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james 05-01-2007 04:59 AM

Italian DIY Book on Ovens, BBQs, Fireplace
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I made a good find in the bookstore the other day. I was in the Home and Garden section and came across a Sunset Magazine style DIY book on pizza ovens, fireplaces, grills, and wood stoves. It's full of good background information, and drawings and photos on brick ovens and precast ovens. I am reading/translating it for fun, and will share what I learn.

One thing that was great for FB is that our oven is included in the book as the sample on how to install a precast oven. Cool. You now can feel safe in the knowledge that your FB oven and installation method is considered state-of-the-art in Italy. They say no to sand in the hearth, and yes to either vermiculite concrete or insulating panels (such as Super Isol) under the oven, and ceramic blanket insulation (our local building supply store started carrying Insulfrax just this year) for over the oven dome. Of course they recommend Refrax.

Installing a precast FB oven is only a 2 on the 10 scale of difficultly and they say it takes two days. If you are using a professional builder, you can tell them it isn't that difficult. :)

I will let you if I learn anything new or interesting. Here are a couple of scanned pages. It's a 100 page book.

Chris 05-01-2007 08:09 PM

Re: Italian DIY Book on Ovens, BBQs, Fireplace
That looks like fun! If I didn't already have a working oven, I'd be interested in getting my hands on a copy. Actually, I'm still interested... When will FB start carrying them? ;-)


james 05-02-2007 01:50 PM

Re: Italian DIY Book on Ovens, BBQs, Fireplace

Exactly. The Forno Bravo Store has definitely appealed to my Merchant Class genes.

Wlodek 08-24-2007 01:51 PM

Re: Italian DIY Book on Ovens, BBQs, Fireplace
You'll be laughing - I have just ordered a Polish translation of this book. Thanks for the pointer.

james 08-24-2007 02:30 PM

Re: Italian DIY Book on Ovens, BBQs, Fireplace
That is excellent. Let us know how it looks -- and how good the translation is. I would never have guessed that was available.

As an aside, by brother-in-law is half Pole and half Scot, and lives in England. He's very conflicted around Rugby world cup.

Wlodek 08-25-2007 08:52 AM

Re: Italian DIY Book on Ovens, BBQs, Fireplace
I'll have it in a few weeks. And yes, I do understand the confusion.



I should get the book in some 3 weeks - I had it sent to my parents in Warsaw. My daughter is visiting them and will bring it back with her.

Wlodek 09-17-2007 08:50 AM

Re: Italian DIY Book on Ovens, BBQs, Fireplace
Right, got the book this weekend. Very well illustrated, and it indeed shows some Alfa Caminetti (FB in the US) ovens. Very pleasant to read and quite comprehensive on general topics.

Oven-wise - I have learnt more from this Forum, its associated documents and my comparisons with the Bread Builders book.

The FB instructions are far more detailed than what is provided in the book. Descriptions in the book are much more sketchy and leave lots of gaps.

But there is a lot about chimneys, general materials, heating and ventilation in there, which I found very useful and interesting, providing a good context for the project.

Outdoor cooking and bread/pizza ovens only take a proportion of the text. There is also a lot of ancillary information, even including some history of pizza ovens and ancient rituals - good as talking points for your guests admiring the oven.

I agree, if I was to specify a reading list, this book would be on it. As additional, recommended introductory light reading, although not as a core text.

So, how about a joint effort in producing a reading list here?

I suggest the FB documents should be the core reading. As should the Bread Builders book, with all the differences in approach (dome vs. vault, amount of thermal mass, hearth insulation). A critical comparative comment is pretty much already there in the form of chapters in FB documents and the distributed information on the Forum.

I must say that the more I research the topic, the more I am grateful to the organisers and main authors of this Forum.

Best wishes from the Lake District
(which is getting colder and autumnal)


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