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Oven floor and opening? - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community


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Oven floor and opening?

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  • Oven floor and opening?

    Hey everyone, I have a few questions, I finished my oven but in the process I forgot a very important step concerning my oven floor. I forgot to use insulation under the oven floor, I used two layers of fire bricks and the oven is already complete with dome so itís impossible for me to rip apart again. Does anyone have any ideas what I can do to or build to rectify this large error? Iím desperate, I know how important the insulation is and I feel really stupid to have forgotten it. Also, I think my doorway is to large which in turn is letting out smoke and not efficient for retaining heat. The door I think I can fix quite easily but the floor I need advice from the experts. Please any advice is better than no advice.

  • #2
    Re: Oven floor and opening?

    Did you build the dome on top of the floor?
    Check out my pictures here:

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


    • #3
      Re: Oven floor and opening?

      Thanks for responding les, Yes I do. What does that mean?


      • #4
        Re: Oven floor and opening?

        Many of us have built the dome around the floor. If that were your case, you could have lifted the floor up and added insulation. Since you have 2 layers of brick - maybe you can lift what bricks you can and add the insulation. Although its not ideal, it would be better than what you have.
        Check out my pictures here:

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


        • #5
          Re: Oven floor and opening?

          If I lifted up those brick that means I would have to rip them apart because there already sealed with refractory concrete. Is that possible or would tearing them apart compromise the strucural integerty of the dome that sits on top, possibily causing a shift?


          • #6
            Re: Oven floor and opening?

            Wow. Mortared in double level brick floor. Not good. You say your door opening is high, could you spare four inches for a two inch layer of cal-sil board, and another layer of brick? I know it's hard to work inside the oven, even to clean up mortar joints, so this might be easier than trying to cut out all that mortared brick with an angle grinder and a cold chisel. You could place the new materials without mortars if the floor is fairly level. There are a lot of high-class ovens with a low dome height.
            My geodesic oven project: part 1, part 2


            • #7
              Re: Oven floor and opening?

              Can I seal the new floor with fireclay?


              • #8
                Re: Oven floor and opening?

                And if I can use fire clay does anyone have a recipe for it? or a site that does because here in the rep Dom, Santiago there is none i checked all over. I can only find refractory morter which is so expensive, you would never believe. I have a place where I can find firebricks but I don't know much about clay, can anyone fill me in, I really need to fix this large mistake. thanks guys


                • #9
                  Re: Oven floor and opening?

                  Hi! Just a couple of thoughts:
                  One being that my first suggestion would be to lay a new floor over the old, inserting the insulation between the two -- thereby fixing both the floor problem and the tall door problem. A tough fix, but workable.

                  Second thought being about fireclay -- can you pulverize a couple of firebricks and make the clay?

                  Third being a very "third-world" type of thought (suitable for my location) -- oh well. We'll know what to do next time we have to do this. Sorry, that attitude is so prevalent around here. Sometimes drives me crazy, but sometimes it is a bit liberating...a "don't worry, be happy" sort of mentality.

                  My last brick oven had no insulation in the floor, and was insulated on the outside with the "magic goo" of Mexico, but it baked great bread and pizza. It was square, ugly as sin and collapsed with the last hurricane we had, but it served me well during its lifetime!!!

                  I'm just a newbie here, and I'm sure the brick oven veterans are clicking their tongues and shaking their heads at me, but I'll bet your oven will work fine...even without the extra insulation in the floor. At any rate, it will be an improvement over the alternative -- cooking over an open fire!

                  -- Rebecca


                  • #10
                    Re: Oven floor and opening?

                    I like the idea of using a layer of ceramic board over your existing floor then adding another floor on top of that. A substitute for fire clay can apparently be made from the grindings off cut fire bricks. A single fire brick or two, cut thinly, to create as much debris as possible, might give you enough material to set the bricks for the final floor.

                    Alternatively, you could possibly rent/buy a small saw from a local equipement rental store or HarborFreight.com, and cut out the existing floor inside the dome, then add insulation and a new floor.

                    Everyone makes mistakes. The trick is to make mistakes when nobody is looking.



                    • #11
                      Re: Oven floor and opening?

                      If you put an insulating board inside your oven and cover it with another layer of bricks, you could probably do without the fireclay altogether. For laying the bricks a very thin layer of regular sand will do. The floor bricks really don't need to be mortared in place or sealed in any way, you can just lay them neatly in place on the insulating board.

                      I'd really advise against mortaring the floor... look where it got you last time
                      "Building a Brick oven is the most fun anyone can have by themselves." (Terry Pratchett... slightly amended)