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Hubb 09-18-2010 02:22 PM

Cooking surface
Hi there, I have been thinking of maybe building a pizza oven an have a question.

What kind of cooking surface can I use? I see alot of people use fire brick an some types of tile, would concrete work as well?


lwood 09-20-2010 08:31 PM

Re: Cooking surface
Concrete is not typically used. It's a matter of how the material interacts with the pizza dough. The thermal conductivity of the surface applies to how fast or slow the material conducts heat to the pizza dough bottom side. That said firebrick seems to be the most optimum material to use. Soapstone is more expensive but has a higher thermal conductivity and is believed to improve "oven spring", how much rise you get from your dough.

Not much about concrete has been discussed for use as the hearth material. Without looking it up, my guess is that the thermal conductivity is much lower than that of say firebrick and thats why it is not used.

Tscarborough 09-21-2010 04:45 AM

Re: Cooking surface
It also fails at less than WFO temps. At around 500 degrees F, it begins to deteriorate, and depending upon the aggregate in the concrete can explosively spall.

GianniFocaccia 09-21-2010 01:01 PM

Re: Cooking surface
If you go with the plans James has supplied here on the FB site, you can't go wrong using the materials 99% of the builders have employed in their builds. Sure, there are slight style and construction variances, but that is what makes every build different and every finished oven unique.

Hubb 09-21-2010 01:58 PM

Re: Cooking surface
So the fire brick would be the best to use for the surface. What would I be looking at as far as cost? I been looking online an cant seem to find any, I know not everyone has it.

thanks for the info guys.

SCChris 09-21-2010 04:31 PM

Re: Cooking surface
James is in NorCal and has all of the materials in a "you build it" kit. See
As for the cost of bricks on a per brick basis, they run from about $1 to $1.30 a piece. Also look in the Finding Building Materials - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community area.


splatgirl 09-21-2010 04:31 PM

Re: Cooking surface
Look in the yellow pages for refractories suppliers. Sometimes stone or masonry suppliers also sell it. Some people here have been able to get used bricks via various sources.
I paid like ~$2 a brick which seems high compared to what others have quoted but AFAIK there is only one supplier in my area so I guess they figure they can do whatever they want.

GianniFocaccia 09-21-2010 06:21 PM

Re: Cooking surface
Another option is to find a local firebrick manufacturer who sells seconds.

azpizzanut 09-25-2010 03:07 PM

Re: Cooking surface

There is a fellow in Glendale, Arizona who has hundreds of used fire brick for .25 cents each. I bought 125 today and picked through a stack to get the best ones. There are thousands of them in various locations on his lot. It may be worthwhile to travel here to pick them up.

If you find used fire brick locally please be sure they are not insulating kiln brick that the seller has misidentified. You are looking for a 4x9x2.5" brick that weighs roughly 7 pounds or more. They do come is various sizes though and that will affect the weight.

Best of luck to you.

azpizzanut 09-25-2010 03:11 PM

Re: Cooking surface

I suppose I should have included his contact information. Search Craigs List for "Brick" (Litchfield Park) under "Phoenix" city. phone 623 853 6984

Best of luck to you

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