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Coal Fired Oven in Australia - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community

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Coal Fired Oven in Australia

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  • Coal Fired Oven in Australia

    Does anyone use coal to fire their backyard oven?

    I live in Newcastle which it it claimed is the largest coal exporting harbour in the world. They ship over 160 million tonnes of coal a year from the port but do you think that I could find any to buy (I only want a sack full & not a whole ship load).

    Where we walk our dogs on a local beach there is a coal seam on a clif but as there is no vehicle access I couldn't be bothered carrying any coal I dug out back home.

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    It would have been fun to try coal in the oven but it will have to wait until I can find some.
    Paul

    Deficio est nusquam tamen vicis ut satus iterum
    (Failure is nothing but the opportunity to start again)

  • #2
    Re: Coal Fired Oven in Australia

    Really hate the smell of burning mineral coal. Its mineral and they extract chemicals for Dyes Plastics and even petrol can't be good on your food.
    By the way our American friends call "Charcoal".... "Coal" so they might be a bit of confusion with that and some of the replies

    Regards Dave
    Measure twice
    Cut once
    Fit in position with largest hammer

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    http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f51/...ild-14444.html
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    • #3
      Re: Coal Fired Oven in Australia

      America is full of coal mines, so Im sure they wont be confused...
      The English language was invented by people who couldnt spell.

      My Build.

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      • #4
        Re: Coal Fired Oven in Australia

        There are different types of coal. Ideally what you want for your pizza oven is a low sulfur anthracite (sometimes called hard coal).

        With respect to health risks, this source:

        Lung Cancer and Indoor Pollution from Heating and Cooking with Solid Fuels ? Am J Epidemiol

        states that:

        "when comparing cooking by coal with cooking by wood, we found a significant increase in risk related to wood. "

        So, if you have access to hard coal, that may be the way to go. If you contact your local blacksmiths they may be able to steer you to a local source.
        Last edited by Neil2; 02-09-2011, 04:27 PM.

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        • #5
          Re: Coal Fired Oven in Australia

          Dave, Americans do not call Charcoal - coal. Many people in the US use coal to heat their homes. We know the difference. My understanding is that many pizzerias in New York use coal in their ovens.
          Our Facebook Page:http://www.facebook.com/pages/Stoneh...60738907277443

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          • #6
            Re: Coal Fired Oven in Australia

            My understanding is that most coal fired ovens are "white ovens" meaning that the fire is not built in the same chamber as where the cooking ocurs. The Pompeii is a black oven, becuase the fire is in the cooking chamber. I don't think you want coal flavors in your pizza, but wood flavor is ok...
            My Oven Thread:
            http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/d...-oven-633.html

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            • #7
              Re: Coal Fired Oven in Australia

              coal fired pizza ovens are black ovens.

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              • #8
                Re: Coal Fired Oven in Australia

                Ilwood
                Sorry to generalise... came across the term in a post were a bloke had made a charcoal burner so he could utilise the left over "coal" from his wood fired oven.
                Australians use the term "Coals" to discribe the Glowing embers in a fire so I made the connection.
                Fasinated to hear that Coal was burnt in a black oven. The main black ovens I can remember as a child were the old "welch side draft ovens" used in most bakeries which were difinitly wood fired. Some "white ovens" and there were quite a few in the bush when I grew up used coal as fuel. There was a coal mine in the next town and many of the men folk worked in it. Coal however was the last thing you would burn as the smell didn't make you popular with the neighbours.
                Still can't stand the smell of burning coal so I'll leave it up to someone else to experiment with it.

                Regards Dave
                Measure twice
                Cut once
                Fit in position with largest hammer

                My Build
                http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f51/...ild-14444.html
                My Door
                http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f28/...ock-17190.html

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                • #9
                  Re: Coal Fired Oven in Australia

                  YouTube video on commercial black oven burning coal...

                  YouTube - Lighting The Coal Oven

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                  • #10
                    Re: Coal Fired Oven in Australia

                    That YouTube is very interesting. They start the fire on the side and leave it there. The oven (and it looks like a pretty big one) burns clean in exactly the same way, and in about the same amount of time, that our wood burners do. It also produces a considerable amount of flame.
                    We use clean-burning anthracite coal to make the world's best pizza.
                    Clean? Well maybe cleaner than bituminous, but anyone using "clean" and "coal" in the same sentence is trying to pull something over your eyes.
                    My geodesic oven project: part 1, part 2

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                    • #11
                      Re: Coal Fired Oven in Australia

                      I saw a similar shapped gas fired pizza oven just they other day. It was about 2.5 feet deep and maybe 5 or 6 feet long. They had fire at both ends, so there might have been another pile of coal at the other end.
                      My oven build: http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/m...and-13300.html

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                      • #12
                        Re: Coal Fired Oven in Australia

                        I have seen many a pizza oven fired with coal. Here in Arizona, a hundred or so miles away from the grand canyon is a huge coal mine run by Peabody and owned by the local Native Americans. For scouting trips in years gone by, I would buy a large chunk o coal at a shop up in Flagstaff for fires. Pretty colored flames - tip to metals in the coal! Burns well though.

                        I personally do not or would not use coal. If you look at the trace heavy metals, there is an issue. Maybe overkill, but to me, wood is just fine. Could there be metals in it? Yes, but not Mercury (unless you live near a mercury mine). As for the heavy metals, a local soil analysis would fill you in on that.

                        As for that coal seam near the ocean- I would avoid (again). In the 1400's that the King of England banned burning sea coal due to the excessive amounts of sulfur which was causing the Queen to have breathing problems (asthma). This was the first air quality regulation that is on the books (a citation can be provided later as it is at work!)

                        Hope that helps!
                        Jen-Aire 5 burner propane grill/Char Broil Smoker

                        Follow my build Chris' WFO

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                        • #13
                          Re: Coal Fired Oven in Australia

                          "I don't think you want coal flavors in your pizza, but wood flavor is ok..."

                          I like it. Most of the people who have eaten my coal fired pizza have said that it is the "best pizza they have ever eaten".

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                          • #14
                            Re: Coal Fired Oven in Australia

                            It would seem that although there are a few coal fired restaurants, no one is using coal in their home oven.

                            It was just an idea to try because there is so much coal in Newcastle. I may have to start my own hole in the back yard and access one of the old mineshafts below to get my own coal
                            Paul

                            Deficio est nusquam tamen vicis ut satus iterum
                            (Failure is nothing but the opportunity to start again)

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                            • #15
                              Re: Coal Fired Oven in Australia

                              Dear Paul
                              Watched the U-Tube vidios.... well seeing is believing... they can certainly cook pizza with coal as a heat source.
                              But then I started thinking and watched them again... Hows it done?
                              Now these are commercial ovens notice how low the entrance are in the front? a lot lower than the magic 63% of the roof height This is because they have a chimney inside at the magic 63% that takes the smoke away from the oven and the front of the oven is low enough not to let any out. The dreaded coal fumes are well obove the height of the pizza so no taste left in the pizza. The fire end probably has a air damper and the chimney a damper as well so the process and the fumes are well in controll. No tar tasting pizza I'm sure.
                              In a home oven.... well you would have to be carefull but the problem of the neighbours getting some fumes well....
                              Mine are well trained and the pleasant smell of burning Australia gum reminds them not to complain otherwise NO PIZZA...

                              Regards thanks for getting me thinking
                              Cobblerdave
                              Measure twice
                              Cut once
                              Fit in position with largest hammer

                              My Build
                              http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f51/...ild-14444.html
                              My Door
                              http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f28/...ock-17190.html

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