some thoughts from Dozer
builder image

Road trench and joint progress

digging a trench

image dsc21416.jpgEarly on we decided that a gutter was needed on the public road section which I’m doing (ie. paying for, albeit with the help of 2 neighbors) because it is in a water path that gets heavy water flow during the rains. Whether the road left to its own devices would hold isn’t the question, but more like for how long. Nobody wants to shell out any dough ray me for something that won’t cut it for at least a few odd years.

image dsc21509.jpgWe decided to trench the road ‘all the way down’. 300 meters doesn’t seem that far until you’re doing a project like this. If the JCB was mine and I wasn’t paying 5000 baht a day, I’d do a little section at a time. In this case we decided to do the whole doggie in one enchilada. !@— image dsc21413.jpgimage dsc21427.jpgThe trench is 70 centimeters wide, which happens (just coincidentally) to be the exact width of the JCBs claw scoop. Chalk is applied along a string line to set the course for the JCB.
!@— image dsc21441.jpgimage dsc21445.jpgMore shots of the trench being dug. Notice Mrs. Dozer’s foray into the world of digital photography with the excellent shot of the trench being dug from the cockpit. The idea to bring in a truck to haul dirt from the lower road section. Putting 8 tons of dirt on top of my brand new (well, not really mine, but the public’s) road didn’t seem like such a good idea. When I mentioned the idea of ‘let’s get a truck in here so we don’t have to make a mess’ everyone said ‘that’s a good idea’. If Mrs. Dozer says I don’t do anything productive, don’t believe it. !@— image dsc21435.jpgThis shows the massive scale of the finished, but yet raw trench.

road joint

image dsc21449.jpgThe lower road joint is the point where Dozer’s Public road hits the public’s public road. One thing agreed on by everyone even remotely involved in this project was that submerged underground drainage was needed at the road joint.

image dsc21458.jpgWith 5PM quickly approaching and the ‘for sure’ requirement to start paying JCB overtime, everyone started working a little bit faster. Here another round is lowered in to place by the expert road foreman.

image dsc21456.jpgThe rounds are not only fitted together, but also cemented in place for durability. !@—

image dsc21464.jpgThe doctor says this patient is ready to stitch back up.

image dsc21465.jpgNot so fast, some sealant needs to be applied on the inside.

image dsc21467.jpgThe lights are on and the overtime meter is ticking. But we did accomplish a lot in 9 hours, 300 meters raw trenching and one road joint! !@—

Let’s finish in a hurry

image dsc21468.jpgSo the next day finds us with 300 meters of ‘exposed’ raw trench. I can say that I started to hope we could somehow get through this next stage without any rain. I know it is heresy seeing how we are in one of the worst droughts in history here. When it actually did start raining shortly after that, being one who likes to look on the bright side of things, I thought, ‘Good, finally some rain’ (but didn’t really mean it).

image dsc21497.jpgimage dsc21496.jpgNow it seemed that we were into the rainy season. You can see that raw trenches are not rain friendly. All I kept thinking is that if we didn’t get finished soon we are going to have a heck of a mess on our hands. Could we find 3 more workers, so we have 6 instead of 3, or maybe 9 instead of 3?

image dsc21486.jpgimage dsc21490.jpgimage dsc21499.jpgThe first step in this whole process is just shoring up the trench walls with cemented in blocks. A lower surface and rendering will be done later. You can see a string line is used to keep things straight. !@—

pissed off at neighbors

This is a minor ‘pissed off’ story, as sometimes one can get. A major ‘pissed off’ neighbor story is much more traumatic than this one. This is basically just a lesson in ‘how not to be a good neighbor’ story.

The workers wanted a day off, which they had coming. They ended up going over to do a road job for the neighbor’s, who had been on them to do this job. Instead of coming over and introducing himself, it was kind of a ‘sneaky around the back of the house’ kind of approach.

The workers had mentioned about the guy needing his road job. He and about 6 other neighbors (who did come around the front of the house) needed stuff done. Anyway, the workers ended up taking their day off to do this guy’s road, which actually turned into a bit more than a day. Can’t fault the workers, but think it is piss poor neighboring skill. The worker’s assessment, we are on schedule on the road project, rain shouldn’t be a problem as the trench is almost protected.

the latest

image dsc21519.jpg image dsc21522.jpg image dsc21526.jpg !@— It is moving very quickly now, most of the rain threat is actually over as we are up to the first junction (which is 200 meters from the lower road junction). I got to give this crew credit, they work pretty quick.


  1. hi doz cant quite understand why you are making a trench? and such a luxurious one at that? trenching for roads is nearly always done to make earth to raise the road height

    why do you need such massive drainage?

    one of the advantages of living on a flood plane is that rain is generally !! spread out evenly, unless someone has screwed arounf with the countryside somewhere

  2. Yes, very true what you say about the deep drainage. Most areas would be OK with just a road laid down, no drainage, but this road takes a huge among of run off and needs either gutter or subterrainian drainage. The reason the gutter was so deep was that the depth of the subterrainian drainage under the road joint (lower rim, 1 meter). Poorly planned and the gutter needed to be redone now it is subterrainian drainage all the way. I am going to post an update about the road. If I were doing a gutter again it would be about 30 centimeters deep and 40 centimers wide and go across the road joint with a metal covering.

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