy to respond if you ask them directly. I know those who build container homes in general talk about tis as well as others issues, partially due to the fact that all containers are not the same.

    Share your info when you find out!