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This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)

 
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:16 PM   #1
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This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)


Sooooo....

After all the 'inspiration' I've seen on these pages, I decided earlier this year to attempt a wood-fired oven of my own.

This is a first for me so there has been a lot of second guessing along the way... vault vs. dome... what size... etc. etc. In 'researching' on the web I found, as usual, way too much information, differing view points, methods etc.

Finally, bit the bullet and got underway with my 'vault' oven. I know all the 'round' oven proponents out there will be shaking their collective heads but... there's always next time I suppose. I chose a vault for a couple of reasons. A good friend of mine just opened a wood fired bakery and I had the opportunity to help out on his own rectangular low vault oven... so got a bit of experience with the process. I also get the impression from many that a rectangular oven can be slightly more versatile... time will tell on that score... I do hope to use the oven for a lot of cooking other than just pizza.

I'll be building an oven with a 32 x 36 interior dimension with a low(ish) vault.

Let us begin then... as always... at the bottom;
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:21 PM   #2
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Re: This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)


Of course the spot where the oven is located just happens to be right where the original home owner decided to bury a bunch of stumps from the lot-clearing process. Needless to say the hole got a bit bigger and deeper than planned, and required a bit o' block to get back up to where we envisioned finished grade to be.

We then did a bit of back-filling, filled the center with sandy gravel and formed for the slab at grade;
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:26 PM   #3
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Re: This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)


Slab at grade poured, block for the oven structure started (leaving a stone ledge of course...), and forming for the hearth slab;
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:29 PM   #4
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Re: This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)


With and without forms;
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:32 PM   #5
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Re: This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)


Also doing a bit of landscaping in the general area so it looks a little less like a construction site.... using up some scraps I had kicking around.

As luck would have it, the job we're currently on requires that we remove all our stone chips etc. from the site. How convenient that I have hole that needs filling...
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Last edited by bytor; 07-30-2012 at 01:35 PM.
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:40 PM   #6
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Re: This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)


I decided to use 'Foamglas' insulation for my hearth insulation. I've used two layers of 3" slabs. Foamglas is a rigid, non-copressible insulation. In the unlikely event that it gets wet, water passes through, rather than being absorbed by the insulation.
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:48 PM   #7
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Re: This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)


I laid two layers of 2 1/2" firebrick on the foamglas to form the inner hearth of the oven. I kept this hearth 1/4" in from the finished interior dimension of 32 x 36" so than I can wrap it with 1/4" ceramic paper to act as an expansion joint/bond break.

I then started on the walls of the oven chamber... three courses and I was out of leftover bricks... have to open up the wallet for the remaining courses...

Hopefully I'll be able to keep my 1/4" slot clear of crap until I get a hold of some ceramic paper...
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:50 PM   #8
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Re: This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)


And to bring us up to date... played around with some arch bricks this weekend;
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Old 07-30-2012, 02:03 PM   #9
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Re: This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)


A question for those of you who have built and more importantly USE wood fired ovens.

The #1 arch bricks I have are laid on a radius of 21 inches. Therefore, with the 32" width of the oven, I'll have a rise in the center of +/- 7 1/2".
With four courses of 2 1/2" brick for the walls, that puts the total inside height of the vault at around 17 - 17 1/2". working from that height then, my opening for the oven will be roughly 10 3/4" high.

Is an opening of 10 3/4" by 16" adequate for most use? i.e. 14' pizza, bread, the occasional roast etc? I'm trying to keep the opening as small as possible to limit heat loss, while still providing a user friendly experience.

What of the interior height of the vault... in 17" ok? Could I go lower? (should I go higher?)
If I did go lower, would the door become too low?

Thoughts?
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Old 07-30-2012, 05:18 PM   #10
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Re: This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)


I prefer a bigger opening, but most commercial ones are smaller. 11x16 would not be wide enough for me, but plenty tall. For pizza, a lower ceiling is better, for everything else it doesn't matter. The next one I build for myself will be a rectangular low dome, I think it is the best of all worlds.

Yours is looking great!

I cooked on this one this weekend, it is an A****o oven, the door is 17x9, the ceiling is 15-1/4.


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Old 07-30-2012, 05:23 PM   #11
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Re: This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)


I made this one about 8am Sunday to go with the orange (ish) "juice"...
The Breakfast of Champions!

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Old 07-30-2012, 05:30 PM   #12
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Re: This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)


TS I hope you burnt your tongue on the pizza

Everytime I see a pizza thread, I get all excited and then you start posting pics and I get hungry...
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Old 07-30-2012, 05:44 PM   #13
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Re: This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)


As always, looks awesome Bytor!!!! I even get impressed by your block work.

I'm still planning my oven, hope to pour the slab this fall and work on it in the slow early spring. I'm still trying to figure out how I'll be able to get an entire lamb in the darned thing (sister raises sheep).

I noticed you went down below frost while most people on the Forno Bravo site don't seem to bother. you're about the closest to me around here. I've been thinking that I'll be going down a ways or at least till I hit bedrock
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Old 07-30-2012, 07:56 PM   #14
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Re: This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)


It's about time!

Vault, dome, it doesn't really matter. I think good points are made for both and I haven't seen evidence that has proved one far surpasses the other.

Looking forward to more pictures and progress. As it happens, I recently started some prep work on my next one and it will be very different than all the others I have done before.

The magic number for a door opening is 62%-64% of the interior height...16" is a pretty standardized ceiling number. My oven (dome style) at my home in CT had an interior ceiling height of 21" and a door opening 12"h x 18"w....if I remember correctly. It worked great for me and I had no draw problems. You should be fine no matter what you do as long as you adjust the door opening proportionally.
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Old 07-31-2012, 06:20 PM   #15
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Re: This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)


Sounds like I should widen my opening a bit... Think I'll shoot for 18" wide by 10" tall.. I'll lower the height pf the vault to 16" to correspond with the opening size.
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Old 07-31-2012, 09:48 PM   #16
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Re: This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)


It might be worth mentioning that the oven opening I described above was not the finished opening on the stonework. I don't remember exactly what it was now but I think the width of the outer vent arch was 21" or 22" and the height was 13". Enlarging the vent area and finish will help visibility and accessibility of the oven. Plus it will create a lip for the door like this.....

This Could Take a While.... (Yet another wood-fired oven thread...)-during2.jpg

Edit: The veneer followed the flare of the vent and so the width of the outer edge of the stone was greater than the vent....which was nice for working the peel and made viewing the interior better.
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Old 07-31-2012, 10:02 PM   #17
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Re: This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)


Gotta have a reveal and don't forget to make the outer arch bigger than the inner arch.
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Old 08-01-2012, 03:54 AM   #18
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Re: This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)


Quote:
Originally Posted by Tscarborough View Post
Gotta have a reveal and don't forget to make the outer arch bigger than the inner arch.
You betcha.... was also going to try and 'flare' the side walls of the vent area to help with getting the peel into the sides/corners of the oven. (At least in the stone veneer if not the vent itself...)
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Old 08-09-2012, 03:45 AM   #19
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Re: This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)


The weekend that was...

My layout for the vault didn't quite work out... rather than doing a bunch of funky cuts to finish off, I just 'poured' a 'keystone' of refractory to finish the vault.

The vault ended up at 16.5" high... One 10.395" door/opening coming up!
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Old 08-09-2012, 08:03 AM   #20
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Re: This Could Take A While.... (Yet Another Wood-fired Oven Thread...)


looking good

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