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  1. #51
    The Pikey Hunter
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    Quote Originally Posted by stevefarang View Post
    OK, got some pics uploaded to photobucket, so let's see how this works.

    This first pic is the finished house we toured back when we considering several different designs. I was sold on this after seeing this house. It was not a model house, but an actual project that they had recently completed.
    Ours will look very similar, except I don't think we will do the wood trim on the front entrance. I think with the sun and heat, it will need re-varnishing every 2-3 years. It really looks spectacular though and I'm still very tempted to splurge on the wood trim. But for now, we will stick with a vinyl like trim.

    Sorry, that entrance door and the windows above it are just hideous Rest looks ok though.

  2. #52
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    Once again, thanks all for your comments, constructive criticism and support.

    There was a comment about how the house looks a little too much, as compared to the surrounding houses. I was thinking, overnight, that up the road and around a bend there is a similarly large, 2-story house. I'm guessing it's about 10 years old. So we won't be the only one in the neighborhood.

    If all goes well for me work-wise & cash flow picks up, construction will resume in January. I'm guessing the house should be done by August-Sept 2012, if not sooner. We'll soon have to start choosing alot of the finish interior details. I also need to talk with them about changing the front ddor trim to all wood.

    We will also have to give some thought to the drive way. PD House does not include that in the design. Fortunately, the crushed stone we put down for the crane can be re-used for the drive. I'm thinking of using inlaid brick/stone (not sure the correct term here), similarly to the house we visited. I don't want a simple black tarmac drive.

    We will also be building a security wall, but I am told you do that AFTER the house is finiehed or you will have bad luck.

    Once again, thanks to all !! I'll keep you updated as we continue this adventure.

  3. #53
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    If you take away the wood entrance feature you will make the house look clinical. This feature may not be to everyone’s taste but it does provide a Thai style focal point.

  4. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by stevefarang
    I'm thinking of using inlaid brick/stone (not sure the correct term here), similarly to the house we visited. I don't want a simple black tarmac drive.
    Too right you dont want tarmac in that heat mate poxy shit anyway ,,believe me I done 10 years of it. I think the term your looking for is " block paving " best laid on hardcore ,, then dryleyne mix screeded off with sharp sand infilled with very fine silica sand .
    Quote Originally Posted by stevefarang
    We will also be building a security wall, but I am told you do that AFTER the house is finiehed or you will have bad luck.
    Too right you will 555 as someone who shall remain nameless up in Chiang Mai can confirm Happy Xmas up there mate!
    Quote Originally Posted by Maxion
    If you take away the wood entrance feature you will make the house look clinical. This feature may not be to everyone’s taste but it does provide a Thai style focal point.
    Good point made , you like it and I like it and if the guy paying the wonga likes it then so be it
    I'm proud of my 38" waist , also proud I have never done drugs

  5. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by nigelandjan View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by stevefarang
    I'm thinking of using inlaid brick/stone (not sure the correct term here), similarly to the house we visited. I don't want a simple black tarmac drive.
    Too right you dont want tarmac in that heat mate poxy shit anyway ,,believe me I done 10 years of it. I think the term your looking for is " block paving " best laid on hardcore ,, then dryleyne mix screeded off with sharp sand infilled with very fine silica sand .
    Quote Originally Posted by stevefarang
    We will also be building a security wall, but I am told you do that AFTER the house is finiehed or you will have bad luck.
    Too right you will 555 as someone who shall remain nameless up in Chiang Mai can confirm Happy Xmas up there mate!
    Quote Originally Posted by Maxion
    If you take away the wood entrance feature you will make the house look clinical. This feature may not be to everyone’s taste but it does provide a Thai style focal point.
    Good point made , you like it and I like it and if the guy paying the wonga likes it then so be it

    Block paving or block pavers !! That's the term I was trying to remember. And definitely a lighter color to reflect the heat. Thanks Nigel ! Damn, I s'pose I owe you a beer or three !!! Now how do you say or spell it in Thai ??

    The security wall is a given. No way do I want to leave this place exposed. We also will have a small swimming pool next to the house, so that's another safety concern. There will be times when my wife will be staying there alone (OK maybe her Mom will be there as well - I know/accept how it works in Thailand!!) Our dog, who already has demonstrated the willingness to defend my wife/property, will have free reign inside the property. Hopefully he still remembers me!! LOL

    We've also been rasing ducks and geese (and chickens & fish) on our adjoining second lot. I never knew Thai people like to eat goose. I understand geese make an excellent alert system and will raise a ruckus whene ever someone enters the area. They can also be cranky buggers and go on the attack as well (ask me how we know this). So I may try to integrate them somehow into areas around the wall in our main lot. Maybe have several small bodies of water for them to hang out in?? I don't think the geese & the dog will get along together.

    One of the other things I will doing at this house is integrating a solar/wind power setup to supply power, especially when I am there. I got to have my air-con and I know we'll be paying through the nose for power. So I've been kicking around the idea of using several wind generators & multiple solar cells, along with a small shed full of car batteries and an inverter system (along with the transfer switch so we are off the grid when system is in use). We have the 3 large lots. My wide alwasy comments on the amount if wind there, plus the obvious sun. So I think we can have several pole mounted wind generators (if 1 fails, I still get power from the others while it's fixed/replaced) and a large area (not sure how large) of solar cells. My son is about to graduate as a BSEE so i have already told him he has to help design this system for me. However, I told him we can't be using lots of fancy new widgets for storing energy. Car batteries are cheap and easy to find in Thailand. So I'll just have a shed of them, stacked up, to store/provide the energy for the system. I might start a separate thread on this isea,as I will be curious to read what others have done and see their set-up.

    Once again, thanks to all. And Merry Christmas !!

  6. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by stevefarang
    One of the other things I will doing at this house is integrating a solar/wind power setup to supply power, especially when I am there. I got to have my air-con and I know we'll be paying through the nose for power. So I've been kicking around the idea of using several wind generators & multiple solar cells, along with a small shed full of car batteries and an inverter system (along with the transfer switch so we are off the grid when system is in use).
    I have a 30 watt solar panel charging a 100 ampere hour car battery. Its provides back up power to the house water pump should anyone be caught needing a show when the power goes off.
    If I was using the backup supply every day then a car battery would be useless because they don’t cycle from charged to discharge well. For this application I would need a deep cycle battery and they are expensive.
    To supply a whole house including A/C with solar power for 5 hours requires a huge amount of storage, lots of solar panel area and big inverters. Be prepared to spend many thousands of dollars for a system like this. The same applies to wind power.

    Solar hot water is a good idea and now would be a good time to start planning a system.

  7. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maxion View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by stevefarang
    One of the other things I will doing at this house is integrating a solar/wind power setup to supply power, especially when I am there. I got to have my air-con and I know we'll be paying through the nose for power. So I've been kicking around the idea of using several wind generators & multiple solar cells, along with a small shed full of car batteries and an inverter system (along with the transfer switch so we are off the grid when system is in use).
    I have a 30 watt solar panel charging a 100 ampere hour car battery. Its provides back up power to the house water pump should anyone be caught needing a show when the power goes off.
    If I was using the backup supply every day then a car battery would be useless because they don’t cycle from charged to discharge well. For this application I would need a deep cycle battery and they are expensive.
    To supply a whole house including A/C with solar power for 5 hours requires a huge amount of storage, lots of solar panel area and big inverters. Be prepared to spend many thousands of dollars for a system like this. The same applies to wind power.

    Solar hot water is a good idea and now would be a good time to start planning a system.
    Thanks Maxion for the info. I know it will be an investment of some money. I'm hoping my son can help me come up with some workable design that combines winf and solar.

    We do have plenty of room to work with though. The wind generators I am looking at source from eBay (about 2.5 kW each via China). I figure if I use 8+ of them, if one fails (because it comes from China) I'll have the others still available until I can replace the bad one. Also, we may not need all the air con units in service during the day. Just at least one for my office. So that might help in determing how much we need.

    Sounds like marine batteries are the way to go ? I believe they are deep cycle design. My son and I were discussing whether we should use maintenance-free or gel type batteries or stick with basic batteries that can be topped off with distilled water as needed. They will be kept in a covered/vented shed.

    We're still brainstorming here. I think I may split this off into it's own thread. Keep this one to strictly the house build.

    Yes, supposedly we are getting a free solar hot water system. I'm not sure how effective it will be or how reliably it will last. I really like the on-demand electric units I usually see everywhere in Thailland.

  8. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by stevefarang
    We're still brainstorming here. I think I may split this off into it's own thread. Keep this one to strictly the house build.
    Well I did toss the idea up in the air in a previous about somehow using solar / aircon and soon got put in me place ( it was only an idea ) anyway good luck with it all

  9. #59
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    Several of my neighbours have solar panels on the roof for power production. (There popping up on roofs everywhere in Australia now), a friend has one with 16 panels generating over 5 kW.
    There are no batteries involved. They are producing 240 volts (voltage in Australia) and any unused power is sent back out to the grid and he gets credit for anything that he produces.
    Here's some links to solar power companies that might give you some ideas (I realize that they are in Australia, but as I said, just to give you some ideas)

    this first one is the set up my friend has
    Exel Power | Home | Innovative Energy Solution | | Solar Power, Sun Power, Electricity

    Solar Shop Australia Home: Solar Shop Australia Solar Shop Australia

    Solar power - grid connect, off grid and hot water systems, solar panels, batteries, wind turbines - Energy Matters

    Solar Power Brisbane Sydney | Quality Products Expert Advice | Australia Wide

  10. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by palexxxx View Post
    Several of my neighbours have solar panels on the roof for power production. (There popping up on roofs everywhere in Australia now), a friend has one with 16 panels generating over 5 kW.
    There are no batteries involved. They are producing 240 volts (voltage in Australia) and any unused power is sent back out to the grid and he gets credit for anything that he produces.
    Here's some links to solar power companies that might give you some ideas (I realize that they are in Australia, but as I said, just to give you some ideas)

    this first one is the set up my friend has
    Exel Power | Home | Innovative Energy Solution | | Solar Power, Sun Power, Electricity

    Solar Shop Australia Home: Solar Shop Australia Solar Shop Australia

    Solar power - grid connect, off grid and hot water systems, solar panels, batteries, wind turbines - Energy Matters

    Solar Power Brisbane Sydney | Quality Products Expert Advice | Australia Wide

    Thanks very much! I figure the batteries would be required at night or on cloudy days. I don't know if it's possible to sell power back to the grid in Thailand (like one can in other countries). But good food for thought!!

    Plus, the intent is NOT to put solar cells on the house itself. I figure we have enough land, we can use something closer to ground, cheap and easy to acess if need be.

  11. #61
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    Ok, this is cool. I was actually able to find our lots on Google Maps:

    Nakhon Pathom Thailand - Google Maps

    We own three lots. The first is where you see the fill (brown-tan area) and extends to the right all the way to the road. Interesting enough, the area where you see the fill is roughly where the house is located. The fill extends to the bottom of the first lot.
    We also own the two lots to the left (with the tree borders). The second lot, just to the left, is where we are raising the standard ducks, geese, chicken, fish (we dug a U-shaped trench), etc. The third lot is still rice paddy. Haven't decided what we will do with it.

    Looking down on the lots like this gives me a better idea of what/who is arround us. I also am looking at the skinny rectangular lot just below where the house goes. For now, the plan is to put a small pool to the right of the house. I think it would be better to have the pool behind the house, which would mean we'd have to buy that skinny lot from whomever. Then leave the space to the right of the house as a garden area with a covered spot to enjoy the great outdoors.

    If I can figure out how to outline our lots, house footprint, etc. I will try to include it.

  12. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by stevefarang View Post
    If I can figure out how to outline our lots, house footprint, etc. I will try to include it.

    If you go to Google earth and bring up the same picture, then with the measuring tool (the ruler icon at the top) you draw a line along a boundary, then in the measuring tool click on 'save', you'll have to give this line a name (something like "steves west boundary") then do the same for all the boundary lines.

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    Wood on the entrance will look a bit better than too much concrete.
    Alternative power supply will be very useful as well. Interesting to see what is going to be needed to make it worthwhile.

  14. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by palexxxx View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by stevefarang View Post
    If I can figure out how to outline our lots, house footprint, etc. I will try to include it.

    If you go to Google earth and bring up the same picture, then with the measuring tool (the ruler icon at the top) you draw a line along a boundary, then in the measuring tool click on 'save', you'll have to give this line a name (something like "steves west boundary") then do the same for all the boundary lines.
    Thanks palexxxx,
    I'll give that a try, if I can find our property again !!! LOL

    Quote Originally Posted by kiwinev View Post
    Wood on the entrance will look a bit better than too much concrete.
    Alternative power supply will be very useful as well. Interesting to see what is going to be needed to make it worthwhile.
    You won't see the concrete on the finished house. The standard is to have a white plastic trim, much like what you see around the windows. But I'm really liking the wood trim and have already talked with my wife about it.

    Reading some other threads on solar/wind power, I get the impression that I won't be able to sell power back to the grid.
    It's still something I am kicking around with my son. I will need to get specifics, such as house loads, esp the air-con, before we figure out how many solar cells & wind generators to use. I am just trying to keep it as simple as possible.

  15. #65
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    OK, I found it and outlined the 3 lots. Obviously, it's a static image, so you can't really look around the area.


  16. #66
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    Finally got to visit the site on January 18, 2012. Not much has changed from the pics that were posted earlier, but I thought I would show some details features.

    First of all, an overall shot with the late afternoon sun.





    This will be my home office area and the nice, quiet view I will have.





    A view of what will be the ground floor guest suite with the future driveway area in the background.





    The area where the bathroom for the guest suite will be. I'm not exactly sure why it's not finished. I noticed the same for the bathroom on the other end of the house. One person was telling me about something going in the ground. I can't imagine they would put the septic tank underneath. How do you pump it out then ? I need to check the plans on this.





    Some of the roof truss work.





    The future western style kitchen area, facing east.





    The view from the back of the house, ground floor. THe more I think about it, I really want to buy that rice paddy, fill it in and put the pooli back there.





    Stairs from ground floor to first floor.





    A close-up of the roof trusses.





    More roof truss detail





    ANd more roof truss details. There are no welds, like I've seen on other threads. Looks like sheet metal screws with a plastic locking piece. It seemed very solid, I was tempted to climb on it. I think this is good for two reasons. 1. Tack welds aren't the strongest weld. 2. The welding would damge the galvanized coating. I did not spot any corrosion.





    Looking towards what will be the master bedroom. In the foreground will be an upstairs family room.





    A slightly different angle of the same area, showing the outdoor patio that will extend out from the upstairs family room.





    What will be the view from the west end of the master bedroom. You can see lot 2 (with the water canal we dug for the fish) and lot 3 way in the back, going to the tree line. ANd yes, we get our own private patio as well.





    A view of the east end of lot 1 with the roofing tiles ready to go on. This whole area will be landscaped. The plan is to put the pool in there as well, but I think it needs to go in the back (if I can buy that lot behind us).



    That's about all for now. Until I get some work in, the job is on hold. Hopefully things will change next month, if not sooner. I'm keen on getting the house finished and stop staying in hotels all the time.

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    Well done Steve thanks for the update,, all the best

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    Finally, the cash flow has picked up and construction resumes.
    The main roof is up now. Concrete blocks go up next month while I'm in Qatar. It should be looking very different when we get back at the end of June.
    Plus, now with the roof on, I get better sense of size. Before, I was thinking it didn't feel that big. Now, these pics make it looks big.

    A front, sligtly angled view of the house. We've got that nice curve, which will make for a good entrance. And I think we'll put a small fountain down in front where they dug out some of the dirt.


    A nice side view (from the east). On this side, next to the house, we'll have a Thai-style kitchen under an overhang. The plan is to put a small pool here as well. This area will also be landscaped and I anticipate this to be an area to hang out in, later in the day with some kind of veranda. We've started some plantings already.



    Some roofing details, if anyone is interested.





    And upstairs, looking towards the master bedroom (west). We own the property going back to the tree line.


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    Thanks for the update Steve ,, my God some of you lads certainly do it BIG style ,, Rick has got a big one in Udon Thani ,, I'm gonna have quite a complex when I put my / sorry the wifes littlun on here one day

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    Progress, looking to be a good solid house. Lots of room. Nice, keep posting the pics.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nigelandjan
    my God some of you lads certainly do it BIG style
    monster houses, big enough for all the wife's family and the Mia Noi's too

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    Quote Originally Posted by DrAndy
    and the Mia Noi's too
    Yes I've heard about them ,, Iv'e been married over 3 years now , do I qualify yet ?

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    depends on what your wife thinks

    as for the roof, Steve, I haven't seem that type of construction before, using galvanised H and T beams, put together with bolts

    we have used the normal welded stuff, which works well

    It will be interesting to see how each goes over a few years
    I have reported your post

  24. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrAndy View Post
    depends on what your wife thinks

    as for the roof, Steve, I haven't seem that type of construction before, using galvanised H and T beams, put together with bolts

    we have used the normal welded stuff, which works well

    It will be interesting to see how each goes over a few years

    Andy & Nigel,
    Thanks!
    It's the standard they use on all their roofs. I think it's better than some old guy, with an even older welding machine, making little tacks all over the place. For one thing, I believe those tacks will ruin the galvanic coating. And I never considered weld tacks as good as a full penetration weld. I checked the structure out, before the roofing tiles went on and it seemed very solid.

    And yes, the house is big. I've been denying myself a nice place for years and figure I deserve this. Also, I didn't want a small place. I like to have room to wander around in. And I wanted to be sure I had a place where I could stay downstairs if I have trouble with stairs when I get a little older.

    As far as the Thai family moving in, the wife has mentioned it (as I anticipated), but she has also mentioned that she doesn't want them to live permanently. We've got enough land that we will be sellling her mom's house and then build a small place (traditional thai construction, not what we are doing) for her mom to live. The wife does not want her mom living with her, surprisingly!!

    At least with the roof up, I can get a better feel for the size. When I saw the frame, with no roof back in January, I was thinking the house was looking smaller than I expected.

    If all goes well, we'll be ringing in 2013 there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by stevefarang
    I never considered weld tacks as good as a full penetration
    Man after my own heart , you can't beat a full penetration mate


    BTW all the best with your new home I am sure you will have many happy years there

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