#1  
Old 04-13-2009, 06:00 AM
Serf
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: china
Posts: 6
Default My oven is outside in!

I'm in the process of opening a hotel in Dali, Yunnnan and decided to add a wood fire oven.

What Happened?!?!


I had to leave on a short biz trip (I was only gone for a day) and before leaving I left the construction plans for my wife and the mason to continue following. When I got back I was dismayed to find that they had decided without me and opposite to what the plans said to line the inside of the oven with fireclay mixture instead of applying it to the outside for insulation.

Their Reasoning

It looked better on the inside then the outside !

It will work the same way!



Im used to this sort of thing living in China for the past 8 years but man this gets my undies in a bundle since this was to be my first oven (was so looking forward to it). I tried firing the oven for a short time and it seems the fire clay lined areas are staying rather cool compared to the exposed firebricks.

My question is, will it still work? Am I screwed? Will the temp be limited in some way? Someone told me pizzas may not be a prob but i'm thinking bread and meats maybe. Am I over reacting?

Thanks for your advice,

David
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  #2  
Old 04-13-2009, 12:53 PM
Ken524's Avatar
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Location: Kentucky
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Default Re: My oven is outside in!

Hi David,

You mention:
Quote:
opposite to what the plans said to line the inside of the oven with fireclay mixture instead of applying it to the outside for insulation.
By "fireclay mixture" I assume you are talking about mortar? Remember, mortar is NOT insulation. Mortar adds thermal mass (the stuff you need to heat up). The only problem I can see is some mortar could possibly come off and fall, but other than that it just adds thermal mass to the oven which might be good for a high-use commercial oven. I think a few guys have mortared the inside of their ovens here, but I can't remember who.

As for firing, how long did you let the oven sit and dry before firing? You should let it sit a week for everything to cure then start with SMALL fires (200-300F) and slowly bring it up to temperature over several days of firings. There is a LOT of moisture in your oven from building. It will take several firings before all the moisture is driven out.

Check out the "Firing your oven" section for curing information: Firing Your Oven - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community

Do you have any pictures? We'd love to see your project!
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Old 04-21-2009, 06:58 PM
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Default Re: My oven is outside in!

Hi Ken,

Thanks for the fast replay and advice! Its greatly appreciated.

So I followed the curing instructions here and let it sit for 7 days and then fired it, gradually increasing the heat for another week.

Although when it comes to adding the insulation to the outside of my oven I might be in a bind. I am in a very remote part of southern China and i'm not sure what they have to offer along the lines of insulation blankets, vermiculite etc... are there any alternatives to be used besides the former? What is the most basic technique I could get away with?

Will post pics once it's completed

Thanks again,

David
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Old 04-22-2009, 06:13 AM
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Default Re: My oven is outside in!

Vermiculite and perlite are common agricultural soil additives. You should be able to get it in rural areas, although I must say, if you don't have any under your oven you may be in trouble already.
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Old 04-22-2009, 06:52 AM
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Default Re: My oven is outside in!

David,

Please tell us you insulated under the oven...
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Old 04-22-2009, 08:14 AM
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Default Re: My oven is outside in!

The mason used some sort of insulation board in between the base and the slab, he said it was safe and commonly used. This is China so you never know, also my command of the local language isn't the best so i'm not exactly sure what it is. Once again he guaranteed it was safe but isn't that what they said about milk powder, the tainted pet food and the rotting drywall?

Wish me luck and thanks again.

- David
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Old 04-22-2009, 12:12 PM
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Default Re: My oven is outside in!

Sounds like your oven is even more of an advenure than it is for the rest of us!

Let us know how it turns out. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for you anyway.
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