#11  
Old 07-08-2009, 11:34 AM
Peasant
 
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Default Re: Keystone CRA|CK Ugh!!!!

Hi Lars, You have a great looking oven there.Wished I had the werewithal to build an arch like that. Anyway, I built to the FB plans and actually left off the vent, ($$$) considerations. As I live out in a rural area, such things largely go unnoticed. I have insulated the dome with 18" of pink fiberglass that I had left over from building my house. Yesterday I decided it was the right time to really crank this thing up, so, 2cu ft of bone dry birch later, when the flames died down to coals and the interior was white all over, I closed the door and left it alone for an hour. Well, when I opened the door again, I was left with no eyebrows and the front portion of my scalp was bereft of any hair, and this was approx 2 ft from the opening. THAT was as close to the fires of hell as I would care to come (chuckles). 5 pizzas went in and out as fast as the wife could put them together. Then the bread went in (6 loaves). I guess what I'm trying to say is let your fire do the work. It will cure, and crack the mortar, mine looks like the canals of Mars. After your week of curing, try a good hot fire, it takes a while to get those bricks hot enough to turn the smoke to gas. Once they do turn white and your floor temp gets up there, it does not take much to keep things hot. I think there are some trade offs between form and function. Thats just my opinion anyway. Have Fun with it.

Ian
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  #12  
Old 07-08-2009, 11:46 AM
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Default Re: Keystone CRA|CK Ugh!!!!

Thanks Ian,

It has been fun, no doubt.

We have been trying out pizza recipes at home ( the oven is out in the country) and I found out our kitchen oven goes up to 550 degrees. The pizza's are coming out pretty well, and I will soon crank up that WFO to full throttle.

I am thinking about a new concept... Sweet-zza. Put some sugar in the dough, top with apple butter ( the tomato sauce), cherries ( for olives), brown sugar and cinnamon ( instead of cheese) , apple slices, coconut ( shredded) or maybe even use cream cheese... any ideas out there to try? I'll take pictures when we try this out!


Doug,

Let's keep each other posted on the crack situation. I plan to light a fire later today, and get 'cracking' as it were ( so long as the wind did not knock off my chimney cap and soak the whole inside with the rain we had last night) I will take some more pictures, too. Did you replace your flue, or put the cracked one in?

Lars
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  #13  
Old 07-08-2009, 02:33 PM
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Default Re: Keystone CRA|CK Ugh!!!!

Quote:
I am thinking about a new concept... Sweet-zza.
This will be fine in your home oven at 550, maybe even better at 375. Sugar at pizza oven temperatures will quickly melt, char, and possibly combust.

Desert pizzas are a good thing at parties a couple hours after the oven has burnt down and cooled.
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  #14  
Old 07-08-2009, 05:29 PM
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Default Re: Keystone CRA|CK Ugh!!!!

Holy cow! Can't wait to see some finished pics in a couple years.. hehehe..

What made you decide to use so much vermiculite/portland? I was thinking of just using a blanket all around and then covering that with stucco to weather proof it until I get time to do my enclosure..
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Old 07-08-2009, 06:32 PM
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Default Re: Keystone CRA|CK Ugh!!!!

Hey Lars, Just fired up the oven again, the floor temperature got almost to 600F, which is the only reading I'm taking, need to get an infrared thermometer one of these days. This is as hot as I have seen it so far, one hairline crack in the arch that was already there has opened up a tiny bit, but nothing like what I saw before. The repair is holding fine, but I have a ways to go, no "fires of hell" for me yet.

I added some blanket insulation around the flue transition. It actually hasn't cracked yet, I'm just expecting it to, you know, that way I won't be too frustrated or disappointed if it does.

Sweet-zza (you should trademark that name, by the way) sounds good to me, I made a grape and pear pizza ("Schiacciata all'uva e alle pere" according to Charles Van Over in "Best Bread Ever" a book I highly recommend) which was great, used a basic pizza dough recipe with olive oil, table grapes, pears, anise seed and sugar on top, all carmelized nicely with that nice burnt sugar on the fruit....ok, I'm drooooling on my keyboard, anyway, I"ll save this kind of talk for a future post to the recipes section, and after I've tried it in a working oven!

Maybe pizza for me this weekend too, barring any catastrophe,

Good luck to the both of us.

Doug
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  #16  
Old 07-08-2009, 07:14 PM
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Default Re: Keystone CRA|CK Ugh!!!!

Cracks happen.
Just take your time on curing, and you will be cooking pizzas in no time.

No guarantees with WFOs... they all behave differently.
But, trust me, you will be fine and enjoying pizza very soon.

I had a brick fall out of my inner arch.. no biggie.. I figured out a solution...
enjoy the journey and then enjoy the food.

Pizza, pitas, bread, turkeys, chicken, steak, brisket.... they all meet their doom in a WFO

Have fun and don't worry about the cracks!
They are just cracks... and if a dome was going to collapse because of cracks.. trust me.. it would be mine.

What you should worry about is making 10 lbs of dough!

Great build BTW! Very nice.!
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  #17  
Old 07-08-2009, 08:25 PM
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Default Re: Keystone CRA|CK Ugh!!!!

Shay,
Are you insinuating that I am taking too long to build?

Great news. After the large crack in the outer arch, the small vent and some puffs out the door of smoke, and a big loud crack in the flue on the last firing, I am happy to report that all three problems are abated!!!!!

The crack in the outer arch ( which was huge, and unacceptible) I did NOTHING about it. It closed up upon cooling and I piled on 8 more courses of brick. This evening, with a 900 deg. dome temp, it did crack... but not in the same place, and not nearly so visibly.

The other side of the keystone opened up hairline, it worked its way up and to the left! I could do something about it, OR NOT! Really not a big issue at all anymore.

Secondly, the flue. Yes, upon the last firing it cracked. I did, basically NOTHING about it. I installed it with mortar, and put quite a bit of vermiculite around it, at least 12" up the flue, left and right, and behind it ( dome side) Tonights fire... the same crack opened up at the top of the flue, and you could see how it got smaller as it got closer to the level where it was covered with vermiculite. A total non- issue now.

Lastly, the draw. On the still evening, once the fire got going pretty well, I brought it most of the way up to pizza temps. The dome burned white ( creosote coming off) and the temps were around 900 in the dome. Once the temp got up there, the flames practically raged all the way up the flue. After that, nothing but clear gasses, right on up and out! Actually, I now firmly believe that the flue is just not designed to take the heat without being in a relatively calm enclosed mortar stack. Open to the air, it just is going to crack and that's all there is to it. I really don't care about the crack that I know is there. It is much smaller when it is allowed to expand throughout instead of only on the inner surface.

Over the whole dome exterior, the temp never got above about 90, the ambient temp of the day. !!!!!! I am sure I am still driving out moisture, but I am going to try a pizza this weekend.

Lars...

ps. sorry no pics.. just brought my HF temp taker ( up to 1100F.)
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Last edited by Lars; 07-08-2009 at 08:29 PM.
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Old 07-08-2009, 08:53 PM
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Default Re: Keystone CRA|CK Ugh!!!!

Quote:
Oh man, when will I ever be able to use this thing???
You're ahead of me so you win..
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  #19  
Old 07-08-2009, 10:23 PM
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Default Re: Keystone CRA|CK Ugh!!!!

Shay,
I am sure I am much older than you, though, so, gosh, I had no idea we were even competing.

What type of enclosure are you planning. I presume you're going all blanket, right?

I am pretty happy with the dome shaped outer shell. I WILL post some pics, but, you know, probably not for several years... (jk) The stucco really hangs together pretty nicely and it's really amazing that a 900 degree fire can be raging behind this 90 degree exterior!



L.
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  #20  
Old 07-09-2009, 12:44 AM
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Talking Re: Keystone CRA|CK Ugh!!!!

Looks good Lars! I am not too far behind you and have a week off next week to try and close the dome. I will post some pics soon but can't wait to see your first pizza and we all know the cracks won't affect the taste.

Good luck.
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