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What happens if the dome turns out to be too high? - 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:
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What happens if the dome turns out to be too high?

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  • What happens if the dome turns out to be too high?

    Hello,
    I'm building a 40" internal dia pompeji oven.
    Decided to try my hands at building it totally without form. (Foam vanes were a huge hassle for me.)
    So far it worked OK, but I expect the interior height of the dome to end up at around 25". Have been shooting for 21".
    I'm wondering what that means for oven. Does it change its baking characteristics? Anything else?
    Should I increase the angle of the last few chains to reduce the dome height?
    Thanks so much.
    VV

  • #2
    Re: What happens if the dome turns out to be too high?

    Some say that building brick ovens is not rocket surgery. I'd bet a sack of refmix that a 25" dome would bake a fine pizza.

    That being said, 4 inches is about 20% higher than the plans call for, so I'd do what I could to angle the bricks a little and get that height down a few inches.
    -Chris-
    I'm building a Pompeii Oven in Austin, Texas. See my progress at:
    Il Forno Fumoso

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    • #3
      Re: What happens if the dome turns out to be too high?

      I think I'd also try to angle in a little, but I thought mine was going to be higher than I intended (42" ID, 18 height was my plan and I ended up right there). The last few rings contributed very little to height.

      Repercussions of too high a dome? Probably better heat retention and perhaps faster heat up, but at the expense of diminished reflective heat from the dome so that the top of the pizza does not brown so easily. Even in my lowish dome oven the bottom usually cooks faster than the top. The solution is to raise the pizza up towards the top of the dome for about 10 seconds at the end of the bake to 'flash' cook the top.

      Enjoy the build because you will definitely enjoy the built oven regardless of how the build works out.

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      • #4
        Re: What happens if the dome turns out to be too high?

        Vincent,
        I wouldn't worry about it. Heat rises, and if you have the proper insulation it should be a moot point. You are building a wood fired oven - not a microwave I think you get a little wiggle room here.

        Great work by the way,

        Continued success,

        Les...
        Check out my pictures here:
        http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/les-build-4207.html

        If at first you don't succeed... Skydiving isn't for you.

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        • #5
          Re: What happens if the dome turns out to be too high?

          I agree with the don't worry advice. There are even some ovens with a higher dome and the producer treats it like an advantage -- a better cusion of hot air for more efficiency with fuel.

          One option, as Maver noted would be to do a small form for that last few chains to get it a little flatter while you close in the dome.

          It's looking great.
          James
          Pizza Ovens
          Outdoor Fireplaces

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