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I am getting ready to build my dream pizza oven

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  • I am getting ready to build my dream pizza oven

    Hello, I am here to get information from members here. I am not "new" to pizza ovens, as I have been doing my research for years. But I am new to this whole process of the ACTUAL build, .. and I am learning from YouTube on what to do, what NOT to do, .. etc. I have chosen the pizza oven of my liking (I kinda like the dome/igloo over the arch design but not by very much, by a 60/40 inside vote). I have completed the "infrastructure" of my build, meaning making sure that the area that the pizza oven is going to be located will not shift, or erode, etc. The foundation has yet to be made meaning the "concrete pad" upon which to start the pizza oven. I had to make sure of the frost heaving potential was eliminated since I live in a zone of having to consider the frost line so whatever I build will be "over-analyzed and "over-engineered". Better to be safe than sorry later due to the weight, etc. I have even placed three vertical concrete pilings using "sono-tubes" with re-bar sticking out in order to then place the anticipated square concrete pad. In other words, .. my pizza oven will be able to withstand an earthquake.

    Now, .. here are SOME of my Q's that I will be trying to get answers from members here:

    1. I have a natural gas feed within 10 feet of my concrete patio (that was intended for an outdoor kitchen BBQ, but I am smitten with an oven instead). I am thinking of buying a N.gas burner to have a combination oven of wood and gas. Other than convenience.. this would increase my costs by at least 2-3 grand (a natural gas burner element is minimum 1,500 for a good burner, plus a gas fitter services bill along with his permit would likely run around 6--$800) .. I hafta ask myself: is it worth the expense? The only advantage I see is less time to wait for the oven to get hot ... or if the oven is tending to cool down, and somebody wants one last pizza before the night is out, .. then the natural gas can be sparked on ... Any suggestions by those that HAVE a custom residential pizza oven with a combo wood/gas option would be appreciated

    2. I am in need to redirect the front vent to a central chimney to an "over-the-center-of-the-igloo" due to making clearance of my patio roofline. I have seen the series of three build videos of Lee McNeil on youtube so I know exactly how to do it

    3. By the same set of videos, I am thinking of adding a smoker side build that would be attached to the pizza oven to use the dome as a slow smoker .. which would be kinda cool.

    4. I have already purchase a real cool reproduction cast iron door to use as the mouth that would add charm

    5. I really like the idea of having a dome of normal brick to cover the first internal dome of firebrick ... really only for aesthetics ..... and to hide the front vent to locate it backwards to go directly over the centre of the igloo/dome.

    6. Here is one of my important questions ... is it possible to "accidentally" get TOO HIGH a temperature on the inside of a pizza oven .. I mean WAYYYYY too damn hot ? I have come to realize that this is a real stupid Q as this means the oven would get over 2000 degrees F and that is bloody unlikely. So, ignore this last question.

    7. there WILL be more Q's ....

    (I am surmising that there will be a moderator or two kinda laughing at my post but I am totally okay with that, since I am a newbie. Here is another kinda stupid Q:

    8. I was thinking of over-engineering the oven dome by adding optional metal tube tunnels. I could place one or two "tunnels" on either side of the mouth of the oven, ... each about 1" or 2" inches diameter, .. with a thick metal pipe from outside to inside of the dome, and each being about a foot or so long. The rationale is that I was thinking that these would be like port holes for added oxygen entry, and they can be capped off on the outside of the oven, ... or made to have an iris / diaphragm sort of thing (so they can be used or not used, meaning optional). This way, if I have the door shut from the reproduction cast iron door, there will still be a feed of air from outside to inside. Is this dumb? Remember, .. I tend to over-engineer things, just in case.
    Last edited by ogopogodude; 02-18-2019, 06:32 PM.

  • #2


    • #3
      I will take a stab at a few of your questions.

      1. For a NG combo oven I recommend that you buy a complete oven ment to be used in that manner. There is a lot that goes in to one of these ovens and if you get it wrong you just built a bomb.

      2. The chimney is I believe called a beaver tail.

      3. I know a few people have made doors with smoke pistols in them to use retained heat to smoke. The other way gets to be a lot more engineering.

      4. The door may be useable or it may not.

      5. I believe what you are talking about is the same as how Gulf did his oven. Basically a Igloo covered in brick. Not hard just need to plan it out.

      6. I have intentionally pushed mine as hard as I could and gotten it to like 1300F that took hours of burning to get there. You wonít accidentally end up that high no way possible. Also the bricks are rated like 2700F or more. So donít worry about that.

      7. Donít change the design by adding other tubes. It probably wonít help and may hurt your performance. There is scientific method to the design of the oven donít over think it. Read some build threads and follow ones you like.



      • #4
        Randy: Thanks for replying. I really do appreciate your input. Here in our municipality we have some very strange local laws. It has to do with previous forest fires as well as air quality. Apparently, citizens in our city cannot build open flame structures. This is soooo stupid. I mean ... really.... even the Neanderthals used fire to keep warm and cook their beasts of their hunt.

        The way to "get around" these stupid laws is to make say, .. a fire pit have a source of gas such as natural gas, or a propane tank situated several feet away or under the pit, and then it is considered gas powered ... even though one is putting wood into the structure. Weird, eh?

        So, .. on THAT note, the whole point of me putting a gas feed into the oven is to FOOL the firemen (or City inspectors) if ever they sniff around my yard, which is not really even a remote possibility. The only time they would do this is if a neighbour complains ... which would never happen in my area. My neighbourhood has about two dozen houses and over 3/4 of them have outdoor fireplaces that are wood fired. And I must say, .. in summer, the neighbourhood smells great when the people beside me start their outdoor fireplaces with the apple wood or cherry wood, or pear trees or whatever that they use to burn.

        These were built BEFORE the forest fires so they have been grandfathered as being "okay" and these residents cannot be told to rip them down. At the time, I was far too cheap to build my outdoor fireplace or fire pit or pizza oven but I did place foundations of vertical concrete sonotubes in strategic places when I was "ready" to place my outdoor fireplace and associated pergola.

        Now the (legal) Q is this: would MY soon -to -be outdoor pizza oven and my anticipated outdoor fireplace (that I am going to build no matter what) this season (because I am in a better financial situation than I was 15 years ago) be grandfathered in as well? The Google maps would clearly show that I have no outdoor fire making structures. ....

        But I financially PLANNED for it prior to the crazy forest fires that happened after my house build. But as soon as the structure(s) that I create HAS a gas feed, .. EVEN though I really have no inkling to USE the gas feed, .. then this structure is considered untouchable in terms of the city ordering it taken down. Weird , huh? I contacted my insurance people that I pay my annual premiums and they said that I can build the items that I want to build... as long as I tell them ,, then my rates go about 25% up annually which I am totally okay with .....

        Sorry for the lengthy post .. but sometimes I wish I was residing in the good old USA where one can do what they WANT on their land. In Canada, .. we got these dumb laws .. at least in our city limits. Other cities in our province don't seem to have these laws.
        Last edited by ogopogodude; 02-18-2019, 08:59 PM.


        • #5
          That is funny. I talked the my fire marshal and he said I was exempt from all fire bans as this was a appliance with a proper flue and spark arrester. Just be careful with the design. That is all I am saying.


          • #6
            I am a Web Designer in an online company that offers dog buggy allows you to take your favorite pet or dog out with you wherever you go. Don't worry about your dog or pet getting into trouble or a dangerous situation. Your stroller will keep your cat or pet away from larger dogs, or traffic.. Good luck.
            Last edited by Franz123; 04-21-2019, 10:10 PM.