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  #31  
Old 02-22-2009, 09:32 PM
Serf
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Texas
Posts: 1
Default Re: Why Italian Ovens are Round

Thanks for the info, I知 in the process of building a brick oven in my backyard, I don稚 know where to start, I want to cook pita bread and pizza I知 reading a book called the bread builders ,I知 going now to research the round oven.
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  #32  
Old 03-03-2009, 10:03 AM
Peasant
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Tanja
Posts: 25
Default Re: Why Italian Wood-Fired Ovens are Round

Hi Rollo,

The temperature that wood fired ovens normally reach is well below the firing temperatures of most solid house bricks.
Unless you are going to be firing 24/7 then the much cheaper house brick would last a very long time.
Although red bricks are OK it is better to head for the whiter brick as these normally have a higher kaolin content [higher in alumina] and are closer to the qualities of a fire brick.
From my hunting for local bricks around Australia [for my workshops] the solid pressed brick is becoming a thing of the past but the closest 'house' brick I have found to a firebrick is the 'Charolais' brick made by Bowral Bricks in Bowral, NSW [now owned by Austral]. It may be difficult to get a small supply in Northern Rivers. The price of this brick is about one quarter the price of a firebrick.
On the subject of why Italian bricks are round - The round/oval shape is perfectly suited to the nature of flames and heat transfer while the barrel arch is more suited to the ease of building with a rectangular brick.
Flames hate corners and don't go there -they take the line of least resistance.
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  #33  
Old 03-14-2009, 02:30 PM
Serf
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Maine
Posts: 2
Default Re: Why Italian Wood-Fired Ovens are Round

James, can you share info on the pizza carts you mentioned creating for the farmer's markets? I am a baker for market and want to bring the oven along but need to meet health codes with the sinks, fridge. Do you make something like this, please send...
Thank you!!
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  #34  
Old 07-26-2009, 12:09 AM
Serf
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: syd
Posts: 3
Default Re: bricks

Quote:
Originally Posted by rollo View Post
Hi can anyone advise me? Am having difficulty accessing fire bricks. ARE normal red solids ok ? are white solids better any info would be apptreciated. I am in the northern rivers NSW australia
Thanks
There is a place in wetherill park called Field Furnace, They carry and make all types of fire bricks, call them on 029 729 1799.
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  #35  
Old 07-26-2009, 04:34 AM
Peasant
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Tanja
Posts: 25
Default Re: Why Italian Wood-Fired Ovens are Round

Solid bricks, especially the lighter colours are generally satisfacory for the temperatures you will reach in a wood fired oven although high alumina fire bricks [or tiles] are obviously better, but at least 3 times the price.
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  #36  
Old 02-28-2010, 08:05 PM
Peasant
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: grapeview wa
Posts: 46
Default Re: bricks

Most pottery supply business will have them , also the heat blankets you'l need to .
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  #37  
Old 02-28-2010, 08:19 PM
Serf
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: syd
Posts: 3
Default Re: Why Italian Wood-Fired Ovens are Round

Be carefall using house brick , they will crack as the oven cools down particulary when u use it in winter and the night air is very cold. The oven cools down to fast resulting in cracking. For the few hundred $ extra , the oven will hold temp longer, last long, and u can be assured minimal cracking. I somtimes load mine with heeps of wood and the temp will reach around 600 on the ceiling.......8-) I can then cook around 6-10 pizza's no probs. Hope this helps.
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  #38  
Old 03-07-2010, 04:49 PM
Peasant
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Tanja
Posts: 25
Default Re: Fire bricks and common bricks

In response to wilson 1000 concern about cracking house bricks I must say that has not been my observation and experience, over the past 50 years, of heating both fire bricks and solid common bricks to temperatures far in excess of the 600 degree C wilson 1000 mentions.
600 degrees C is a fairly easy and common tempeature to reach in heating up a wood fired oven and while it might be in excess of the alpha/beta quartz conversion of 573 degrees C it is unlikely that a solid common brick is so placed to receive substantial temperature differences in wood fired oven operations to cause cracking.
I would also think that a solid common brick, in a reasonably insulated oven, would be subjected to sudden cooling to be influenced by the crystobalite alpha/beta conversion at 200- 225 C and that would include an unusual brick with an excessive silica content or a near vitrified brick [or 'clinker'].
I'm certainly not advocating the replacement of firebricks for ovens that are destined to run continuously, as in a commercial operation, but for the occasional intermittent use most home ovens get I'm sure a good solid house brick for the dome [especially in the white/cream range which usually has a higher alumina content] would generally outlast the oven owner.
Certainly, firebricks are designed for situations of heat, but that usually is in kiln and furnace situations. For oven domes they can be an expensive overkill.
Another myth is that fire bricks hold heat better than common bricks. While it is true that fire bricks can withstand higher temperatures [and we are talking 1000 degrees C plus] it is the density [weight] of the brick which determines its heat holding capacity.
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  #39  
Old 03-07-2010, 05:49 PM
Tscarborough's Avatar
Il Pizzaiolo
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Ausitn
Posts: 3,128
Default Re: Why Italian Wood-Fired Ovens are Round

In this part of the US, Texas, LA, OK, MS, etc, there are very few pressed solid commons, and they cost almost as much as fire brick, with less availability. What you say is certainly true, but it is also a local observation.
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  #40  
Old 03-08-2010, 12:01 AM
Peasant
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Tanja
Posts: 25
Default Re: Why Italian Wood-Fired Ovens are Round

Hi Tscarborough,

I must admit the solid, pressed, common bricks are becoming, decidedly, less common in Australia as most brick manufacturers are turning to extruded bricks with as much 'holes' as there is fired clay [not a brick to be considered for oven dome construction].
Certainly if your fire bricks are about the same price as commons there is no question which you should choose. It is only on the, usual, great price variation that you would choose common bricks.
I have found that in assessing the quality of fire bricks in Australia, and from other parts of the world, that there can be enormous differences. What might be termed a common brick from one manufacturer can be more refractory than a fire brick from another.
Our own [Aussie] firebrick manufacturers are meeting so much competition from imported Chinese manufacturers that there are very few local products left and it must be admitted that the imported product is, in general, far superior.
I had an experience recently of purchasing, in the state of Tasmania, near-white house bricks [@$1each] to build an oven dome, that proved to be admirably suited to the job. The manufacturer told me he had been asked earlier for firebricks by a potential oven builder, who was referring to a 'build your own' wood fired oven book.
When he said there were no firebrick manufacturers, as such, in Tasmania he offered him the same bricks as I had chosen saying they would be perfectly suitable for the oven temperatures he was likely to reach.
The oven builder would have none of the suggestion stressing that the 'book' was perfectly clear - firebricks were to be used.
He asked the brick manufacturer where he might purchase 'pure' firebricks and was advised to go to a barbeque shop- one of a large national chain.
He eventually was able to obtain his firebricks - they were imported [across Bass Strait] from the Australian mainland @ $8 per brick!!!
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