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pizzadoc 03-24-2009 07:09 PM

I'm just getting started on my backyard kitchen which will include an oven such as the Casa 80. I live in upstate NY with very cold winters. Should the slab be built on footers 3-4 feet deep below the frost line or will a 6 inch slab with rebar on compressed gravel be sufficient. Thanks

ksm 05-28-2009 10:44 AM

Re: Foundation
I, too, would like to know what the wisdom of the forum has to say about this. We live in Rhode Island and have the same issues.

dmun 05-28-2009 11:09 AM

Re: Foundation

Should the slab be built on footers 3-4 feet deep below the frost line or will a 6 inch slab with rebar on compressed gravel be sufficient.
Either plan will work. If your gravel bed is well drained you shouldn't have any frost heave issues. I built one foot thick footings three feet deep, but i was building a two story chimney. If your chimney isn't much taller than you are, the slab-on-crushed-rock plan is fine.

dbhansen 05-28-2009 02:35 PM

Re: Foundation
Try some searches on the forum for "frost heave" or "foundation" and you'll find lots of discussions about this. Here's a good one: Link
A lot of it depends on the local weather and soil conditions. If you can get good drainage, then go for the gravel/slab. You might also want to check with local builders and see what they recommend.

ksm 05-28-2009 06:01 PM

Re: Foundation
Thank you to both dbhansen and dmun (BTW, we read about your geodesic oven w/ awe). Having a link to a thread is very helpful, because I must be doing something wrong with the search feature: it returns either "nothing found" or lots of unrelated threads. (I also tried searching for discussions about oven size and gave up -- just started reading through the threads to find the different opinions.) We do have an appointment in two days to pick the brain of a local builder, but wanted to be knowledgeable enough to ask decent questions and to understand the ramifications of different approaches. Then on to the oven! Again, thanks.

thebadger 05-28-2009 06:43 PM

Re: Foundation
I live in cin. Ohio with clay soil.... I opted go go about 6" below the frost line just to be safe.

That said I"m building my 'bar' area on a 5 in pad - not as worried about it.

Definitely do the research and see what works for your situation.

dmun 05-28-2009 07:18 PM

Re: Foundation
Sometimes google does better that the forum search: a search for "brick oven foundation"
(in quotes) on google will zero in on exactly what you want, whereas the forum search for the same thing will produce more random results. Also, the forum search doesn't work on short words, like "UK" or "AAC". There is a way to limit google to a specific site, but I forget what it is. That is not so important here because most brick oven searches zero in on Forno Bravo pretty quickly.

ksm 05-29-2009 11:05 AM

Re: Foundation
Ah! Yes, that does work much better -- perhaps too well ... but then it's a cold & rainy day, so I can't plant in the garden anyway.

Once again, thank you for the help. All the other posters -- is that the right word (for those who "post"?!) -- are right. This is one terrific forum/community. It's really amazing how willing people are to help out complete strangers.

dougrappe 05-31-2009 05:23 AM

Re: Foundation
If you haven't found this thread yet, take a look.

I went with a frost protected shallow foundation in Chicago, having the same frost heave concerns.

good luck,


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