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Oven "Kit" vs "Custom build" from scratch - 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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Oven "Kit" vs "Custom build" from scratch

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  • Oven "Kit" vs "Custom build" from scratch

    I am in the design phase of a new home and plan to include a pizza oven on the outside wall of a screened porch with front of oven inside and the rest outside.

    What are the pros and cons of a "kit" such as FB Premio or Casa vs a "built from scratch" oven. We will use it for pizza and bread primarily, for ourselves (two of us) and entertaining. We will hire someone to do all of the work.

    Any and all general advice is also welcome as I am a pure newbie and novice.

  • #2
    Re: Oven "Kit" vs "Custom build" from scratch

    Hi Steve,

    If you are going to hire someone, you probably will want the Premio or Casa kit. Building a dome from scratch is a labor of love and takes a lot of time to do it right.

    The kits are more expensive than 200 firebricks and mortar, but take hours to assemble versus weeks to build a brick dome. As you know, skilled labor is expensive. The kits are also very easy to put together (less chance of mistakes by the contractor).

    The foundation, stand, insulation and final finish are virtually identical for either route you take.

    Regardless of which way you go, be sure to download Forno Bravo's E-Book for building the Pompeii Oven (scratch built) and the instructions for installing a kit.

    Read the information carefully to familiarize yourself with the process before hiring your contractor. You will need to watch the builders like a hawk to make sure it's done correctly. We've heard ugly stories about contractors and hired help doing things "their" way (wrong insulation, NO insulation, etc, etc).

    Read up as much as you can here on the forum. We'll be happy to direct you to the info you need and answer any questions you have.
    Ken H. - Kentucky
    42" Pompeii

    Pompeii Oven Construction Video Updated!

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

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    • #3
      Re: Oven "Kit" vs "Custom build" from scratch

      Hi Steve,

      Ken is "spot on" regarding your best options.

      The kit will confirm the oven chamber is going to function the best possible, and is less expensive than hiring that phase of the construction to be build on site.

      And,

      The single most important 'detail' in oven performance is insulation. It has been common for people to avoid, or ignore, or give this detail less attention than it is due...

      By reading the books Ken has referred and spending some time reading this forum, you will gain the education necessary to confirm this detail is addressed correctly by your contractor... and then your oven will work well....

      JED

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