Building The Low-Temperature Kiln at Umpium Mai

These photos depict the building of a low-temperature kiln. The kilnsite was pre-determined when we arrived and 
so our research for materials began at the site itself. There was an existing thatch topped 
hut built on a leveled hillside over the road. We found the clay on the hillside directly behind 
the hut to be of acceptable plasticity for use as a building material. Due to the availability of 
labour (the YDC staff and students) we were able to complete the project in about three 
weeks. The photos below cover a two week period.


 -PHOTO- 
This is the kilnsite before excavation, after removing the topsoil and overburden we screened
the excavated clay and used various mixes of Clay, Sand, and Rice Husk to form a slotted
cone shapped brick and mortar. The grey bricks in the foreground were made before our
 arrival from another local source of higher temperature clay.

 -PHOTO- 
A view of Area "A" of the camp from the kilnsite.

 -PHOTO- 
An outline of the kiln as we excavated the firebox and leveled chamber and chimney areas.

 -PHOTO- 
Mr. Ou-Moun is working with us, he has his own workshop where he does sculpture and is
also an excellent carpenter.

 -PHOTO- 
Kai at the other end of the firebox.

 -PHOTO- 
One of the children mimicking our weaving activities.

 -PHOTO- 
One of Ou-Moun's sons making thin strips of bamboo for tying together our woven form for the 
firebox.

 -PHOTO- 
The completed bamboo form

 -PHOTO- 
Ou-Moun, Burt Cohen, and Tom Unziker.

 -PHOTO- 
The Completed firebox was made from the unfired brick made from a  high temperature gray
 clay which Mr. Ou-Moun found.

 -PHOTO- 
Students and staff forming balls from the red clay (6) Sand (4) Husk (2) mixture; it was mixed wet
so we had to form the balls before lunch, so they were dry enough for forming after lunch.

 -PHOTO- 
Forming the hollow clay cones
 -PHOTO- 
Same as above

 -PHOTO- 
Placing the completed cones on ground  sprinkled with rice husk to sun-dry

 -PHOTO- 
Top view of the Firebox, Chimney base and Chamber base.  The chimney base is also made
from higher temperature unfired brick from the same gray clay.
 -PHOTO- 
Front view of above

 -PHOTO- 
Detail of doorway and bamboo arch guide

 -PHOTO- 
The completed dome and firebox

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Side view of door and base of chimney

 -PHOTO- 
Completing the chimney base (overhead view) The doorway is filled with cones and sealed
with a 3sand/2husk/4clay lagging.

 -PHOTO- 
A view of the wasteoil ladder (burner) being tested in the drying fire.