#11  
Old 02-15-2008, 08:47 PM
dmun's Avatar
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Default Re: Bigger ovens

The ovens you linked to:



are the twin ovens at "a mano" here in Ridgewood NJ. Those are low dome Naples style ovens, and yes the vent is above the door. The commercial builders of this style of oven angle the vents up from the entryway and take the vent stack up from the center of the dome enclosure. I think this is mostly for aesthetics, but do not be deceived: these DO NOT vent from the inside of the dome, they only look that way.

We've only seen one built example of an vent-from-the-dome oven, built by the father of a member (can anyone help me with a link here?) that wasted vast amounts of fuel, and took forever to heat up. No amount of dampering is going to compensate for having the flue in the wrong place. One additional thing about wood stove commercial dampers: they are designed to cut off only about 80 per cent of air flow when fully closed for safety reasons, and they are just a flap of cast iron - no insulation at all.

Ovens are a lot of work to build, and we're here to help you to build one that will work right the first time. If you decide to do things differently, we're here to cheer you on, and to learn from your mistakes, or to share in your triumphs.
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  #12  
Old 02-15-2008, 09:53 PM
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Default Re: Bigger ovens

Hi Jay,

There is a style of Italian oven where the vent is located outside of the oven chamber above the door, where it arches back over the oven dome -- and connects to the chimney at the top of the oven. While it looks as though it could be vented in the back, it is the same oven design we describe in the Pompeii Oven e-book.

The Twin Ovens were actually made in Italy, and shipped to NY -- where they use Caputo flour. :-)

The main advantages of the Italian design is that you have much better control of the fire, higher heat cooking and better use of your wood.

Community wood-fired ovens are the wave of the future.
James
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  #13  
Old 02-15-2008, 09:55 PM
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Default Re: Bigger ovens

Hey David,

I think this is the second time we answered the same question the same way; at the same time.

Great minds....

James
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  #14  
Old 02-17-2008, 07:41 PM
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Default Re: Bigger ovens

I love being the devils advocate.....So..... I believe the squirell tail ovens which from my knowledge were built in vermont and other earlier settlements had the flue in the back.

People seem to quickly dismiss this change by saying it was less efficient, but if that was the case why did they do it for 50-100years. It seems to be more laborous to build, so it must have served a purpose right? I know at least one of the ovens built by the MHA (masonary heaters of america) was a squirell tail design. It would seem that giving the exhaust gas a second pass at the masonary would make sence (scents? im on my third labatts). I think there is a way to make an oven in this manner with high tech insulation and have the best of both worlds.

I believe alan scott wrote that domed ovens are old technology which should be relegated to history. I just dont feel comfortable dismissing the squirell tail (or the dome for that matter) as easily.
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Old 02-17-2008, 08:13 PM
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Default Re: Bigger ovens

Ed
You are correct in saying many "squirrel tail" ovens vented from the back and then over the dome. I do not however recall the one that the MHA folks built, I would love to see it! I believe that there are ways to create something that would satisfy both needs...I think if the opening to the flue is at the recommended door height and is located correctly I think such an oven could heat up in good time...however...keeping the heat in would be another issue as you have added an additional "drain to the bathtub"...one opening to the oven is simpler and more efficient...has to be...
That's my 2 cents before bed...
Jealous about the Labatt's...have not had one sine I left NY!
Dutch
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  #16  
Old 02-17-2008, 09:47 PM
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Default Re: Bigger ovens

Edschmidt,
50 - 100 years seems hardly a proven design compared to say a couple of thousand years of use of the oven provided on this site. There's nothing wrong with experimenting with existing or new designs, they might be better. If they proved to be significantly better, no one would be using the older designs at all. At least, that's how I see it.

Man dreams, builds, modifies, then discards those ideas that don't work as well as their existing model. You can make even a poorly designed model work, (my oven for example), but no one would do it that way again for very long, say.... 50 - 100 years?

Another devil's advocate, back at ya!
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  #17  
Old 02-18-2008, 05:09 AM
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Default Re: Bigger ovens

And gas indoor ovens pretty much killed wood fired outdoor ovens as well, I guess were all just living in the past and need to keep up with technology. My point on the 50-100 years is that they did this for generations AFTER having full knowledge of the roman design. It must have done something better for it to be built that long. My guess is that it heated quicker, but probably lost heat quicker as well, but before highly efficient insulation it was probably not that significant.
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  #18  
Old 02-23-2008, 01:32 AM
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Default Re: Bigger ovens

After looking at squirrel tail ovens I have decided that I donít want to put the flue at the back. Our oven will no longer have a hole in the back, thank you for correcting my misdirection. I will post a design with the flue at the front when I have designed it. Or no flue as the oven is outside? Will search the forum, thanks again!
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  #19  
Old 02-23-2008, 06:28 AM
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Default Re: Bigger ovens

I think you will be happy with it and will have a very efficient and long standing oven!
Dutch
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  #20  
Old 02-23-2008, 06:52 AM
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Default Re: Bigger ovens

Guys,

Years ago, a friend of mine purchased an 1820 square cut limestone farmhouse north of Kingston, Ontario. It's a lovely building, but it was in need of lots of masonry repair work. (No matter what, it remained a refrigerator in winter.) Part of the work was to restore a limestone beehive oven that had fallen in. Most of it projected from the outside wall. It shared a flue with the six foot wide cooking fireplace next door, and the flue was in the front but not isolated from the bake chamber. The limestone construction blocks were an average of six inches thick. It WAS possible to get it up to baking heat, but not for long, and it took enormous amounts of wood to get there in the first place.

Ruth, the lady who did the baking in it, was a dedicated historian and definite believer in the old ways. That didn't keep her from cursing the design. She ended up not using it very often, mostly around Christmas.

Jim
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