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  1. #1
    Thailand Expat
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    Fitting out your Thailand condo

    Time to renovate your old Thailand condo or just get it finished then this is the thread you want, these 2 condos are in Pattaya and luckily in the same building next door to each other, otherwise the neighbours would be real pissed off to find we have knocked through their wall.

    So to start we got 2 shells, no bathrooms, a few electric wires that barely meet the grade, but they do have an earth cable, a couple of balconies, one of which is a bit badly tiled slope wise but can be lived with, so we have 2 shells with pipe works for 2 bathrooms and 2 kitchens, as its being knocked through we don't need all those pipes so they are a bit of a problem job

    First on the knocking through of the 2 units, you got to cut the walls with the old angle grinder to weaken them up a bit, this if I remember correctly will be a 3.4 meter entry to the bedroom and bathroom area.



    After cutting the walls you got to knock the poxy thing down, this is actually pretty easy, but you don't want big chunks of concrete and bricks and that slamming down onto the floor.



    Leave all the rubble on the floor till you have all the big bits of concrete down, this also helps to protect the floor a bit from structural damage, ie you get an over eager idiot decides he can whack down that 400kilo piece at 3 meters high in one go its impact distributes a lot better on top of a pils of rubble than on a nice floor that aint got much flex in it.



    Your gonna end up with a lot of rubble, ie pick up loads of it, now this is where it becomes difficult to make a price on a condo job, all this rubble now has to be bagged up, this rubble then has to be taken to the lift, it then has to be taken downstairs, loaded into a pick up and dumped somewhere, I reckon we got 100 bags of rubble out of this little knock thru, thats a lot of time in lifts your staff are going to be spending, also you are generally only allowed to use one lift in most condo units so your staff are enjoying their day whilst waiting for lifts, luckily I have calmed down a bit in my older years and don't make the gits carry it all down the stairs



    So we got to carry on making a mess, get all the shitty messy work done first, water pipes that are not going to be used need to be hidden and capped off, yep start smashing out more bits of wall, this you really have to be carefull with in older condos, ie the walls are only 10cms thick and you need to smash out 8 to 9 cms, they got nice expensive wall paper on the otherside your going to be paying for a major redecoration job, nowadays most use superblock so you got about 15cms to play with so it isn't too scary.

    These are ready to take out the extras and cap for good.



    Get those electric runs in, nowadays in Pattaya at least your electric runs have to be in conduit, also I think they are reasonably a bit serious now about having an earth on your breaker box, so we are going way hi tech in Thailand now, although I know the guy who does the checks for new buildings and he hasn't checked anything I have done in the last 5 years, anyway earths are a good thing, who wants to read about a customer dieing in their shower.



    Now chisel out a load of brick and mortar and your away, electric cables coming this week in lovely gray conduit, hmmm, "gray"? Yeah seems they got away with gray at this condo, normally yellow would be more acceptable here in Thailand, not that it makes much difference I suppose, gray is a bit thinner and cheaper than the yellow and is generally used for air con water pipes.


  2. #2
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    Thailand super block in condos

    Now superblock is the in thing in Thailand, the prices have come down so it can compete as a building material that is commonly used, in tourists areas like Pattaya, Phuket and Bangkok where labour prices are expensive superblock works out to nearly the same as the Thai red bricks, the ones we are using here are 20 by 60cms, nice and square and easy to work with, just use a wood saw to cut them and the cement glue, hmmm well thats how it translates to bond them together.

    This area will be the bathroom and a walk in closet.



    Still have the problems of going to high in one day though, the cement glue is obviously cement based and doesn't set off that much quicker than the normal stuff.



    See those super blocks cut above the door way? pretty damn good huh, try that with red brick, anyway, got to chuck a concrete beam on top of that.


  3. #3
    Thailand Expat terry57's Avatar
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    Top idea there DD.

    How much you pay for those gaffers if you don't mind me asking.

  4. #4
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    Good idea, i have plans to buy a cheap ( @100,000b) apartment in bkk and retro fit it into a modern studio apartment, budget luxury for the well heeled backpacker!!.

  5. #5
    Newbie Phil Conners's Avatar
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    DD: Interesting post! Why did you put bricks in front of the door, couldn't you just brick it up?

    Phunpin: Where in BKK will you get anything but a doghouse for 100K baht?

  6. #6
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    Most condos do not allow you to change anything that shows in communal areas, this condo all they will allow is upto a 10cm trim round the door frame, they will also allow you to change your front door but it has to be the same style as it is at the moment, ie an 8 panel door I believe.

  7. #7
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    Thailand Condo Renovation

    So how are things coming along with this Pattaya Condo?

    Well the concrete and rebar beam is in and the block work has been taken up to near the top.

    In there is a walk in closet, shelf space and the bathroom, or will be pretty soon.






    The rubble is building up at a rapid pace and we really got to consider getting rid of it real soon, yep, it all has to be carted to the lift, taken downstairs, and then chucked in a pick up truck and dumped somewhere


  8. #8
    The Pikey Hunter
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    I'd just lob it out the window.

  9. #9
    Thailand Expat
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    The condo actually charges 200baht perday extra if you have staff working there, they won't take your rubbish away though, hmmmmmm.

    Anyway got those pipes cut down and sealed off, thats a right poxy job to do, you got to be so carefull you don't damage the neighbours wall cos for some reason they tend to complain about that



    Electrics going in for the extra power outlets, never can have too many of them and nows the time to get the dirty work done.



    Straighten out all those edges ready for rendering off.



    Bit of cement in the knock through to get our straight edge.



    The wall does have a slight curve in it or a bow, not a lot can be done about that and you have to hide it as best as possible.



    Getting there.



    All done and ready for some plaster board.


  10. #10
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    So lets start rendering off those bare brick walls.



    a picture of the render just after the wall has been covered, need to let it harden a bit before trying to get it relatively smooth.


  11. #11
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    Some of the waste pipes that are already in are not going to be used, these need to be capped off, trouble is there is not going to be enough floor height, ie they will end up as high as the tile and blue pipe sticking out of a nice cream tiled floor won't look too nice, so we got to modify the pipe fittings a bit, mess this up and you loose the 20k baht deposit that is deposited with condo, plus they will also charge you for repairing it so this bit you really got to be carefull who you get to do it, somchai the drunken motorbike taxi driver down the road would not be a good choice for this little job even if he says he can do it



    A picture showing the height we have left with the cap by the door.


  12. #12
    Thailand Expat Texpat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtydog View Post
    anyway earths are a good thing
    Had a change of heart, did you? Good to see you've come around.

  13. #13
    gos
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    looking forward to seeing this completed I am thinking I might do this buy a couple of condos and knock into one good sized pad
    keep up the good work DD

  14. #14
    Thailand Expat
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    Well after slight modification of the cap and pipe we end up with this.



    Next fun job is raising the floor height, so first we have to find the true level, the floor variation is upto 8 cms, ie loads of dips and rises don't forget this sand and cement all has to taken to the lift and then brought up to the condo so it is pretty hard work, the mounds are for us to have a height to work to for the pouring.




  15. #15
    Mea-Culpa
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    Made enough for a new set of tires yet...

  16. #16
    Thailand Expat
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    A new set would be 17,500baht, luckily I only need 2, so to your question, no to a new set, but nearly there for 2 really isn't that much profit in building so to make money properly you need about 50 guys working for you.

  17. #17
    Mea-Culpa
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtydog
    really isn't that much profit in building so to make money properly you need about 50 guys working for you.
    That will bring on some side-effects and extra cost....Like Valium and high blood-pressure medication...

  18. #18
    Thailand Expat
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    ^Yes quite, thats why I don't like the idea of working for a living.

    Anyway seems they left a load of cement slurry in the other room, the thing is do you leave it there or chip it? I got to admit you can probably get away with leaving it there but it just isn't right, if the tiles do stick ok they will still sound like that haven't when you tap them.



    So it's chip all the old crappy concrete out.



    And start raising the floor level, this room took about 100 bags of cement and sand in all, every single one of those bags had to be brought up from the ground floor and wheeled to the unit, still got to do the back bit though, the other room took several hundred .




  19. #19
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    Tiling a Pattaya Condo

    Time to start tiling this condo I suppose, now in the middle there is going to be a fancy design, normally we would just buy one from the shop, they are generally made out of granite and or marble, but this one we have had to make using reconstituted granite tiles, yep the nice shiney black ones, probably stick it in there tomorrow as this picture is a few days old already.


  20. #20
    Thailand Expat
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    Time to sort out those nasty edges on the black granite for the center piece of the room.



    Useing different grades of abrasive wheels on the angle grinder.



    12 more pieces to go


  21. #21
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    Can't forget to grout between the tiles, we usually use the same or a similar color grout to the tiles, this helps hide any size differences in the tiles, these tiles are exceptionally good though.


  22. #22
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    Time to do the fancy tile work, you can buy these ready made for a few thousand baht or get your builder to make your own, they are a bit of a pain as normal cutting is generally used for sides of rooms and is hidden, these are stuck in the middle of the floor so you got to sort out the edges which is a lot of work.


  23. #23
    Knows fok all
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    Nice work DD.

  24. #24
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    Thailand fancy tiling

    This sort of stuff is real labour intensive and I doubt if it is done much in first world countries as the cost would be prohibitive, here we are sticking in a 8cm black granite border round the edges, we wanted to keep the tiles full size for the main area.



    Sticking in the normal tiles into the display.



    Another little granite inset.


  25. #25
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    Thailand plasterboard ceilings

    Time to get the ceiling up, the top is obviously concrete and as ugly as fok, pipes and all stuff like that to hide, so first off is get the hangers up.



    Yeah they dont look like much but they do the job and it is a lot cheaper using alloy than wood for ceilings.



    This is a stepped ceiling, with that sort of thing you pay for the meter even if you only got a 10cm step as it involves a lot more work.



    More c line going up.



    Condos in Thailand these days don't want to burn farangs to death anymore, so they are fitting sprinkler systems and stuff like that, whether they work or not is another thing, but the thought is there, so the ceiling guys have to work to the sprinklers height.




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