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Oven clay reuse help - 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 clay reuse help

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  • Oven clay reuse help

    My previous oven survived 2 years before it really needed a revamp. The clay is London clay and has baked to a red brick colour. It's very crumbly and when I add water seems to go back to a sticky though lumpy clay. Can I reuse this or is it best to dig a new load?

  • #2
    Re: Oven clay reuse help

    Looking at the clay, I don't think it has small enough particulates make a true clay (even though it's sticky) I'm now thinking of digging more up and using the old fired clay to back fill the hole.

    The clay I do have:



    seems to be about 1:3.5/4 - so I'll probably need to add two buckets of sand for every one of clay? Sound reasonable? Using B&Q Sharp Sand.

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    • #3
      Re: Oven clay reuse help

      Now (currently) baking some clay/sand mix bricks in my domestic oven! I've discovered that my clay is 1 part sand to 2 parts clay, therefore I need an additional 50% by volume of sand to make 1:2 clay to sand ratio! Details of my experiential is on Further clay experiments Waark!com allotment and green living blog

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      • #4
        Re: Oven clay reuse help

        It is possible that the surface of the clay that was closest to the fire, particularly at the top of the dome may have got hot enough for some of it to be sintered ie having reached 573C in which case it will be difficult to return it to a powdered state. You'll need to do a lot of pounding.It may be less work to start again
        Kindled with zeal and fired with passion.

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        • #5
          Re: Oven clay reuse help

          Thanks David, I'm fairly sure I got to the 700'C+ range as I could cook a pizza in about 30 seconds. The entirety of the dome colour/material was consistent, so I've definitely got the thermal mass up to temperature! I was wondering if I could reuse this material somewhere rather than putting it back in the ground!

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          • #6
            Re: Oven clay reuse help

            Yes you could, but like I said, if it has been sintered it won't return to mud, it has been made permanent and will require crushing. You could try wetting the stuff down and sieve and discard the sintered bits instead of crushing them.
            Kindled with zeal and fired with passion.

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