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Rough Cost Estimate - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community



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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Rough Cost Estimate

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  • Rough Cost Estimate

    Hi all,

    I realize this is a tough question, but I'm thinking of building a 36'' oven using the Pompeii oven plans and I was wondering if someone can give me a rough materials cost estimate for an outdoor DIY build? Unfortunately, I don't have any friends in the masonry business so I'll probably need to cost everything at retail prices before I get started.

    Many thanks from Ontario, Canada!

  • #2
    Re: Rough Cost Estimate


    Although I can't help you on the cost of a Pompeii, not having built one, I can tell you that I'm also in Ontario, and you'll find that the costs will be higher here than they are south of the border for similar materials. Like me, you're probably used to that.

    Do it anyhow.

    "Made are tools, and born are hands"--William Blake, 1757-1827


    • #3
      Re: Rough Cost Estimate

      Thanks for your reply Jim! I figured it would be more than just an exchange rate. At this point, I'd like to know if I'm looking at $1K or $3K?

      A few questions for you:
      - How deep did you dig in your foundation? I'll be building near the lake district (Rosseau) and the bedrock is pretty shallow so I don't think I'll need to worry too much about heaving.
      - Do you have any thoughts on sourcing materials in Ontario? I'll probably ask for a quote for the blocks, mortar, firebricks, high-heat mortar, and vermiculite/perlite from Capbrick and Simcoe Block to get a rough cost.
      - I'm thinking that I'll finish the exterior using local stones with a slightly pitched roof.


      • #4
        Re: Rough Cost Estimate


        You're in an ideal situation. I'd go to bedrock, maybe drill a few holes with a rented Hilti to insert rebar, straight up, and just pour a slab with mesh in the middle, wired to the rebar. Frost heave just won't happen. Make sure you clean the bedrock well to assist in adhestion. Think about runoff and account for it. My situation is far other: 12 inches of topsoil over heavy clay, with ground water in between. Not good. My slab is eight inches thick with ten sonos four feet below that, lots of gravel. Like I said, the ground's not stable, but I've had no heave problems at all. Can you spell "overbuilt?"

        The source I've used locally is Bathe & McLellan in Whitby. They were about the only place that would get LaFarge Fondue for me, also vermiculite (PoolPac) and angle iron cut to length. The owner is very knowledgeable. For fire brick and tools, I dealt with Don & Son, also in Whitby, but these sources are far from you. Having to do it again, I'd import Refrax from FB; ditto SuperIsol and batt insulation. Quicker, easier, less hassle and running around. For common materials, like block, Type S, mesh, etc., it's tough to beat Home Cheapo on price.

        You talk about a "slightly" pitched roof. I'd factor snow load into the equation and maybe go for more of a pitch, maybe metal roofing. Your area can get a ton of heavy snow, so truss well.

        You'll have no shortage of local stones in your area. Do consider high quality English chisels for splitting from places like Don & Son or Betz Cut Stone (Davis Drive, north of Toronto). They make masonry life much, much easier. You'll definitely need a tile saw, wet saw, what you will.

        Keep it up. Let me know if I can assist further. Oh, yeah, you're probably, just probably, looking at 2.5 K.

        "Made are tools, and born are hands"--William Blake, 1757-1827


        • #5
          Re: Rough Cost Estimate

          Hi, I remembered building a spreadsheet somewhere of my time invested and cost.

          I've attached it as an HTML file. Basically I spent about $2,400 not including any purchased tools. Does include rentals.

          I live in a small town with an expensive lumberyard and am too lazy or time challenged to drive very far for materials, I'm sure folks can do better other places. Firebricks I found to be particularly expensive.

          Dome cost was the single highest component as I divided it up, a fair bit of that cost was for the tile saw I rented at $50 a day.
          - JC


          • #6
            Re: Rough Cost Estimate

            Thanks all. I've put in a request for a quote on some of the materials from a local building supply company. After a brief phone conversation, I expect the quote will be on the high side so I may need to call around a bit more.

            Being a weekend 'cottage project' my wife suggested that I look for some reclaimed or local materials this spring to help keep the costs down. Her comment suggests that I don't have a budget of $3K to work with... we're already committed to building my mother in law a new garden this year, replacing two sections of outdoor deck and the usual spring fix-ups.


            • #7
              Re: Rough Cost Estimate

              Check the postings by Redbricknick. Nick is finishing up his oven using almost 100% found, scrounged items. There were some ideas for reclaimed materials there.
              Pizza Ovens
              Outdoor Fireplaces


              • #8
                Re: Rough Cost Estimate

                Agreed. After a bit of searching it looks like between kijiji and craigslist, I should be able to find the bricks at much less cost. There are also a few dilapidated brick/stone farm buildings in the area so I might do a bit of door-knocking as well.