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Peculiar Smell When Cooling Down - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community

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  • Peculiar Smell When Cooling Down

    I've been curing my 30" refractory dome oven this week using only seasoned hardwoods & newspaper. The burning wood smells so good... even the neighbors have raved about it (luckily) and I haven't even put food in it yet! And the next day when I pull off the oven doors to get ready for the next fire, it smells so good! But at the end of the daily cures, after the fire has died & the oven begins to cool, I've noticed a slight, peculiar smell coming from the oven. I don't even know where to start describing it other than it's non-organic, almost faintly metallic-like. When I stick my nose in there & take a good whiff, it's stifling... a bit suffocating.

    Anyone experience anything like this???

  • #2
    Re: Peculiar Smell When Cooling Down

    It could be the oven coking - I had this when I was curing my oven, the wood wasn't combusting efficiently due, I assume, to the huge moisture content within the oven chamber. The dome was very black and it smelled like you describe. I think the material used in the construction also smells whilst it is curing too. All disappeared once the oven had been fired to full temperature a couple of times.

    Good luck!

    p.s. I cured my oven without using a door to let as much moisture escape as possible, it could even be your door curing if it is painted...
    Last edited by PerryPizza; 09-10-2009, 06:04 AM.
    My rustic oven;
    http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/p...oven-6770.html
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    • #3
      Re: Peculiar Smell When Cooling Down

      Originally posted by PerryPizza View Post
      It could be the oven coking - I had this when I was curing my oven, the wood wasn't combusting efficiently due, I assume, to the huge moisture content within the oven chamber. The dome was very black and it smelled like you describe. I think the material used in the construction also smells whilst it is curing too. All disappeared once the oven had been fired to full temperature a couple of times.

      Good luck!

      p.s. I cured my oven without using a door to let as much moisture escape as possible, it could even be your door curing if it is painted...
      You know, I suppose it could be the smell of steam. Now that I've had more time to think about it, the smell kind of reminds me of that. Just got a little worried when it took my breath away after sticking my nose in there.

      I only put the doors (unpainted, made from some fire resistant material) on when the oven cools to about 200-300 degrees. I thought I read somewhere this was the thing to do during curing to retain the heat longer. Should I leave the doors off all night & let it cool faster?

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      • #4
        Re: Peculiar Smell When Cooling Down

        I figured out what the smell is most similar to... a sauna! I guess that would make sense. So what is that smell from? Is it moisture... is that what extreme heat smells like??? Sorry... my 1st WFO!

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        • #5
          Re: Peculiar Smell When Cooling Down

          Does it smell a bit like a road paving site ?

          If so, it could be creosote build up.

          This will burn off in the final firing when your oven gets to 900 + F.

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          • #6
            Re: Peculiar Smell When Cooling Down

            Not so much like tar... it really smells more like a sauna.

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