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Old 08-29-2009, 07:54 PM
kebwi's Avatar
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Default Is used firebrick okay?

Hey, my first post!

Okay, I've been toying with the idea of a brick oven for months, but never realized there was a community for it. Now I've found a lot of helpful information. I've already got the Pompeii plans and I've done a little reconnaissance at Home Depot (they had virtually no high-temp products, fire brick, high-temp mortar, high-temp insulation, nothing).

Anyway, I have access to a load of used firebricks. They are a mix of Clayburn 2.75" thick and JBC 2.5" thick (both 9x4). Any opinion on these bricks? One vs the other perhaps?

In addition, does it matter that they are used? Is it like miles on a car? Will my oven just fall to pieces in a few years if I use used bricks?

They definitely don't have raw sharp edges and corners. They're quite rugged. I figure, for the dome, it doesn't matter if they're sharp as long as they don't fall apart. What are the properties/risks associated with used bricks?

Finally, I'm not sure they'll work for the floor due to their imperfections.

Thoughts?

Thanks.
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Old 08-31-2009, 05:55 AM
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Default Re: Is used firebrick okay?

I'm in your boat. I have about 155 whole fire brick that were used in a boiler. I got them from a local mason who builds ovens. He said they've been seasoned already in the boiler and won't crack on me. He said about 1/2 of new fire bricks will split at some point. It sounded logical to me, but I'd like to get some additional opinions too.
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Old 08-31-2009, 06:25 AM
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Default Re: Is used firebrick okay?

Quote:
He said about 1/2 of new fire bricks will split at some point.
Firebrick cracks are rare, most ovens crack at the mortar joints. Buy new bricks if you can afford them, if only for the crisp corners. You also don't know what the previous use was, you don't want heavy metal contaminated bricks.
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Old 08-31-2009, 07:33 AM
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Default Re: Is used firebrick okay?

Ah, okay. Thanks. I posted in an adjacent thread about half-thick bricks, new and sharp. There are 496 available and I'm building a small oven, 36" give or take. I would greatly appreciate your input over there:

http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f2/h...icks-7725.html (Half-thick firebricks)
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Old 08-31-2009, 09:24 AM
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Default Re: Is used firebrick okay?

Thanks for the advice. We have a brick manufacturer in town where I can get them new @$0.75 a brick. I think this is a really good deal.
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Old 08-31-2009, 10:43 AM
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Default Re: Is used firebrick okay?

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@$0.75 a brick. I think this is a really good deal.
Ding! Ding! Ding! I think we have a winner in the new firebrick category. I paid a buck three years ago and thought I was getting a bargain.
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Old 09-01-2009, 09:47 AM
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Default Re: Is used firebrick okay?

I wouldn't be opposed to recycling used firebrick for the dome if I was confident that they hadn't been exposed to heavy metals. On the cooking floor where most of the food contact is, I'd want to use new bricks. And perhaps out front, where sharp corners & edges have an aesthetic impact.

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