Steel Roof Rafters Installed – Massive Progress On Our Retirement House Build

Pictures taken during the construction of our retirment house in Pakchong (Pak Chong), Thailand between the second week of February and the first week of March, 2011

Approximately Two Weeks Ahead of The Planned Construction Schedule

As you will see in the photos at the bottom of this page the roof rafters have already been installed. These were scheduled to start on 22 March 2011 and be finished ready for the roof tiles to be installed commencing 31 March 2011.

So taking today’s date as 7 March, the roof rafters were installed at least two weeks earlier than scheduled. Allowing for the few days it takes Kanyah to send the photos to me and the fact that they would have started putting up the steel roof rafters a few days before that I would say that the progress of the couse construction is at least three weeks ahead of schedule.

Below is an extract from the construction schedule showing the dates for the roof installation.

Image of Construction Schedule 110307

Construction Schedule 110307

Click to see a bigger image (Opens in new window)

House Build Progress Photos – Earliest Ones First

Kanyah sent me the last set of photos which I posted on the website on the 17th of February, 2011, so three weeks have gone by without her sending me any photos until now. Therefore the oldest of the photos i’m posting here could have been taken three weeks ago.

Anyway here are a batch of photos showing the changes since the last set, namely, the ring beam complete at eaves level (to support the roof) and some blockwork walls started for the ground floor workshop.

Image of House Frame Side View 1

House Frame Side View 1

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Image of House Frame Side View 2

House Frame Side View 2

If you look at the ground floor slab level on both the photo above and the photo below you will see what looks like wooden planks. As you should know, the walls and the floor will be in wood (on the second floor level).

I can’t tell from the photos what those wooden planks on the photos are for. Before the wooden floor planks are laid there must be a supporting structure of wooden joists and the wood I can see on the photos looks too thin for that purpose.

Next time Kanyah calls from Thailand I will ask what this wood is for and where it is to be used.

Image of House Frame Side View 3

House Frame Side View 3

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Image of House Frame Side View 4

House Frame Side View 4

Above and below I’m baffled how such a flimsy arrangement of wooden sticks nailed together can support all that concrete when it has been poured into the formwork and has no strength of it’s own. but now I think of it, I can’t see any formwork, so what is the wood for?

Image of House Frame Side View 5

House Frame Side View 5

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Image of House Frame Side View 6

House Frame Side View 6

In the photo above, the two white ‘blocks’ in the foreground ar stacks of wteel mesh fencing panels awaiting erection around the perimeter of the land. Actual photographs of the panels after installation are further down the page.

Image of Posts For Front Wall 1

Posts For Front Wall 1

Above and below the concrete columns for the from wall are in preparation. 20 m of wall (minus the gate), cost to me 49,000 Baht.

Image of Posts For Front Wall 2

Posts For Front Wall 2

Now let’s change the subject and introduce Jalan and a disappointing (and dangerous) practice.

Image of A Happy Worker

A Happy Worker - Is This Jalan?

Above, Kanyah keeps talking about Jalan, her nephew who has come to stay with her in Pakchong to help supervise the house build. His primary function is to act as an inspector and to make sure that the house is constructed in accordance with the construction drawings. I paid for a high quality set (42 sheets!) of drawings produced by a Thai Architect based in Bangkok and I’m very glad that I did.

Jalan also took charge of assembling and erecting the perimeter fence, assisted by one labor, and when you look at the photos you’ll see what a neat job he has made of it (except for the welding!)

I have never met Jalan and am guessing that’s him in the photos. He looks happy enough, but Kanyah told me yesterday that he was not well and couldn’t work. His eyes were hurting and he had to put drops in them. Why?

Don’t Weld Galvanized Steel!

Kanyah tried to explain what had happened to Jalan and after looking at the photos I came to a conclusion what had happened to him. I deduced that he was suffering from the fumes that arise when welding galvanized steel (on the fence). I know from first hand experience how awful they can be because I had done it myself many years ago.

I had to make this educated guess at what had happened since Kanyah doesn’t know the English for ‘galvanized’ steel nor ‘welding’ (and I don’t know the Thai words). I immediately sent this warning message by email to Kanyah:-

“Important Safety Warning

DO NOT WELD GALVANIZED STEEL. Galvanized steel contains a zinc coating that produces carcinogenic and poisonous gas when it is burned. Exposure to the stuff can result in heavy metal poisoning (welding shivers) – flu like symptoms that can persist for a few days, but that can also cause permanent damage.

Before welding, grind off the galvanizing.

After welding must paint with special paint”

I,m very annoyed at this. Not only is welding galvanized steel dangerous (and at best very uncomfortable) it completely destroys the anti-rust benefits of the galvanizing. Why oh why did kanyah not send me the details of the fencing system before she bought it. I asked her to end me the information in the post but she never did.

Strong headed and short tempered she did what she wanted without using my experience and we lose out. Typical. Very difficult trying to control a house build project in this way.

Below are the tell-tale marks from welding.

Image of Fence Panel Welding

Fence Panel Welding

Image of the Wedding Machine Used To Weld The Galvanized Steel Fence Panels

The Wedding Machine Used To Weld The Galvanized Steel Fence Panels

In the next photo, Jalan seems happy mixing concrete – presumably for the fence posts.

Image of Mixing Concrete By Hand

Mixing Concrete By Hand

Image of Fence Panels Neighbor Noi's Side

Fence Panels Neighbor Noi's Side

Image of Fence Panels Blue House Neighbor's Side 1

Fence Panels Blue House Neighbor's Side 1

In the photo above you can see the fence on the blue house  neighbor’s side of the land. I have marked the power poles installed by the electricity company to bring the electrical power into our land.

Image of Fence Panels Blue House Neighbor's Side 2

Fence Panels Blue House Neighbor's Side 2(Alan's comments)

Above, you can see what a neat job Jalan has made of the fence (except for the welding) and how long our plot of land is.

Next, the later photos – the house is really taking shape now that the steel roof rafter are in place.

Image of House Frame Roof Side View 1

House Frame Roof Side View 1

Image of House Frame Roof Gable View 1

House Frame Roof Gable View 1

Image of House Frame Roof Gable View 2

House Frame Roof Gable View 2

Image of House Frame Roof Distant View 1

House Frame Roof Distant View 1

The next few photos show the blockwork wall forming the ground floor workshop.

Image of House Frame Blocks Side View 1

House Frame Blocks Side View 1

Image for House Frame Blocks Side View 2

House Frame Blocks Side View 2

In the picture below you can see the first of the window frames for the ground floor workshop.

Image of the Workshop Walls and Window

The Workshop Walls and Window

And below is a close up of the window frame.

Image of the Workshop Window

The Workshop Window Frame

Above, you can see the angled temporary supports for the workshop window frame. There seems to be a row of ‘bricks’ or half-thickness blocks just under the window frame, I suppose to make the height correct for the window frame.


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