Wednesday, October 12, 2011

How to Construct A Proper Road

Step by step general guideline).
  1. Received construction Drawings
  2. Engage a License Surveyor
  3. Site boundary / Right of way setting out
  4. Surveyor to take all the existing ground level within the R.O.W for control and calculation purpose.
  5. Submit for approval all the survey works done on site prior to Site clearing works
  6. Start site clearing
  7. Setting out for road center line, road edge, road side drain and all necessary level
  8. Submit for approval all the survey works done at site prior to any earthwork
  9. Upon Approval, Proceed with the earthwork (Construction of the Subgrade) to achieve the design level.
  10. Construction of the road must be done as the approved project quality plan and method statement.
  11. Perform the Quality check according to the Project Quality Plan (PQP) and method statements to confirm to the design requirements.
  12. Upon achieving the design requirements for the subgrade, set up the second stage level control for the sub-base work and submit for approval prior to sub-base work.
  13. Upon approval proceed with the sub-base work.
  14. Perform QAQC Check as per approved PQP.
  15. Upon achieving the design level, submit for inspection and approval to proceed with the road-base work.
  16. Set up the control level for the road-base work.
  17. Submit for approval.
  18. Upon approved, proceed with the road base work.
  19. Repeat QAQC Procedure as required in Approved PQP for road-base work.
  20. Upon achieving the design level for the road-base, submit for inspection.
  21. Only proceed with the pavement work when the constructed Road-base is approved and accepted by client or their superintending officer. ( If any)
  22. Installation of the road furniture.
  23. Handing over for completion.


Saturday, October 8, 2011

Preliminaries work

Preliminaries work.
Preliminaries work is description that always being used in tender and contract documents. It consist of more than one work or things that is essential and without it the construction work will not be able to proceed. Below are list of preliminaries work normally being included in the tender and contract document.
1. CIDB Levy,
2. Insurances,
3. Performance Bond,
4. Site office for contractor,
5. Site office for Superintending officer and representative,
6. site clearing,
7. Mobilization and demobilization,
8. Temporary works,
10. Progress report, Quality assurance and Quality control report, Safety and health report.
11. Environment monitoring report.
12. Safety and health officer/supervisor,
13. Environmental consultant,
14.Safety and health protective equipment,
15.As-built drawings,
16.Statutory and regulatory requirement,
17.Transpotation services for S.O and S.O.R's
18.monthly Site meeting
19. Site clearing prior to completion.
20. others..


The item that is listed above is the normal preliminaries work in a tender or contract document.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Construction Failure

I bought an apartment costing $137,980.00 in 2004 in Malaysia. However until 2011 the apartment have not being completed and handed over to me. This sound familiar to numbers of house buyer or Property purchaser. I consider this a bad investment, I wanted to dispose this property but I am Not sure whether I can gain back my capital. What I know is, certainly not, because it is uncompleted property.

The above scenario is a scenario of failing construction or to be more accurate, failure in project management by the developer. This developer fail to delivered the property in time, they failed to pay the penalty of late delivery of the purchaser. This had resulted to the purchaser file in the winding up process on this developer. Know the developer is a bankruptcy.

However, the question is, will the purchaser get their property back if the development was finance by the bank? If yes how? How about the remaining of the purchaser who do not do anything or take any legal practice on the developer? Is there anyone who know how in the case of Malaysia legal law. There are number of claimant on the property. First the financier of the development,Second the group that lodge the winding up, third, other parties that had given the financial means to help the developer run their day in day out business and the last but not least the purchaser that had not taken legal action on the developer but instead signing the deeds of settlement that allowed the developer to complete the development within 8 months from the date of signing, however until this being publish here the deed of settlement was not stamped with stamped duty.

In this scenario who's fault is this?. Is it The developer, The Consultants or the Kementerian Pembangunan Perumahan Negeri Sarawak, Malaysia and their agency( because they failed to monitor and taken positive action in preventing this issue from happening).

Thursday, July 21, 2011


Have you ever been a broke down contractor?...
What does it mean with broke down contractor? it is very common that we here that contractor complaining that they cant bring some more construction material. this is not because that they do not have even a single sen but it merely because what they have is just enough to run the company. Most of the time construction payment is base on monthly or progressive payment certified by the client or their representative. However there is cases that after the evaluation and verification process after contractor submit their claim, contractor had being paid very late. some time they only received their payment after 3 months or even more. with this view, lets we make some calculation;
lets say, contract sum = $50M
construction period = 12months
Average (prorated) spending /months = $50M/12 = $4.167M
Hence total spending for 3 months = 3 X $4.167M =$12.5M
let say, Evaluation on work done take 2 weeks after progress claim submission.
therefore spending for 2 weeks =( $4.167/4weeks) X 2 weeks = $2.08M
The total spending from the date contractor submit their claim until they received their payment
will be;
=3 months spending + 2weeks spending = $12.5M + $2.08M = $ 14.58M
With that you have to fork out $14.58M!!!!!!!! its is a big sum of money.
Looking at this scenario, It is very important that a proper financial planning being carried out for every construction project.
This scenario is only for one project. what if you have 2 or even more project in hand !! It can be a deadly disaster...
Looking into this situation, if contractor is now well prepared with the financial planning when they are participating in a quotation or tender it will be a trap for your will be one of the broke down contractor or even a bankruptcy!!!!!!!!!!!!
Construction is not for those that are not prepared to be a broke down person.

Thursday, June 2, 2011



Component of Road Construction.
  1. Survey Works
    1a. Right of way or Boundary Survey
    1b. Road centreline (CL) Survey.
    1c. Road levelling survey ( Subgrade Level, Subbase Level, Roadbase Level,Finishing road level survey.
    1d. As built Survey.
    1e. Invert level for drain, Culvert
    1f. Slope formation survey.
  2. Site clearing.
  3. Stripping of top soil.
  4. Cutting and filling to form the subgrade level.
  5. Cutting to form the slope formation level.
  6. Laying of the Subbase with the approved material.
  7. Laying of the roadbase with approved aggregate.
  8. Spreading filler to top of roadbase.
  9. Sparying the prime coat on top of the roadbase.
  10. Laying of the Asphaltic Binder course.
  11. Laying of the Asphaltic Wearing Coarse.
  12. Construction of the drainage system, (Bench or berm drain,Toe Drain, Roadside drain)
  13. Piling works to drain, Culvert or bridge.

Testing required in road construction.
  1. Selection of material
  2. Compaction test.
  3. CBR test
  4. Makintosh probe testing
  5. Marshall test
  6. Cube test for concrete.


Wednesday, May 25, 2011


Communication is very important in construction industries. Bellow are mode of communication that can be use to communicate effectively.

1. Fax
2. Phone
3. Email
4. Mail

However for documentation and official record it advise that all information must be done in writting and it shall be as simple as it can. the most important is the content must be clear and can be easily understand by anybody that received the information.

Sunday, April 24, 2011


General sequence of Water Main Pipe laying works.
  1. Site survey and setting out.
  2. Site clearing.
  3. Earthwork and trenching
  4. Pipe laying and Jointing works
  5. Piling to Man hole/ service hall/valve chamber
  6. Piling to anchor Block/thrust block
  7. Construction of man hole /chamber/bridge/Thrust block
  8. Testing
  9. Rectification of pipe ( if any)
  10. Testing and commissioning
  11. Back filling to Pipe trench
  12. Site tidying prior to handing over for completion
  13. Handing over for completion.
*Item,5,6 and 7 can be done concurrently with item 4.
*Item no.8 can be perform segment by segment
( lat say every 100m of installed and jointed pipe.)

Type of testing to be performed.
  1. Pressure test.
  2. Leakage test
  3. Welding test ( in the case of mild steel pipe is in use)
Pipe flushing

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Wan's Journal: Engineering Marvel of Japan's Highrise Building

Wan's Journal: Engineering Marvel of Japan's Highrise Building: "Earthquake resistance building design will sway without collapsing in the advent of a powerful earthquake. This video shows the marvel of su..."

Tuesday, March 29, 2011



  1. DOZER







  1. Appointment of license Surveyor.

  2. Proceed with boundary survey and setting out.

  3. Verification by the S.O or S.O.Rs’ on the survey done by license surveyor.

  4. Upon completion of 1st KM of the boundary survey , the site clearing activities will proceed.


  1. Mobilisation of the Machinery(s) and equipment(s).

  2. Upon the completion of 1st KM boundary survey by the Licence surveyor, the site clearing shall start.

  3. All clearing shall been done with in the site boundary.

  4. Prior to clearing at any chainage of the road, Construction Manager or contractor rep. shall identify if there is any existing crops or structure within the area that require the attention of S.O. / S.O.Rs’. If there is any, Contractor Reps’ shall inform the S.O / S.O.Rs’ for verification. Photo of evidence shall be properly taken and area affected shall be define clearly.

  5. No Site clearing shall proceed at the affected chainage unless officially directed by the S.O.

  6. All debris from the clearing activities shall be properly dispose within then project site. If there is any debris need to be dispose beyond the site boundary, contractor shall abide to the local authorities rules and regulations.

  7. No debris Shall being dump within the filling area designated for permanent road.

  8. No burning shall be allow as a method of disposing all the debris.

  9. The Construction Manager or Contractors’ Rep. shall notify the S.O / S.O.Rs’ on the location of the dumping site as to suite the site condition.


  1. Cutting activities shall be done as shown in the construction drawings.

  2. Prior to cut and fill activities, all top soil shall be scrub and stock pile for later usage(if necessary) at the designated stock yard area which will be jointly identify at site by construction Manager / Contractor reps. and S.O / S.O.Rs’.

  3. Prior to cutting, the soil sample shall be tested for their suitability as fill material for the fill area. If the material are suitable, it shall be stock pile at the designated area which will be identify at site by the Construction Manager in the event that the filling activities have not yet proceed or otherwise.

  4. All the unsuitable material from the cutting area shall be dispose according within the site boundary.

  5. Temporary access for existing traffic shall be provided as and when needed.

  6. In the event that the temporary access are provided, there shall be enough detour signboard, AWAS sign, CONSTRUCTION IN PROGRESS sign and any others safety precaution signboard shall be erected to prevent any danger to the user.

  7. During working hours traffic officer (s) shall be assigned to control the flow of traffic at the affected area.

  8. Temporary drainage shall be provided along the construction site (if necessary) to drain-out the surface water.

  9. All temporary drain shall be discharge to the nearest stream / river / nearby drain. All discharge outlet shall be provided with silt trap before it being channel to the stream / river / nearby drain.

  10. Joint Inspection shall be conducted to verify the work done.


  1. Prior to filling activities or embankment activities, all the material that is going to be use as filling or embankment material shall be tested for the suitability. Marking peg for the purpose of filling or embankment layer thickness shall be established.

  2. After setting out of the fill or embankment area, the filling or embankment activities than shall started. The filling activities shall be done in layer. Each layer shall be properly compacted and tested before subsequence layer is lay.

  3. The process shall be repeat until it reach the proposed finish platform level as per construction drawings.

  4. All filling shall confirm to the approved construction drawings.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Construction Material Pricing.

Construction industry is always subject to increase in construction material cost. All over the world, this scenario is unavoidable. In Malaysia, particularly in Kuching, sarawak, the cement cost already being revised upward effective from 1st March 2011. This is as publish in The borneo post which also being publish in this website.Official Website of Ministry of Housing and Urban Development

Monday, March 7, 2011

Construction Forms and Template

Construction Industry also like the other industry. it will always involve lots of form and may be not all of the form we are currently use is well understand by others. This is why from time to time what ever for we are using, it will always need to be review to ensure that all relevant and important information are captured in the form. As such investing in the form template will always be good.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Advertising space for rent

Construction material, plant & equipment, machinery are all welcome to advertise on this blog.

Friday, February 25, 2011

How to reduce the construction cost

How to reduce the construction cost.
Construction Industry is an industry like the other field of business. It is all about trading for what each and every one wanted for. The client will want to have a product that is value for money and the consultant always wanted to be part of the business with a reasonable price for their render service. The builder which known as contractor which will offer how much they need to be pay for realising the quality product.
The first stage that the contractor needs to do is win this competition. Next is start building the product with the agree contract sum between the client and them. When start building the product the contractor will have to find a way on how they can maximize their profit. The term is to do some cost saving in their activity in order to increase their profit margin from what have been included in their original contract sum.
There is a numbers of process or technique that contractor need to applied if they wanted to increase their profit margin. The answer is cost reduction for the construction. How can this being done. Here are some techniques that can be use.
  1. Shopping for the cheapest and quality material available in the market.
  2. Mitigate the risk of increase in construction work by sublet certain portion of work especially labour. ( Lump sum cost for certain work which the increase of labour cost will be absorb by the subcontractor)
  3. Method of construction ( eg. By machine or man power)
  4. Building component (temporary or permanent work). Eg. Recyclable falsework & formwork, Factory fabricated building component such as floor slab.
  5. Plan for the project and adhere strictly to the programme.
  6. Complete the project at the shortest time frame which will save more in the plant, equipment & manpower cost.
Acquire own machinery, plant & equipment instead of renting. For the long run this strategy will significantly reduce the contractor construction cost. However beware of the maintenance cost.

Saturday, February 12, 2011



Construction industry is always about winning a tender. There will be no business for contractor if they do not participate in any tender or quotation. However tender or quotation is only the first step for contractor to get their business running. The important point here is winning a quotation or tender.
How to win in a tender or quotation competition? Here we will discuss some of the most important point on how it shall be. Bellow are what really important for contractor to know and do.
  1. Make sure all instruction in the "INSTRUCTION TO TENDERER" being fulfilled such as all pages that need to be sign are already sign and all required supporting document being attached in. In other words completeness of the tender document.

  2. The cash flow normally being defines as how much the capital that a contractor have and ready to be utilised in the event that the contractor being award the project. Normally the available amount shall not less that by 5% of the tender sum. The capital can be combination of the cash in hand (Bank balance) and credit facilities (eg. Overdraft, project financing facilities from the bank, fixed deposit and ect.). How to know wether you have enough or not.


    Let say;
    Total tender sum = $ 100M.
    Construction period = 12 months
    Average prorated cash flow = $100/12mths = $8.34M


    Minimum Ready capital needed = $100M X 5% = $5.5M
    ( This minimum is because that in actual fact that normally in the first 3months the expenses for the project will be considerably low due to the reason that the first 3 months expenses could be only the preliminary expenses such as preparation for insurances, Bank guarantee, site office, and all office and accommodation required under the contract by client.)


    With reference to the above calculation contractor now can compare wether they have enough capital to win the project. For example:


    Available cash flow = bank balance + Fixed deposit + credit facilities.
    Say:            = $ 3M + $1M + $7M = $11M > $8.34M >$5.5M

  • Contractor already passed the cash flow evaluation.


  1. Construction period.
    In tendering contractor must never exceed the construction period required by client. One common mistake by contractor is never specified the duration they offered. This condition will cause them to be disqualified.


  1. Contractor resources
    Resources can be categorised as follows:
    1. Plant and equipment.
    2. Machinery
    3. Man power
    All of the resources above must be as relevant as impossible to the nature of the project. For example in road construction, the plants that you will need are premix plant, soil test laboratory, Excavator, Dozer, Engineer, Site Supervisor, labour and ect.


  1. Contractor current commitment.
    Contractor current commitment is define as current project that still progressing undertake by contractor. The more commitment the contractor have in hand the more slim chances that they have to win a tender. However, if the current commitments that they have are almost completed, there is a chance for them to win a tender. The only thing is that make sure that the current project report is ahead of schedule or on time. This is the factor that will contribute to the reputation of the contractor.


  1. Previous Experience.
    Previous experience is defined as the project that had been completed by contractor. This Experience shall be as relevant as it be to the nature of tender that the contractor participating. The other factor to this is the size of the project. In this case the value of project is counted. Let say the tender price for this tender is $100M then the contractor experience must reach at least nearly $100M or more. With that, the client will be more comfortable to award the tender to the contractor who have completed the same nature of project and almost the same value or event more value from what he currently tendered for.


  1. Tender Price.
    This tender price is the one that weighted most in the event that contractor already pas all the evaluation above. When it comes to this Factor there are a few item that will be considered. The Most important item is that the tender price shall not exceed the client budgeting price.
    The next issue is that it is in the range of what the market offer and the last but not least item is value of money.


    For instant if the client budget is $120M with the construction period of 12 months, the revenue collected when the project completed and in operation is $2M/mths.The recommended contractor have the following offer;

Tenderor no./NameOffered tender priceOffered construction periodAhead completionRevenue
A$100M10 mths2 Mths$4M
B$98M12 mths0mth$0
C110M8 mths4 Mths$16M

Locking into the data above which one will be choose.
Lets do some analysis.

Take into account early completion :
Client will make extra 2M with contractor A after deduct $2M extra compare to contractor A and revenue of $4M in choosing Contractor C.

If I were the client, I will choose contractor C because after considering the expenses for this project do not exceed the project budget and in return, I will make extra $4M if I can operate this property earlier that planned.

This selection is what we called "Value for Money".


With the tips mentioned above contractor shall be able to secure another project under their cap.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Thursday, February 3, 2011


Project planning for Managers.
Project planning is an important ingredient to ensure the successfulness of a project. Top priority of every project that we undertake is to make money. This must be the first objective for every person that involve in the construction. However, in the process to achieve this goal, is importance to deliver the end product in the most economic way and with the best quality in accordance to the requirement and specification line out by the client and inline with the good engineering practice.
The solution to this is project planning. In this article we will discuss the basic information that must be consider in the project planning.
Two important rules that a project planner must adhere to is TIME and COST. With these two keywords a planner will be able to plan a project to achieve the company objective.
The definition of TIME in the contact of a project is the agreed time frame for a contractor to deliver a complete end product with the required specification without neglecting the rules and regulation by the authority and also the statutory requirement.
COST is the value of the contractor offer and being accepted by the client in order to deliver the end product. This cost in actual fact is already inclusive of the contractor profit margin. Therefore it is very important to a planner to know what the exact construction cost for the project is.
With the definition above you now have the idea on how to create a project plan.
Software, is another important tools that a planner. There are numbers of software or programme for a planner to plan a project. The most common and widely use software is primavera project planning, Microsoft project or even Microsoft excel (for a straight forward project that does not involve a complex lineout).
In scheduling various works that needed to complete a project, a planner need to know when to start, when to finished, what is the work involve, the sequence of work, what the plant and equipment involved and how many numbers of these needed. All of these then will enable a planner to do some calculation whether or not the line out given meet the construction cost that of the contractor. If not an adjustment must be make or a planner can also adjust their plan to gain more profitable margin.
Below are sample of the illustration on how exactly to plan a work. (Sample that being created with the Microsoft excels).


Example only:
Construction of the 7.2m(W) X 10.8m(H) X 200mm (thk) brick-wall complete with plastering and weather proof painting.
Step.1 : listing major item involve in construction.
  1. Time frame to complete the work 8 weeks.
  2. Agreed contract sum $10,000.00
  3. Work Involve :
    1. Material Procurement
    2. Bricklaying
    3. Wall Plastering
    4. Installation of scaffoldings
    5. Wall painting.
  4. Major Plant and equipment needed
    1. Cement & Sand mixer
    2. Scaffoldings
  5. Manpower needed
    1. Bricklayer
    2. Plasterer
    3. Painter
    4. Scaffolding erector
    5. General workers
  6. Construction material required.
    a). Ordinary Portland cement
    b). wash sand
    c). special cement powder for plastering
    d). Red brick
    f). Prime coat paint
    g). specified brand for weather bond paint.


step 2.: simple calculation on the quantity needed(for material).
Step 3: Simple calculation on the numbers of plant & equipment as well as manpower needed.
Step 4: list down the work involve in a correct sequence.
Step 5: incorporate all the quantity, cost and time required to delivered the project in whatever software you are using.
Step6 : Analysed if you meet the profit margin or if you want to increase the gross profit margin.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011


Project planning is important ingredient in every construction work undertake by contractor. without a proper planning it is only by chances that a project can be run smoothly even though at the end of the day, the project will be delivered, but, with a very high price that contractor need to pay. The cost could be another capital loosing for doing a construction project. For some this is a very painful but valuable lesson that must not be forgotten. The moral of this will be "learn from the past experience".
Now a days, to be a competitive contractor it is not only that one need a good networking of supplier, strong cash flow, having numbers of skill workers , equipment, plant and machineries but proper project planning. With a proper construction planning, all of the resources usage can be optimised to deliver even higher profit margin without jeopardizing the quality of the end product. With a good construction practice and well planed project, contractor should be able to meet their contract requirement as well as their own objective that is making more money.

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Wednesday, January 19, 2011


It is very important that contractor to keep a proper record of their daily site activity. One of the common way to do this is by preparing a site diary. All recorded daily site activity must be verify by the Superintending Officer (S.O) or their representative(S.O.R). If the site diary is keep by the S.O or S.O.R, it is very important that contractor must have the copy of this Site Diary.

The information in the site diary can be part of the vital evident if there is any dispute in the project.

Purchase Your site Diary Here.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Drawing or Document Register

Control of document or drawing is part and partial of the process to ensure a construction project can be delivered on time and meet the specification. It is an important area that all personnel involve need to practice. The proper record of document or drawing issue, will make it easier for all parties to track and dispute on the matter of drawing or document distribution can me minimised or prevented

Sunday, January 9, 2011