#11  
Old 12-24-2008, 06:09 PM
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Location: Blackstone, MA
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Default Re: second post, lots of reading

Elizabeth,

Just looked through your WFO pictures. You did an amazing job. I hope I get mine completed this summer. Merry Christmas Elizabeth, SpringJim, and RTflorida! Thank you for the responses.

Jay
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  #12  
Old 12-25-2008, 04:37 AM
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Location: Adelaide, South Australia
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Thumbs up Re: second post, lots of reading

HI kgmfq3 (Jay),
I'm glad to have inspired you to build an oven, and to build it as economically as possible.
You might like to check out Tim's oven:

http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f21/...days-5283.html (Tims oven - early days!)

He used second hand red fired clay bricks in his dome. Contact him for advice.
Be aware that there are many types and grades for brick. The types available here in Adelaide from 60+ year old houses which are obviously not in a crumbly condition are fine. We also have1200˚C fired 4" solid clay pavers being used consistently for dome ovens without problems, but firebricks in Australia are between $3.50 to $5 each.
Anyway, do your research, ask your questions, make your decisions and enjoy your build and using the oven.

Merry Christmas.

Neill

PS. Congratulations on your new twins arrival. My twin daughters are 29 years old and have bought us nothing but the greatest of pleasure. Now they are excelling themselves with grandchildren, we found out that the one who has an 18 month old (our first grandchild) is 8 weeks pregnant! The other twin is due in 3 weeks.
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  #13  
Old 12-25-2008, 06:16 AM
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Default Re: second post, lots of reading

I have only fired my oven 8-10 times yet, but I'm fairly happy with it. I'm thinking of retrofitting with some thermocouples to get a better idea of whether I'm really getting my bricks properly hot all the way through - but with a 1 hour firing I can start to cook pizza, and this week I've fired it for 1.5 to 2 hours twice and have been able to cook a batch of pizzas, a decent load of bread, and a roast chook, and then some roast some vegetables and nuts, and the next morning, having left the door off overnight, it was still 60-70C. So while firebricks may well be better, I can't see how much better I really need it to perform. Of course this may change down the track as I get more experience!

I posted a picture and description of the bricks I used here, if it's any use.
http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f6/c...icks-5177.html (A couple of questions about bricks)

Last edited by Tim F; 12-25-2008 at 06:19 AM.
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  #14  
Old 12-25-2008, 03:20 PM
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Thumbs up Re: second post, lots of reading

Tim, thanks for chiming in here.

Jay,

Brevan quotes

Quote:
"Firebrick will hold heat much longer than a red clay brick"
but I disagree with his beliefs. Holding the heat is relative to your insulation, not necessarily the material from which it is made. A red brick will absorb the heat quicker than a paler brick, whether house or firebrick (the darker the car, the hotter it gets, it's a simple scientific fact). A house with a silver or white roof is considerably cooler than one with a dark roof. So the red brick will absorb the heat readily and only laboritory tests will determine the difference.
Yes I agree that a firebrick is designed to be heated and cooled whereas a household brick is designed for construction and not necessarily to be heated to oven temps BUT THEY WORK FINE and they DO NOT SPALL (well at least the ones out here that I have observed don't, even in commercially used ovens.
If you can't afford the more expensive bricks, or want to economise to use that money elsewhere, then carefully select the bricks that you want to use, set them up in a fire and burn them, get them so hot in the red coals and see what they do. Many red bricks are fired at over 1200˚C which is DOUBLE your maximum oven temperatures so they are going to perform fine.
Look, do your homework, ask questions and choose your preference.
I have no vested interest in firebricks and from some of the postings here on brick supplies on this forum, some of the suppliers of the firebrick don't know themselves. So how are we to decide?

Neill
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Old 12-30-2008, 01:22 PM
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Default Re: second post, lots of reading

Neil makes an intersting point, but the absorbtion of heat has nothing to do with the color of the brick- you're not heating it with the sun. It has to do with the material the brick is made from. If firebricks don't hold heat any better than a red clay brick, then why are the Forno Bravo instructions very specific about using fire brick- not to mention 99% of the members here have all used a firebrick of some sort. Are we mis-informed? Are there any benefits at all to using the more expensive firebrick?
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  #16  
Old 12-30-2008, 02:05 PM
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Thumbs up Re: second post, lots of reading

Brevan,
this is an interesting topic and I currently have access to an engineer (who married my immediate neighbors daughter earlier this year and is currently next door for a week) who works out of Canada for a company who designs and builds blast furnaces all around the world using wholly refractory materials (albeit high temperature).
I will see if I can get either some specific information from him or get him to source through his company contacts regarding the positive characteristics (and also the negatives) of the differences in oven materials.
I feel quite strongly about this as many people don't have access to the quite expensive materials in some places to build an oven.
Refractory manufactures do have a agenda to make sell and profit from their goods - understandable, but these materials have only been available for a relatively short time when compared to the traditional fired clay brick.
I also realise that clays vary considerably through out the world, we might have the best for brick manufacture, and the US the worst, how it is mixed and fired for the final brick will also vary, but even with today's technology, every fired brick will be much superior coming out of a fully automated processing plant than when they were stacked in large (double garage sized kilns) and fired for 3 days with 4 foot hardwood only 50 years ago.

Neill
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  #17  
Old 12-30-2008, 04:53 PM
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Default Re: second post, lots of reading

Quote:
currently have access to an engineer (who married my immediate neighbors daughter earlier this year and is currently next door for a week) who works out of Canada for a company who designs and builds blast furnaces all around the world using wholly refractory materials (albeit high temperature).
A Californian gets information from a Canadian through the helpful intercession of an Australian. Geez, you gotta love this stuff!
:
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  #18  
Old 12-30-2008, 05:58 PM
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Default Re: second post, lots of reading

There is an interesting experiment here: Measurement of Heat Capacity that I plan to do in the next month. It seems to me that there are 3 points to consider with the red brick vs firebrick though - how much heat they can store (which will be answered through that link, I think), how quickly they conduct heat (this should also be easy to test with a thermometer and heat source) and finally the issue of cracking/spalling, which may be harder to test except anecdotally.

I think the colour of materials in an oven does make a difference by the way, although I'm willing to be convinced otherwise. In one of my food science books I read that different coloured or clear baking pans affect how quickly food cooks on the bottom of the pan.
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  #19  
Old 02-15-2010, 03:54 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Mendon, MA
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Default Re: second post, lots of reading

jay,
did you start your oven yet?
Im in Mendon, and have been contemplating an oven now for 2 years and counting.
Curious if you started yet.
Thanks,
Ed
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