Although this was time consuming and I ate a few sparks along the way, it was not all that difficult. If you remember to measure twice (or three times) and cut once, things will go a lot smoother. Putting steel cut-outs back in is most likely not going to happen. We put in 6 windows and three doors. We found the windows and front door at the Habitat for Humanity’s “Restore” for a really great price. There may have been a chip or two in the nailing strips but that didn’t affect us. We found the brand new sliding glass door at Home Depot (returned item) for $290. It was marked down from $1300 and was a very good quality sliding door.
When we installed the windows we tried to make sure that the nailer was in line with an outside ridge of the corrugated steel (on both sides). On the top and bottom we just used the outer corrugations to attach to. To install the windows we ran a bead of silicone along the nailer and placed the window into the frame. We then used self-tapping screws to attach the window to the steel. After the window was secured we used great stuff foam to seal off the openings in the corrugations.
We didn’t think it would be a good idea to trust the great stuff to stop water from getting in so we came up with a plan to build awnings. We cut 15″ pieces off of the window cutouts that we already had. The steel is 13-14 ga. and even a small piece of 15″ x 60″ can be difficult to hold in place and weld. So we rigged up a rope around the awning and my son’s waist to hold it in place until we could get the awning tacked up. We also took a piece of 3″ plate steel and ran it along the top of the awning and flush with the container end wall. This trimmed up the awning but also gave me a good seal to the container. We then applied a bead of silicone and did a pretty good job of keeping water out. We did these before we had the new roof. Now that we have the roof we also have a 3′ overhang but in Texas we get rain that blows at seemingly right angles :-).
In the ends of the containers with doors we thought about keeping the doors and using them as security but with 5×6 windows and the fact that the doors block out a lot of light, we thought it would be best to cut the doors off. We used 2×6’s to frame in these windows/doors. We used self-tapping screws to attach the wood to the steel for the outer frame and then nails inside the frame. After that it was pretty much traditional wood framing.