Duocons - an alternative to classic containers?


Duocons - at first glance, they appear to be normal standard containers. On closer inspection, however, it becomes apparent that they are double-door containers, as the Duocons are equipped with container doors on both short sides.

In Europe, it is extremely rare to find this type of container on dealers' inventory lists, but it enjoys great popularity elsewhere, especially in the USA. But why is that?

Duocons particularly popular in the USA

It may be hard to believe, but the 40'HC Duocons in particular are a real bestseller overseas. The reason is simple: there are hardly any 20'HC on the US market. This is mainly due to the fact that pretty much all major shipping lines, unlike Europe, do not accept 20'HC for one-way leases to North America. The main reason: the 20'HC do not have a gooseneck tunnel.

This has obviously caused major problems on the road in the past. Thus, if two 20'HC containers are transported on a gooseneck chassis, the front one stands much taller and consequently exceeds the overall height allowed or is simply too tall for many bridges.

This is no different in Europe and of course also here in Germany, however, the containers in the USA travel a much longer distance inland in comparison. In order to avoid this problem, most shipping companies refuse any requests for this equipment in advance.

1x Duocon = 2 containers

As the name suggests, two containers are created by separating the fully welded Duocons. The respective back walls are already supplied in the containers. The walls are riveted to the side wall at the factory.

How to cut a container

First, however, the containers must be separated, since the containers are completely welded together with a metal sheet. The Duocon cannot simply be separated in the middle, as this would make the individual containers longer than the 10' ISO requirements. The tool is therefore applied directly to the respective end (next to the corner castings). The welded areas are then cleaned and reworked or straightened. Weights are then placed in the container to weigh it down, since in most cases the two 10s are slightly distorted after cutting. The weights allow the container to straighten out and, ideally, to stand level. Only then are the front walls welded on.

The containers are then left to stand overnight or for a few hours allowing the welds to cool and, together with the tonnage, keeping everything straight. After that, the weights are removed. The slow cooling and the weights in the container are therefore essential to keep the 10' containers in shape. The last step is the color touch-up.

Are Duocons the cheaper mini containers?

In times of high and currently still partly horrendous sea freight, 20' Duocons are clearly the more economical alternative to the standard 10' containers. Since the standard 10' are only bolted together and spot welded, the containers have to be shipped empty. This is where the 20' Duocons come into play, as their design allows the container to be loaded. On the one hand, this avoids having to pay high sea freight rates, and on the other, the containers are then often available in the hinterland. This in turn saves expensive transport costs. For example, ex Hamburg to the south, when a 20' Duocon is returned in Munich and can be separated on site in the depot.

So what is the difference between Duocon and standard containers?


  • More signs of use due to shipping with cargo - inside and outside.
  • Not every depot has the possibility to separate the containers
  • Partially high costs due to large amount of work


  • Avoidance of high sea freight
  • Duocons are returned by the shipowners also in the hinterland - close to the customer
  • Duocons can also be used as double door containers without separation

Do Duocon containers have a CSC after separation?

Yes. Duocons are equipped with a CSC for a 20' container prior to separation. Once the containers have been separated, the CSC must be removed accordingly. The CSC plaques are already in the container, as are the backboards, and are then attached to the 10' containers.

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