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Rojo Vivo 12-30-2008 10:59 AM

Our Wood fire Oven in Mexico
5 Attachment(s)
We are turning our old cement cistern into our wood fire stove. We had some trouble finding perilite here in Mexico but it finally arrived today. We will pour our insulated floor this afternoon finally.

Jed 12-30-2008 03:00 PM

Re: Our Wood fire Oven in Mexico
Rojo Vivo,

Welcome to the forum... Your project looks great!

I look forward to seeing your oven come together.. keep the pictures coming!


nissanneill 12-30-2008 03:11 PM

Re: Our Wood fire Oven in Mexico
Hi Rojo Vivo and welcome aboard.
Gee, that cistern looks massive when compared to the dome or vault ovens around this forum. A cistern here in Australia, is the water holding device for a toilet, much smaller and made from either ceramic or plastic!
Are you planning to use this for an oven? an enclosure for a dome built inside of it? or just as a fire stove/cooking area?
I noticed that you are insulating under your presumed hearth, so I assume that you are going to cook on it once hot!
I am a little concerned that the concrete that your 'cistern' is made from will not be the best material for housing fires as it will break down and splinter with hot temperatures.
I would insulate inside it and then run a cource of bricks inside (basically build your oven from the outside in rather than the conventional way. It certainly has the room for it but that can always be done on a needs basis.
Your oven/stove opening seems rather large and that suggests to me that you may be planning such a build.
All the best with your build, I will be watching it with interest.

Happy new year.



Rojo Vivo 12-30-2008 03:29 PM

Re: Our Wood fire Oven in Mexico
Hi there, thanks for your suggestions. We are actually just using the cistern as the facade for our oven. The large opening was already cut out in the front and there was a opening cut out in the side. We are leaving it open like this for now so we can fit inside to build our dome oven. We started by pouring our cement base and left room underneath for wood storage which will be accessed from the side opening. Once we are done making the stove oven inside we will close up the top part of the opening. We are building the 42'' stove and it will fit perfect inside the cistern. We are pouring the 4" insulating floor today. We are using the 5-1 of perilite and cement. One question how long should it cure for before we start our laying our brick floor? It is 33 degrees here in the day and drops down to maybe 19 at night. When the dome is all finished and vented up throught the top of the cistern then we will fill it with perilite. Then we will close the front up flat around the arched opening and decorate it up to look Mediterranean with clay tiles and bricks, black rod iron and fresh paint.Do we leave it loose, I saw that somepeople added fire clay to theirs and packed it around the dome?
I will post more photos tomorrow of the insulating floor, boy that perilite isn't fun to work with!!!

Rojo Vivo 12-31-2008 06:57 AM

Re: Our Wood fire Oven in Mexico
5 Attachment(s)
Well we now mixed the perilite and concrete insulating floor for our oven and layed it yesterday. As you can see by the pictures we mixed it on the ground which made it way easier. That's the way they do it in Mexico, no fancy mixers or even wheel barrels used much here. Now just waiting for it to cure, exicted to start building the oven floor and dome in the next few days!!!!!:)

SpringJim 01-01-2009 06:34 AM

Re: Our Wood fire Oven in Mexico
Nice project...keep the pics coming

Are you talking F or C temps? Must be C in Mexico eh? Otherwise I'd be worried about the freezing temps. :eek:

Your perlite mix should set up pretty quickly with the 5:1. IF the foundation under this layer is solid, I would not be afraid to start laying the hearth on top. How did you support it in the cistern?

Rojo Vivo 01-01-2009 07:51 AM

Re: Our Wood fire Oven in Mexico
Not to worry, it does not freeze here in Merida Mexico, it's pretty hot and humid all the time!!! We supported the cement base in the cistern with cement blocks and drilled holes in the sides of the cistern and inforced it with lots of rebar. We then poured , I think a 6" slab of cement the then ontop of that a 4" layer of perilite and cement for the insulating floor. It's New's Years day today we are laying the brick floor, very excited!!!I will post sopme new photos later today. "Feliz Ano Neuvo"!!!!

Rojo Vivo 01-06-2009 08:59 AM

Re: Our Wood fire Oven in Mexico
5 Attachment(s)
Here are some new photos of our WFO. It's a little difficult working inside of the cistern but it's turning out pretty good!We are getting closer to the top of the dome!!!

Rojo Vivo 01-21-2009 08:35 AM

Re: Our Wood fire Oven in Mexico
We are all finished the dome but there are a few gaps inside the oven. Is this a problem, we have lots of insulated cement on it and a thick layer of vermiculite. We are also going to fill up the rest of the cistern with loose vermiculite? Please any suggestions would be of great help. Also what should we clean our oven floor with to get the bit of cement of of it or should we worry about it?

dmun 01-21-2009 10:01 AM

Re: Our Wood fire Oven in Mexico
You can clean your brick with muriatic acid, but be careful in an enclosed area like that: the fumes can be deadly. Follow instructions carefully, particularly about diluting the stuff. First try scrubbing your brick surface with another brick and water, if your mortar isn't too old it should come right off.

If you're going to fill that cistern with vermiculite you may have the best insulated oven ever! Remember, it leaks out of the tiniest opening.

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