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Brainstorming around indoor pompeii oven for double use - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community


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Brainstorming around indoor pompeii oven for double use

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  • Brainstorming around indoor pompeii oven for double use

    Hi all,

    Long time since my last post. A few years ago, with the help of this forum and its plans, I finished up my outdoor 120 cm oven. Since me and my wife like cooking and entertaining, this oven has during the last couple of years seen very heave use with maybe 400 pizzas, bread, meat and chicken roasts. For me firing up the oven is quite a relaxing experience and cooking with it is much more rewarding then a regular electric oven even without counting the much superior flavour that you get.

    But my oven is outside and soon the winter is coming. Even though I sometimes fire up the oven in the winter, it is not used for the majority of the time. Which leads me to start thinking of an indoor pompeii oven. In the next year or so I may start a new home construction and want to incorporate an indoor oven as a central piece of a large kitchen.

    If the oven was indoor I could see my-self firing up the oven at least twice per week. If the oven was indoor and used that much for cooking then I was wondering if it can have dual use to also heat the house somehow in the winter time. I have underflow heating system and was thinking of incorporating on the outside of the dome (before the insulation and exterior cover) copper tubes that will circulate water that would be heated and either stored in a water tank or circulated in the underfloor heating system.

    The only problem I see is that the water tubes may need to be empty when you want to use the oven for high heat cooking since other wise they may take away to much heat from the dome. Maybe this can be solved by having a mechanism to empty the tubes when its needed.

    What do people think about this idea? Any other problems which I have not thought about? Could be interesting to come up with a new forno bravo design all together

    Any thoughts are welcomed.


  • #2
    Re: Brainstorming around indoor pompeii oven for double use

    [I would start my research by looking at what has been done with heating and cooking in the pre industrial revolution eras and cultures.] Strike this. We already know that "form follows function".

    [The idea of using the kitchen as a source of heat for the whole house is as old as houses and huts and caves before. In ancient BC times it’s common to have the livestock in the house to help with keeping the house warm.] Strike this too..

    My French father–in-law uses a combination stove and boiler for his home heating and hot water needs. I don’t know that this is the most efficient use of your WFO heat. I'd want to keep the heat up in the oven as long as possible to provide cooking options and I think pulling heat off to heat other things can be done more efficiently with other technologies. Wood fired furnaces must exist but because of the variables of wood as a source I don't think you'll be as efficent as natural gas, coal or electricity or even a pellet fueled furnace. Now, if you have a wood lot, and what you have is sustainable, then your costs may be lower than these other fuels. I'd think that a wood fired water heating furnace is going to be better at heating radiators and space than a WFO with water heating capabilities.

    A WFO is going to need to pull oxygen from somewhere and if it pulls from inside the house you’re going to have cold air entering the house. This is the problem with heating with fireplaces and it’s solved by use of an independent external air supply into the combustion chamber then the heat is siphoned off the chamber envelope and into the living space.

    If I built a WFO in the kitchen I’d pull fresh air from the outside to where it’s needed at the WFO, not inside the oven but close, and allow for a chimney and vent that can close when you’re not burning.

    Last edited by SCChris; 10-10-2010, 11:39 AM.


    • #3
      Re: Brainstorming around indoor pompeii oven for double use

      Hi Chris,

      Thanks for your thoughts. Good point about the fresh air intake, this has to be taken into consideration.

      In regards to efficiency I don't really care. The primary function should be the oven function. But during the 1-2 hour burn in time we are creating quite a lot of heat which is escaping out the chimney. I want to use some of that energy if possible without impeding on the ovens primary food function.

      In our house we have a regular fireplace. Most of the times in winter when we use it its not for warmth but more for the comfortable feeling it gives. Thus if I do an indoor pizza oven it will have a sliding glass door like our fireplace. This way we can see the fire and no smoke will escape and all will go out the chimney. So the way I see it, if there is a way of capturing some heat, then we will be burning the oven more then what is needed for food only. Also by doing this the oven will almost always be hot enough for cooking again.


      • #4
        Re: Brainstorming around indoor pompeii oven for double use

        You've got a good point, if you burn to heat, then you will have available heat to cook.