Renovating an old rural village home in Thailand.

Faz

Well-known member
Saturday 29th June.

First job was to repair that broken water supply pipe.
It was an overcast cooler morning, so ideal to get it completed first thing.

From this;
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To this:
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A new elbow, two straight couplings and a couple of short lengths of pipe and hey presto!
 

Faz

Well-known member
Next item on the agenda was to give the carved panels on the front doors their third and final coat of stainer/varnish.

I'd already decided to take the doors off again and apply this coat with the doors lying flat.
The advantage was to avoid runs, the disadvantage was I could only varnish one side at a time, allowing drying time in-between.
By the time I'd repaired the water pipe, took the doors off and got the varnish and brushes out it was nearly 1100.

929.jpg

Once the varnish was setting, but still tacky, I removed the masking tape.

930.jpg
 

Faz

Well-known member
To my delight, the varnish was drying quickly, in contrast to the previous week.
By 1600, I was able to turn the doors over and varnish the other sides.
An hour later, I removed the masking tape.

Later in the evening after an evening meal and a shower, now dark, I sat on the front porch with the spots on and the carvings in the door really stood out under the lights.

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There are a few smudges and drips which I wiped around the outer edges, but when completely dry I'll sand these down.

The wife was telling me specifically why she wanted these doors.
Thai culture/folklore/superstition, but in her words;
"The dragon represents the man of the house, whilst the hen represents the woman of the household. The flower heads represent wealth and money, whilst the fish represent good luck and a happy family"

I wonder if that's where the term being 'hen pecked' comes from?
 

Faz

Well-known member
Sunday 30th June.

Yesterday, I attempted to patch up the rear porch ceiling when I had to reposition a spotlight due to a steel beam.
It didn't go well!

919A.jpg

The screw heads were proud, and it looked a mess, so Sunday morning I took it down, carefully cut a new piece of fibre board and fixed it to the beam with silicone, then gave it a Polyfilla smooth over. Leaving that to set, I turned my attention back to the front doors.

They were now perfectly dry, so I sanded areas where I'd smudged the stainer varnish on any exterior edges, which will later be coated with clear yacht varnish.
That complete, I started to rehang the doors.

937.jpg
 

Faz

Well-known member
The wife's eldest son, now 22, is home on a break from his 4th year at Uni.
Young, fit lad, runs and wins marathons, plays football ............ but is work-shy! (A polite term for lazy).
Yesterday he was helping the wife remove the rest of the grass from the garden edges where she's attempting to grow sticky rice for the first time.
The wife removed 90% of the grass.
Any excuse for food, the toilet, or he thought his phone rang to get out of any physical exercise.
I told him straight he's in for a shock when he starts work because an employer won't put up with all these excuses.
He also needs to see a doctor if he's constantly hungry, then requires the toilet an hour later.

Now, I know the Thai education system has a lot to answer for, but I thought at Uni he'd learn a bit of common sense and think for himself, but no, nothing seems to change. If they're told A is B, and B is C, then that is what they believe and never challenge it.
Sunday early afternoon, I heard the pump running on and on, only to find he was spraying the newly laid rice crop, as his Mother asked.
Big black rain clouds were hovering overhead, I shook my head in disbelief.
10 minutes later, I'd come inside to get some lunch, when he came inside again, "hungry, toilet", I asked, no he wanted his hat.

Within minutes, the heavens open, and it's lashing it down.
I finished my 10-minute lunch and am then astounded to find him outside in the pouring rain still spraying the rice crop with the hosepipe.
He came in for his hat when it started spitting.
I have serious reservations on how these kids will cope when they finish Uni, get a job and parents aren't at hand.
'Common sense' is obviously not part of the curriculum.
It reminded me off one day being at the swimming pool, and it started to rain lightly (no thunder or lightning) and all the kids started to get out and get changed.
"Are you closing early" I enquired. The female pool assistant, who spoke very good English, replied, "No, but it's started to rain".
"But there's no thunder or lighting, it's just a shower" I replied.
"Yes, but they'll get wet" she answered!
WTF ........ seriously, in a swimming pool, surely not!

Fortunately, the rear porch light is undercover, Polyfilla now dry, so I sanded it down, gave it a lick of paint and refitted the downlight.
Massive difference from my first attempt, time to start packing up and head off home.

938.jpg

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Next weekend, I can mask up and start varnishing those front doors with clear varnish.
 

Faz

Well-known member
Sat 6th July.

Due to watching footie late the evening before, we left an hour later than usual.
Arrived in the village, 0930.

First task was to remove all the locks, handles, bolts and other hard wear from the doors, then mask up.
It was 1100 by the time I started giving the surround edges of the doors their first coat of varnish.

Before;
941.jpg

After;

942.jpg

The first coat just disappeared, soaking into the wood.
Other than the darker colour change, you wouldn't have guessed it just had a coat of varnish.

I'd hoped to be able to apply a second coat later in the day, but by 1800 and light quickly fading it was still tacky in places.
 

Faz

Well-known member
The wife worked in the garden most of the day and I gave a hand when free.
Her experimental sticky rice crop appears to be coming along nicely.

943.jpg
 

Faz

Well-known member
Sun 7th July.

Saturday evening I watched England v Switzerland in the quarter-finals of the Euro 2024 tournament, which kicked off 2300 Thai time.
It finished 1-1 and went to extra time.
Almost 0100 Sunday morning and trying to force my eyes open, I decided the result would be whatever it would be, whether I watched it or not, so retired to bed.

At 0330, I found myself awake, attempting to go back to sleep, but it was no good, by now my brain was in overdrive wondering how the England game finished and whether we were knocked out, or had progress to the semi-finals.
I knew if I didn't get up and look, I'd have a very restless night.
England went through on a penalty shoot-out, but the even later match, which kicked off at 0200 Thai time, between the Netherlands and Turkey was still playing and 1-1. Netherlands then scored a second goal and it finished 2-1.

I'd intended going back to bed again after knowing the results of the quarter-final matches, but now found myself absolutely wide awake, so I decided to make a cuppa and wait for first light to break and get an early second coat of varnish on those doors.
I need to fit the basic locks back on the door so we could secure the place when we left, and it took far longer than expected for that first coat to dry the previous day, so I figured the earlier, the better.

So, 0600 Sunday morning the varnish and brush were out again!
At least the second coat didn't completely soak in and gave a sheen to the finish.
1500 it was dry enough to refit the basic locks back.

950.jpg

0830, brushes cleaned and waiting for the varnish to dry, I thought I'd get some shut-eye on the settee.

0930, I was woken and nearly jumped out of my skin by the most horrendous crack of lighting directly overhead.
It was impossible to get some sleep. We had a thunder and lighting storm for the next couple of hours, the noise from the overhead cracks of lighting were enough to make you jump, and the thunder was just as bad.
It was absolutely lashing it down with rain and the drains and roads were flooding, it was so intense.

Eventually, the thunder and lighting passed over and at 1130, I once again attempted to get some shut-eye, although the rain was still very heavy, but having an insulated roof and ceiling, I could only hear the dripping of rain as it ran from the roof onto the pathways.
 

Faz

Well-known member
1430, I woke to find the storm had passed, the rain stopped, and the sun had reappeared.
Other than a few pools of water lying around, you wouldn't have guessed we had such a violent storm just a few hours earlier.

I fitted the basic locks back to the front doors, took a shower, changed, and packed up ready for the trip back to Roi Et.

The wife, apparently after the thunder and lightning had ceased, but it continued to rain, had been busy in the garden, clearing weeds and overgrowth from the raised banks of soil along the boundary walls. They lift out easier when the ground is wet.
These raised banks of soil along the boundary wall are to direct and drain any rainfall onto the rice crop, so I'm informed.

951.jpg

I'm hoping to apply the third and final coat of clear varnish to the front doors next weekend and fully refit the handles, locks etc.
However, should it require a 4th coat, there's no rush to complete it.
 

kaptainrob

Administrator
Sun 7th July.

Saturday evening I watched England v Switzerland in the quarter-finals of the Euro 2024 tournament, which kicked off 2300 Thai time.
It finished 1-1 and went to extra time.
Almost 0100 Sunday morning and trying to force my eyes open, I decided the result would be whatever it would be, whether I watched it or not, so retired to bed.

At 0330, I found myself awake, attempting to go back to sleep, but it was no good, by now my brain was in overdrive wondering how the England game finished and whether we were knocked out, or had progress to the semi-finals.
I knew if I didn't get up and look, I'd have a very restless night.
England went through on a penalty shoot-out, but the even later match, which kicked off at 0200 Thai time, between the Netherlands and Turkey was still playing and 1-1. Netherlands then scored a second goal and it finished 2-1.

I'd intended going back to bed again after knowing the results of the quarter-final matches, but now found myself absolutely wide awake, so I decided to make a cuppa and wait for first light to break and get an early second coat of varnish on those doors.
I need to fit the basic locks back on the door so we could secure the place when we left, and it took far longer than expected for that first coat to dry the previous day, so I figured the earlier, the better.

So, 0600 Sunday morning the varnish and brush were out again!
At least the second coat didn't completely soak in and gave a sheen to the finish.
1500 it was dry enough to refit the basic locks back.

View attachment 11451

0830, brushes cleaned and waiting for the varnish to dry, I thought I'd get some shut-eye on the settee.

0930, I was woken and nearly jumped out of my skin by the most horrendous crack of lighting directly overhead.
It was impossible to get some sleep. We had a thunder and lighting storm for the next couple of hours, the noise from the overhead cracks of lighting were enough to make you jump, and the thunder was just as bad.
It was absolutely lashing it down with rain and the drains and roads were flooding, it was so intense.

Eventually, the thunder and lighting passed over and at 1130, I once again attempted to get some shut-eye, although the rain was still very heavy, but having an insulated roof and ceiling, I could only hear the dripping of rain as it ran from the roof onto the pathways.
Those doors look a million baht. I hope you they never suffer from dogs scratching to gain access, or be let out.
 
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Quarky

Well-known member
When I make the mistake of wearing yellow in the summer when running... I end up covered in insects...

Doors look fantastic
 
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MarcTwoSix

Well-known member
The wife's eldest son, now 22, is home on a break from his 4th year at Uni.
Young, fit lad, runs and wins marathons, plays football ............ but is work-shy! (A polite term for lazy).
Yesterday he was helping the wife remove the rest of the grass from the garden edges where she's attempting to grow sticky rice for the first time.
The wife removed 90% of the grass.
Any excuse for food, the toilet, or he thought his phone rang to get out of any physical exercise.
I told him straight he's in for a shock when he starts work because an employer won't put up with all these excuses.
He also needs to see a doctor if he's constantly hungry, then requires the toilet an hour later.

Now, I know the Thai education system has a lot to answer for, but I thought at Uni he'd learn a bit of common sense and think for himself, but no, nothing seems to change. If they're told A is B, and B is C, then that is what they believe and never challenge it.
Sunday early afternoon, I heard the pump running on and on, only to find he was spraying the newly laid rice crop, as his Mother asked.
Big black rain clouds were hovering overhead, I shook my head in disbelief.
10 minutes later, I'd come inside to get some lunch, when he came inside again, "hungry, toilet", I asked, no he wanted his hat.

Within minutes, the heavens open, and it's lashing it down.
I finished my 10-minute lunch and am then astounded to find him outside in the pouring rain still spraying the rice crop with the hosepipe.
He came in for his hat when it started spitting.
I have serious reservations on how these kids will cope when they finish Uni, get a job and parents aren't at hand.
'Common sense' is obviously not part of the curriculum.
It reminded me off one day being at the swimming pool, and it started to rain lightly (no thunder or lightning) and all the kids started to get out and get changed.
"Are you closing early" I enquired. The female pool assistant, who spoke very good English, replied, "No, but it's started to rain".
"But there's no thunder or lighting, it's just a shower" I replied.
"Yes, but they'll get wet" she answered!
WTF ........ seriously, in a swimming pool, surely not!

Fortunately, the rear porch light is undercover, Polyfilla now dry, so I sanded it down, gave it a lick of paint and refitted the downlight.
Massive difference from my first attempt, time to start packing up and head off home.

View attachment 11427

View attachment 11428

Next weekend, I can mask up and start varnishing those front doors with clear varnish.
Felt like an episode of my Step-son thread 5555
 
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Cuzzy

Well-known member
"Yes, but they'll get wet" she answered!

Quite strange how they think. It has puzzled me for some time although I now just laugh, to myself of course.
 
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Faz

Well-known member
Sat 13th July.

It didn't take long to remove the temporary fitted hard wear from the front doors and get that 3rd coat of varnish applied.
Although I expect it to be dry for later this evening, I'm not going to refit all the locks and handles until Sunday afternoon, giving it time to harden as well.

After cleaning the brush in turpentine, then soap and water, and a spot of lunch, my attention became focused on getting plug sockets fitted for the two cameras.
No cabling was previously installed to accommodate these two sockets, as at the time we weren't even aware the True internet installation came with any cameras.
When I initially wired the house, I split circuits into zones for both sockets and lighting.
32 amp circuit breakers for plug sockets;
1. Front utility room and front porch.
2. 3 bedrooms.
3. Lounge/Dining area.
4. Kitchen and rear porch.
Similarly, 16amp circuit breakers for lighting circuits.
1. Front utility room and front porch.
2. 3 bedrooms.
3. Lounge/Dining area.
4. Kitchen and rear porch.
5. External side lights.
When we leave the property on a Sunday afternoon, we turn all circuit breakers 'off', bar the kitchen plug socket circuit due to the fridge/freezer.

For the cameras to be active, we will now also need to leave the modem on in the lounge for wi-fi.
Thus, the sockets for the cameras need to be wired into either the kitchen or lounge circuits.
If you attempt to fit additional sockets, it's as well to spend 30 minutes or so to establish the best and easiest way to do this, although in my case as I originally installed all the electrics, it only took a matter of minutes to establish the easiest way to do this.

For the socket on the front porch, it was literally on the other side of the front wall to where the consumer unit and trunking were installed, but with roofing steel and the corner pillar being the obstructions. With the trunking lid removed, it was a case of drilling a hole outside and passing a cable over to drop into the hole in the ceiling into the trunking. Being very familiar with electrical installations, a few tips;
Use a single strand of cable to 'fish' over or around obstacles. In this case I used a 2-foot length of single (blue) strand 2.5mm cable, bent into a 'U' shape, but it still took 3 attempts to drop it into the right place.

953.jpg

I then taped the 2.5mm cable to the remaining external piece of blue wire, and gently eased through (push and pull) a foot at a time until I had enough to reach into the consumer unit for connecting.

952.jpg

954.jpg
 

Faz

Well-known member
With the cable now through, I cut off enough to connect into the socket, tying a knot in the end so it couldn't accidentally be pulled out by the weight of the longer length of cable hanging down on the other side of the wall.

955.jpg

I then fitted the socket and connected it up, before plugging the camera in.

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Another tip;
When stripping cable back to expose the 3 different cables, use a Stanley knife or similar to score down the centre of the external sheathing.
Not too hard or you may strip the sheathing from the inner cables, just a light score is sufficient.
At the cut end of the cable, you will now be able to get hold of one of the three cables and holding the bottom of the cable, pull the single cable upwards and it should rip through the external sheathing as if it were butter.

957.jpg

It's now easy to remove the other 2 cables and cut the external sheathing to length, leaving just the earth, live and neutral sheathed cables intact.

I connected the cable to the third, (lounge) 32amp circuit breaker and replaced the consumer unit cover.
 

Faz

Well-known member
The socket for the rear porch camera was a little more challenging, as all the kitchen socket cables are buried in the wall, but the 2.5mm cable feeding the kitchen sockets passes directly where the ceiling hatch was installed.

958.jpg

Drilling an external hole in the ceiling and passing the 2.5mm cable straight up into the roof space was simple, it was then a case of pulling enough cable over to reach the hatch, preferably without clambering around in the ceiling.
Another tip;
Old wire coat hangers are very useful. Cut the hook off and bend the hanger until it's straight, but place a hook in the end. Next tape it onto a length of trunking or timber to create a long reaching grab hook, thus;

960.jpg

With the hatch open and ladders in place, I was now able to reach across the ceiling and grab the 4m length of cable I pushed up into the roof space and drag it across to the hatch, without every having to climb into the roof space.

959.jpg

The only problem was that I didn't have a spare junction box to connect into the circuit, and the Thai way of stripping, twisting wires then taping with insulation tape, does not comply with my standards. Connection will have to wait until next week.
 
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