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Old 07-23-2008, 01:23 PM
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Location: Minnesota
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Default Is this project too big?

I have been an outdoor cook for many years and have always thought about an outdoor oven. We just bought a new house with a great back yard and I have been thinking about it again. I have the space and time.

My question is do I have the skills? I am generally very handy, have built a shed, done roofing, interior remodeling etc. I have VERY little experience with masonry. I can see that the steps are well documented with pictures so I have little question that I can follow directions and construct the foundation and the hearth. What concerns me is the actual brick construction of the oven itself. This looks, to me, much more complicated. I am aiming for a relatively low cost project, as opposed to buying a pre-fabricated oven.

Can this be done by someone with basically no masonry experience?

Any and all guidance is appreciated.
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Old 07-23-2008, 01:50 PM
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Default Re: Is this project too big?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mnshel View Post
My question is do I have the skills? ... Can this be done by someone with basically no masonry experience?
You'll get your experience as you build. I could have written your post about 12 months ago, but now I feel pretty confident about cutting bricks, mixing mortar, etc., just from working on my wood-fired oven. The foundation will give you experience with concrete and rebar, the block stand will teach you about bricks and mortar, etc. I would suggest reading the Forno Bravo instructions, perusing the posts on this forum, and perhaps picking up a library book or two on basic home masonry, and you'll be good to go. And if questions arise along the way, post them here and you'll get tons of advice from experienced oven-builders. If you're "handy," you can build one of these ovens.
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Old 07-23-2008, 02:08 PM
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Default Re: Is this project too big?

Shoot, even if you're not "handy", I think it can be done if you want. At least that's what I hope to show

Just keep reading this forum. It is packed with info.
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Old 07-23-2008, 04:19 PM
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Thumbs up Re: Is this project too big?

No, go for it.
You will learn as you go. If it doesn't fit, then you have lost only a littl mortar.
Choose wisely and you will build a great oven for very little dollars.
It really is easier than it looks or what you think it is going to take.
Remember that nothing ventured, nothing gained. You have all the help and assistance there that you will need.

Neil
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Old 07-23-2008, 05:05 PM
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Default Re: Is this project too big?

I agree with everyone else.

GO FOR IT!

We'll help you when you need it.

Dave
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Old 07-23-2008, 05:37 PM
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Default Re: Is this project too big?

I to like you have "home improvement experience" but no masonry skills (maybe I still don't ) but I was able to do the project.

You'll be fine - go 4 it.

I'm cooking but still need to put the finishing touches on it.

It does take A LOT of time. I know it pulled away from some family time so I'm taking a break before I put the finish.

Good luck

Dick
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Old 07-23-2008, 05:57 PM
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Default Re: Is this project too big?

Yep Go for it!!! We should have made this a poll....
I've been around here for a while and I've seen glorious ovens and not so glorius ones and I think (as long as you insulate under and over) they all cook a very fine assorment of pizza, bread, and the occasional turkey or goose.

It takes basic skills and a sponge.

You'll do fine!!!

Chrsto
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Old 07-23-2008, 06:59 PM
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Default Re: Is this project too big?

The only person I wouldn't urge to build their own oven is someone who can't lift heavy things. This is easy to test in the masonry isle of the local home center. Otherwise, basic skills and hand tools are all you need to get started.
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Old 07-23-2008, 07:32 PM
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Default Re: Is this project too big?

I say stop while you can don't do this project, don't spend the money or waist your time so long as your neighbor is building one next door with instructions for you and your friends to use it when ever you want...and he even supplies the beer........If not build one yourself you have the tools and its fun and frustrating and satisfying
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Old 07-23-2008, 08:54 PM
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Default Re: Is this project too big?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mnshel View Post
Can this be done by someone with basically no masonry experience?
For sure. I was that kind of guy - never had work with bricks at all.
It might be difficult, but mission is possible, definitely.

Good luck!
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