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Pizza oven problem? - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community

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I'm Peter Reinhart! Ask Me Anything! Monday, February 15, 2016 7:00-8:00 pm EST

To kick off our AMA feature, we have invited author, chef and master bread maker and host of Pizza Quest, Peter Reinhart, to be our first host! Peter will be in the Forum on Monday, February 15th, from 7:00 - 8:00 pm EST. If you are unable to be online during the live session, you can post your questions in the sticky post. Peter will answer those questions during the live session on February 15th. You can view Peter's answers to your questions as well as what happened during the live session in the session thread.

Ask Me Anything New Forum Feature

You will notice a new forum at the top of the main page called, "Ask Me Anything". This forum will be used for live one hour "Ask Me Anything" (AMA) sessions hosted by people who are knowledgeable in different areas pertaining to wood fired ovens. How it works:
- Each AMA will have a "sticky" thread where the community can post questions they would like answered during the live session. This will allow everyone to participate even if you can't be online for the live session. These questions will not be answered by the host until the live AMA; if you need an answer quickly, you should post it in the appropriate Forum area for the community to respond.
- Another thread will be posted for the live AMA. Registered users who are logged in during the live session can interact with the host by asking questions and receiving responses.
- The live thread will remain in the AMA forum to view after the session.

We hope you enjoy this new feature! Please let us know if there is a topic that you'd like to have as an AMA and we'll look for a host!

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Pizza oven problem?

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  • Pizza oven problem?

    Hi all. Not to sure where to post this, but need advice.

    I built an oven last year and have a vermiculate base(2 inches) and a dome on top with two layers of vermiculate blanket and covered with vermiculate/cement mix. Last year it heated very well and made great pizza.
    We have had a very wet winter, and the dome appears damp this year.

    Upon firing it does not get anywhere near enough hot anymore. From 400degrees celcius last year, to 100 Celsius this year.

    The floor appears to not be heating anymore. There is a firebrick 4 piece floor, covered by a 4 piece dome. I have fired it a few times to try and dry it out.

    Any ideas? Thanks.

    Geoff.

  • #2
    Re: Pizza oven problem?

    G'day Geoff
    Sorry that your post has remained unanswered for so long.
    You are right its pretty well soaked I'd say. Low and slow fires for a while. That's not so bad you can bake some really nice meals. As it drys and starts to give you the higher temps...Back Off .. And be patient. It will come good with time.
    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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    • #3
      Re: Pizza oven problem?

      Your cladding is made from vermiculite/cement? That is an insulating mix, and if you don't have a stucco shell over it, there's no wonder your oven is saturated. Any pics?
      Old World Stone & Garden

      Current WFO build - Dry Stone Base & Gothic Vault

      When we build, let us think that we build for ever.
      John Ruskin

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Pizza oven problem?

        There is a valuable lesson to be learned here.
        Your oven obviously works fine when properly dried out and over the winter or wet period, it absorbs water which retards it's performance. As vermiculite will absorb moisture out of the air and readily absorb water that comes into contact with it, you will need to dry it out again and slowly, but most of all protect it from doing it again. Build a cover over it or wrap it when not in use to ensure that it does not get wet nor able to absorb the high humidity of moist air.
        Prevention is better than cure, - do it right the first time!

        The more I learn, the more I realise how little I know


        Neillís Pompeiii #1
        http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/n...-1-a-2005.html
        Neillís kitchen underway
        http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f35/...rway-4591.html

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        • #5
          Re: Pizza oven problem?

          Thanks for the replies folks. I have lit a couple of fires. And it has improved slightly. I hope to get it going this weekend as we have a bank holiday here and hopefully it will improve further.
          With next winter in mind:
          The stucco people talk of, can this be bought anywhere? Us it paint? Or should I put a sand/cement mix over it first, then paint it?

          Thanks.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Pizza oven problem?

            To note, I had it covered all winter with a bbq pizza oven specially for it. But we had a lot of rain. So that could well have soaked it non the less.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Pizza oven problem?

              G'day
              Stucco is the American term. Render is probably the term that you use in Ireland. Sand, portent cement, lime, and it should be available in a premix form.
              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

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Pizza oven problem?

                Not exclusively American, but render is interchangeable universally.
                Old World Stone & Garden

                Current WFO build - Dry Stone Base & Gothic Vault

                When we build, let us think that we build for ever.
                John Ruskin

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Pizza oven problem?

                  Here in South Oz, we don't use the terms interchangeably.
                  When we speak of render, we generally mean a smooth exterior coating of cement/lime/sand mixture that is trowelled flat.
                  When we speak of stucco, especially if the guy holding the trowel is of Italian (Molfettese) descent, we are generally speaking of textured exterior finishes.

                  Wiki says stucco was traditionally textured for appearance, then the definition of cement render is so similar its all the same stuff as far as I can see.

                  In any case, being an Aussie, I'd render an igloo shaped oven, not stucco it.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Pizza oven problem?

                    G'day
                    Well if that's the case its stucco for me ...... The texture surface hides the imperfections in my finish
                    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

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Pizza oven problem?

                      Originally posted by wotavidone View Post
                      Here in South Oz, we don't use the terms interchangeably.
                      When we speak of render, we generally mean a smooth exterior coating of cement/lime/sand mixture that is trowelled flat.
                      When we speak of stucco, especially if the guy holding the trowel is of Italian (Molfettese) descent, we are generally speaking of textured exterior finishes.

                      Wiki says stucco was traditionally textured for appearance, then the definition of cement render is so similar its all the same stuff as far as I can see.

                      In any case, being an Aussie, I'd render an igloo shaped oven, not stucco it.
                      Whether you are Aussie or not, stucco and rendering are the same thing....in your case, the meaning of the word changes but not the true definition of what is being done.

                      Internationally, they mean the same thing....being international forum is the reason for the earlier post.
                      Old World Stone & Garden

                      Current WFO build - Dry Stone Base & Gothic Vault

                      When we build, let us think that we build for ever.
                      John Ruskin

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Pizza oven problem?

                        Originally posted by stonecutter View Post
                        Whether you are Aussie or not, stucco and rendering are the same thing....in your case, the meaning of the word changes but not the true definition of what is being done.

                        Internationally, they mean the same thing....being international forum is the reason for the earlier post.
                        G'day
                        Your not wrong about the international thing. I was in a discussion on stand sizes and deliberately didnt start quoting measurements cause it was in ins and ft. Gulf started quoting sizes and I could visually see in my mind the sizes without converting them. Creepy I haven't used imperial since a kid in the 70s when Aust changed to metric
                        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

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Pizza oven problem?

                          Originally posted by stonecutter View Post
                          Whether you are Aussie or not, stucco and rendering are the same thing....in your case, the meaning of the word changes but not the true definition of what is being done.

                          Internationally, they mean the same thing....being international forum is the reason for the earlier post.
                          Interesting discussion. We have always called it "parging". I had never heard the term "rendering" until I came on here. It took me a bit of time until I figured out what that meant. And "stucco" was always a decorative masonry cladding (w/texture) that was applied to exteriors of homes, etc. That's one of the fun things about a forum like this that is virtually worldwide, the terminology, slang, etc. It's all good! But.....I'll keep "parging".
                          My Build:
                          http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/s...ina-20363.html

                          "Believe that you can and you're halfway there".

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                          • #14
                            Re: Pizza oven problem?

                            I know parging as a thin masonry coating too,and use the expression.

                            The difference is, the term parge is not normally used to describe a decorative finish, but as a rough coat or a back coat on veneer work.

                            When I build with mortar, I'll parge the backs of the stone as I go, so as not to leave voids into the cavity or the bed mortar. I parge the stone even when there is no cavity, because it functions like burning thinset onto tile...so the back filled mortar forms a better bond to the stone through the parge.
                            Last edited by stonecutter; 04-18-2014, 07:09 AM.
                            Old World Stone & Garden

                            Current WFO build - Dry Stone Base & Gothic Vault

                            When we build, let us think that we build for ever.
                            John Ruskin

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Pizza oven problem?

                              Originally posted by stonecutter View Post
                              I know parging as a thin masonry coating too,and use the expression.

                              The difference is, the term parge is not normally used to describe a decorative finish, but as a rough coat or a back coat on veneer work.

                              When I build with mortar, I'll parge the backs of the stone as I go, so as not to leave voids into the cavity or the bed mortar. I parge the stone even when there is no cavity, because it functions like burning thinset onto tile...so the back filled mortar forms a better bond to the stone through the parge.
                              Yeah, it's kind of like "backbuttering" tile. Although I have nowhere near the experience you do, it's funny, I do the same thing. I usually burn a bit of mortar on the wall where the stone is going to bond, then immediately set the stone, so it bonds good. Now I feel better, knowing I'm doing it right. I knew I was, but it's nice to see it said by someone w/your experience. I guess I did learn a thing or two working w/all those oldtimers when I was still wet behind the ears as a greenhorn.
                              My Build:
                              http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/s...ina-20363.html

                              "Believe that you can and you're halfway there".

                              Comment

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