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Another water/steam question, please... - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community

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  • Another water/steam question, please...

    Building an vaulted system and I'm about 70% done with my (base, hearth, walls, dome about 90%), and I want to add a copper line for water/steam before I close it up. I do alot of indoor bread baking and use the ice-cube method, but want to ensure an adequate steam supply for my outdoor oven, avoiding ice cubes and/or water pans. I've researched this, but still have some questions/concerns, so here goes:
    My idea is to run a line along the oven walls from the front to the near back, sloping downwards, with a small 90* port into the oven near the back. My thought process is to add water to the line and it'll warm/steam as it slopes into the oven.
    Part of me says this will work, the analytical side of me says it'll turn to steam before it hits the oven and simply rise up the slope and out, with little to no steam making its way into the oven. (It may also be dangerous for the person adding water.) I guess I could add the water and then cap it, allowing a one-way exit for the steam, but am unsure.

    Does anyone have info on this, or a working system, perhaps with pictures? Everything I've looked up shows commercial systems (with no pictures) or posts like this, asking for information. Any help would be appreciated!

  • #2
    A little unclear on what kind of oven you have...a vault (half-barrel) or Pompeii (dome) style... How many loaves of bread are you looking at for a single oven load? I usually do 15-20 loaves (7-10/load), then some loaf style whole grain breads, then follow with my lower temp Italian, Challah, & Ryes. For all of my bakes, I've found the easiest and very effective method of steaming is to use a 1/2 gallon hand pump sprayer. Single pump handle on top, front facing nozzle, & a trigger---not the basic mister used as a squeeze/spray, squeeze/spray, ad-nauseum type. When you are loading >6 loaves of high hydration dough, the steam they produce will supplement whatever you introduce.

    I know commercial ovens have a steam option, but from what I've seen & read (and tasted), the added complexity and potential leaking problems incorporating a steam jet just isn't worth it for a "normal" home situation. As you noted, you want a steam input and you certainly don't want to accidentally inject cold water or have an accidental steam backup. On the forum there was a lady who used an old pressure cooker and connected the vent to a copper line & injection port. If memory serves, she set it up so that she could switch from injection to an outside the oven second pipe for venting after the bread steam operation. I found the link to her thread so maybe this will be better than my explanation...

    https://community.fornobravo.com/for...injection-test

    Hope that helps...as I stated, I'm pretty happy with my low tech, small garden hand-pump/sprayer.
    Last edited by SableSprings; 12-09-2017, 12:51 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
    Blog: http://thetravelingloafer.blogspot.com/

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    • #3
      Thank you for the reply. The pressure-cooker idea is pretty much what I wan to go with, so that answers my question. Injecting cold water just seems dangerous anyway.

      FWIW, it's a vaulted barrel, 30x32x16. Will be pizza/bread/meats/dehydration uses and hope to go from there. Not commercial bread by any means, but am very particular in my bread tastes and NEEDS!

      Thanks again!

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      • #4
        Try to install this pressure-cooker in a way that allows you to easily disconnect/disable without compromising your oven's integrity (also note that there are induction plate compatible units out there...no outside flame & combustibles isn't a bad idea..). It will be interesting to have you try the pump spray mister vs this steam system. If you found there was no benefit/difference between the two, you'd want to be able to remove (reasonably easily) the p-cooker.

        With the barrel vault only 32" deep, you could pick up a 2-3 gallon sprayer (with a brass wand & nozzle ) and it would allow you to load the bread and then use the wand to do a misting spray from the back to the front.

        Anyway, looking forward to what you do and any conclusions that are drawn from this steamer quest...
        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/

        Comment

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