Anyone who owns a home has experienced the urge to make it especially special. In their backyard, some homeowners might desire to install a pool. Some people might desire to add a room to their house. Wayne Martin, however, had a much grander plan in mind. Of all, to his neighbors, all he was doing was excavating a sizable hole in his yard. But that hole just marked the beginning of his substantial do-it-yourself endeavor.
Most people would have assumed Wayne Martin was constructing a swimming pool. Otherwise, why would he have excavated such a large hole in his yard? However, it wasn’t a pool that he had in mind, and when a 20-foot shipping container was arrived, his neighbors were rather perplexed.
The purpose of the hole in Martin’s yard was unknown to any of his neighbors. They just knew that he had excavated a hole that was rectangular in shape. Was he creating an artificial lake? No. He had no plans to add water to the unknown hole.
Martin had actually ordered a 20-foot shipping container for his yard online, it turned out. Even though the majority of do-it-yourself home improvement projects are rather pricey, the shipping container didn’t break his budget at all.
Most people are unaware that shipping containers are simple to acquire online and reasonably priced. In fact, some businesses will provide consumers with secondhand shipping containers that are in reasonable condition. Martin’s neighbors, though, were unable to understand why he required one.
He began locking the massive double doors shut once the cargo container was on his land. Even further, he performed a second inspection to ensure that no rodents or rainfall could enter. He still required an entrance and exit, though.
On the opposite side of the container, he erected a door that swung inward, which the neighbors thought was strange. Why didn’t he simply use the two doors that came with the container at first? But there was a reason behind his insanity.
Martin always included the container in his grand DIY scheme, so he made sure the hole he dug in his yard was large enough for the container to fit in. That’s not all, either.
In order for the door he added to swing out without getting trapped in the ground, he also left about two feet of room on either side of the container. It would have been extremely challenging to enter and exit the container if he hadn’t planned ahead and taken these actions.
He first had to line the bottom of the hole with pea gravel before burying the container. This would give the container a soft surface as well as a surface that may let air reach the soil underneath it. But what other use does pea gravel serve?
Pea gravel is frequently utilized in applications like pipe bedding and drainage. In comparison to the other materials Martin needed to employ for his project, it is also seen as being reasonably priced. But he still faced another challenge.
Heavy and enormous shipping containers are commonplace. Martin lacked a truck large enough to do it and was unable to push it into the ground on his own. He therefore made the decision to make a help request.
The only individuals who had a crane available to them were a septic tank firm, which was what Martin required. He called out to one of them, and they came over to place the container carefully into the yard’s pit.
There was just enough room for the swinging door in front to open and close because the container was now underground. Even though everything was coming together flawlessly, Martin still had a lot of work to do before he could enjoy the results of his toil.
Martin made sure the extra space between the container and the dirt was still there before continuing. He couldn’t risk the soil collapsing in on itself, which can happen occasionally. But that wasn’t the only reason he need the area to finish the makeover of his project.
Anyone who constructs something underground runs the danger of having it inundated with water during a storm or as a result of a broken water line. Martin, however, had a plan that would make sure the container would stay nice and dry in such a situation.
A submersible device called a sump pump is put in a sump pit. Now, the lowest point in a basement is often where a sump pit is dug. The function of a sump pump is to remove extra water from a small area, such as a bunker. That was what he was creating, right?
Martin was creating a sort of bunker for himself, but to enter and exit the bunker, he would require a set of steps. He therefore used some concrete to construct a flight of stairs and then waited for it to cure.
Martin was concerned that flooding or earth shifting might cause his bunker to become unstable, despite the fact that a container is very substantial. Yes, the pea gravel reduced the likelihood of this happening, but it didn’t prevent it. He required a back-up scheme.
He bought two strong I-beams to provide the container the additional support it required. These support beams later used as the structure for some other outside features that he hadn’t yet created.
Martin wanted to make sure the container fit in seamlessly with the rest of the yard so that no one would ever even be aware that there was a bunker out here. But in order to prevent the roof from collapsing, he first had to construct some framework to it.
The metal in the container would give in to the environment and start to rust without a properly supported roof. The sides would eventually close in on themselves, trapping whatever or whoever is still inside for all time.
Martin covered the bunker’s outside framework with metal sheets so that it could bear any pressure, such as a truck driving nearby or a person sitting on top with their dog.
Martin constructed a concrete stairway, but he left a hole in the roof so he could work on a startling entrance. A lot of cement and concrete were needed for this. But he needed to confirm that he was abiding by the regulations.
Ongoing concerns about safety persisted throughout the whole project. Martin had to make sure the project as a whole did not break any building regulations that may result in fines or worse. However, how would a building inspector even be aware of what he was doing?
The drawback of a DIY is that there will always be that one obnoxious neighbor eager to stir up trouble. Martin understood that anyone may report his activities by making a simple phone call. His project would then be in danger.
What if Martin’s project had not passed an inspection? If a construction inspector discovers something that isn’t up to code, they frequently have the power to order someone to knock down the entire project. Martin did his work in such great detail because of this.
Martin used a checklist to make sure he hadn’t missed any steps because it would have been devastating to have an I-beam or a screw missing here or there. Additionally, he added elements to the bunker that were essential for maintaining life.
No human or animal can survive without air, so he realized his bunker would need to have access to fresh oxygen from the outer world. In order to improve ventilation, he built two 12-inch air vents to the front and back of the bunker.
Martin wasn’t concerned about a construction inspector because he never did a shoddy job. He was aware that he was constructing a bunker that could endure almost any natural or man-made disaster. But was this the rationale behind his secret work on this project?
The fear of a nuclear strike was a major factor in the 1950s and 1960s’ popularity of fallout shelters. Due of the cold war between the United States and Russia, everyone thought about these bunkers as the prospect of a nuclear fallout became real.
These shelters were created to protect individuals from both the first radiation blast and the lingering radioactive levels in the vicinity. Families were supposed to take refuge in these fallout shelters until the radiation levels were safe for human tissue. But there were other dangers than the Russians.
The Soviet Union stationed nuclear missiles in Cuba in the beginning of the 1960s. The Soviet commanders on the island, which was 90 miles off the coast of Florida, were ready to launch their nuclear missiles at the United States.
The United States was terrified of a nuclear assault from Cuba for 13 days. Fortunately, those rockets never fired. However, many kept constructing fallout shelters in case the prospect of a nuclear attack reappeared. Martin, however, was not constructing his shelter for that reason.
Martin was eager to use his bunker, but he hadn’t finished building it yet. Particularly during the chilly winter months when the earth is prone to shifting, he had to ensure that the container stayed in place. Why did he do this?
Even though I-beams and pea gravel were excellent, Martin still needed a more durable fix for his stabilizing issue. After some web study and brainstorming, he eventually found what he needed to stabilize the subsurface container permanently.
He gently poured large amounts of concrete that he had meticulously mixed onto the roof and walls of the container. By doing this, the bunker wouldn’t shift, which could endanger the building.
Martin didn’t just throw some more concrete on top, either. He covered the structure with six inches of concrete, smoothed it out, and then leveled it with the rest of his yard. Prior to entering the interior, he had one more task to complete.
Martin strengthened the doorway by inserting more cinder blocks via the reinforcement bars. The steel bars would be protected from the elements by these blocks. He was now prepared to work on the interior after finishing the outside.
Martin had to take down the support beams that prevented the roof from collapsing before entering the bunker. Don’t worry, the beams’ function will still be served by the cinderblocks he earlier erected.
The majority of bunkers and fallout shelters are equipped with the minimal needs for survival. This includes things like food, clothing, medical supplies, and occasionally even firearms. But what exactly was Martin going to keep in his bunker?
He started by gathering some hammers, nails, and wood to construct a few shelves for himself. The bunker would start to fulfill the function Martin had planned for it from the outset once they were put in position.
The bunker’s frigid and dry climate made it the ideal location for storing alcohol and wine. But did Martin intend for this to be the only use for the cellar?
Martin planned to keep non-perishable food items and holiday decorations in the bunker in addition to the wine. But Martin and his loved ones may also find sanctuary in this area from a natural or nuclear calamity, similar to the bunkers constructed in the 1950s and 1960s.
Martin had the option of keeping his bunker’s construction method a secret. But he wasn’t a selfish man, and he reasoned that disclosing the existence of his bunker and the details of its construction would benefit everyone.
Martin included a list of the materials individuals should concentrate on while constructing their own underground bunker, as well as the specifications of his container. A few helpful hints that he picked up while working on his DIY project were also included.
He advised installing handrails on steps so people would have something to grip onto as they descended into the bunker. The ice can make the steps extremely slick in regions when it snows. The possibility of someone falling and suffering an injury would be decreased by the handrails. How likely is it that Americans will construct bunkers like this one?
Some Americans believed it was vital to prepare for the worst because of the unrest in the Middle East. Consequently, it was discovered that bunker construction increased significantly in 2017, which was good news for one Texas company.
Clyde Scott, the proprietor of Rising Bunkers in Texas, reportedly reported a 400% rise in sales between 2016 and 2017. Due to the need for bunker construction, Rising Bunkers now generates $10 million in revenue annually. But how much did Martin spend on the construction of his bunker?
Martin invested a total of $12,500 in his bunker. Given that he had to employ a crane operator to lower it into the hole and spend a lot of money on constructing supplies, this seems acceptable. But before he was finished, he needed to make one more adjustment.
Martin still had to finish the outside, and that was to fill in the area at the door with soil. Then he put a few bushes to hide the bunker from view so that anyone who happened to gaze at his yard would not be aware of its existence.