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Hello from Western Washington - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community

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Hello from Western Washington

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  • Hello from Western Washington

    Hello all, I live with my wife and two dogs and a cat on a small island in Puget Sound. We are planning on building a small bread/pizza oven this summer. I'll post photos as my project progresses.

    Other interests include sailing, gardening, home theatre (high Def), and letterpress printing.

    Here's a photo I took of a wood fired oven that I was told was either built or rebuilt by Paul Gaugaun on the island of Hiva Oa in the Marquesas Islands, French Polynesia. I took the photo in 1977 on my first voyage to the South Pacific (1977-80). By the time of my second voyage (1983) the oven was no longer used and the local bread was being made by a "modern" facility on the island. I have other photos of this oven should anyone wish to see them.
    Wiley
    Attached Files

  • #2
    Re: Hello from Western Washington

    Welcome!

    We would love to see more pictures of that oven. Have you downloaded the free pdf plans yet from the forno bravo store link?

    Drake
    My Oven Thread:
    http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/d...-oven-633.html

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Hello from Western Washington

      Hi Drake,
      Yes, I have downloaded the plans they offer. I also have just finished reading Daniel Wing and Alan Scott's book "The Bread Builders, Hearth Loaves and Masonary Ovens" which is very encouraging.

      The area where I live has several basalt quarrys and I am curious about using this "traprock" in constructing my oven. Alan Scott makes particular reference to using this material in oven construction. The oven on Hiva Oa was also built with basalt although it looks brick lined. Unfortunately back in 1977 I was using a 110 film sized camera and it was not until 1979 that I had the film delveloped. The tropical heat did not help in maintaining high quality images either. Here's a couple more of the young bakers mixing the dough and shaping the loaves etc.
      Attached Files

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Hello from Western Washington

        Welcome Wiley! Great pics! I love the dough work pics. They sure put out a lot of bread, huh?

        What Island are you on - Small Island - Mcneill? Just kidding - Bainbridge, Herron, Anderson, Fox, Marrowstone???
        GJBingham
        -----------------------------------
        Everyone makes mistakes. The trick is to make mistakes when nobody is looking.

        -

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Hello from Western Washington

          gjbingham,
          We live on Marrowstone, we bought land back in '89 and started building our own home. Land here was inexpensive then, now one cannot find one acre for twice the price we paid for five. We are in the rain shadow of the Olympics and so only get about 18-20 inches of rain each year :-)
          I was in commercial fishing and my wife had her own small home business, we have both since retired...early :-)
          Wiley

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Hello from Western Washington

            Hey Wiley, I too found this site after reading the Alan Scott book, paid for his plans too...but ended up building the pompeii. If you read enough here, you will probably do the same, unless you really need professional volumes of bread.

            Welcome!
            My Oven Thread:
            http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/d...-oven-633.html

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Hello from Western Washington

              Wiley,
              Great to have you here. You'll add to the growing list of West Coast ovens.

              My siblings and I have a dilapidated beach cabin on Marrowstone that faces Indian Island. I still have a house over at Keystone, on Whidbey. Too cold up there for my blood though.
              GJBingham
              -----------------------------------
              Everyone makes mistakes. The trick is to make mistakes when nobody is looking.

              -

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Hello from Western Washington

                Thank you for the kind welcome.
                This is a great group of interesting people, I was sort of concerned that it might be a clique of afficinados of one type/style/manufacture of oven and am pleasantly surprised that it has a wide selection of DIY creative thinkers who are willing to try different and perhaps slightly heretic ideas on oven construction.

                Also good to hear you/your family has land on Island. If ever you get up this way please PM me first and we can get together :-)
                Bests,
                Wiley

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Hello from Western Washington

                  Will do Wiley.

                  Post pics of your build. We love to watch!
                  GJBingham
                  -----------------------------------
                  Everyone makes mistakes. The trick is to make mistakes when nobody is looking.

                  -

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Hello from Western Washington

                    Originally posted by Wiley View Post
                    Thank you for the kind welcome.
                    This is a great group of interesting people, I was sort of concerned that it might be a clique of afficinados of one type/style/manufacture of oven and am pleasantly surprised that it has a wide selection of DIY creative thinkers who are willing to try different and perhaps slightly heretic ideas on oven construction.
                    Bests,
                    Wiley
                    you don't have to be crazy....but it helps
                    sigpicTiempo para guzarlos..... ...enjoy every sandwich!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Hello from Western Washington

                      Originally posted by gjbingham View Post
                      Will do Wiley.

                      Post pics of your build. We love to watch!
                      OK, should I post pictures to this thread or start a new thread? This isn't going to happen over night as I (like most of us) have lots of demands on my time. Presently I'm finishing the sheetrocking of my wife's new sewing room (that was a "exchange" for the time I spent building the home theatre), costructing the new greenhouse (I have the slab poured), building the new planting bed along same so corn can go in this spring (just had 12 yards of "topsoil" delivered last week for this bed); and yesterday had a pallet of cinder block for the WFO along with two pallets of stackable "cottage stone" to build a retaining wall (for the planting bed).

                      But it's going to happen this summer, (I picked up two bags of Fondu and two 4 cu ft bags of vermiculite last week in Seattle) it just isn't going to be non-stop everyday working on just this project.

                      I think I'm going to go with the steel shell overlayed with refractory concrete, a layer of Frax then vemiculite concrete. I'm not sure whether I'll go with a firebrick hearth or try a basalt Fondu concrete hearth. That will be over vermiculite concrete. So there will some modifications as I go along but I think I have the hard basic decisions covered. Here's a couple of photos of what I have come up with regarding the entrance "tunnel". Actually sort of looks like a dome WFO if you let your imagination run a bit. Still have to figure out the chinmey.
                      Bests,
                      Wiley
                      Attached Files

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Hello from Western Washington

                        I think the steel dome is quite unique so maybe start a new thread to document the new building and cooking.

                        I actually thought the double dome idea with vermiculite/perlite layer was interesting too!

                        are there any steel domes we know of now? I wonder how they are....keep the brick floor for cooking though!

                        Jim
                        sigpicTiempo para guzarlos..... ...enjoy every sandwich!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Hello from Western Washington

                          Interesting! Why the layer of Frax? What properties are you looking for from that? I'm not totally familiar with refractory concrete, but it seems that you could go straight to insulation on top of that.
                          GJBingham
                          -----------------------------------
                          Everyone makes mistakes. The trick is to make mistakes when nobody is looking.

                          -

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Hello from Western Washington

                            Xabia Jim:
                            I sure plan on keeping the masonary hearth, Alan Scott mentions a oven that has steel oven walls and roof with a masonary hearth. It's one of two ovens used by the Acme Baking Company. He mentions it on page 91 of the paper back edition of "The Bread Builders". So the idea is different and perhaps a bit unusual but by no means unique. I'm more at home working metal than bricks :-)

                            I'll start a thread over on one of the other sections. There is another forum member who was considering using a steel liner, (perhaps a member with a user name: "Mine", it's hard to check when one is writing a post :-) I don't want to intrude on his thread but perhaps it'll fit to start something in that same section.

                            gjbingham:
                            I was following a thread elsewhere on this forum where there was a discussion of whether to put the kaowool or Frax next to the brickwork and cover that with the vermiculite insulation or to put the vermiculite first and then the Frax. The majority opinion was to put the Frax first followed by the vermicuite as it gave a denser surface upon which to apply the weather resistant layer (stucco). Sort of made sense as well, to have the best insulation closest to the heat one is trying to contain.

                            Life is an experiment! (at least mine is). I've got to run, today is the day we check in on my aged Mom. I won't be back 'til late tonight.

                            Bests,
                            Wiley

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Hello from Western Washington

                              Ahh, you mean insulation blanket, insulfrax? There's a few types used. I misunderstood. Good call. That sounds right -blanket then vermicrete. I've no idea how the oven will actually perform, but it should work, it seems to me. I love experimentation! If for some reason, you're not happy with the performance, it is important to tell it to the crowd here. Our cumulative knowledge grows from experimentation such as yours.

                              (yes, I was a whimp. I followed the directions. Born to live with mediocrity. Sad, sad!)

                              Happy building, or welding!
                              GJBingham
                              -----------------------------------
                              Everyone makes mistakes. The trick is to make mistakes when nobody is looking.

                              -

                              Comment

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