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Continued Design Ideas - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community


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Continued Design Ideas

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  • Continued Design Ideas

    Thanks for all who replied to my thread in Introductions. In that thread I mentioned I didn't want to make too many cuts because I will be using my neighbor's saw. But that has all changed. He is moving and I can't afford to rent or buy one so I don't want to make any cuts. So that rules out any kind of dome.

    Here's what I'm thinking of building. It requires only one cut and I can probably make it with my table saw and an old blade.

    One thing I don't like about this is the size of the opening. I recall someone mentioning in a thread that you can cut fire bricks without using water. If this is true and I can buy a suitable blade for my table saw I might consider this design instead. Any thoughts about the advantages of one over the other?

  • #2
    Re: Continued Design Ideas

    End walls are better off being inside the arch.
    You can soak the brick in water first.
    You can use an angle grinder fitted with a diamond blade.
    Kindled with zeal and fired with passion.


    • #3
      Re: Continued Design Ideas

      Where's the vent? Option 2 looks like it would be better for oven management. There may be a reason that the AS ovens are not built this way.
      Check out my pictures here:

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


      • #4
        Re: Continued Design Ideas

        Originally posted by Les View Post
        There may be a reason that the AS ovens are not built this way.
        The lateral thrust from the dome will push the entry over.
        The English language was invented by people who couldnt spell.

        My Build.



        • #5
          Re: Continued Design Ideas

          A poster ona previous thread reported he built an oven that looked like Design #2. He warned that because the oven was wider than it was deep it did not draw worth a damn and was worthless. Maybe this is why AS ovens have the footprint they do.


          • #6
            Re: Continued Design Ideas

            Which one are you thinking of building? If you don't want to cut bricks, I can't understand why you'd look at the second one.

            Have you considered that you can 'break' the bricks? A well placed blow with a roofing type hammer.. or they do have brick vises.
            My oven (for now):


            • #7
              Re: Continued Design Ideas

              Spring for a saw....they don't cost that much....


              • #8
                Re: Continued Design Ideas

                Number one, and you still need to either break or cut halves as you want the brick of the arch to be running bond, not stack bond.

                As for the ends being either inside or outside, the best is 1/2 in and 1/2 out, that is, notched. This provides the best seal and most support.

                You can cut dry and use your table saw, but you will be producing a plume of mildly carcinogenic dust and killing your saw. Use a fan to blow it away from you while you cut.


                • #9
                  Re: Continued Design Ideas

                  You could always buy a used saw, then sell it on Craigslist after getting most, if not all of your money back.
                  My oven (for now):


                  • #10
                    Re: Continued Design Ideas

                    Once again everyone has given me great advice. Thanks.

                    It seems the consensus is that I need to get a saw. OK. I'll do it. It's only money after all and what's that compared to delicious bread and pizza hot off the hearth?

                    So if I get a saw what's stopping me from building the dome oven vs. the vault (except that I have no masonry skills whatsoever)? Seems most people on this site are passionate about the dome but still some have built the vault.

                    So here's the million dollar question: Is the dome's performance worth the (apparent) extra effort it takes to built it (just looking at the construction photos makes me tired) or will the vault and it's simpler construction perform just as well? Again, it's just my wife and I baking the occasional loaf or flipping an occasional pizza. The oven is meant mostly as a failsafe against a long term power outage.

                    Thank for sharing your thoughts.


                    PS, these are the bricks I have. 190 of the small ones (alumina 60%), 30 of the larger ones and 2 half arches (alumina 45%).

                    Last edited by clofgreen; 07-28-2011, 07:42 AM.


                    • #11
                      Re: Continued Design Ideas

                      Maybe you would be better off buying a kit from Forno Bravo.


                      • #12
                        Re: Continued Design Ideas

                        The cheapest FB kit is $1,200. I have $300. I'm getting most of the materials for free or extremely cheap from construction sites or local online postings. My fire bricks cost $85. I picked up 500 brick pavers yesterday for $65. Getting free metal studs from a construction site. Got a bunch of 4 and 6 inch pressure treated wood free from a neighbor ripping out a deck. Is there a pattern here? This is the design I'm thinking of. The finish is stucco over leftover conc. board from a tile job a friend did. Rocks are from my yard. I've yet to find free corrugated tin roof but am still looking.


                        • #13
                          Re: Continued Design Ideas

                          Looks good. It sounds like your committed to building it yourself.


                          • #14
                            Re: Continued Design Ideas

                            Yes, I am committed to build it myself. Can't see paying somebody else to have all the fun.

                            But to keep this thead from taking a turn I don't want, I encourage everyone to go back to page 1 and read the last post. I'm really torn about the dome vs. vault debate I've read so much about. I'd love to build the dome but am not sure I can pull it off, especially with the bricks I have. But if it really is so much superior to the vault I'll bite the bullet and go for it.

                            Those who have built one or the other, please feel free to post your advice (after all, I love getting stuff for free ).


                            • #15
                              Re: Continued Design Ideas

                              I did much the same as you, started with a $0 budjet. Our firebrick were wedge shaped so we went with a barrel vault. In the cold rain a few months ago it took 2 1/2 hours or less to get to pizza temps. I wanted the larger mass for retained heat, with mounds of insulation. After cooking we put the door on and we loose about 100 degrees per day, great for extended cooking.

                              Decide what you want your oven to do and go from there. I have had good luck and am pleased with our design.