The Ultimate Man Cave Essentials
Every guy secretly wants one, a man cave of their very own. For the uninitiated, a man cave is a bloke’s sanctuary and can take many forms such as a basement, shed, media room or gaming room, or – in the case of one well known Australian family in the film The Castle – the pool room!
According to some well known psychologists of enough repute to be included on Wikipedia (I mean, anyone can edit it, so it must be reliable): “It is important for a man to have a place to call his own, referring to a male area to which to retreat. Some psychologists claim that a man cave can provide refuge from stressful surroundings and be beneficial to marriage”. So there you have it, having your very own man cave is one of the secrets to a happy marriage!
The humble man cave has even made it’s way into the Webster’s dictionary:
man cave n. (1992): a room or space (as in a basement) designed according to the taste of the man of the house to be used as his personal area for hobbies and leisure activities
Think of a Man Cave as being the part of your old bachelor pad that you are allowed to keep in your home, somewhere where the rules are relaxed, and blokes get to be, well – blokes. There’s even a man cave of the year competition on The Official Man Cave Site. Man caves can range in sizes depending the space you have at hand (don’t have enough space – why not use a second hand shipping container?) and often pop-up in unused space around the house such as basements, attics, garages and garden sheds.
What are you going to need?
We aren’t saying you need all of this stuff to make the perfect man cave, but here are some of the things that we think would make a pretty pimped out man cave suitable for a modern day James Bond (or Bond Villain), that won’t be confused with something out of an 1980s era frat boy movie. And after all, isn’t that what we are all striving for when it comes to constructing the ultimate man cave experience?
1) A Decent Hi-Fi
Forget about one of those all-in-one systems, a real man cave has a proper hi-fi system. Think components, high end speakers, and a proper turntable. You could recycle vintage components or go for a full on audiophile system costing a couple of hundred thousand dollars, the sky is the limit when it comes to building a sound system. A decent hifi doesn’t need to break the bank though, look for reputable brands, especially those from the 1970s and 1980s when quality hifi was king, and pick yourself up a cheap Ikea Kallax or Expedit storage unit for keeping all those new LPs you’ll be pulling out of the thrift shops.
2) A Big Screen TV or Projector
Whether it’s watching your favourite movie or the Wallabies against the All Blacks, you are going to want a big screen to watch it on. In this case, newer is better, and lightweight big screen TVs can now be easily mounted on the wall of your man cave. Better still, design your cave so all external light can be blacked out and install a High Definition media projector and project onto the entire wall. Add a streaming media centre with the latest sports and movies (such as an Amazon Fire TV) and you’ve got your entertainment sorted. 370 inch screens are a bargain at 1.7 million dollars.
All you’ll need now are some posters from your favourite, must see movies, and of course – a lazy boy, and the entertainment hub of your man cave is ready to go.
3) A Classy Beer Fridge
Aussie blokes drink beer, it’s a fact of life, but not everyone wants a glass of XXXX or VB out of a rusty beer fridge. Why not get yourself something far classier to go in your man cave, something that exudes some blokey sophistication. Bathurst themed man caves might go with something made out of checker-plate steel, while international men of mystery might go with this wooden beer fridge below.
4) If thats not enough, build a whole bar
Because sometimes you need a bar in your man cave. With room for a keg of your latest home brews, your collection of beer glasses and of course a beer mat “borrowed” from your local pub, the bar in your own man cave will be the place where everyone knows your name. Creating your very own speakeasy has never been easier. Grab some bar stools, a refrigerated keg (learn how to make a kegorator here) and the bar design of your choice
5) The Right Chair
Every good man cave needs a throne for it’s ruler. This means a decent chair, and nothing compares to a decent recliner. You need somewhere to kick back and relax after a hard day at work, to read a decent book or simply to enjoy a cold beer and watch the footy. So go hunting, and find yourself the best Lazyboy money can buy and install it in a prime location in the man cave, preferably with a complete view of that big screen TV and in earshot of your hifi. Better still, find one of those stupidly expensive chairs they always have in the shopping mall with the vibrate function and massage the day away.
6) A Pool Table & Poker Set
The guys in the Castle wouldn’t have referred to it as the “Pool Room” without having a pool table. Your man cave is never complete without a pool table. Track down a decent pool table, maybe even a dart board and a Foosball table so you’ve got something to beat your mates at when they come over for a drink. Find yourself a regulation sized poker table for those all night games of poker (or if you’ve got ‘that’ sort of sense of humour – Cards Against Humanity).
7) Bookshelves…And manly, leather bound books.
Add a touch of class to your man cave with some bookshelves. Nothing says an educated, well travelled, suave, James Bond style man than a bunch of books that he’s never read. Seriously though, whether it’s storing your Haynes manuals, cocktail books, BBQ recipes or the last decade of AFL Annuals, you’ll need somewhere to keep your books. Here’s a great list of books for your man cave to get you started.
Better yet, consider using the bookshelf as a hidden door into your man cave, just like an evil super villain.
8) A Functional Coffee Table & Some Classic Arcade Gear
Because who doesn’t need a coffee table that works as a fully functional vintage video game controller. At $4500 USD it might be a bit pricey, but who can put a price on convenience? Now you can relive your glory days on the Super Nintendo & Mega Drive with retro gaming consoles that work on your high definition TV.
9) Manly Art, with a Touch of Class
Guns, cars, footy and pictures of beards. You’ll need some manly art from the walls, and there’s no better expert than the guys at The Art of Manliness. Keep it classy, remember, you are going for Man Cave and NOT Bachelor Pad or Frat House
But I don’t have enough room!
That’s where a shipping container comes in. Ranging in size from small 10 foot containers to huge 40 foot long shipping containers, they make an ideal building block for your own customised man cave, which you can even take with you when you move house. Shipping containers can be easily modified to contain all the modern conveniences you’ve grown accustomed to in your home, such as insulation, plumbing and electricity, and you can easily add doors, windows, storage shelving – even rooftop decking if you please. All it takes is some imagination and a bit of customisation, and it’s considerably cheaper than constructing an addition to your house from scratch.
Check out this awesome example from the Burlap and Denim blog. Their friend had a huge collection of Vespa and Harleys and needed somewhere manly to store and enjoy them. It was time to build a man cave from scratch. Taking three shipping containers, he started construction, first adding a wooden roof that joined his creation together. He then cut the interior walls out using a welding machine to ensure clean cuts and cleaner joins. Window holes were cut out of the walls and windows were installed, while the whole shipping container building was insulated and then covered in plywood. Extra manliness points were gained by using shipping pallets to decorate the walls.
Lighting was installed and vintage signs were purchased online. All of this went together to create a truly inspirational man cave that we can all aspire to.
Are you inspired? Ready to construct your own mancave?
Contact the team of second hand shipping container experts at Gateway Container Sales & Hire. We’ll help you find the perfect container for your man cave, give you suggestions on container building, and put you in touch with local contacts with experience to create the perfect space for your manly pastimes. Whether it’s a standard container or something more custom, we’ll find the right container for the right price, so what are you waiting for? Arrange a quote now!