web analytics
Gaps, bumps, uneven dome top....how bad can it be? - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community

Announcement

Collapse

Photo Galleries are back! Instructions below.

Dear forum users,
Thank you for your patience with the Photo galleries. We've got your galleries online!
We have finished writing a custom script to migrate the PhotoPlog to vBulletin5’s albums.

Unfortunately V-Bulletin killed the "Photoplogs" in their software upgrade which was unforeseen and we're the first development group to have written a script for getting the galleries back... that said, it took some time to reverse engineer the code and get the albums to move over seamlessly!

Forum users will be able to access their “PhotoPlog” images through their user profile page by clicking on the “Media” tab.
They will also be able to browse other albums by going to the albums page. (On the forum site, there is a link in the black bar beside “Forums” to the albums.)

In order for users to create an album please follow the steps below.
1) Go to user profile page and click “Media”
2) Click Add Photos
3) Enter Photo Gallery Title in the first field
4) Click Upload or Select from Photo Album to add photos
5) Click Post
6) Once posted, the album will be created as a “Topic” on the albums page for the public to see. The topic title will be the “Photo Gallery Title” they created before uploading their photos.


To create this migration path we used vBulletin5’s default album structure. Unfortunately, it won’t work like the “PhotoPlog” but is an album/gallery component on the forum now.
See more
See less

Gaps, bumps, uneven dome top....how bad can it be?

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Gaps, bumps, uneven dome top....how bad can it be?

    Well I made it, finished the dome...well, it is done, but I'm very unhappy with the results. I rushed it, end of the day, excited to get it over...just didn't give it the attention I should have in my enthusiasm to say the dome was complete... now I want to chip it out and do it over. My husband is making me post this horrible pictures to have you talk me out of it.

    SO my dome got pretty flat at the end, but I made it up to row 10 before I needed any form help. so I just cut a 20" circle of insulation board and pressed it against the top, using wedges to give me angles in the dome (I know...not the best idea - strike one for me - lazy!)

    I thought I was using plenty of mortar - homebrew 3:1:1:1 - but I have giant holes underneath. AUGH. I sanded off my fingertips (through the gloves) pressing the mortar into the holes from below, and still these massive gaps...



    Here is what it looked like from the outside, but truthfully I knew when I finally gave up for the night that those gaps were probably too big.


    I don't care about the bumps, but the giant gaps have me concerned. That middle star section is tapered narrower, so there is probably a little locking going on there...but I seriously doubt this is considered good enough. I want this thing to last forever, I don't want it falling in later and have to fix it from inside. So with that in mind - should I just knock it out now and redo that last bit or is that mortar strong enough to hold those for the life of the oven?

    If you do try to convince me to leave it and move forward with the vent, should I at least fill in those deep holes with more mortar? Looking at them, there are plenty of pockets that I think the mortar would fill and be wedged up in there without falling out on to the pizza, at least in the biggest spots.

    I'm honestly ashamed to have to show anyone these pictures... especially you all, but I sure appreciate your help and your experience so very much! Thanks ~ Xene
    My oven album is here

    sigpic

  • #2
    Re: Gaps, bumps, uneven dome top....how bad can it be?

    Xene -
    It'll work just fine. I wouldn't worry about it. You just need the mortar to provide an air seal. The gaps are a natural consequence of using un-tapered bricks, and consensus seems to be that they are no big deal.

    If you are really concerned about the look of it, you could fill those gaps with mortar from the inside. I've done that inside my oven, and I don't think it's going to come out. My trick is using mortar that is a little dry - usually stuff that squeezes out between the bricks. Try mixing up some mortar and buttering it onto a spare fire brick - then scrape it off with your finger or a trowel to push into the cracks. The brick should pull out enough water to make the mortar the right consistency to stick in those gaps.

    You have really cruised through your oven build and you should feel good about where you are. It took me 3 1/2 months to get as far as you have in a couple weeks!
    My build progress
    My WFO Journal on Facebook
    My dome spreadsheet calculator

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Gaps, bumps, uneven dome top....how bad can it be?

      I hope Tscarborough chimes in here, I'd put a lot of confidence in his recommendations. If he doesn't, send him a personal message.

      With regard to filling those voids after the fact, unless Tscarborough has a fail safe way to do it, I'm not sure the patches will stay. I say that because mine are falling out each time I heat the oven, and its been almost a year! Oven works fine, but it isn't as pretty as I dreamed of. It hurts less each time I use it. Sleep on it a few nights before you decide ot knock things loose, you may be able to live with it. HTH
      Lee B.
      DFW area, Texas, USA

      If you are thinking about building a brick oven, my advice is Here.
      Our One Meter Pompeii Oven album is here.
      An album showing our Thermal Breaks is Here.

      I try to learn from my mistakes, and from yours when you give me a heads up.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Gaps, bumps, uneven dome top....how bad can it be?

        Originally posted by Lburou View Post
        With regard to filling those voids after the fact, unless Tscarborough has a fail safe way to do it, I'm not sure the patches will stay. I say that because mine are falling out each time I heat the oven, and its been almost a year!

        Uh oh... sounds like I might have some gritty pizza's in my future. I am hoping that filling the voids quickly after setting the brick will make a difference in the mortar bonding- while the mortar is still wet.

        I did read in another thread that the builders in Italy fill the gaps with Refractory cement. I think it was Tscarborough who said on the same thread that the gaps aren't a big deal
        Last edited by deejayoh; 06-11-2012, 03:29 PM.
        My build progress
        My WFO Journal on Facebook
        My dome spreadsheet calculator

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Gaps, bumps, uneven dome top....how bad can it be?

          They (mortar repairs) are pretty much going to fall out, no matter what you do, but it doesn't affect the performance. I would probably knock it out just because it would bug me every time I used the oven, but it is up to your preference. If you do knock it out, be sure and knock it UP from inside.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Gaps, bumps, uneven dome top....how bad can it be?

            Thanks fellas! Those holes are pretty big, I'm not talking a crack here, those are bigger than quarters, I don't think you can tell from the picture. They are really rough and odd shaped (eek, I can sure make my work sound good can't I?) I'm feeling pretty confident that there is enough space and nonuniform surface that mortar would get trapped in those biggest holes and get locked in, just because there would be a significant mass. Some are half the brick deep... Digging my quality-built hole deeper...

            I think I could live with the inside as long as I know it won't fall in later in life when I'm too old to fix it. If it is structurally sound this way, I think I'd be happy to give those holes the best fix I can, and hope for the best. If it is not, well that is an entirely different story. I'm going to put so much attention on the finish of this thing that the inside dome will never draw anyone's attention!

            Has anyone played with the mortar mix? I've read about lime lately and how it provides more flexibility - in that it allows for more expansion/contraction, and is more breathable, if I increase the sand and lime would that be of any benefit? What advantage is the Portland providing in the mix? Just some ideas I've been tossing about, thought you all might have suggestions?

            Deejayoh - Thanks for kudos on burning through this project, we've had such a dry spring that I've been able to work on it every day - it seems like it went really fast - even to me! Even if I knock it out (or up) it still seems like decent progress in a short period of time.
            My oven album is here

            sigpic

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Gaps, bumps, uneven dome top....how bad can it be?

              Xene,

              I also would not patch it. The lime make the product more "plastic" but it's not a magic bullet to prevent cracks. If the mortar cracks there is always a chance of it falling in chunks or bits and pieces. If it were me, I would remove it, take step back and take your time rebuilding it. The summer is new, whats a couple of more weeks when you get years of good sleep?
              Check out my pictures here:
              http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/les-build-4207.html

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

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Gaps, bumps, uneven dome top....how bad can it be?

                Originally posted by deejayoh View Post
                I did read in another thread that the builders in Italy fill the gaps with Refractory cement. I think it was Tscarborough who said on the same thread that the gaps aren't a big deal
                I just wanted to clarify this point, since I was the one who posted it originally. It is not a solution for this situation, it is instead an alternative method to building the dome that does not require complex cuts.

                I made a simple graphic to explain how it works a bit better. Italian builders work on a sand form, and that is critical to this method. The bricks are first laid using the sand form with the mortar joints shown in blue. Once the dome is completed in this manor all the triangular gaps are filled with a castable refractory which is shown in green. The italian builders use a very wet mix and pout it over the dome to fill the holes, but I could not find a refractory product here in the US made for that wet of an application so I simply used a standard fairly dry mix and rodded it into each hole to compact it and eliminate gaps and air pockets.
                Attached Files

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Gaps, bumps, uneven dome top....how bad can it be?

                  Originally posted by Les View Post
                  whats a couple of more weeks when you get years of good sleep?
                  Couple more weeks? I can rebuild that in a few days! And enough of you seem to be confirming my gut feeling that I think that is what I'll be starting in the morning. Yucky!
                  My oven album is here

                  sigpic

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Gaps, bumps, uneven dome top....how bad can it be?

                    If the gaps are pretty big and not triangulated upward, they may well hold the mortar. It is worth a try if the appearance doesn't bother you (and there is no reason it should, it is a cooking appliance after all).

                    Shuboyje, I have a product that would work for that, the main difference is that it contains a fair amount of perlite. It is sticky and able to be used wet. The Italians are using a volcanic pozzolan mix design, and I have been looking at making a mix with some glassine pozzolans.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Gaps, bumps, uneven dome top....how bad can it be?

                      Xene,
                      If you do decide to fill the gaps, you will have to keep one thing in mind. That is you will have to fill them from the back of the crevice forward. Or downward in this case. From veiwing the pics I believe that when you were mortaring in the last few rows that you were trying to push the mortar into the joints with a trial or I believe you said with your fingers. Mortar can't be pushed 2 inches into a joint with a tool wider than the joint. It will just bridge over trapping the air or spaces that you see. It has to be "pointed" in. By that I mean that you will have to use tools that are narrower than the joint that you are "tuck pointing". In your case you have many different size joints to fill. So you will have to have several different sizes of tools available. To complicate things you will be pointing vertical. That means that some mortar might just fall in your face. Have at least safety glasses and a bandana over you mouth and nose.

                      You can use a "mortar bag" to apply the mortar. The bag will keep the mortar from drying as fast but you will still need a tool to point the mortar with. I have three sizes of tuck pointers (1/4" and 3/8" and 1/2"). I dont think that going out and buying masonry tools would be cost efficient for the small amount of work that you need to do though. You can fab a few tools from common every day things, a butter knife, wood rippings, even the flat edge of an unsharpened pencil can be used to point the mortar straight up into the back of a tight joint.

                      And yes, I do agree with Tscarborough. It would bug me too. But if your pointing is done right it should last many years. At least as long as if it had been filled at the time of placement.

                      Prior to pointing, clean the joints as good as possible. I have an air compressor, but no more than you will have to do, one can of compressed air like they use for computers would do just fine. Work in small sections. Use a small paint brush and prewet the joints you are pointing. Fill from the back (top) in at least three passes. Apply the mortar about one third of the depth of the joint. Use a tool comparible for that joint to pack or smooth to the back. Work fast on one small section, but don't get in a hurry on the whole project.
                      If you decide to remove the last few rows, what we call buttering the brick is by far the best route to go. But, for that inevitabe joint or joints that need to be pointed, keep this technique in mind.
                      I hope this helps.l
                      I don't care what folks say behind my back........They are either braggin' or.......lyin'

                      joe watson

                      My Build
                      My Picasa Web Album

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Gaps, bumps, uneven dome top....how bad can it be?

                        That needs to be bagged, overhead tucking sucks.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Gaps, bumps, uneven dome top....how bad can it be?

                          Originally posted by Xene View Post
                          Couple more weeks? I can rebuild that in a few days!
                          I'm sorry I forgot your awesomeness I still suggest you take your time. If I could go back, I would re-do quite a few things. In regard to people looking inside at your work - trust me , they will. Even if the fires of hell are going on, they will want to look inside.
                          Check out my pictures here:
                          http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/les-build-4207.html

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

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Gaps, bumps, uneven dome top....how bad can it be?

                            Originally posted by Tscarborough View Post
                            That needs to be bagged, overhead tucking sucks.
                            Either I left something out or you misread the post.

                            IMO it takes a combination of the two.
                            I don't care what folks say behind my back........They are either braggin' or.......lyin'

                            joe watson

                            My Build
                            My Picasa Web Album

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Gaps, bumps, uneven dome top....how bad can it be?

                              The overhead tucking sucks part comes out very clear in the post as I read it!

                              Gulf - fabulous instructions, thank you! Now I'm really torn, as I know I can do a much better job - and I also know that a few of those joints won't take mortar and those little ones will probably bother me once I fix those gapping holes. And we do have a few friends who will be sure to tsk, tsk me over those gaps when they see it, no matter how awesome the outside turns out -oh the shame!

                              I took my rubber mallot to it tonight and it won't budge...another strike against tearing it apart, but I think I'm going to get a chisel tomorrow and see if I can dislodge parts of it - do a partial pintuck and partial rebuild. I'm still torn. Gulf's instructions give me hope I can salvage it the way it is - ugh.

                              Was the idea of adding more lime and more sand a good one if I try the brick repointing method? Hope there are a few brick pointing videos on YouTube to check out.

                              Good grief!
                              Last edited by Xene; 06-11-2012, 08:26 PM. Reason: spellcheck errors on phone
                              My oven album is here

                              sigpic

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X