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spareRib 05-02-2007 02:40 PM

Rough Cost Estimate
Hi all,

I realize this is a tough question, but I'm thinking of building a 36'' oven using the Pompeii oven plans and I was wondering if someone can give me a rough materials cost estimate for an outdoor DIY build? Unfortunately, I don't have any friends in the masonry business so I'll probably need to cost everything at retail prices before I get started.

Many thanks from Ontario, Canada!

CanuckJim 05-02-2007 03:47 PM

Re: Rough Cost Estimate

Although I can't help you on the cost of a Pompeii, not having built one, I can tell you that I'm also in Ontario, and you'll find that the costs will be higher here than they are south of the border for similar materials. Like me, you're probably used to that.

Do it anyhow.


spareRib 05-02-2007 04:57 PM

Re: Rough Cost Estimate
Thanks for your reply Jim! I figured it would be more than just an exchange rate. At this point, I'd like to know if I'm looking at $1K or $3K?

A few questions for you:
- How deep did you dig in your foundation? I'll be building near the lake district (Rosseau) and the bedrock is pretty shallow so I don't think I'll need to worry too much about heaving.
- Do you have any thoughts on sourcing materials in Ontario? I'll probably ask for a quote for the blocks, mortar, firebricks, high-heat mortar, and vermiculite/perlite from Capbrick and Simcoe Block to get a rough cost.
- I'm thinking that I'll finish the exterior using local stones with a slightly pitched roof.

CanuckJim 05-02-2007 09:06 PM

Re: Rough Cost Estimate

You're in an ideal situation. I'd go to bedrock, maybe drill a few holes with a rented Hilti to insert rebar, straight up, and just pour a slab with mesh in the middle, wired to the rebar. Frost heave just won't happen. Make sure you clean the bedrock well to assist in adhestion. Think about runoff and account for it. My situation is far other: 12 inches of topsoil over heavy clay, with ground water in between. Not good. My slab is eight inches thick with ten sonos four feet below that, lots of gravel. Like I said, the ground's not stable, but I've had no heave problems at all. Can you spell "overbuilt?"

The source I've used locally is Bathe & McLellan in Whitby. They were about the only place that would get LaFarge Fondue for me, also vermiculite (PoolPac) and angle iron cut to length. The owner is very knowledgeable. For fire brick and tools, I dealt with Don & Son, also in Whitby, but these sources are far from you. Having to do it again, I'd import Refrax from FB; ditto SuperIsol and batt insulation. Quicker, easier, less hassle and running around. For common materials, like block, Type S, mesh, etc., it's tough to beat Home Cheapo on price.

You talk about a "slightly" pitched roof. I'd factor snow load into the equation and maybe go for more of a pitch, maybe metal roofing. Your area can get a ton of heavy snow, so truss well.

You'll have no shortage of local stones in your area. Do consider high quality English chisels for splitting from places like Don & Son or Betz Cut Stone (Davis Drive, north of Toronto). They make masonry life much, much easier. You'll definitely need a tile saw, wet saw, what you will.

Keep it up. Let me know if I can assist further. Oh, yeah, you're probably, just probably, looking at 2.5 K.


jahysea 05-02-2007 10:38 PM

Re: Rough Cost Estimate
1 Attachment(s)
Hi, I remembered building a spreadsheet somewhere of my time invested and cost.

I've attached it as an HTML file. Basically I spent about $2,400 not including any purchased tools. Does include rentals.

I live in a small town with an expensive lumberyard and am too lazy or time challenged to drive very far for materials, I'm sure folks can do better other places. Firebricks I found to be particularly expensive.

Dome cost was the single highest component as I divided it up, a fair bit of that cost was for the tile saw I rented at $50 a day.

spareRib 05-03-2007 06:01 AM

Re: Rough Cost Estimate
Thanks all. I've put in a request for a quote on some of the materials from a local building supply company. After a brief phone conversation, I expect the quote will be on the high side so I may need to call around a bit more.

Being a weekend 'cottage project' my wife suggested that I look for some reclaimed or local materials this spring to help keep the costs down. Her comment suggests that I don't have a budget of $3K to work with... we're already committed to building my mother in law a new garden this year, replacing two sections of outdoor deck and the usual spring fix-ups.

james 05-03-2007 06:59 AM

Re: Rough Cost Estimate
Check the postings by Redbricknick. Nick is finishing up his oven using almost 100% found, scrounged items. There were some ideas for reclaimed materials there.

spareRib 05-03-2007 07:38 AM

Re: Rough Cost Estimate
Agreed. After a bit of searching it looks like between kijiji and craigslist, I should be able to find the bricks at much less cost. There are also a few dilapidated brick/stone farm buildings in the area so I might do a bit of door-knocking as well.

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