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Hi From Adelaide Australia

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  • Hi From Adelaide Australia

    Hi everyone, technically Iív been on this forum for years but havenít visited since I joined.

    I run a small wood oven sourdough bakery (Dyerís Bakery) and sell primarily at farmers markets. I currently have a lowish dome (450mm) 1200mm round oven. It has performed well considering it was never intended as a full time commercial set up.

    Iím planning a significantly more professional and efficient oven and Iím finding it hard to get info on what I plan to do.

    Iíll make a new post in the appropriate section and start questioning the brains trust here.



  • #2
    Hi Dylan! So are you looking at building a white oven (instead of the black) or barrel vault (instead of Pompeii)? Most of the WFO bakeries I've visited here in the Pacific NW (USA and Canada) are white ovens to provide a cleaner baking chamber and the ability to better control heating (but are more difficult to build). The classic ovens in Europe were white ovens until the deck ovens and alternate heating sources became widely available...curious to find out what you're planning to build.

    There's some good info out there on the basic white oven design (brought back into use in Paris by Lionel Poil‚ne before his tragic death in 2002). I haven't seen any actual plans on the Internet, but as the "newbie builders" in this forum have shown, where there's a will/interest, there's a way to get it done (followed by improvements and streamlined methods )

    p.s. If you're interested, here's a link to a brief article on Lionel done by the Smithsonian magazine (published in 1995) when he first started shaking up the Paris baguette industry.
    Last edited by SableSprings; 12-26-2017, 06:07 PM.
    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


    • #3
      Thanks Sablesprings, I guess firstly, I have seen contradictory definitions of a ďwhite ovenĒ. Some have said there is no exhaust from a fire going through the baking chamber (rather in channels around it), while others have it as the exhaust from an external fire box going through the baking chamber.

      Mine me will be the latter. Somewhere between a French gueulard oven and a Scotch oven. Letís call it a grey oven. I will be able to fire in the baking chamber if I need more soaking heat but having an external fire box for ease of refiring

      It it will have a baking surface of 1500x1200mm (60x48Ē) so not huge by any standard but should have a capacity of 300 loaves a day at a stretch.

      There red will be a fire box under the floor at the front left with a gueulard throwing flame down towards the back and a flue at the front left.

      A low low arch or 350mm (14Ē) so nearly flat ceiling. And steam injection. The oven will weigh somewhere between 2500-3500kg (5500-7700Lb).

      So that is my plan in outline.


      • #4
        Sorry Dylema, I didn't mean to insult you by treating your initial question with a pretty basic, probing note. Lots of folks have not put in the time you obviously have doing your research, so it seemed important to establish what you had in mind for the new oven plan. Good to have another bread baker here in the community and the reviews on your bakery make me a little unhappy that I can't pop down to have a taste...what you've got going sounds terrific!

        I like your grey oven terminology over the oft used (and sometimes confusing) white oven version. With all the apparent discrepancies in the definitions on the Internet, I always just think of where's the main heating fire going to be as related to the cooking, in the chamber and white, outside the chamber. To me, simply having the option to fire without filling the cooking chamber with wood is the way to go and I'd always assumed the only practical build included a separate (relatively small) fire box that vented through the cooking chamber (so, you're right on target and we all should start calling them black or grey ovens ). I simply could not envision creating and working a large fire box that heated a completely isolated cooking vault with any sort of efficiency (stark white oven?). I kept thinking about all the nooks and crannies needed that would gather creosote & ash...

        I'm really going to be interested in what you do here and hope it will turn out to be a great success as well as a documented build (with lots of pictures) here for other folks interested in this concept.

        Loading and unloading the oven will be interesting, as well as the practical number of loaves per load you'll be able to handle.

        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


        • #5
          I have seen diagrams of ovens that have a series of channels for hot gas to travel in if you imagine them snaking under the floor and over the roof but youíre right the work to clean out such a maze would be a pain.

          I will have full a full width or 2 half width doors so I can use a bread loader. Therefore loading 20 or so loaves at a time.

          There are are obvious issues with a full width door especially heat loss but the fact that I can open the door load 20 loaves and close it less than 30 seconds later seems to out weight this negative. It currently takes 3-5 minutes to load 20-30 loaves.

          I can currently load a maximum of 30 loaves at a time. So with 60% more area and an easier shape I will hopefully load up to 50 loaves at a time.

          Iíll start a build thread soon.


          • #6
            I grew up in a country town that had a side drawn oven that survived into the 70s. The floods during those years and into the 80s in the north west NSW meant that that oven was producing bread when those from the big producers couldn't get thier bread out to thier customers. The little country town of Boggabri scotts side draft survived.
            A side draft oven which meant the draft went under neath and over the oven surface.
            There was no Wood burning smell unless you went outside.
            The bread was a "staple" food not a mass produced "cake"like is excepted now.
            How many bakers make thier living out of the pies and pastries rather than the dayly bread.
            Regards dave
            Measure twice
            Cut once
            Fit in position with largest hammer

            My Build
            My Door


            • #7
              Hi Dave, my great grand parents had a bakery and grocery from the 1920ís till 50ís and they had a 300 loaf scotch oven. I believe that this oven lís fire box vented directly into the baking chamber and there is reference to them scuffling the floor with old flour bags before baking.

              When tip top bakery started delivering sliced bread in the late 40ís/early 50ís my great grand father opened a lunch room instead and sold pasties. I think this story is replicated all over the country.

              Unfortunately the oven and any trace of the old shops are gone


              • #8
                Not to hijack the thread as such, but just in case anyone is interested, it is still possible to experience an old fashioned bakery if you don't mind a bit of travel. Not sure when they are opening this year.


                • #9
                  That is interesting. I bit a trip for us Yankees as well but I will keep it in the gray matter file just in case I get close to this area...........
                  Google Photo Album []


                  • #10
                    Does anyone have a link to the new topic that this guy was talking about? I am very much interested in the furnace he is talking about, so I want to know a little more information. Basically, I'm interested in if I can cook eclairs in this oven. Once I ate very delicious eclairs and since then I have been trying to repeat their recipe, but unfortunately I still can't do it. Some chefs say that you need to change the oven, but I'm just an amateur cook, so I don't really understand what I need to do and I still decided to listen to the advice about changing the oven. To be honest, I no longer have any options for how to improve my cooking process. Thank you in advance for the provided link, I hope this will help me.
                    Last edited by Ushuaya; 01-24-2021, 06:31 PM.


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Ushuaya View Post
                      Does anyone have a link to the new topic that this guy was talking about?
                      Can you be a little more specific?
                      Joe Watson " A year from now, you will wish that you had started today" My Build Album / My Build