Broken canisters, often with glassy vitrified surfaces, were found throughout the Trench 54 South workshop debris. Lumps of frothy faience slag with embedded fragments of bone were also quite common in the debris.
Manufacturing related sites and debris from ancient Indus sites.
Part of a terra cotta kiln setter found in the Trench 54 South workshop debris. The tip is not vitrified and may have been buried in ash during the firing process.
A glazed terra cotta kiln setter with bone fused onto the splayed surface appears to have been an important part of the firing process in the Trench 54 South faience workshop.
Experimental efforts to manufacture and fire faience and steatite tablets were undertaken by J. Mark Kenoyer in Madison, Wisconsin, during the summer of 2001.
Stages in the manufacture of faience tablets. First it is necessary to make the faience paste and the steatite molds. Then the paste is formed into a rectangle and impressed on both sides by the molds.
In order to glaze faience it must be fired at approximately 940 degrees Celsius for several hours. The red color of the glowing faience barely visible inside the canister indicates that this temperature has been reached.
Fully and partially glazed faience tablets and other fired objects could be examined after the fire had cooled and the canister opened. The steatite molds were also included in the canister to see how they would be affected by this type of firing.
Section view of the the floor levels of the Trench 54 South workshop showing major excavation units.