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  #61  
Old 07-01-2007, 11:09 AM
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Default Re: Christo's Cucina

Hi Paul - a similar remote thermometer can be bought from Amazon dot com. The US site has one almost identical to the one I have.

Christo
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  #62  
Old 07-01-2007, 11:21 AM
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Default Front arch is complete

Setbacks behind me, pressed on with the entry arch and the last of the refractory motar work. I used bricties screwed to the metal frame as well as bonded to the vent arch with refmix.

I'm pretty happy with the arch. I have also put in lighting under the arch similar to Neils approach. I'll post pics of that after I'm sure it all works!!!

Was cleaning out the mortar in the crack between the bricks and form about an hour after I had finished the arch - hard to not futz with it..... Kept worrying about how the inside of the arch looked with cement boogers hanging from it....

I resisted all temptation to remove the form for an additional hour and pulled it out. Cleaned it up and tooled the remaining joints. Very happy today.

I used refractory cement from little tubs to cover my remix tabs and then pretty much the last of the Refmix bag to cover the last of the cracked joints in the oven. The stuff is already hard. I willl spray it down once more and put the ceramic blanket back on this afternoon.

Turns out a Perlite factory is less than 3 miles from my house. Monday will have me buying a couple bags of the most coarse stuff they have. Cheap too.

Christo
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Last edited by christo; 08-14-2007 at 02:19 PM.
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  #63  
Old 07-14-2007, 09:48 PM
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Default Re: Christo's Cucina

Started the Stucco or started coating the oven as I'm not sure surface bonding cement is really correct to call stucco.

The stuff has alot of fiberglass in it and seems to go on well. They say it is stronger (wind load) than a standard masonry wall if coated properly. I got both of the wood storage areas underneath my oven coated today.

I also put all the harborlite (perlite) in the oven and buttoned up the flat roof. I could not buy EPDM rubber membrane roofing so I bought a EPDM pond liner to use instead. In the picture you can see where I used roofing cement and fiber tape to bridge all gaps. (note - its not good for roofing cement to contact pond liner - I had to put down a thin sheet of plastic between the roofing cement and liner) Where the flue tile comes through the roof I used up the last scraps of the ceramic insulation board and made a 3 inch curb all around the flue. I will run the rubber pond liner up against the cermamic insulation and then put a copper flashing cap over it to do the final seal. The black caulk is high temp silicone fireplace caulk.

Tomorrow starts the 2nd set of drying fires since the repairs!!!! Slow and low will be my motto for the next 6 days.

Christo
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Christo's Cucina-stucco.jpg   Christo's Cucina-img_0829.jpg  
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Last edited by christo; 09-19-2008 at 10:26 AM.
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  #64  
Old 07-22-2007, 07:10 AM
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Default Re: Christo's Cucina Lights

Lights are working but will soon be converted to 12VDC.

After consulting with a neigbhorhood electrcian, I originally went with 120VAC halogen lamps and a protective cover. But I am losing patience with a clean install of glass oven light domes over the bulbs, I should have done the mounting before I completed the decorative arch.

I recently saw some 12 VDC halogens during a visit to my father in law that I think I can make work and then will not bother with any futher guarding.

Placing the decorative arch lower than the vent arch also seems to make a good difference preventing smoke from coming out the arch as well.

Drying fires are completed. Oven is staying intact. Did a slow ramp to white dome on Friday - Pizza was Great!!!

More stucco on tap for today!!!

Christo
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Christo's Cucina-oven-lights-fb.jpg   Christo's Cucina-arch.jpg   Christo's Cucina-oven-light-front-view-fb.jpg   Christo's Cucina-side-view-light-fb.jpg  
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  #65  
Old 07-29-2007, 04:59 PM
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Default Another oven is born

A big thank you to James, the list and my brother in law!!!!!

Oven construction phase is complete.

The Fiber reinforced cement/stucco went on without a problem. The oven is covered inside and out with about 1/4 inch of the goop and is ready for the top color coat when the rest of the outdoor kitchen and patio is completed. I may go with a light yellow or gold for the body of the oven as it will play nicely with the black granite shelf and terracotta bricks in the opening. The niches were a pain in the neck and I ended up using my hands to put the goop in there. They are off center as the counters that will project from each side of the oven will not be as wide as the oven. The niches will be centered on the countertops. I just need to figure out what to put in them!!!!

The flat roof is done. I ended up buying EPDM pond liner and used that as the roofing material as it is pretty resistant to sun exposure. I screwed up and used asphalt based roofing cement to glue things together and then read that it is not compatible with the rubber. I let it dry for a day and put a liner between the roofing cement and the rubber. I think I will put a bag or two of round white gravel on the roof just to protect it from the possible tree branch. I was going to make a metal cover to go around the flue tile, but instead opted to pour a cap around the flue tile. I isolated the flue tile form the poured cap by wrapping a piece of corrugated cardboard around the tile before pouring. After the concrete set, I removed the cardboard and filled in the gap with hi temp silicone caulk.

Used Hardee trim for the trim - so far I think the only mateiral used in the oven that can burn is the roof and the wiring.... I clamped a home made fence to my diamond brick saw and ripped the trim in half for the the narrow piece at the top.

Oven lights are still 120VAC with GFI protection - they work so nice. I will convert one of these days....

I will make a follow up post with lessons learned.....

The oven is making very fine pizzas!!!!

Again - thanks to all!!

Christo
Attached Thumbnails
Christo's Cucina-trim.jpg   Christo's Cucina-gregg-3.jpg   Christo's Cucina-gregg-4.jpg  
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Last edited by christo; 07-29-2007 at 05:10 PM. Reason: left out lights
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  #66  
Old 07-30-2007, 05:34 PM
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Default Re: Christo's Cucina

Chris,

It looks fantastic - well done!
Quote:
Originally Posted by christo View Post
The niches will be centered on the countertops. I just need to figure out what to put in them!!!!
Nice out of the way spot for a glass of wine, beer, etc .

Time now to enjoy the fruits of your endeavours.

Cheers, Paul.
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  #67  
Old 08-23-2007, 02:32 PM
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Default Re: Christo's Cucina

Cheers,


Well done!

And thanks for all the valuable information!
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  #68  
Old 08-25-2007, 06:58 AM
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Default Re: Christo's Cucina

Thanks for the kind words.

Thought it was a good time for an update.

In additon to the week of drying fires, we've cooked pizzas 8 times since I pulled the insulation back and added some refmix coating for insurance after I saw cracks in the dome.

I have intentionally been taking about 2 hours to fire the oven - gradually bringing it up to heat vs stoking the big scary fire right off the bat. Maybe I'll get there one day. I start fires with a Harbor Freight weed burner and it is wicked cool - I especially like the huge sound it makes when you use the afterburner lever, I don't dare to use the afterburner in the oven as I'm afraid I'd fill up the oven with excess propane and blow it up!! But I digress.

I see no additional cracks and no movement in the dome. The existing cracks do not seem to get wider during firing. I think I am out of the woods and have stopped worrying so much about them. At this point, there's really nothing I could do anyway.

During construction, I had a tarp blow off at exactly the wrong time and soaked the oven enclosure while it was half full of vermiculite. It has taken longer than a while to dry this out. After a week of drying fires I thought that all of this would have dried out, but I had some hot spots and the the concrete over the wood bins was particulary hot. Now after the additinoal fires - all is good - the concrete above the wood bin is cool for the first 2 or 3 hours and then starts to warm and I have only one spot on the outside of the oven that feels even warm to the touch when the oven temp is high.

I have some high temp silicone left over and used it to fill the crack in the vent flue for now. The crack is staying sealed and seems to be holding it's own. It may become a yearly maintainece thing. I wonder what other maintenance things I should plan on doing for the oven in the future?

Off to buy more concrete!!!

Best Regards Christo
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  #69  
Old 09-22-2007, 06:23 AM
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Default Re: Christo's Cucina

Things I learned on the base:

1. I notice some of you are reinforcing the slab vs building Lintenls.

I'm not happy with the huge gap between the oven flloor and the wood storage. Next time I'm going with the beefy slab and no lintels.

2. The pentagon shape is more difficult to manage but seems to make my oven appear smaller. the Front and left and right 45% viewing angles prevent the back end of the oven from being seen and it appears smaller.

3. Dividing the storage area in half with 4x4x16 block and making 2 doors has proved useful. We have 2 storage areas where you don't have to crawl deeply into. This also prevented much of the temporraroy supports required during hearth pour.

4. Locating the base on the one side of the yard was very good advice I received. I was so jazzed about the oven and outdoor kitchen it was going to be the centerpiece. I can barely see it from the house and the view is untouched. It's an eazy walk from the kitchen, too.

5. Mixing my own concrete -first pours were exhausiting, hauling 80 lb bags out of the truck on to handtruck stack at the worksite and lift to the mixer.
  • For the final slabs - I asked for the lumberyard to load the bags for me (2 lifts eliminated).
    Back at the site, I made a table out multiple pallets (to keep cinder block stack low) and cinderblocks (being very careful to set the blocks on angles so the table would have a very sturdy base). There will be quite alot of weight - I had a 20 bag pour so I put 10 bags on the table at one time.
    I then backed the truck to the table and slid the blocks off the truck and transfered the bags on this tall table. Truck heigh was close to table height so very little lifting there. From there it was a short lift from stack to mixer where I took the razor kinfe and cut the bag in the middle. I rolled the bag a little and it would split and pour into the mixer. This method was so much easier on my back and I felt so much better afterwards. I don't know why but all of my pours seem to be completed in the evenings...... I located the mixer on the corner of the form so when I dump - it dumps right into the forms - worked well for oven base and outdoor kitchen wing bases.

6. Rebar bending and cutting - I have a piece of 3/4 in pipe that I use to slip around rebar and bend it against the ground.
I used 1/2 inch and 3/8 in rebar for the slabs and had no trouble bending the shapes I desired. Cutting the stuff is a bit tougher - so I bend the entire outside shape and if I have some overlap I bend it in to the center and begin another bent or zigzag inset.
I also bought some of the short lengths at the supply store for cross pieces or additional support. I did not cut any rebar in any of my oven or outdoor kitchen slabs.
7. embedding jbolts or bolts in to concrete where enclosure will attach was very handy.
8. Making sure foudation is below patio level is a mistake I made - one foundation edge will show when I lay my patio later this month. Bricks will butt up agiasint the foudndation vs resting on top of it.
Attached Thumbnails
Christo's Cucina-concrete-mixer.jpg  
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  #70  
Old 09-23-2007, 06:15 AM
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Default Adding wings to the Oven

Was waiting to use a Bob Cat to excavate the wings to the left and right of my oven.. The guy still looks sad...I think he wants a grill and refriderator.

In one of the pics you can see the grill sitting on the other side of the oven waiting for its pad.

I dug up a multitude of roots by hand in earth that has been several inches short of water all year. and got to the point where my oven floor would be 41.5 inches above the patio floor. I was planning for 43, but my digging quota was exceeded.

Forms were built and lined with plastic as the ground was so dry.

More digging for the electric, water, and drains and it was ready to pour.
My wife volunteered to help spread out concrete while I mixed. Later, we looked at some of the pictures and there are bubbles or orbs on some and not on other pictures taken at the same time. Her freind thinks we have spirits in our backard helping onthe oven - I'd rather have Nicks helpers....

Wrapped it up in short order, cleaned the tools, broomed the surface hit the showers.

Christo
Attached Thumbnails
Christo's Cucina-form-work.jpg   Christo's Cucina-halfway.jpg   Christo's Cucina-finished-pour.jpg   Christo's Cucina-spirit-compression.jpg  
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Last edited by christo; 09-23-2007 at 06:18 AM.
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