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brokencookie 07-21-2008 04:25 PM

Satellite / Portable Pizza oven
I did'nt know which part of the forum to post this so the best guess is here in the oven building forum. Althrough I am trying to get the record for the most posts without actually building an oven I could not stand it any longer.
I am in the middle of some septic tank issues that are sucking up my time and energy, as well as delaying my build. I finally told my wife that I was going to take 1/2 a day and build a portable pizza oven for camping. I was inspired by a couple of builders who modified their webers for pizza and Wiley with his steel oven.

I started with an old 5 gal propane tank. I cut the handles and seat ring off ( used them later in the build). I then cut the top off the tank and sectioned ( cut ) off the bottom third. Turned it over, installed a grate and fire brick. Cut a hole for circulation.
Finally, added 3 legs for stability and a large propane burner for heat.

I fired it up last night, hit 750 degrees and started making 3 minute pizzas. I can only make about a 10 inch pizza, but cooking for only 3 minutes makes it doable.
The pizzas tasted incredible ( standard FB recipe) and my wife has forgiven me for playing hookey for a day. I'll post pictures of the little Satellite oven soon.


brokencookie 07-22-2008 07:05 PM

Re: Satellite / Portable Pizza oven
5 Attachment(s)
Pictures as promised

I started with a standard propane bottle. The hole left by the fire brick splits is to allow heated air to flow across the top of the pizza. There is a vent in the side of the lid on the opposite side. The flames.... well, my son thought it was so cool that it needed flames painted on it. Who am I to argue with a 16 year old ?
This was a great way to at least be able to work on my pizza cooking skills while my "real" oven is being built. After that, I will retire it for camping use only. I will be the envy of every camper in the area when I am making fresh pizza


berryst 07-22-2008 07:19 PM

Re: Satellite / Portable Pizza oven
That has got to be the worlds saddest little pizza oven....I love it. I laughed out loud the the very site of it. After viewing the great monuments...the alters of pizza pie heaven you build this. You cannot argue with perfection and success. It is simply perfect. In a flash of brilliant can-do you have made an oven and I have struggle with success and setback....but you are done by happy hour

Wiley 07-22-2008 08:24 PM

Re: Satellite / Portable Pizza oven
Bruce, great job! Now we need to build it in SS and gimbal it so I can hang it off the back of my boat! They make small SS units that are small round kettle BBQs that wouldn't take much modification to make what you have done.

One could make those and sell them at any tailgate party.


CajunKnight 07-22-2008 08:43 PM

Re: Satellite / Portable Pizza oven
Have to admit. I like the idea. Inexpensive and doable on any budget. Not a brick oven but cooks pizza on the go, interesting.

brokencookie 07-22-2008 09:11 PM

Re: Satellite / Portable Pizza oven
I have to admit that it's not my first choice in ovens, but it will get me by until the real build. Giving credit where credit is due I stole ideas here

However, I am too cheap to buy a Weber just to deconstruct it, so I used odds and ends around the house. You'll notice I did'nt post until it sucessfully made decent pizza. I figured, no matter how it looked, all could be forgiven if it worked :) My neighbors had sampled the goods and are now volunteering to help me get a real oven underway. :D

nissanneill 07-23-2008 04:16 PM

Re: Satellite / Portable Pizza oven
Come on crew, I have enough tasks to do with the outdoor kitchen without making another oven,
I work part time on a saturday morning at an automotive dismantler (what we call a car wrecker) and will now look for an out of date stainless steel lpg gas cylinder to cut down (very carefully though) and make one for taking on our 4wd trips. I have a steel one at home, but a nice shiney one will avoid having to strip off all the paint.
We have friends who have cut an old 18 gallon stainless steel beer keg into a webber cooker, so an old gas tank may now find a new life.
Will put a little thought into the plans and do a protoype shortly.


TDVT 07-28-2008 05:43 AM

Re: Satellite / Portable Pizza oven

Originally Posted by brokencookie (Post 37743)
I have to admit that it's not my first choice in ovens, but it will get me by until the real build. Giving credit where credit is due I stole ideas here

However, I am too cheap to buy a Weber just to deconstruct it, so I used odds and ends around the house. You'll notice I did'nt post until it sucessfully made decent pizza.

True again! Necessity IS the mother of invention. Way to go!

I am also TOO cheap to buy a Weber to cut up, luckily I had that one around, BUT......

I found a thread about the Brinkmann Smoke n' Grill on a tractor forum, which looks like a perfect candidate for a small, inexpensive, low-modification pizza cooker.

They stand on the ground, are already open-bottomed, have a side door for my optional gas burner, are big enough (16" dia) to mount a pizza-stone in the lid & cost only $35 brand-new at Home Depot.

My plan is to build a heavier shelf for the split-brick hearth, mount a stone in the lid, add a vent (there are none) & rig up a gas burner mount on one on the lower grates. I should still be able to run it on charcoal too.

Until real masonry happens, this might be it. I got one last week but haven't started any modifications yet.

They also seem to have a following due to the low cost. Look here.

brokencookie 07-28-2008 05:03 PM

Re: Satellite / Portable Pizza oven
As always, learning the quirks of each oven takes time. I thought I would post so other builders could benefit ( or poke fun at ) from my experiences.

I cut an additional 3 inches off the bottom of the cylinder and lowered the whole unit to speed up the heating process. I removed one of the small fire brick wedges for more air flow. I removed the wedge 180 degrees away from the side vent in the lid. This made a huge difference. The bricks heated faster and the tops of the pizza's are now becoming done at the sample time as the bottoms. I also made the side vent a little shorter ( about 1/2 inch) to retain the air a little longer. When the pizzas are cooking you can stand 3 ft away from the vent and feel the hot air coming out horizonally. I am thing about putting a movable closure on the vent for greater control.
I leave the propane on the entire time I am cooking. I have discovered that even with the burner running the bricks start to cool. So, I have to either, give it a 10 minute rest/recharge between pizzas, or each pizza gets cooked a little longer. With 4 people in my family, I cook 4 pizzas, one after another. Give it a 20 minute break ( while scarfing down pizza) then cook as many more as needed. Average dough ball size is 200 grams ( 10 inch pizzas ). It's been a lot of fun to get the whole family involved in prepping and cooking pizzas this way.

TDVT, you keep getting me into trouble :eek: After reading your post I took the 3 inch piece I cut off, added a grate and a few legs. Now I can use charcoal ( dual fuel pizza oven :D ) and/or use this as a smoker. I'll try and post pictures tomorrow. I have to clean up my welds and make it look presentable again.


brokencookie 09-28-2008 04:23 PM

Re: Satellite / Portable Pizza oven
I thought I would revisit this topic for those who don't have time or space for a brick oven.
Today I made pizza for a family birthday celebration. I took my little oven to the park about 1/2 hr ahead of time to preheat. Using 260 gram dough balls I made 18 individual ( 10 inch ) pizza in about 75 minutes. Everyone created their own and then shared with others as they came out of the oven. I had bowls of ingredients availible for them to choose from and then guided them in creating their pizza. I used the FB standard recipe for dough and had the following ingredients ready.

Sauce ( 1 can tomato paste, 1 can tomato sauce, with fresh garden cut herbs)
Colby Jack cheese
Monzerella cheese
Smoked gouda Cheese
Freshly grated parmesian cheese
romano cheese
pineapple tibits
Canadian bacon
red, green and yellow peppers
fresh rosemary, thyme, oregano and garlic

The entire spread cost about $20 (US) to feed 14 people.

I have managed to create at least 9 new "pizza snobs". :D It is amazing how many people have never experienced a decent freshly made pizza. I think I am going to stencil "The little oven that could" on the side of my portable oven. :)

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