By Heather Daveno, early 1980’s. This DIY article is copyright free as long as you credit its author.
The peaked roof of the 13th century maikhan was supported by a ridgepole, supported in turn by two upright poles. Guy ropes served to stabilize these uprights at each end of the maikhan. The guy ropes which were made of yak hair, were adorned with prayer flags, which served to both mark the guy ropes (notorious trip hazards), and to send prayers to heaven for the Buddhist inhabitants. Smaller maikhans belonging to Buddhist ascetics included an iron trident, which probably fastened to the top of one of the two uprights.
If you would like to build one like I did, feel free to download this article.