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WJW 02-02-2012 10:42 AM

Southern Cal Source for Refrac Mortar
Anyone have a source for something like heatstop 50 in the So Cal area? And much mortar am I likely to need for a 36 x 42 barrel vault oven?


GianniFocaccia 02-02-2012 11:21 AM

Re: Southern Cal Source for Refrac Mortar
You could try Thompson Building Materials, there's one up by you. I called them at one point and they were not carrying HeatStop products, so may the force be with you.

Truthfully, the feeling here is that HeatStop is grossly over-priced and places a limit on the amount of mortar you can mix up in a batch since you don't want to throw any excess away. Of course, YMMV.

There is a growing legion of builders who swear by homebrew mortar, myself included. If (when) I build a second oven dedicated solely to bread, I will go with the homebrew again. Honestly, I wouldn't use anything else.

WJW 02-02-2012 11:28 AM

Re: Southern Cal Source for Refrac Mortar
Thompson's doesn't carry it.

I was thinking about the homebrew and am happy to hear you say that. What ratio of cement sand clay did you use?

I bought a couple of sacks of premixed mortar from thompsons last time I was there. Assuming the mortar is premixed, how much clay would you add?
I have two sacks of the premix mortar and two sacks of clay...maybe I'll just go to it and get started on the walls later today.

I'm also looking into Harbison Walker's products. They have a number of mortars....Refrac Air Dry, Recrac Wet Dry, etc. I'm waiting for a call back from their salesman to see what cost and shipping is likely to be.

brickie in oz 02-02-2012 11:36 AM

Re: Southern Cal Source for Refrac Mortar
I would and did use a premixed thin airset mortar for a barrel, it sticks real good and will have less of a tendency to crack and fail.
You will need 2x20 litre buckets and costs about A$30 per bucket.

Its the joints that fail in an oven, my joints are about 1 to 2mm thick.

WJW 02-02-2012 11:51 AM

Re: Southern Cal Source for Refrac Mortar
Al...are you talking about a completely premixed refractory type mortar or a regular pre-mix mortar which you added fireclay to?


brickie in oz 02-02-2012 11:54 AM

Re: Southern Cal Source for Refrac Mortar
Totally premixed, open bucket, and stir, use.

Edit:- You need to add a drop of water to slacken up the mix a bit and make it easier to spread and use.
Butter the brick to be laid.

WJW 02-02-2012 11:55 AM

Re: Southern Cal Source for Refrac Mortar
What do you guys thinkl og using this stuff fopr a thermal break at the entryway? It's an HW product and sounds very durable and easy to mold/work with.. Comes in a one gallon tub or in caulk tubes.

INSWOOL MOLDABLE is a 2300F ceramic fiber, putty-like consistency material, used for linings up to three inches thick, to pack large voids, or even fill thin cracks. It can be troweled or hand packed into place.

INSWOOL MOLDABLE is light weight, with very low thermal conductivity, and therefore a good insulator, yet it develops a strong hot face surface to withstand physical abuse and high air velocities as compared to conventional ceramic fiber products. It is also used as a high temperature gasket material, and as a general purpose patching product. Its ability to compress makes INSWOOL MOLDABLE an excellent material for expansion joints and for filling contraction cracks. It is also an ideal material to fill ceramic cuplock anchors for ceramic fiber blanket linings, and can be used in contact with molten aluminum.

GianniFocaccia 02-02-2012 11:56 AM

Re: Southern Cal Source for Refrac Mortar

The classic homebrew ratio is 1-3-1-1: portland cement, fine sand, hydrated lime and fireclay. Check your premix mortar bag for content and adjust with fireclay and lime accordingly.

I would not buy any kind of mortar and perhaps anything else from Frank Dicken, the Sales Manager at HW. He sold me a bag of refractory mortar that he claimed was suitable for a WFO. I used a little bit of it on my firepit and found out after a rain (it was even covered up) that was water soluable because it crumbled into dust. When I called to discuss with him he would not return my message. I found out on this site he sold the same bag to someone else for a bit less than what he charged me. Further, he gave my name and number out to a guy who solicited me for some kind of networking thing. Totally unprofessional and I have since taken my business to a competitor down the street.

WJW 02-02-2012 12:06 PM

Re: Southern Cal Source for Refrac Mortar
Wow...Frank is the guy who I'm waiting for a call from. I left him a message telling him that I'm building an outdoor pizza oven and want to talk to him about a proper mortar choice....ought to be very interesting to hear what he says if he calls me back.

azatty 02-02-2012 12:21 PM

Re: Southern Cal Source for Refrac Mortar
If memory serves, Dino bought some premixed mortar for his oven. Maybe PM him?

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