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mini pompeii oven questions - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community



New Forno Bravo Forum Feature

Forno Bravo Forum Community,

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.
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- The live thread will remain in the AMA forum to view after the session.

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.

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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mini pompeii oven questions

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  • mini pompeii oven questions

    OK, so I have read loads on the forum, but nothing really answers the basics questions I have.

    Firstly I an intending to build a mini pompeii oven (30") with an internal diameter of 25.5 in, I have already constructed the concrete hearth base, so here comes the questions.

    1: What thichness should the concrete hearth base be? I have currently poured a 2.5in base with 10mm reenforcing bars, and am thinking this should be considerably thicker?

    2: Should I place an additional insulation topping on the hearth and then place a firebrick floor on top of that, or would 65mm thick firebricks directly on teh concrete hearth be sufficient ?

    3: Is a fire brick floor what I should be cooking on, or should this again be covered with something?

    4: As my oven will be pretty small I am unsure of the oven dome height, I looked at some figures and tried to work out a proportional ratio
    I rekon for my 25.5in internal diameter a dome height of 13" from cooking floor to ceiling does this seem to shallow for the dome height.

    look forward to comments

  • #2
    Re: mini pompeii oven questions

    Hello Matthew,
    I am just starting my 28" oven.
    -Based on everything I have read the 2.5" base seems a bit thin, though input from more experienced builders may suggest otherwise.
    -Base pour (or hearth), then insulation, then firebrick, which is the cooking surface.
    -Cook directly on the firebrick.
    -If you utilize an indespensible tool for your build, the dome height will be exactly half of the diameter of your oven, so a 12.75" height for your 25.5" diameter oven.
    My two cents.
    Good luck,


    • #3
      Re: mini pompeii oven questions

      The quality of your mix and if it is cured properly are questions which need answered. If your mix was measured accurately and the exact amount of water added, then I think 2.5" could be ok if the stand supported in the middle as well. You must insulate between the slab and the floor.
      Cook directly on the floor bricks.
      Oven height is normally half the diameter, but this can be varied a bit without impairing function. You don't want the door on a small oven to be too low. Stick with the 63% rule.
      Kindled with zeal and fired with passion.


      • #4
        Re: mini pompeii oven questions

        thanks guys
        what is best to use as an insulant below the firebrick base
        would a primary layer of firebricks be suitable or is there a better cheaper alternative


        • #5
          Re: mini pompeii oven questions

          @ goose
          how far have you got with your oven
          would be great to see some pics as a comparison to my plans


          • #6
            Re: mini pompeii oven questions

            Not too far yet; just poured the slab yesterday. As soon as I make some headway I'll start a thread. As to the question of the best floor insulation, most seem to use either a hi-temp ceramic board or vermicrete (portland cement/vermiculite mix). I haven't decided which type I'll use yet...


            • #7
              Re: mini pompeii oven questions

              most seem to use either a hi-temp ceramic board or vermicrete (portland cement/vermiculite mix). I haven't decided which type I'll use yet...
              Both work well. I used the insulating board because I wanted to minimize the thickness of the layer for visual reasons (two inches of refractory insulation board is recommended.) Perlite/vermiculite concrete is cheaper, but bulkier - You need four inches. There is also some labor involved in mixing and placing the vermiculite concrete, where the board is pretty much cut-and-place.
              My geodesic oven project: part 1, part 2


              • #8
                Re: mini pompeii oven questions

                Heat is heat is heat.

                You need to follow the minimum dimensions for the floor thickness and the dome thickness/insulation layer. If you are worried about size, use the FB insulation for the floor and dome.
                Jen-Aire 5 burner propane grill/Char Broil Smoker

                Follow my build Chris' WFO