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Pompeii Oven Misprint? - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community



I'm Peter Reinhart! Ask Me Anything! Monday, February 15, 2016 7:00-8:00 pm EST

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.

Ask Me Anything New Forum Feature

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.
- Another thread will be posted for the live AMA. Registered users who are logged in during the live session can interact with the host by asking questions and receiving responses.
- The live thread will remain in the AMA forum to view after the session.

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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Pompeii Oven Misprint?

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  • Pompeii Oven Misprint?

    Hello All,

    I just broke ground on what I'm hoping will be a 42" Pompeii oven/bbq combo. I have a large amount of loose rock/soil to dig out before I get around to actual construction, but I figure starting now will make it so that when spring really arrives in the Pacific Northwest I'll have all my materials sourced, plans drawn and research completed. The idea is to build the oven with attatched bbq into the side of a rocky hill next to my house.

    One initial question I had was in the plans for the Pompeii oven there is a table in the beginning that states the foundation for a 42" Pompeii oven would be 73" x 86". However in the material list it describes materials for an 80" by 94" foundation. Before I go drawing up any plans I was wondering if perhaps I missed something in my read through that explains the difference? Thanks for any clarity as I continue my attempt at reading every single build and piece of advice on the forum before April.


  • #2
    Re: Pompeii Oven Misprint?

    Hi Sam,

    It's not a misprint; more like a variation in consistency due to the evolution of the plans (does that make sense??)

    Use the plans as a basic knowledge set to begin designing your oven. What is most important about the foundation is that it will hold your block stand.

    Different parts of the country (and world) have different sizes and shapes of building materials. Concrete blocks come in all sorts of sizes and vary from Home Depot to Lowe's, etc. Material variation combined with oven design means that everyone's block stand & foundation will be different.

    Before you can design your foundation or block stand you need to know the exterior dimensions of your finished oven: exterior diameter of dome + insulation + type of finish (stucco dome, house, etc).

    Then figure out your hearth size to fit the oven, then block stand size, then foundation. Funny that the foundation is the last thing you need to calculate

    In the planning stages, I took a trip to Home Depot with my tape measure and measured the dimensions of their concrete blocks. Then I was able to design my block stand, assuring it was the right size for the oven.
    Ken H. - Kentucky
    42" Pompeii

    Pompeii Oven Construction Video Updated!

    Oven Thread ... Enclosure Thread
    Cost Spreadsheet ... Picasa Web Album


    • #3
      Re: Pompeii Oven Misprint?

      Hey Sam-

      Welcome to the forum! Your build sounds very similar to the one I did last year. I built an oven and BBQ terraced into a hillside. I am in Seattle too. Happy to share any insights on sourcing and challenges with the approach.

      My build progress
      My WFO Journal on Facebook
      My dome spreadsheet calculator


      • #4
        Re: Pompeii Oven Misprint?

        That makes sense, thanks for the clarification! I went through the plans and designs and have a pretty good idea of what I am going to be putting together. I sourced a lot of the materials already and will definitely have to use your suggestion and take a tape measure and figure out the exact dimensions.

        I strated another post in "getting started" after we broke ground on our build last weekend. I will have to consolidate and post one continuous thread in construction. Deejayoh, I actually found the pictures of your build and it is extremely similar to what my brother-in-law and I had sketched out and discussed. I figure I will post the build thread together in this section of the forum. We have a lot of digging left to do, though we aren't putting up an entire retaining wall like your build! Though the amount of rock in the soil should lead to a pretty interesting excavation. Once I have the sketchup model properly drawn to size with the right dimensions I figure I can ask about good sources in Seattle. I know that there is a local company "Rolling Fire" that sources FB kits and material, any experience with them? I was thinking for firebrick and mortart and ceramic boards perhaps?

        Regardless thanks for the welcome and help, be back after I move some earth.



        • #5
          Re: Pompeii Oven Misprint?

          Hello Sam,
          I can't tell from your Sketch-up whether you are planning just one openning under your hearth for wood storage or if you have another openning on the backside. It is the general concensus here on this Forum that multiple access points for your wood are better. You may already know this, but I thought I would pass that along before you get too far. I wish I had researched more on this website before I finished my block stand because the reality of crawling on hands and knees to pull wood from the back of a 5' deep block chamber is not very appealing.

          Last edited by ATK406; 02-25-2013, 10:17 PM.