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Minnesota Oven - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community


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Minnesota Oven

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  • Minnesota Oven

    Thought about building a oven for a few years and finally made the committment and dug up the backyard, no turning back now. Planning to build a 42" Tuscan style. The foundation is done, more than likely over built. Purchasing cement blocks tomorrow. I found the Forno Bravo plans to be at times confusing. My foundation is 80" X 94" and at this time planning for the stand to be 5 blocks deep and 4 1/2 blocks wide which should give me enough room on the hearth slab. Not sure why the plans call for cutting blocks to 12 ". More questions then answers. Been given a deadline of Oct 8th for complete in time for my wife's 50 birthday bash. Pretty sure it's going to be Pizza Hut pizzas. Always open to input.

  • #2
    Re: Minnesota Oven

    Welcome to the forum! One of your best time investments at this point of your oven construction is to look at the thread (linked below) in the newbie section put together by Lburou. Many of the links he lists have great photo documentation of a wide variety of builds and all have great advice in the text. Lots of excellent comments by other experienced oven builders follow that help explain and supplement the Forno Bravo plans.


    Make sure you plan on some sort of work space on the side of the actual oven, plenty of insulation, seating area for your guests, and a good path to the kitchen! Several forum members have built barbeque/fire areas to one side of the oven to expand on the possibilities for entertaining. Just as an FYI, my wife was not really excited about my project at first but now can't imagine not having it (same for several neighbors that enjoy our Friday bakes).

    Good luck -- your time window is a bit tight but it is possible to get a basic oven done by your wife's birthday...top/side insulation and finishing to be completed later. At worst case, instead of pizza from the oven you can have one of your oven's curing firings as an event at the birthday party.
    Mike Stansbury - The Traveling Loafer
    Roseburg, Oregon

    FB Forum: The Dragonfly Den build thread
    Available only if you're logged in = FB Photo Albums-Select media tab on profile
    Blog: http://thetravelingloafer.blogspot.com/


    • #3
      Re: Minnesota Oven

      Hello Applewood,

      I found some of the best info is from the WFOs on this forum. The FB plans are a good baseline and sometimes you have to read between the lines. Like SS says, Lburou's treasures is really a great place to start. Good luck with your build. Oct may be a stretch but not impossible. Look forward to seeing your progress.
      Build Link............... Picassa Photo Album Link


      • #4
        Re: Minnesota Oven

        Hi, Applewood:
        You have definitely come to the right place for know-how on WFO's. I agree that your deadline seems tight (depending on how much time you can dedicate to the project)...I broke ground in the late Spring and am still going, but I've not been at it 100%.
        And there are builds that have been done in a weekend, according to some threads on this forum.
        Best of luck! The joy is in the journey!


        • #5
          Re: Minnesota Oven


          I am up in the twin cities and travel thru Red Wing several times a year, I would love to stop by and see how you are coming along; and if you are in the twin cities please feel free to stop by for a look at my oven and if you give me a heads up we might even be able to arrange for some pizza or fresh bread. You will have your hands full getting it done before Oct 8. please feel free to contact me privately and we can exchange phone numbers.



          • #6
            Re: Minnesota Oven

            Exquisite. This is looking fantastic. I'm sure it'll be a real beauty when its all finished. Please up date.


            • #7
              Re: Minnesota Oven

              Hi Applewood! Welcome.

              I agree with Russell about the plans. They are fairly generic. There are a lot of variations in locally produced building materials (like concrete block sizes) so the plans can't be exact. Head to your building material store with a tape measure. Some time with a sketch pad, pencil and calculator (or some easy to use CAD software) will be time well spent.

              Make sure your hearth will be adequately sized to allow room for insulation on all sides of your oven walls.

              I'd forget about any deadlines; don't be in a hurry. Do it right and it will last for the next 30 birthday bashes.
              Ken H. - Kentucky
              42" Pompeii

              Pompeii Oven Construction Video Updated!

              Oven Thread ... Enclosure Thread
              Cost Spreadsheet ... Picasa Web Album