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Construction in Thailand Is building in Thailand as bad as it seems? Can properties really be built and fitted out to European standards? Would you like to Build your own house in Phuket, or a swimming pool in Bangkok? Solar water heating in Pattaya? Or maybe you want to build a resort or guesthouse on Koh Samui? If you want to build a luxury house in Thailand then this is the forum for you.

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Old 03-10-2016, 05:10 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by jonnyenglish
Water on your property is also seen as good luck.
Yes, that comes from Feng Shui of course.
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Old 03-10-2016, 06:55 PM   #27 (permalink)
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'Yes, that comes from Feng Shui of course.'

Indeed, along with not having your bed in the bathroom, toilet on the front porch of your house, or doors where windows should be.. or something like that anyhow
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Old 03-10-2016, 07:20 PM   #28 (permalink)
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So, the pond design isn't meant to be a concrete pool made to look like a pond, I have deliberately not made it as such by leaving the bottom of the pond and the upper ledge and edges free of concrete, this allows the water to rise and fall naturally, plus gives the animals, fish and whatnot somewhere to dig about.

I will put in rocks and gravel on the concrete ledge where the plant cages will go for the fishes to make nests in and around at a later date, before I plant it up.

The concrete sides to the pond were really just an idea I had to consolidate the sloped sides of the pond, in order to stop slumping during rains, but also where fish and animals burrow along the water line into the mud bank.

Fish also have a tendency to root about in the mud at the base of plants, uprooting plants as they do so, by putting plants such as waterlillies and such in baskets/cages containing soil and gravel, topped with a mesh and more gravel, this will protect the plants, but also allow for them to be moved about to optimal effect, plus I will be able to control plant growth easier. Lillies also need to be started off in shallow water and then moved to deeper water as they get bigger, so this also solves this problem.

The concrete pipes sticking out of the side are not so that water can drain out of the pond as they are below the intended water line (although this will happen to some extent), but rather the other way around, so that ground water can seep in without breaking off the concrete I had put around on the sides.

As the water level will fall during periods of no rain, I'll have to top-up from a hose every day or so.

Anyhow, here's a pic of the partially concreted pond, complete with access steps on the left. As you can see, I have also put in a barbed wire fence to keep cattle out. Eventually I'll use plants, low walls and other devices to create a perimeter, but for now this'll do.

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Old 03-10-2016, 10:12 PM   #29 (permalink)
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A very nice start to an interesting-looking thread .

And we've already had a photo of a dog looking into a concrete drain .

Excellent jonny !



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Old 03-10-2016, 11:40 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Fantastic mate.

Looking forward to the thread as it develops over the next year or so.


I'm consider retiring up around CM in 8-10 years time, and considering different areas.


Don't suppose the plot next to you is up for sale.
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Old 04-10-2016, 02:03 AM   #31 (permalink)
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Might see like a silly question, but why didn't you use the soil form the pond as your initial layer on your house pad?

How long do you plan to 'season' the house-pad before building?
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Old 04-10-2016, 05:25 AM   #32 (permalink)
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Great thread and good luck with the build.
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Old 04-10-2016, 08:37 AM   #33 (permalink)
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A very nice start to an interesting-looking thread .

And we've already had a photo of a dog looking into a concrete drain .

Excellent jonny !



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The dogs are in important and integral part of any construction project and should be there at every stage in order to assess build quality, especially good at testing pour quality of freshly laid concrete!
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Old 04-10-2016, 08:51 AM   #34 (permalink)
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Fantastic mate.

Looking forward to the thread as it develops over the next year or so.


I'm consider retiring up around CM in 8-10 years time, and considering different areas.


Don't suppose the plot next to you is up for sale.
Cheers Old Bean,

Why wait until retirement? Get started now, land prices are already getting crazy in other parts of the country, only a matter of time before the same happens around here.

In my opinion CM is by far the best part of Thailand to live, sure it doesn't have beaches, but with that comes all the associated annoyances and expenses.. Additionally, seeing as though this is a construction-themed board, have you seen what sea air, rain and constant heat does to a property? I have seen villas literally fall apart after a few years of constant battling down on Koh Samui. Also not good for the Aston Martin, oh wait... I don't have one, 'doh!'

Up here you get to choose what sort of environment you'd live to live in, the benefit of a small city with more amenities than much larger places offer, plus you can always jump on a cheap flight if you need to swim in some salty wobbly stuff and get sand on yer bits.

And actually, yes there are several plots I know that are going in Baanpong and also surrounding area (and not through a property company too!)...
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Old 04-10-2016, 09:09 AM   #35 (permalink)
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have you seen what sea air, rain and constant heat does to a property?
Had a house right on the beach several years ago. Constant maintence work. Similar to boat ownership.
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Old 04-10-2016, 09:15 AM   #36 (permalink)
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Good start Jonny, I like the pond layout. If you dont mind me asking, how will you keep it full or will you let it rise and fall naturally dependind on the season.

I'm considering something along those lines as far a placing a pond out back. We could keep it full with creek water and overflow to the same creek during the rains. I would prefer topping it off with well water as I'm afraid any fish in the pond may not taste verry good if in a stagnant pond. That being said the cost to run a pump for makeup water may be prohibitive.

Will you be running some type of aeration pump to keep oxygen levels up? Just curious.
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Old 04-10-2016, 09:27 AM   #37 (permalink)
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Might see like a silly question, but why didn't you use the soil form the pond as your initial layer on your house pad?

How long do you plan to 'season' the house-pad before building?
Very good question David, the answer is I did in part use some of it, but actually there is a slight slope over the length of the land, the pond is at about the 2/3rds mark on the plot, so even after I used this 'soil' there would still be more needed to make it all level.

here's a map:



The only soil I was concerned about was what went on the last section after the pond at the end of the property (furthest from the entrance), as this will be used to grow fruit and veg, so managed to get decent topsoil locally. Actually, much of it came from a patch of land that had banana trees growing on it, some of the roots came in with the soil and have since started sprouting trees all over the growing garden area, which is great!

Additionally to answer your second question, it doesn't really matter about how long I wait for land to settle, as I am planning on building my house raised by 80cms, not on a pad, so the footings go down well below the already compacted and existing undisturbed ground level prior to my adding the additional 80cms.
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Old 04-10-2016, 09:41 AM   #38 (permalink)
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Good start Jonny, I like the pond layout. If you dont mind me asking, how will you keep it full or will you let it rise and fall naturally dependind on the season.

I'm considering something along those lines as far a placing a pond out back. We could keep it full with creek water and overflow to the same creek during the rains. I would prefer topping it off with well water as I'm afraid any fish in the pond may not taste verry good if in a stagnant pond. That being said the cost to run a pump for makeup water may be prohibitive.

Will you be running some type of aeration pump to keep oxygen levels up? Just curious.
Cheers Khun Fish, the water level will of course rise and fall, but I already have 3 sources of water on the land, a well, gov't water and water piped straight in from the reservoir.

Gov't water is a last resort, I'm always concerned about what comes out of the taps here...The reservoir water has all sorts of organic goodies in it, including insect and fish eggs, so will be using this to top up (have put in 4 taps of this water supply along the length of the property, one right next to the pond and already did a test before the rain started, it took 3 days to fill the pond from water table, but I won't be letting it drop that low again after the house is finished.)

Additionally, I'll be placing those large round traditional-looking rain catchment pots and guttering on the house, can use this water to top up too.

I'll be planting with oxygenating water-weeds into manageable baskets to help the fish, but also might consider a pump of sorts, hidden behind rocks and logs to circulate water and add more oxygen.. they are pretty cheap to run really, just stick it on a timer so that it only runs during the day. If it means not having a stagnant green pond with upside-down fish floating on top, then that's the way to go!
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Old 04-10-2016, 09:44 AM   #39 (permalink)
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Great thread and good luck with the build.
Cheers Loy, Ideas, luck and money are what is needed.
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Old 04-10-2016, 09:55 AM   #40 (permalink)
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Fantastic mate.

Looking forward to the thread as it develops over the next year or so.


I'm consider retiring up around CM in 8-10 years time, and considering different areas.


Don't suppose the plot next to you is up for sale.
Cheers Old Bean,

Why wait until retirement?
I'm in my 30's.

Daughter goes to a good International School in Bkk.

I already own a condo there.




Plus it's not 100% certain anyway.


Good luck and enjoy it mate, you've got a great patch there.
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Old 04-10-2016, 12:44 PM   #41 (permalink)
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Whilst all this pond building stuff was going on, we got the chap with the digger back to excavate a well, after all we need as many water sources as we can get in Wadi Baanpong..

Now then, for ease of use, I wanted the well to be sunk near-ish to the house/workshop, that way I could also use it if needs be to top up the pond during the dry season.

Whilst this seemed like a grand idea to me, there was much chattering and deliberation amongst my missus, Nong the digger and a couple of the chaps on the concrete gang...the discussion must have gone on for about an hour, when I stepped in and enquired as to what the hell they were talking about.

It turns out that there was already a well sited on the land but it had been covered up ages ago, and it was explained that it is very bad juju to be sinking a well on land that already has one and that one isn't in use.

It took me about 5 seconds to agree just to uncover the existing well, just to end this continuous conversation before we all expired from heat and lack of Som Tam Laos .

OK, so digging starts in the point furthest away from the pond and house, right next to the gate/entrance to the land as it turns out, OK whatever.

About a metre down we hit rock, very large boulders from the nearby hill to be exact, 1000-2500 KG's in size. I'm thinking this isn't a well, but perhaps a seasonal spring.. handy harry!

Issue now is we need to remove the large rocks in order to place in the beautiful concrete rings and consolidate the well sides, and this hole is getting bigger and bigger and the rock at the bottom isn't budging... take a look:

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Old 04-10-2016, 12:50 PM   #42 (permalink)
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After an hour of fighting this boulder, the Flintstones 2000 excavator sprang a hydraulics leak, was smelling hot and oil was dripping from the engine...

Nong the digger announces that it's the land spirits fighting us as we didn't ask permission to uncover the well, so with ciggie in gob, he promptly jumps into his pick-up truck and disappears for 20 minutes before returning to the site where he and his buddy (I'll call him 'Bod') set up an alter to the land spirit, with offerings (apologies for fuzzy photo, must have been interference from the ethers emanating from angry spirits):

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Old 04-10-2016, 03:18 PM   #43 (permalink)
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And for those itching to know the result of the pig's head, booze, water, rice and incense combo offering of appeasement.. the rock finally came out of the hole, along with a bunch of others that would now be placed around the pond in a not-very-considered fasion.

This, along with the completion of the concreting of the pond, was felt by all on site as a milestone of achievement, small steps for most I know, but hey, it's progress at least!


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Old 04-10-2016, 03:46 PM   #44 (permalink)
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Might see like a silly question, but why didn't you use the soil form the pond as your initial layer on your house pad?

How long do you plan to 'season' the house-pad before building?
Very good question David, the answer is I did in part use some of it, but actually there is a slight slope over the length of the land, the pond is at about the 2/3rds mark on the plot, so even after I used this 'soil' there would still be more needed to make it all level.

here's a map:



The only soil I was concerned about was what went on the last section after the pond at the end of the property (furthest from the entrance), as this will be used to grow fruit and veg, so managed to get decent topsoil locally. Actually, much of it came from a patch of land that had banana trees growing on it, some of the roots came in with the soil and have since started sprouting trees all over the growing garden area, which is great!

Additionally to answer your second question, it doesn't really matter about how long I wait for land to settle, as I am planning on building my house raised by 80cms, not on a pad, so the footings go down well below the already compacted and existing undisturbed ground level prior to my adding the additional 80cms.
Mate, I can see a bit of a design flaw. Surely the workshop should be much bigger than the house?
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Old 04-10-2016, 03:52 PM   #45 (permalink)
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Mate, I can see a bit of a design flaw. Surely the workshop should be much bigger than the house?
hmm.. I see your point, perhaps I should also include a narrow-gauge rail link to the nearest pub?
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Old 04-10-2016, 04:35 PM   #46 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by jonnyenglish View Post
I'll be planting with oxygenating water-weeds into manageable baskets to help the fish, but also might consider a pump of sorts, hidden behind rocks and logs to circulate water and add more oxygen.. they are pretty cheap to run really, just stick it on a timer so that it only runs during the day. If it means not having a stagnant green pond with upside-down fish floating on top, then that's the way to go!
Mate, we (the extended Thai Family) are Fish Farmers.

Without going into great details if you have a gentle ripple on the ponds surface there will be usually sufficient aeration of the pond.

O2 saturation levels depend, amongst other things on the ambient Water/Air temperature and the time of day.



The point of lowest O2 saturation is just before dawn ... so that's when you want your pump running.

If you want some fish for eating, monosex Tilapia or Catfish are the easiest and Catfish don't worry much about O2 levels.

Be carefull of the locals ... they'll nick the lot the night before you harvest them!
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Old 04-10-2016, 05:03 PM   #47 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by David48atTD View Post

Mate, we (the extended Thai Family) are Fish Farmers.

Without going into great details if you have a gentle ripple on the ponds surface there will be usually sufficient aeration of the pond.

O2 saturation levels depend, amongst other things on the ambient Water/Air temperature and the time of day.


The point of lowest O2 saturation is just before dawn ... so that's when you want your pump running.

If you want some fish for eating, monosex Tilapia or Catfish are the easiest and Catfish don't worry much about O2 levels.

Be carefull of the locals ... they'll nick the lot the night before you harvest them!
Many thanks for the info on O2 levels David, much appreciated. If I do come to installing a pump, it'll be on a timer and as you say, probably only needed in hot and dry season.

As for fish types, my friend's pond just up the road has Nile Tilapia (Pla Nin) in it that do very well, and are tasty (not at all muddy like carp can be), We can get these for a small outlay up at the reservoir (Huay lan) as the royal project there has a fish farm. I do like Snakehead fish (they also don't mind low oxygen levels), but I've heard they are voracious and eat everything else in the pond.

Anyhow, will do more research after house build is complete, the site for the house is very close to the pond and we'll be putting in a sala which sits half over the water, so I'll wait.

Fish for eating will be the last to go in after planting out.
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Old 04-10-2016, 05:38 PM   #48 (permalink)
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View showing completed pond, now with two tiers of concreted slopes, with ledge and return lip at top edge of final mud ledge, two levels of pipes (which also help to seat and anchor the concrete facing to the soil below), plus access steps, and boulders from the well excavation which will be moved to their correct place soon after, note dog surveying position of boulders.

Oh my, they look like rain clouds forming, concreting finished just in time!

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Old 04-10-2016, 09:44 PM   #49 (permalink)
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I like the use of the concrete around your pond and the steps leading down. It is almost like a natural swimming pool you see on the web. Blue gill or Sunfish would be nice for a small pond. Fun to catch with a pole and line and probably wont muck up the water as much as catfish.
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Old 04-10-2016, 10:26 PM   #50 (permalink)
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Brilliant thread here.

One of the best developing offerings I have seen for years on Teakdoor.

Well done jonny. Keep the info and pictures coming.
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