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Cleaning Mortar from Dome Question - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community

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Cleaning Mortar from Dome Question

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  • Cleaning Mortar from Dome Question

    I am currently up to the fourth course of my Pompeii build, and sadly, I have not been very neat with the mortar. I have lots of excess mortar on the faces of the interior bricks. I would like to clean it up a bit before proceeding with the build.

    What is the best way to clean up the mess? I think I read somewhere that Muratic or Hydrochloric acid can be used. I have done some research, and found a product called 'Detergent 600" which I may end up using.

    My other question is If I use one of these chemical type products, how do I clean it up properly, to insure no chemicals are left on or in the bricks since they are porous. I was thinking of puting a plastic sheet down on top of the hearth bricks, and just spraying the interior dome walls with the water hose, but then I worried that the chemicals would then pour out onto the lawn. Ughh, what to do?
    "Pizza, the world's most perfect food."

  • #2
    Re: Cleaning Mortar from Dome Question

    Scrape off the buildup, with a putty knife, and scrub what's left using water, first with a wire brush, then with a scrub brush. Call it a day.

    Save the toxic chemicals for the decorative stonework on the exterior.

    That's my advice.
    My geodesic oven project: part 1, part 2

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    • #3
      Re: Cleaning Mortar from Dome Question

      I used a wet towel to clean off mortar while the mortar was still wet.

      Try to avoid letting mortar dry on the inside.

      I have to agree with dmun on cleaning up what you done so far.
      My thread:
      http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/d...ress-2476.html
      My costs:
      http://spreadsheets.google.com/pub?k...Xr0fvgxuh4s7Hw
      My pics:
      http://picasaweb.google.com/dawatsonator

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      • #4
        Re: Cleaning Mortar from Dome Question

        Thanks for the advice guys. I'll try the wire brush method and skip the chemicals. I think if it does not all come off, I can live with it. I don't think too many people will stick their heads into my oven anyway (You FB guys might,) but not anyone else.
        "Pizza, the world's most perfect food."

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        • #5
          Re: Cleaning Mortar from Dome Question

          Originally posted by PizzaJNKY View Post
          Thanks for the advice guys. I'll try the wire brush method and skip the chemicals. I think if it does not all come off, I can live with it. I don't think too many people will stick their heads into my oven anyway (You FB guys might,) but not anyone else.
          I think you are correct.


          --mr.jim
          --mr.jim
          ---------------------------------------------------------------
          The real art of conversation is not only to say the correct thing at the right time, but also to leave
          unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment.
          ---------------------------------------------------------------

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          • #6
            Re: Cleaning Mortar from Dome Question

            Fire bricks can vary quite considerably in density and porosity,
            If you have refactory cement which dries very hard, or the cheaper fireclay/lime/portland cement, (which also dries hard over a few days), then you may use a softer wire brush on a small angle grinder. Care must be taken to gently ease the deposit off raster that have it gouge out the brick surface.
            If you want to return the surface to the best possible under the circumstances, an orbital or random orbital sander can also be used but to lay safe use a fine grit paper (or better cloth abrasive).
            These methods will however change the surface appearence but will remove that stubborn cement.

            Neill
            Prevention is better than cure, - do it right the first time!

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


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

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            • #7
              Re: Cleaning Mortar from Dome Question

              Good advice...

              I bought some acid at Lowes - pretty scary stuff. I only need a little bit. Then what do I do with the rest... I'm thinking I just return it and live with a little haze on my bricks...

              Dick

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              • #8
                Re: Cleaning Mortar from Dome Question

                I guess I am just used to working with acids in the lab. They don't bother me at all. I use many more dangerous chemicals on a daily basis, some of the at home. Many of the common household products you have under your sinks can be classed as dangerous chemicals. The classic one is Liquid plumber. This is a very concentrated base ( the opposite of acid) and can be very dangerous.
                As far as disposal of you acid I would recommend two methods.

                1. Many cities have a hazardous waste exchange or disposal site by the land fill or dump.

                2. Muratic acid or hydrochloric acid is not really a problem if it is dilute. You stomach is full of fairly concentrated hydrochloric acid. Fill a 5 gallon pail with 4 gallons on water. Pour your left over acid into it. Take the bucket out back and dump it on the ground. Let the hose run water over it for 10 minutes. The 2 elements in hydrochloric acid (HCl) are hydrogen and chlorine. Disassociating them in water dilutes them to harmless levels. The chlorine will bond with just about any metal ( like common salt (NaCl)) and is harmless in the soil.

                BAC
                Sharpei Diem.....Seize the wrinkle dog

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                • #9
                  Re: Cleaning Mortar from Dome Question

                  Originally posted by thebadger View Post
                  I bought some acid at Lowes - pretty scary stuff. I only need a little bit. Then what do I do with the rest...
                  My leftover muriatic acid can be used to lower the pH level of our pool
                  Ken H. - Kentucky
                  42" Pompeii

                  Pompeii Oven Construction Video Updated!

                  Oven Thread ... Enclosure Thread
                  Cost Spreadsheet ... Picasa Web Album

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                  • #10
                    Re: Cleaning Mortar from Dome Question

                    Ken,
                    Post a pic of that pool! I love swimming pools! Someday I'm going to rework ours. I just turn on the heat today.
                    GJBingham
                    -----------------------------------
                    Everyone makes mistakes. The trick is to make mistakes when nobody is looking.

                    -

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                    • #11
                      Re: Cleaning Mortar from Dome Question

                      Hey George,
                      I just had a great idea. For your next project you should make a volcano shaped pompei oven in the middle of your pool That would make it easy to have a pizza and pool party for all the rugrats and thier friends.



                      Bruce
                      Sharpei Diem.....Seize the wrinkle dog

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Cleaning Mortar from Dome Question

                        Done!

                        Bruce. You building yet? What's the holdup?? Is your drainfield issue solved?
                        GJBingham
                        -----------------------------------
                        Everyone makes mistakes. The trick is to make mistakes when nobody is looking.

                        -

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Cleaning Mortar from Dome Question

                          About 25 years ago I considered building a swimming pool - "how hard could it be?" Anyway I went ahead and built one. Quite a success, and now all those years later, "A pizza oven? How hard could it be to build one?"
                          Now I know! It's a bit over half way done, and like the pool it looks fairly rough (I am no mason) but also like the pool it will work well I am sure!
                          And to paraphrase gjbignham, everyone makes mistakes. The trick is to make mistakes where nobody can see them even when they look....

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