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International vs. domestic containers

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International vs. domestic containers
Posted by Lithonia Operator on Saturday, November 6, 2021 8:44 PM

I frequently see references to international and domestic containers. Are these two types of containers physically different from each other? Or, are the writers of articles just referring to how the containers are being deployed, not physical differences?

It sure seems like it would be simpler if they were both the same.

Still in training.


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Posted by MidlandMike on Saturday, November 6, 2021 8:53 PM

I know their lengths are different.  International containers are 40' or 20' long.  Domestic containers are 53' long.

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Posted by SD60MAC9500 on Saturday, November 6, 2021 9:04 PM
 

The only differences are gross weight and dimensions.

Domestic containers are:

53' x 8'2" x  9'6" with a maximum GWR of 67,200 lbs.

 

ISO Containers are:

20' x 8' x 8'6" Dry/Flatrack/Tanktainer

40' x 8' x 8'6" also come in High Cube 9'6" Dry/Flatrack/Refrigerated

45' x 8' x 8'6" also come in High Cube 9'6" Dry/Refrigerated

Most ISO containers have a maximum GWR of 67,055 lbs.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Rahhhhhhhhh!!!!
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Posted by Backshop on Sunday, November 7, 2021 7:19 AM

IIRC, the first domestic containers weren't stackable because they weren't build to the same standard.  They could only be "topload".  That doesn't seem to be the case anymore.

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Posted by 7j43k on Sunday, November 7, 2021 8:26 AM

What the two versions have in common is using the same dimensions and methods for interlocking the containers.  The dimensions are based on the 20' and 40' containers.  There also have been, and may still be around, 28' containers for domestic use.  Those are supplied with the standard locking connections as the 20', with an overhang off the front (the 45's and 53's have symmetrical overhang front and back).

Note that it is common to see a 53' domestic container stacked on top of an international on double-stack cars.

There is nothing precluding an international container being used in domestic service, except that it can bulk out too soon.  In fact, once international containers are removed from the ship, they ARE essentially domestic containers.

Going the other direction is near impossible.  Container ships cannot accept our domestic containers below decks.  And stacking them on top is very limited and a PITA.  

This tends to be true for the international 45's, but less of a problem as the container width stays the same.  45' containers cannot be stowed below deck.  

I believe also that most/some domestic containers can't be stacked more than two-high.  That is also limiting on a ship.

There also have been 48' domestic containers, preceding the 53's.  There might still be some around.

 

 

Ed

 

 

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Posted by NittanyLion on Tuesday, November 9, 2021 12:15 PM

7j43k
There also have been, and may still be around, 28' containers for domestic use.

I don't remember the last time I actually saw a 28 footer.

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Posted by SD60MAC9500 on Tuesday, November 9, 2021 1:38 PM
 

NittanyLion

 

 
7j43k
There also have been, and may still be around, 28' containers for domestic use.

 

I don't remember the last time I actually saw a 28 footer.

 

28' containers have long been out of service... Roughly 26 years now... A failed experiment involving; BN, ATSF, and UPS. BN America, and UPS were the only operators of 28' containers. However the 56' well cars created for those containers are still in service.

 20 ft containers - Trains Magazine - Trains News Wire, Railroad News,  Railroad Industry News, Web Cams, and Forms
28-foot Domestic Container Photo Gallery
 
 
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Posted by 7j43k on Tuesday, November 9, 2021 2:41 PM

Here's a link to a photo of a 28' container in service in 2011:

 

http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=2596965

 

NOT as a container, as such.  But still, in use.

 

I think there were only 100 of the 56' well cars built.  They do show up; I've taken pictures of a couple.

 

Ed

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Wednesday, November 10, 2021 11:55 AM

I would guess that the 28' container was an attempt at a variant with increased flexibility of the trailer usually found in double bottoms.

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Posted by BaltACD on Wednesday, November 10, 2021 12:03 PM

CSSHEGEWISCH
I would guess that the 28' container was an attempt at a variant with increased flexibility of the trailer usually found in double bottoms.

Were any container chassis constructed that would facilitate the hauling of double 28 footers?

I have never seen any container chassis that could be doubled over the road.

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Posted by SD60MAC9500 on Wednesday, November 10, 2021 3:44 PM
 

BaltACD

 

 
CSSHEGEWISCH
I would guess that the 28' container was an attempt at a variant with increased flexibility of the trailer usually found in double bottoms.

 

Were any container chassis constructed that would facilitate the hauling of double 28 footers?

I have never seen any container chassis that could be doubled over the road.

 

Here in Michigan we do. It's not common but every now and then you can see double 20's. 

 
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Posted by BaltACD on Wednesday, November 10, 2021 6:55 PM

SD60MAC9500
 
BaltACD 
CSSHEGEWISCH
I would guess that the 28' container was an attempt at a variant with increased flexibility of the trailer usually found in double bottoms. 

Were any container chassis constructed that would facilitate the hauling of double 28 footers?

I have never seen any container chassis that could be doubled over the road. 

Here in Michigan we do. It's not common but every now and then you can see double 20's. 

Haven't seen any leaving or going to the Port of Baltimore.

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Posted by 7j43k on Wednesday, November 10, 2021 7:47 PM

Is this part of the conversation about two 20' containers on two chassis towed by one truck?  Or is it about two 20' containers on a single chassis?

 

Ed

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Posted by Backshop on Wednesday, November 10, 2021 8:23 PM

2 20ft containers, each on its own trailer.

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Posted by BaltACD on Wednesday, November 10, 2021 10:38 PM

Really sketchy is the loading of two 20 foot containers loaded on a single flatbed trailer and secured by ratchet straps.

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Posted by SD60MAC9500 on Thursday, November 11, 2021 9:00 AM
 

BaltACD

 

 
SD60MAC9500
 
BaltACD 
CSSHEGEWISCH
I would guess that the 28' container was an attempt at a variant with increased flexibility of the trailer usually found in double bottoms. 

Were any container chassis constructed that would facilitate the hauling of double 28 footers?

I have never seen any container chassis that could be doubled over the road. 

Here in Michigan we do. It's not common but every now and then you can see double 20's. 

 

Haven't seen any leaving or going to the Port of Baltimore.

 

Yeah you won't see it outside of Michigan. We have a 164K GCVWR on a Tractor Trailer Combo. Double 20's here mostly head to the thumb region for loading grains.

 
 
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Posted by tree68 on Thursday, November 11, 2021 10:13 AM

BaltACD

Really sketchy is the loading of two 20 foot containers loaded on a single flatbed trailer and secured by ratchet straps.

Straps being a key point.

Saw a container moving on a truck the other day with what appeared to be just one such strap...  Undoubtedly privately owned for storage and being moved between points, as opposed to carrying cargo.

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Posted by 7j43k on Thursday, November 11, 2021 11:34 AM

I'm convinced that any containers held down by straps are NOT in intermodal service.  I cannot imagine someone at a port dropping a container down onto a chassis that didn't have box connectors at the four corners.

Ed

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Posted by BaltACD on Thursday, November 11, 2021 12:44 PM

7j43k
I'm convinced that any containers held down by straps are NOT in intermodal service.  I cannot imagine someone at a port dropping a container down onto a chassis that didn't have box connectors at the four corners.

Ed

I have no idea of the ownership or where they were loaded - just seen them moving on I-70 West of Baltimore.

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Posted by OWTX on Friday, November 12, 2021 11:52 AM

The lack of long combination vehicle (LCV) container hauls, is in part, a function of a disjointed regulatory environment in the U.S. Congress locked in federal and state length and weight laws in 1991, but the technology has marched on.

Here is a "B train" (trailers linked by a fifth wheel) 4x20' lash up:

https://youtu.be/VwonK7Kx5Ls

And  the same with a 2x40' hookup.

https://youtu.be/XG05RfVZhZc

Here's a B triple up in Canada:

https://youtu.be/q-YIblzUZJY

 

"A trains" are the pintle hooked trailers like those used on UPS pup trailers. 

 

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Posted by Backshop on Friday, November 12, 2021 2:05 PM

Not containers, but here are some of the everyday trucks you see in Michigan.

Michigan Truck Road Trains (Quikrete, Praxair, Flying J) - YouTube

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Posted by BaltACD on Friday, November 12, 2021 2:31 PM

Backshop
Not containers, but here are some of the everyday trucks you see in Michigan.

Michigan Truck Road Trains (Quikrete, Praxair, Flying J) - YouTube

What is the purpose of the 7 axles on a 'regular' trailer - raise the load limit to 150K pounds or similar?

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Posted by Backshop on Friday, November 12, 2021 2:38 PM
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Posted by BaltACD on Friday, November 12, 2021 2:48 PM

Backshop

No wonder Michigan roads look like the quarry Fred Flintstone works in.

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Posted by Backshop on Friday, November 12, 2021 3:10 PM

Yeah, but did you read the preface on the report.  It claims that they damage the roads less than two standard trucks, which is BS.  The MTA (MI Trucking Assn) is one of the strongest lobbying groups in the state.  They know which palms to grease.  Their claim used to be that MI needed the heavier trucks because of all the heavy industry we have.  Those days are long gone, so they started a new tack.  Also, that it's better because of the driver shortage.

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Posted by BaltACD on Friday, November 12, 2021 4:44 PM

Backshop
Yeah, but did you read the preface on the report.  It claims that they damage the roads less than two standard trucks, which is BS.  The MTA (MI Trucking Assn) is one of the strongest lobbying groups in the state.  They know which palms to grease.  Their claim used to be that MI needed the heavier trucks because of all the heavy industry we have.  Those days are long gone, so they started a new tack.  Also, that it's better because of the driver shortage.

Is Michigan building the roads to a higher standard to support the additional weights than the rest of the states are?

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Posted by Backshop on Friday, November 12, 2021 5:00 PM

It doesn't seem like it.

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Posted by Ed Kyle on Friday, November 12, 2021 5:13 PM

Michigan roads used to be the best, it being the auto industry state.  Now they are the worst; even worse than all-but-bankrupt Illinois!

 - Ed Kyle

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Posted by Backshop on Friday, November 12, 2021 5:27 PM

You must be a lot older than me if you think Michigan's roads were ever the best, and I'm 62.  I remember the experimental, no expansion joint paving that they used on I-275, in the late 70s, early 80s.  It didn't last long.  Who can forget the "innovative" tensioned interior cables of the infamous Zilwaukee Bridge?  The list goes on and on...

Zilwaukee Bridge - Wikipedia

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Posted by 7j43k on Friday, November 12, 2021 6:39 PM

In 1962, on a car trip, I asked my Dad how come the road suddenly became so bumpy and nasty.  He said "We're in Michigan now."

He also explained why some people in Michigan were living in basements without a hint of a house on top.

An informative trip--See America First!

 

Ed

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