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dinoforno 07-08-2009 10:54 AM

FireBrick Lengthwise rather than 1/2

I have been reading these threads for about 2 months now and I am about to push the trigger with my dad (mason and old school). I am looking forward to just spending the time with him and building one of things I have always wanted was a pizza oven. After reading everything on this forum I find myself in a perplexed situation. I am the engineer with the logical and practical point of view and my dad is the old school knows exactly what needs to be done but does not have the strength to do the work himself any longer. So we find ourselves in debates about this pizza oven. I need to put my hands where my mouth is I guess is. Since he is insisting on using the brick lengthwise rather than cutting them in half in the dome creation....I have not seen any posts where the brick is done this way so I am going to ask if there are any thoughts I would think there would be a lot more cuts but his poiint is less brick loss. Any one have any opinions about benefits of one way or the other?


Lars 07-08-2009 11:23 AM

Re: FireBrick Lengthwise rather than 1/2
Some people use the 'soldier course' for the first 'chain' of full bricks on end.

When you start to build a dome ( a round object) with bricks ( rectangular solids) you need to cut them somehow to approximate the spherical shape. There is really very little brick loss ( not sure what that means) but, for example, I used a chisel to cut all my bricks, and there was only one that did not break where I wanted it to.

(I also made tapered bricks in one dimension by cutting them in half on an 11 degree angle)

Hope this helps.


james 07-08-2009 11:30 AM

Re: FireBrick Lengthwise rather than 1/2
Great answer Lars. Thanks.

dinoforno 07-08-2009 01:32 PM

Re: FireBrick Lengthwise rather than 1/2

Thanks for the reply it is understood that we would need to make cuts and what not. The plans on the site call for x number of bricks and after the soldier course they are cut in half. So if you do the math cutting a full brick in half and making cuts to fit the circular shape of the dome would mean you would need a number of brick extra unless when you cut the brick in half you are left with equal brick sizes which then would make no difference. This is somewhat hard for me to explain without a picture so I was in the process of sketching my plans after the Solider course the next layer for instance is made up of X number of half bricks cut to form the ciruclar shape why not use an entire brick cut to form a circular shape? I will try attach my sketchup drawing...tonight if I can to show the for the cutting the brick 9" divides well into 4.5 inch brick and is probably easier to work with in square form to make circular tapering. So I see the logical reasons for doing this in the forno bravo plans but I was trying to understand is why not just using the tile saw (definetly not old school by the way). The chisel would make it difficult to get the taper you want but to someone skilled like Lars and my dad I assuming....


Lars 07-08-2009 01:40 PM

Re: FireBrick Lengthwise rather than 1/2
When you cut the bricks in half, you use BOTH halves, of course. There is no waste. Use a tile saw or a chisel. It is easy either way! No great amount of skill required!


ps. James, thanks -- after all, I am allowed to cut bricks now as an apprentice. [that ranking system is a great way to encourage participation!]

dinoforno 07-09-2009 09:25 PM

Re: FireBrick Lengthwise rather than 1/2
This what happens when you get the young guy trying to outsmart the wise bull. anyway Dad and I had a misunderstanding he is actually saying what you both are saying and I am totally putting way to much effort into this. Forms are up and ready to pour cement pad. hope to start this thing soon as here in Rhode Island it still feels like spring.

I got a 20% coupon at Harbour Frieght and I am going to go get a tile/brick saw that everyone keeps talking and sit my dad down to do the cutting a little unorthodoxed probably but it will keep him doing something other than yelling at me and trying to do the work himself....

thanks for the sanity check guys. I will try and figure out to post my progress i started to write about it on my Live Blog for my family...

Rodneyf 07-10-2009 04:14 AM

Re: FireBrick Lengthwise rather than 1/2
Get some pics up so we can enjoy and help your build but don't rush it. You will find as we have that building a WFO is a legal drug that can give you both highs and lows that nobody around you can fully understand. I have yet to cook my first pizza but I am still as high as a kite on my build and who cares but me!

Lars 07-10-2009 07:50 AM

Re: FireBrick Lengthwise rather than 1/2
Hey Rodney,
I care.


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