The Wood-Fired Blog

Thanks to Feedback from Dealers / Customers on our prints

To the Forno Bravo faithful, we appreciate the feedback and suggestions regarding our print layouts for our wood fired oven kits.  Many of our technical support calls over the years have been because our prints were more about oven use, then install.  That is changing!  We are in the process of updating all our drawings to provide Architectural views for Designers / Installers as well as key component parts.

We are confident that our customers and their contractors will find this new format much friendlier and, as always we welcome input / suggestions.  Just email us at

When each oven family’s prints are ready, we will keep you posted with Forum announcements.

The Casa and Premio series ovens are all done and ready on our website.  They are under the “Dimensions” tab on the main site.

We are working on the Giardino ovens now and then the commercial products.

For a quick peak, check out the Casa 90 print.Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 6.32.53 PM

Key improvements include:

  • A nice clean visual of the Front, Side and Top view of the oven with all the installed components layered.  This came from all our customers suggestions;
  • We added the minimum recommended foot print for the installation.  This assumes that your pizza oven install is going to use stucco and not a thick structure to enclose it.  Thank you to Home Pizzeria Ovens of Florida / New Hampshire for that suggestion.
  • Insulation and Flue specifications are clearly identified.
  • Ship weight and crate size are listed in the bottom left to make planning for a delivery easier courtesy of Outdoor Pizza Ovens in Canada.
  • Minimum clearances to combustibles are clearly identified in the top view thanks to The Arch in North Carolina;
  • Hearth specification is listed for convenience so you don’t have to refer to the install guide when planning;
  • A Decorative Facade Allowances chart is included to give you an estimate on how different appearances may increase your foot print.

Designing the World’s Finest Pizza Oven into your home keeps getting easier.

Thanks again and have a great Spring planning your project!

Forno Bravo Operations Team


Pizza Oven Design — Ventilation Options. Both Good and Bad.

Building on my postings the last couple of days on oven design and innovation, I wanted to follow up with some thoughts on pizza oven ventilation design. In general, there are a couple of different methods, including two that are quite widely  used, and a couple that you need to avoid —whether you are building your own oven, putting a pizza oven kit or assemble oven in your backyard, or selecting a pizza oven for your restaurant.

The two proper venting methods are the “traditional design”, where the vent is located in front of, and above, the oven opening, and the chimney (or ventilation pipe) runs vertically up from the vent; and there is the “center vent design”, where the vent (or hood) opening is located directly above the oven opening, and the vent runs directly back over the top of the oven dome, where it connects to the chimney (or ventilation pipe). In both cases, the ventilation system is located outside of the cooking chamber, where the door can be used to regulate airflow, or even cut off airflow, and to retain heat inside the oven.

The illustrations below show the elements and functionality of both designs. Be sure to click on the graphic to see a larger image.

Center vent closed


Center Vent Open

In the traditional wood oven ventilation design, the vent is located in front of, and above, the oven opening, and the chimney runs straight up. The vent and chimney create a strong draw, helping pull hot air out of the oven chamber and increasing the oven’s natural convection. While a wood oven will “work” without a vent and chimney, a properly designed oven ventilation system will significantly improve air movement and oven performance, while keeping smoke away from the chef. The traditional design can work either with, or without, side walls that enclose the vent.

The center vent design has also been been used widely over the years in both pizza ovens and bread ovens. Like the traditional ventilation design, the vent creates a strong draw, helping pull hot air out of the oven. Additionally, because the hot air is pulled directly across the the top of the oven dome, this ventilation design can help evenly heat the oven and help the dome maintain high pizza baking temperatures. The center vent design is used in Naples-style pizza ovens, where they often call the vent a hood, or second dome.

You really can’t go wrong with either design, and in some ways the question of which ventilation method works better for you may depend as much on design ascetics as it does on functionality. Forno Bravo manufactures ovens using both ventilation methods.

I also want to add a couple of thoughts on two other ventilation designs — the “no vent” oven and the “vent in the oven” designs.

There is a small oven imported from Portugal that is for sale in the US that does not have a vent, and to be blunt, we would strongly recommend against buying it. Given the choice of the Forno Bravo Primavera and Andiamo ovens (at very reasonable prices), there is no reason to buy a vent-less oven. The oven does not draw as well or operate as well as a properly designed oven, and the chef has to deal with constantly have smoke in his or her face.

We are also asked on occasion whether we would recommend a Pompeii oven builder avoid the hassle of building a vent, and our advice is that unless the vent will stop you from building your oven, it is absolutely worth the effort to build one.

And finally, there is the “vent in the oven” design where the vent is placed inside the oven opening, behind the oven door, rather than outside of the oven chamber. There are some shortcomings to this design, so there are two basic reasons for seeing an oven with an internal vent. First, you see an internal vent on Forno Bravo’s innovative Strada60 — our smallest and lightest oven designed for portability. By incorporating the vent inside the oven chamber, we were able to create an oven that you can easily set up at a tailgate party, that still provides excellent wood-fired cooking performance.

On the other hand, when you see an internal vent on a permanent oven you know there is  a problem. To be blunt again, in this case the oven designers simply did not know what they were doing. There are two different US-made pizza ovens that have this critical problem, one located in southern California and the other in Illinois, and our recommendation is to avoid those ovens.

Take a look at the graphic below to see the implications of an internal vent.

Door Location

Sorry about the lengthy post. Let us know if you can any questions or comments.