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air gaps in mortar - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community



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air gaps in mortar

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  • air gaps in mortar

    I'm at the stage of building the dome and would like to know how air pockets in mortar will affect the oven.
    I understand air expands when heated but is it an issue.
    I did half of the first chain just mortaring the bricks to the base leaving the wedged part for later only to realise filling in the wedge part (sides) is harder than I thought.
    Can I make the mortar runnier than normal so it finds it's way into the smaller gaps easier. I'm using poor mans mortar
    3 parts sand
    1 part cement
    1 part fire clay
    1 part lime.

    I hope that's the right mix.

    Thanks.. Oscar

  • #2
    Re: air gaps in mortar

    I would try and avoid it. Are you using a grout bag? It requires the mix to be on the thin side but you can squirt it into some pretty small areas. Outside of that, use a pointing tool, but this requires a LOT of time.
    Check out my pictures here:

    If at first you don't succeed... Skydiving isn't for you.


    • #3
      Re: air gaps in mortar

      Thanks I look into a grout bag, I was thinking about pinching my wifes icing bag which sounds pretty much along the same lines as a grout bag.

      Edit- Just came back from Bunnings (large hardware store in OZ) and they never heard of them so I popped over to the supermarket and got an icing bag which should be a good substitute.
      Thanks for the tip Les.

      Last edited by OscarA; 02-15-2011, 07:53 PM.


      • #4
        Re: air gaps in mortar

        A ziplock bag with the corner cut off will work, too. THe freezer kind are sturdier.


        • #5
          Re: air gaps in mortar

          The icing bag should work. I recall an earlier builder using plastic baggies. Any masonry supply should have a grout bag but you are on the other side of the planet - things spin differently.

          Edit... Talk about timing. As soon as I posted I saw that Slatgirl had the same suggestion about the plastic bag.
          Last edited by Les; 02-15-2011, 09:14 PM.
          Check out my pictures here:

          If at first you don't succeed... Skydiving isn't for you.


          • #6
            Re: air gaps in mortar

            Thanks Splatgirl and Les, I'll keep the freezer bag/zip bag idea in the memory bank just in case the icing bag breaks or doesn't work as well as I hope.


            • #7
              Re: air gaps in mortar

              How about inserting a straw, motar then remove. That should allow for the air to escape.


              • #8
                Re: air gaps in mortar

                i got a half a dozen heavy plastic throw away grout bags from the brickyard. i've got to belive that the ziplock would work just as well. buy a hard plastic float to work the mortar in after you fill the gaps...