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edschmidt 04-11-2007 04:40 PM

Alternate firebricks for domes
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This is a bit of a continuation from dmun's thread, but I thought it was kind of a new topic. I purchased about 6-8 skids of firebrick which were originally purchased to build a smelting furnace for about .20 cents each. They are differing diameter of tapers and ratings of firebrick. The lowest rated are high duty, the highest is the 90%aluminum silicate 3000deg. white brick. These are not insulating, in fact the tapers weigh 11#each and are smaller than a normal brick. Anyway here are a few pics of the bricks laid out into oven configurations, what do you think?

P.S. The last photo spans 5' and the bricks are 6" thick, I set a normal sized firebrick in the photo for comparison.

dmun 04-11-2007 05:24 PM

Re: Alternate firebricks for domes
Those are GREAT bricks. If you didn't want an oven that's five feet in diameter you could fudge the mortar joints a bit and still have a better oven than you could get with rectangles.

My guess is that the white high duty bricks are really hard to cut.

edschmidt 04-11-2007 06:36 PM

Re: Alternate firebricks for domes
Im sure your right, If I do use them I will probably do the barrel vault config, with low duty firebricks for the facing walls. Some of the white bricks are way to much of an angle to use alone, but I figured if I alternate between straight low duty brick, and the tapered bricks I could get not only the right dome size, but it would also be striped (sweet). I know the bricks are pretty dirty from sitting on the pallet, but they are a really bright white color which would come through after firing.

dmun 04-11-2007 07:20 PM

Re: Alternate firebricks for domes
I love alternating colors in arches:

RTflorida 04-11-2007 10:00 PM

Re: Alternate firebricks for domes
After spending every free minute I've had the past two weeks cutting firebrick, just to "come close" to what you have there.....I'm jealous.

GREAT FIND!!! Please, keep us posted (pictures) of what you intend to build. Its gotta be good.


Xabia Jim 04-11-2007 11:13 PM

Re: Alternate firebricks for domes
Ed, 6-8 slids...that's a lot of bricks!

Dmum, that mosque in Cordoba is awesome...a full city block long and all you can see is arches....a favorite! Do you know that in the middle they built a catholic church! No one would try that today!!


DrakeRemoray 04-12-2007 09:51 PM

Re: Alternate firebricks for domes
Not to throw water on the fire, but I understood that the high duty bricks were insulating in nature. Will they absorb and hold heat too?


carioca 04-13-2007 12:30 AM

Re: Alternate firebricks for domes
Hello edschmidt,

the configuration in the first two pics looks very good to me. I've been experimenting with a catenary curve and came up with a rather similar layout. (See my last two pics at Picasa Web Albums - carioca - Forno_del_gallo )



carioca 04-13-2007 12:36 AM

Re: Alternate firebricks for domes
Hi edschmidt,
further to earlier: if you decide to go for a barrel oven (though I don't know why you would :-) ) I can send you a 600k PDF version of an article in opur local Better Homes & Gardens mag describing the construction of just such a project...



edschmidt 04-13-2007 05:01 AM

Re: Alternate firebricks for domes
Wow cirioca, that is very impressive work. I actually already own a 36" diameter dome oven of my own design which I use at least weekly. There are pics of it in (dmun's geodesic oven thread)To be honest Im not yetsure what Im going to build from the bricks., I can never refuse a bargain. If I get better at making bread It would be cool to build the 5'X5' barrel design as a huge bread oven.

In response to the insulating question: There are insulating firebricks, which can be high duty, they are white and weigh approx. 4# each. These are extremely dense and weigh11#. The refractory expert I talked to said they are often used as a heat sink. If anything I would be a little worried about them giving up storing and giving up too much heat (longer heating times, longer wait to get to bread temps.

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