Homemade bricks ready to become walls
In the highlands of Pasto, Colombia, adobe is produced industrially by many small to medium sized brickyards.
If you think of the material as a simply an artisanal, bygone construction product, you would be surprised to see tracker trailers loaded with the adobe brick headed to construction sites.
Here are some shots of adobe manufacturing in the southeastern mountains of Colombia. The blocks are formed in molds, sun-dried and then fired in large wood ovens. Smoke rises all along the road where adobe is being “baked” as if loaves of bread.
The bricks come out soot black, and must be cleaned by hand to reveal their rust-brown natural color.
— Fernando Pagés Ruiz is ProTradeCraft's Latin America Editor. He is currently building a business in Ecuador and a house in Mexico. Formerly, he was a builder in the Great Plains and mountain states. He is author of Building an Affordable House and Affordable Remodel (Taunton Press).