A slightly different take on curing
I just fired my oven for the first time yesterday. What's different? I fired it from nothing to 700 degrees over 10 hours with no cracking.
The difference isn't the firing though - rather, coming from a construction background, I always wait a month before messing with concrete, so it had been curing for a month already naturally. This requires patience, but I really think it matters.
Second, I've got enormous thermal mass. The oven is a superior clay 36", which is pretty much the same as the forno bravos (I'd never heard of forno bravo before, happened upon this site by google accident). Its on a 5" slab, with 2" of insulating cement on that, then firebrick on that. The oven is in a concrete "box" that's around 4' x 5' by 4' high, with the concrete in turn veneered with stone. The space between the walls and the oven (which is covered with 2" of refractory cement) is loose vermiculite fill.
I think the combination of the long curing time and huge mass means that less uneven stress is put on the oven. We'll see how this works out in practice.
Re: A slightly different take on curing
there should now be a link to oven pics in my sig line
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