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2 Brick Questions - 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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2 Brick Questions

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  • 2 Brick Questions


    My very first post. I was thinking about buying a pre fab oven kit and then found this site!!! I'll still be making some purchases from the FB to aid in the construction.

    The boss says I'm not allowed to start until next year but she didn't say I couldn't get everthing ready.

    Just a few initial questions:
    1) found a local supplier of fire brick - yellow - "correct" size but he isn't sure if it's low/med/high duty. He charges $1.15 each. Don't want to build with the wrong stuff - is this okay?

    2) Regarding the soldier course :
    a) It sits on the brick base and not the isol board or concrete/vermiculite base?
    b) It doesn't look like you mortar the soldier course to the brick base on the bottom - does it just "free float?"

    Cincinnati, Ohio

  • #2
    Re: 2 Brick Questions

    The yellow firebricks you found are probably the correct ones - they should be pretty heavy - about 9#. If they are light then they are insulating firebricks which you do not want.

    My soldier course sits on top of the insulation. Do the current plans suggest placing the soldier course around the insulation? You want a layer of insulation between the walls of the oven (soldiers) and the concrete hearth to avoid heat loss into the large concrete heat sink that is the hearth.

    And yes, the soldiers can be free floating (although they are not free once they have been mortared in to their neighbor soldiers and weighed down by the massive dome).


    • #3
      Re: 2 Brick Questions

      Hey Dick,
      Welcome aboard.
      You have two choices on where you put your first course of dome bricks -- both of which definitely sit on the insulating layer. You can either build the dome directly on top of the cooking floor, or you can cut your cooking floor into a round shape, and set the dome on the insulation layer.

      I think it is easier to build the dome on the floor, but the oven will be a little more efficient if you build the dome around the floor. The better precast ovens (all of ours) are designed with the dome around the floor.

      Maver has it right on your bricks. As long as they are heavy (not insulating bricks) they will be fine.

      If the project ever looks daunting, you can always buy an FB precast oven.

      Pizza Ovens
      Outdoor Fireplaces


      • #4
        Re: 2 Brick Questions

        I built my dome on the floor. One consideration is if you are going to make an igloo enclosure, you may want a smooth circle at the bottom. It is not a necessity: you can raise the floor level up above the ragged edge of the floor. Remember: the first pompeii plans presumed that people would be cutting their bricks with a brick set: it was meant to be a minimal-cut operation.
        My geodesic oven project: part 1, part 2


        • #5
          Re: 2 Brick Questions

          That's a good point. You can go as elaborate or simple as you want -- with more, or less cuts, and more or less accurate cuts. You get to pick your own level.
          Pizza Ovens
          Outdoor Fireplaces


          • #6
            Re: 2 Brick Questions


            I thought it looked like the soldier course "rested" on the bricks but wanted to check. I'm sure I'll go with that approach. Don't worry James I'll be making some purchases from the FB store. The problem with ordering the pre cast is the shipping (in addition to the base cost). These ovens don't seem too prevalent in the mid-west. Based on some other posts I've read it doesn't look like I need to do anything "special" for construction and could use it in the winter if I follow the advice I've read.