I am Mark, I live in Virginia, Lake Anna, and started building my outdoor pizza oven. Poured the foundation for it last weekend. I have been surfing the web for information and when I think I have it, Wallaaa, it confuses me more. However, I have read every string here and just want to say THANKS, the information here is the best!
I do have some more questions, I notice that some of the ovens lay the fire bricks flat, and some stand them on the side, what is the difference.
When using the vermiculite mixture do I use that as the mortar between the bricks on the dome also?
I will start my pictures this weekend, I just didn't take any pictures of me digging the plot for the foundation, got way too tired :eek:
I am still building my oven, but I have done a lot of research along the way.
The mailbox design by Alan Scott sets the hearth bricks on their edge (making the hearth thicker).
The Pompeii design on this site puts the bricks flat, making the hearth thinner.
The main difference is mass. Less mass heats up quicker and is easier to get to very hot temps (for Pizza say). More mass takes longer to heat up but stays hot longer (for mulitple rounds of bread baking).
That is the short version. The long version has been discussed at legnth on this forum!
As an aside, if you are new to this forum, you may not be seeing all of the threads when browsing. Make sure you change your default Thread age cutoff in the User CP (upper left part of this screen) to "show all threads"...
Thanks Drake, that did add quite a bit of threads, LOL, now I have more reading to do. Thanks for the info on the difference of laying the base. I plan to pick up the firebrick in the morning so I will go with my original number of brick I estimated for the base. There is a lot more to learn about this then meets the eye, I have several plans but none really explain the differences on why certain things are done.
Vermiculite and Perlcrete are for insulation, NOT strength!
As to being too tired after digging foundation. Robert Musa posted this a while back and it has become part of my vocabulary...
He called that phase the "Man With a Hoe" phase and linked this picture...
ROFLMAO, hey thats me in the picture, Thanks Drake, I represent that picture. :D thanks Marcel, I kind of knew that but I wanted confirmation. The people at the brick yard in Richmond suggested the the same mixture but never mentioned the vermiculite mixture as being for insulation. I noticed they keep refering back to the colonial masons so apparently a lot more people around here in VA are building or have built these ovens.
Thanks, I really appreciate all the assistance. Will start posting pictures this week.
Also note that some people choose to use a real refractory mortar instead of the portland/fireclay mixture. James sells one on this site called refrax. two other brands are:
Eventually the portland cement will break down at high heat. I don't really think this is a huge issue, but I still sprung for the refractory mortar.
Hi all, a seven hour trip to the brick yard, LOL, of course other stops too, can't go to Richmond, um, the big city, LOL, and not do other things also. but I have the cinder block base almost done, have to pick up a few things in the AM to finish it. Man, talk about wearing a person out though.
I just can't wait for the first firing and food to come out of my new oven, have tons of recipes to try, the wife if getting more and more with each step finished. I took pix today but don't have the connection from the camera here so we will return to our weekday home on Wednesday and then I will post them.
Thanks You have been a great help and I will still be bending your ear for a bit.
Welcom aboard. Good luck with you pizza oven adventure. I look forward to seeing it progress and to hear about the first firing that produces food!
TPCS (aka bill)
Ok, next problem, big problem, I am having a lot of trouble finding the vermiculite for the portland mixture. All places I have called and visited do not carry it any more. Any suggestions...
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