Building a new home with pool and sauna in Phonjalong, Korat

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Building a new home with pool and sauna in Phonjalong, Korat

Postby gadgetman » Wed Apr 23, 2008 7:46 pm

My wife and I have bought 1 rai of land in her village of Phonjalong, facing the village reservoir and are about to rent our house out in Phuket and leave all the hussle and bussle for some real, Thai village life!

But before enjoying the village life, we have some serious work to do first! We are going to build an L shaped Pool Bungalow, with 3 ensuite bedrooms of the style so popular (and so practical from my viewpoint) in Phuket. They are also fairly simple and straightforward to build as well (my good friend from the UK has built 3 already in Phuket, so I have some inside knowledge!) which translates to very cost effective!

I have read of some great ideas on this website for saving money, and doing a good job at the same time, so I can't wait to put all this knowledge into practice.

Through info read here, I have asked <edit Dozer 7/30/09> to draw up the plans, using a variation of what we have built in Phuket. The most important lesson I have learnt is to design the house to be as cool as possible - hence the use of gable ends with plenty of ventilation, insulation behind the roofing tiles etc.

The house is to be built so the floor beams and the top of the swimming pool are 2m above the ground level, ensuring that we will have an ininterupted view from the house and pool across our planned 2m perimeter wall, across the reservoir and the village beyond. An additional benefit is plenty of storage space under the house, and hopefully some cooling benefits in the house.

I am also planning to fit some floor vents into the bedrooms and lounge floors, made from hardwood to form a grating panel, and backed with fine mesh to keep out the bugs of course, These will be fitted into an opening we will make when we cast the floors, and be made secure, but removable for cleaning etc. Along with some ceiling vents with self closing louvres (so we can let the hot air rise into the roof space, and not draw heated air back if we do have to resort to turning on the A/C) we hope that our new house will be as naturally cool as possible.

At this stage, I am not sure whether we will need electric extractor fans on the gable end vents, and maybe electric extractor fans in the ceilings to make the system really work. Unless anyone has some good ideas on this, I think I will try the natural convection route first, but make sure wiring is in place for electic extraction if it appears necessary.

As far as the planned build goes, we have selected a local builder on a labour only basis. We have seen some examples of his work, and it appears of good quality for a reasonable price on the jobs he has completed recently. My Thai wife is on the case with this, as we are waiting on a firm quotation once he has studied our detailed plans!

We am going to be on site every day, so hopefully avoiding too many disasters, and keep the whole build on budget.

We are also going to build a Sauna and 2 toilet/Shower rooms on the plot along with an outside kithchen, as my wife is going to open up for business - to keep her from getting bored, she says! We have copied the sauna design from one we go to regularly in Phuket, so hopefully it will work first time.

So a few challenges ahead to keep us occupied for the next few months. I have attached a couple of photos to show the land plot, and also the style of house we have already seen our friend build in Phuket, and that we are replicating on our plot, with some mods .

We will keep you posted as we progress further, along with a few cries of help, we are sure!
Attachments
Pool villa front in build .jpg
Another photo of the bungalow of the style we are going to build, in construction...
Pool villa front.jpg
An example of the bungalow and pool that we are going to build, although ours will have gable ends
Land plot looking over lake.jpg
View from the plot over the reservoir towards the village...
Land Plot fenced.jpg
Land plot fenced in and ready for building to start...
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floor plan

Postby pklongball » Thu Apr 24, 2008 7:02 am

Hey gadgetman it looks like you have your work cut out for you for several months ahead.

Land looks good and the house plan I am very interested in,,,,,,,,,,would you be wil to post or PM me a floor plan of the place?

I will be looking at this type of design for my house next year,,,,,,,,,,,if there is a plan in place no need to re-invent the wheel so to speak.

Thanks

PK
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Postby tung » Thu Apr 24, 2008 2:53 pm

Hi Gadgetman

If you don't mind me asking are you putting together a written contract with your builder and if so how are you structuring this especially regarding payments?
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House plans etc

Postby gadgetman » Thu Apr 24, 2008 4:35 pm

Hi pklongball
I am pleased you like the look of the bungalow we are going to build. I am waiting for the plans to be forwrded to me for my house layout, but meanwhile can provide plans for the house as built in Phuket. I will send you a PM with info.
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Payment schedule

Postby gadgetman » Thu Apr 24, 2008 5:20 pm

Hi Tung,
Payment is going to be an important issue, I agree but remember this is going to be a labour only contract, and at the moment we have only a ball park figure for the builder's labour, based on him looking at my initial building sketches. The builder has agreed payment in 4 lumps - 1)On completion of work up to floor level including swimming pool construction, septics and soakaways. 2) Blockwork up to roof level. 3) Roof structure, roof tiling and rendering, 4) Finishing house, and building perimeter wall.

The Sauna and outside toilet and showers are to be constructed after the main house construction is completed, and we are paying for the labour as contruction is completed.

The percentage of the labour costs payable at each stage will be agreed with the builder when we discuss the final plans with him in June, and then we plan to commence construction.

I will be responsible for installation of all plumbing and electrical services including the Swimming pool, and have a local tiler who will be doing all the ceramic finishes, granite worktops and also sandwashing of outside pathways etc

I will give you an update in June once we have finalised the details, and I hope this is of some help meanwhile...
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Re: Payment schedule

Postby tung » Fri Apr 25, 2008 2:28 am

gadgetman wrote:Hi Tung,
Payment is going to be an important issue, I agree but remember this is going to be a labour only contract, and at the moment we have only a ball park figure for the builder's labour, based on him looking at my initial building sketches. The builder has agreed payment in 4 lumps - 1)On completion of work up to floor level including swimming pool construction, septics and soakaways. 2) Blockwork up to roof level. 3) Roof structure, roof tiling and rendering, 4) Finishing house, and building perimeter wall.

The Sauna and outside toilet and showers are to be constructed after the main house construction is completed, and we are paying for the labour as contruction is completed.

The percentage of the labour costs payable at each stage will be agreed with the builder when we discuss the final plans with him in June, and then we plan to commence construction.

I will be responsible for installation of all plumbing and electrical services including the Swimming pool, and have a local tiler who will be doing all the ceramic finishes, granite worktops and also sandwashing of outside pathways etc

I will give you an update in June once we have finalised the details, and I hope this is of some help meanwhile...



Cheers for that as I believe that I will be about 2 months behind you on starting my build in Hua Hin. Just going through preliminaries at the mo
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Postby rubik101 » Mon Apr 28, 2008 3:59 pm

Gadgetman, and others who might know, why a sauna? Do you use one now? I am about to start design work and just wonder how useful a sauna might be. I was leaning towards a hot tub-whirlpool bath out on the balcony rather than a sauna.
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Why sauna?

Postby gadgetman » Mon Apr 28, 2008 4:59 pm

Rubik101,

I understand your question - before being introduced to taking sauna's in Phuket by my wife, I was also sceptical!

However, I do really enjoy the experience now, and to be fair the sauna I use in Phuket and the one we are going to build, is more a combination of sauna and steam room, as heat is generated by a wood burning fire heating a stainless steel "boiler" mounted above, and located outside but adjacent to the enclosed sauna room. The boiler cylinder which has water and herbs poured in and topped up through a small access door on the boiler side, is mounted vertically above the fire, and has a conical top with a pipe leading out, ducting hot herb scented steam into the sauna room.

I am sure the health benefits of sauna's are documented elsewhere - but we really enjoy them, and they are a great cure for a hangover, the odd cold, painful joints etc. Of course we never have any of those in Thailand (well maybe the odd hangover!), but is is really great to get steamed up, jump in the pool to chill (slightly!) and repeat, whilst enjoying an ice-cold beer or two!.

We are also going to open up our sauna for the locals to enjoy for a few baht per session, and also serve some local Isaan food, as my wife says she has to have a business to run so she doesn't get bored!

I think you need to try a Thai sauna or two to decide what is best for you before you decide what to build in your new project. Good Luck!
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Postby dozer » Wed Apr 30, 2008 12:30 pm

At this stage, I am not sure whether we will need electric extractor fans on the gable end vents, and maybe electric extractor fans in the ceilings to make the system really work.


I like them. The are cheap (anywhere from 700 - 2000 baht each), effective and easy to install, especially with a gable roof design as you can just vent straight out through the gable side.
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Gable Vents

Postby gadgetman » Thu May 01, 2008 4:12 pm

I like them. The are cheap (anywhere from 700 - 2000 baht each), effective and easy to install, especially with a gable roof design as you can just vent straight out through the gable side.


Dozer, thanks for your reply. Would you think it is better to install an extractor fan at both Gable end vents, or is fitting to just one end likely to be sufficient to draw the air from inside the living area, into the roofspace and out?
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Hi Gadgetman

Postby tr4ever » Tue Jun 03, 2008 3:04 pm

I have been to Thai steam / sauna's and love them too. But what I saw was a little different from what you describe. The sauna's I have visited had a steam pipe coming out of the wall and elbowing down into a small wooden or tin bucket of herbs.

Just a thought, as it seams easier to clean the used herbs out a small bucket then the whole boiler.

Cheers,

tr4ever
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Re: Building a new home with pool and sauna in Phonjalong, Korat

Postby blue gecko » Wed Jun 10, 2009 3:12 pm

Looks great!! ;0)

Please can you post floorplan allso. I like idea that pool is between 2 wings.
How about the price???
Perhaps I do something like this allso in Khanom????

Miki

I am newbie from Finland so Sauna is going to be there for sure!!!!
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Re: Building a new home with pool and sauna in Phonjalong, Korat

Postby thaifly » Fri Jun 12, 2009 10:53 am

gidday blue gecko...its the thai fly..from mae rim....hey matey spent many a long hour..having a sauna..in your lovely country....very fond memories indeed...now when you get your sauna into operation...try the following..EUCALYPTUS OIL....KANGEROO BRAND....105 BAHT A SMALL BOTTLE..AVAILABLE IN MOST CHEMISTS...its great as an inhalant for the relief of colds ...and HANG OVERS...or just to make you feel that good in a sauna...just drop a couple teaspoons in a cup of water..and then throw a little on the hot coals..to your liking..its also can be used for the relief of sprains and strains ..rub freely into the effected area...the thai fly manages to have a sauna every couple days..using this oil and it leaves herbs ETC ETC for dead
...its a KANGAROO EUCLYPTUS GIDDAY TO ALL...ITS THE THAI FLY FROM MAE RIM
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Re: Building a new home with pool and sauna in Phonjalong, Korat

Postby gadgetman » Sun Jan 17, 2010 4:30 pm

Well, it's hard to believe but 18 months have flown by and here is a photo of the completed house and pool, with only the garden left to sort out! And not only do we have our new home, sauna and restaraunt business, but we also have our new baby daughter Jodie, who is now already 13 months old and quite an expert on building equipment and machinery!

Over the coming week I will go back to the beginning and add more photo's of our project from the beginning. I am only sorry it has come to an end, because it has been such a great experience building here in Korat, and after completing this project following a couple of others in Phuket, I would be delighted to assist any other farang builders or potential builders up here in the NE of Thailand.

Of course, if you are already here in Korat, contact me on 081894 3966 if you would like to come and enjoy some great Thai food, a Sauna or swim in our salt water pool. as my wife and I are now open for business in our village near Non Sung, Nakhon Ratchasima
Completed house viewed from garden by Sauna.jpg
Finished house viewed from Sauna end of garden
Pool showing waterfall surge tank, with seating, kitchen and sauna behind.jpg
Pool view with Garden Sauna, Restaraunt and customer toilet/showers in background
Finished house view from bedroom wing across terrace to sauna, kitchen and toilet-showers.jpg
Completed house viewed from bedroom "wing" looking across to terrace and pool bar
Puy happy house is now finished!.jpg
Puy is happy as house is completed
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Re: Building a new home with pool and sauna in Phonjalong, Korat

Postby gadgetman » Sun Jan 17, 2010 5:50 pm

THis is how our project build began in July 2008, as we excavated the first of the 24 footings that would be the basis of the L shaped house. The specifcation was for a concrete pad 1.5m x 1.5m, formed 1.5m below ground level.
First footing with PJ looking on.jpg
Puy looks on as the first footing is excavated on site

The rebar pad cages are all 12mm, along with the rebar column supports, and we used 10" dia concrete pipes backfilled with concrete below ground up to the height of the ground floor beam, which was the next job
Filling in the 24 poured footings.jpg
24 footings poured and rebar in place ready for beam and later for columns on top
Puy wires up the steel for columns.jpg
Puy helps wiring up the 12mm rebar column supports
Puy wires up the steel for columns.jpg
Puy helps wiring up the 12mm rebar column supports

After the footings were filled in with earth and compacted, the next job was to make the ground floor beam, and for this and all the future beam construction we had worked out it was cheaper and would produce a better job to hire steel shuttering from a very helpful tool hire company in Korat, especially as I was insisting that the beams were to be continuosly poured in one session and not cast in several meter long sections as our builder was suggesting, to save costs on timber for him to make conventional shuttering. The steel shuttering worked superbly, and produced a very well finished beam.
Steel formwork for groung floor concrete beam.jpg
Steel shuttering being assembled to make groung floor beam 30cm x 20cm
Attachments
Puy wiring up the footing steel cage.jpg
Puy wires up the 12mm rebar pad cages
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