New village build near Udon

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Re: New village build near Udon

Postby schuimpge » Wed Feb 21, 2018 9:18 am

Looks good so far. Nice work.
Are the yellow pipes your incoming electricity lines?

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Re: New village build near Udon

Postby ajarnudon » Fri Mar 30, 2018 8:54 am

Hi Luc
Sorry to take so long. Yes, they house the mains cables - the distribution box will be just inside the front door of the garage.
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Re: New village build near Udon

Postby ajarnudon » Thu Apr 05, 2018 6:30 pm

Well, things have been very busy recently - firstly at work in BKK, and for the last 2/3 weeks, on the building site in the village. I am on holiday until mid-May, and this is my prime building time before the wet season. A lot of progress has been made, at the expense of a large dent in the bank balance. Over the past couple of weeks we have averaged 7-8 workers onsite per day, The priority remains to get the garage to lockup stage so we have a secure storage area for tools and materials. Today the garage/laundry/workshop (with toilet) has reached 85/90% completion.
Here is a quick pictorial update on work during March.

The inner garage wall going up. The first three courses were backfilled with concrete and reinforced vertically every third core, as well as horizontally in the fourth (cut the webbing out of the tops of the blocks and laid D12 bar across before corefilling). Each core beside a post was reinforced full height in the same manner and reo tied into the post every second course above #4.

Garage ceiling going up.

Fill in place, and laundry plumbing and power roughed in.

Fabricating the reo 9mm mesh for the slab. Can't buy sheets of mesh in Thailand, so you weld up your own - my experience in Udon anyway.

Start of the 44 sq m X 12 cm (= 5.5 cubes) pour. Reo in place supported by luk bun. 24 steng.

Told the missus she was daft - whatever she planted wasn't going to grow there :lol: Kept it wet for three days - weather was perfect, never got over 29 degrees.

One of two 2 cm control joints cut with a diamond saw in the 11 m slab after 36 hours. After two weeks I am very happy with the result. No signs of cracking, and a nicely finished surface - no powder. I am sure that the curing process is aided by having the roof up before the pour - will use this same strategy for the house proper.
OK, not allowed any more pics now, so will continue in episode 2.
Cheers, John.
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Re: New village build near Udon

Postby ajarnudon » Thu Apr 05, 2018 8:01 pm

March 2018, Episode 2

Next we had the macro in - dug the holes for the ten central pillars for the house, and installed two septic tanks.

One of the reo cages on luk bun at the bottom of the 1 m X 1 m X 1 m post holes. Minimum of 5 cms clearance from reo all round.

Rendering the outer garage wall, inside and outside.

Painting the guttering - suay suay.

The rear of the garage houses my workshop, as well as the laundry and a toilet. As we had already poured the 40 X 40 cm footing for the rear wall, a toilet with an S-trap wouldn't do. We needed one with a P-trap (no pun intended) with an exit thru the back wall. Only ones we could find were a few 'American Standard' brand (made in Thailand) suites, which are usually used in multi-storey buildings. So we bought a THB 5K version, but when shopping we fell in love with this Chinese made suite (S-trap, one peice, low tank profile, dual-flush, soft close etc.) @ THB 2.4 K and bought it for the upstairs (in our split-level design) ensuite - and it came with a free wash basin! Haven't decided yet on the downstairs main bathroom toilet, but thinking that the Chinese one will win out (haven't poured footings there yet).

There is a lot to describe in this picture. Firstly, this inner garage wall will have a 7 cm cavity between it and the main house southern wall. The bottom four courses of the house wall will duplicate those of the garage wall , with reinforcement etc. for load-bearing capacity. The breathing holes visible in this wall will be duplicated in the house wall to provide sub-floor ventilation under the pan poon floor in the house upper level (raised 80 cm). Our ladies did most of the block laying, and as these 15 cm blocks are extremely heavy, we pay them a loading of 10% whenever they work with these blocks. But the course the guys on the left are laying was just too heavy for the ladies. This course forms a bond beam (just like course #4, with the webbing cut out of the top of the blocks. However, to stop concrete simply falling thru the cores, we placed 26 blocks on a plastic sheet and filled the cores with 5-6 cms of concrete on the ground in the morning. In the afternoon, it had set enough to lay them in the 17th course, then the 12 mm steel bar was laid across the top, tied into the posts with epoxy and welded to the vertical reinforcing steel, after which the blocks were core filled with concrete. To my mind, this is the simplest, most cost-effective and efficient way to make a bond beam in a masonry wall.
Above this we went down to 9 cm blocks, the second course containing 18 glass blocks, and finally a cut block to fit flush with the house top plate (not in place at time of the picture).

More soon with an April update.
Cheers, John
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Re: New village build near Udon

Postby pipoz » Sat Apr 07, 2018 11:46 am

Hi John,

Looks like you bought new scaffold for the task

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Re: New village build near Udon

Postby ajarnudon » Sun Apr 15, 2018 10:19 pm

Hi Pipoz
Have had two sets all along, but as the build got higher, I bought another four sets, giving us a 2 x 3 or 3 x 2 capability. The welders will be working at 5 metres + above ground level welding the central top plates, rafters and battens, so the extra capacity was a must. I am pondering the safety issues which would never enter these guys minds (I doubt they have much experience in working at heights) - hard hats maybe, but that won't help if they break their back in a fall. Safety harnesses (they have never used before) would probably lead to an accident. The only thing I could be sure of is welding a temporary rail across the outside of each top section of scaffold at waist level.
The scaffolds are really quite cheap (THB 1200-1300 per set) - in fact, four wheels cost nearly as much as the scaffold they support. Job finished (bear in mind that this is a part time project for me, obviating rental) I will sell four sets, keeping two (with one set of wheels) for maintenance (cleaning, cobwebs, painting, light replacement, CCTV adjustment etc.).
Cheers, John
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Re: New village build near Udon

Postby ajarnudon » Mon May 14, 2018 8:23 pm

Hi again. Here is an update on what we did in April, either side of Songkran.
Episode 1.

Firstly, we moved the distribution box from the temporary pole setup to its home inside the garage. It was getting a bit crowded inside the box, so we moved the mains switch to a separate box which also houses a solid brass bar for all the earths to link to the main earth - the latter is a 1 1/2 metre copper stake driven into the absorption trench of the first septic tank, ensuring moist ground and a good earth return path to the pole MEN at the front of our land. Moving the mains switch to the separate box also provided room on the DIN mounting bar for another 32 amp breaker, so we now have 4 x 32 amp, 1 x 20 amp and 1 x 16 amp circuits.

Three double GPOs in the workshop area, and lights going in.

Laundry and toilet (left) area at the rear (western end) of the garage. The window is a 120 x 60 cm casement window mounted horizotally rather than vertically. This is the size window I wanted, and the only option without a substantial lead time. I used 7.5 cm steel angle as lintels for the 9 cm masonry blocks here. Water inlet and power for washing machine to the left of the laundry tub. This tub, a H'a'fele sink unit, has proved very disappointing. Twice the price of comparable units we saw later, it continualy has small rust spots coming up on the 'supposedly' stainles surface. They come off with a bit of rubbing, but is not what I expect for the money I paid. Needless to say, no other H'a'fele product will find its way into our home.

The 15 x 15 cm x 6 metre central steel columns in place. So glad I went down this path - straight and true (unlike the concrete posts on the outside), easy to align, and easy welding. Lengths of 12 mm bar welded on provided supports all over the place, and were easily ground off after. Concrete posts don't provide this option.

This is the proper way to do a septic tank. The inlet (right) is of course set higher than the outflow. With this design, a crust forms over the top of the effluent water which isn't disturbed by water flow either in or out.

Grey water from the laundry tub joins the slotted pipe in the absorption trench after the septic tank (doesn't go thru it). This flows down to where our garden will be.
More soon. Cheers, John
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Re: New village build near Udon

Postby ajarnudon » Wed May 16, 2018 6:38 pm

April. Episode 2.
Everyone had five days off for Songkran, but we hit the ground running straight afterwards.


Workbench and enclosure - the two lengths of 8" x 2" hardwood for the benchtop came in at 1,000 baht, and the vice that I had bought two years earlier finally found a home.

Recessing the tops of the pillars to accommodate the central steel beams.

These 16.4 metre beams were fabricated on the ground from 3.2 mm C-section, and were enormously heavy. Four of us (that's me in the white shirt on the far end) struggled to carry them into position. I was totally incredulous when they started the lift - the three guys on the poles were deadlifting the beam on ropes while people on the ground pushed them up with hardwood poles. The lack of even the most rudimentary mechanical assistance astounded me. After what seemed an eternity (grunting and groaning interspersed with rest breaks), the beams were safely at rest in the poletop recesses. The workers would have been in no condition to raise the second beam that afternoon, so I set them on other tasks while I sourced what would be needed - longer ropes, 9 medium-small pulleys and some shackles.

Next day, three people, one at the base of each pole, hoisted the second beam effortlessly with the 3:1 mechanical advantage - the guys at the top only had to position and align the beam. All over in minutes, and a minimum of effort. I think these guys are still scratching their heads.
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Re: New village build near Udon

Postby ajarnudon » Sat May 19, 2018 5:00 pm

May 2018. Episode 1.
My main priority was to have the roof on before I went back to work in mid-May, but I took a detour and worked on the footings first. They were formed up with the small (6 cm wide) concrete blocks, and I wanted to get them in while the blocklayers were still onsite - before they went off to another job, or got caught up in agricultural activities. The blocks were laid two high (40 cms), and the footings were made 35 cms wide where there will be a live load (wall support), and 30 cms wide for dead loads (no wall, pan puen and topping support only). All footings were reinforced with four lengths of 12 mm deformed bar. The were poured over two days - we got about 60% poured the first day, had to place some more reo next morning, and booked the truck for 1 pm the second day. We were pouring the last two lineal metres when the heavens opened up. We were all drenched and running around finding pieces of sheeting, black plastic etc to cover the fresh concrete. Next day we hand mixed some concrete to finish the last couple of metres.

The dimpling in the concrete from the heavy rain before we got it covered is clearly seen in the picture above. This isn't an issue for the footings, but I would have been spitting chips if it had been a slab. Another good reason (apart from better curing) to pour slabs after the roof goes on. At this point we said goodbye to the blocklayers temporarily - I didn't want them laying blocks with people working overhead in case something got dropped.

Two 7 metre long bamboo poles we harvested from a stand on my brother-in-law's block.

These were supported by steel welded to the central columns one metre below the tops of the poles, and flexing of the bamboo eliminated by rope supports tied to the central beams - a design similar to a suspension bridge. This arrangement is to allow a large platform for the welders to work on when welding the 4 x 2 box section rafters and chords in place.

One of two plywood platforms on steel frames. These had already seen use on top of the blue scaffolds for the blocklayers. We welded another two lugs to each end of the platforms, giving a neat fit eliminating any movement on the bamboo rails.

The 6 metre ladder we fabricated, with two 12 mm deformed rebar hooks welded at the top to fit over the top central beams.
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Re: New village build near Udon

Postby ajarnudon » Sat May 19, 2018 5:40 pm

May 2018. Episode 2.

Using the new ladder. It actually proved to be too long, so the two bottom rungs were cut off.

The two platforms in place. Here the guys are covering them with plastic held in place with elastic (occy) straps before they go home, to protect the ply from possible overnight rain.

Rafters and battens all welded in place. Here one of the guys is painting over the welds.

The first sheets go on - it feels very cool underneath. This picture shows the unfinished roof frame at the rear. This section, over an open 10.4 x 4 metre rear deck, is a Dutch gable (a part gable on top of a hip roof). Being a little complex, I elected to come back to it later.

Trimming roof sheets at the front. The floor plan cuts away at 45 degrees from the outer walls, while at the same time wall height increases. This, I am hoping, will make an aesthetically-pleasing design feature when the walls are up.

Roof sheeting and ridge capping in place. A couple of friends and the workers helped us celebrate - lots of food and drink. I am now back in Bangkok, but hope to link up with my team again soon on a weekend to finish off the rear roof.
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