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Finally getting to building WFO in Calgary, Canada - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community

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  • Finally getting to building WFO in Calgary, Canada

    After years of patiently waiting to build a pizza oven, I have finally begun my journey. It has been a long while since I first found the plans on this website, and I've been anxiously awaiting ever since.

    I've had a plan that has been adapted into what i am beginning to build, which i plan to be a 36" oven. I've attached a simple mockup I created in Sketchup. The side with the oven opening faces an existing raised patio, thus why there are 6 courses on concrete blocks.

    I've been able to source quite a lot of my materials (locally) already, which is a pleasant surprise. I've recently been reading up on this forum about techniques and tools (planning to build an "indispensible tool").

    So far i have poured my slap, and setup a test of my concrete block structure. Perhaps tomorrow will allow me to cement it into place.
    I have a couple of questions so far:
    1. How long (days of work) should i expect to build the dome and front arch? (I still need to cut bricks... hoping to source a wet saw)
    2. To ensure i have enough for errors & spares, i purchased 200 firebricks (based on pompeii plans indicating 60 for floor and 120 for dome) All this brick stacked next to the house looks like WAAAY too much. Does a 36" oven really require 180 firebricks?
    3. The firebricks seem surprisingly soft, in that granules rub off from them easier that i would expect. Is there something needing to be done to them so that they stop losing granules? (i.e. so they don't end up in the food) These are what i've purchased https://www.brockwhite.com/catalog/m...rick/1-0455043 (only US link has product info sheet)

    I'm really excited about my journey ahead, and hope the fun of building my own oven lives up to my expectations. Here are some photos of the initial work.

    Thanks for reading,
    David in Calgary
    Starting Design in Sketchup (will sit next to 16" tall existing patio) Where we started, removing old landscaped bed Digging is complete
    Last edited by shanxk8; 06-01-2017, 07:23 AM. Reason: Created photo album & added better pics
    David in Calgary
    My Build Thread

  • #2
    David, welcome to the forum. My oven was a 39" and I sort of lost track of how many bricks I used.
    I can say I was also surprised at how granular (crumbly, sandy?) the firebrick was. I have not had any problem, at least that I have noticed, with brick dust/grains ending up in my food and if there were any I am pretty sure they will just pass right through as long as you are eating them and not breathing them. I hosed my bricks off after cutting them and that seemed to help dislodge any loose particles.
    My build thread
    http://www.fornobravo.com/community/...h-corner-build

    Comment


    • #3
      Thanks for the reply JR. I guess i will make an extra effort to make sure that i select the best bricks to make sure my floor is nice & smooth, that is probably the most important part.

      David in Calgary
      My Build Thread

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      • #4
        Originally posted by shanxk8 View Post
        Thanks for the reply JR. I guess i will make an extra effort to make sure that i select the best bricks to make sure my floor is nice & smooth, that is probably the most important part.
        That's what I did. After I placed my insulating board all was pretty smooth and flat, so I just picked bricks that were as uniform thickness as I could, and laid them without using any sand/clay mix.


        Hopefully by now you have decided what kind of arches you want (flat vs hemispherical) and what kind of bevel or taper you are going to put on your bricks if any. The devil really is in the details. I really enjoyed my build but there were many times I was pushed a little out of my comfort zone, which I guess added to the overall satisfaction when I got those first fires going.
        PS, your sketch-up photo came out really tiny and I could not make out any detail.
        My build thread
        http://www.fornobravo.com/community/...h-corner-build

        Comment


        • #5
          I will have to setup an album to upload my photos to, i'm not quite sure what happened with that first one.

          I have been using sketchup to model in more detail how i think my dome and arches will be setup. I want to use it to figure out the angles & brick sizes to cut. (I expect reality to work differently, but i can dream)
          David in Calgary
          My Build Thread

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          • #6
            That's fine to use sketchup to calc all your brick angles but DJ has already developed an Excel spreadsheet to help calc angles and brick numbers. Why reinvent the wheel, use your time and brain power resources elsewhere.
            https://community.fornobravo.com/for...ulator?t=18131
            Russell
            Build Link............... Picassa Photo Album Link

            Comment


            • #7
              Wow, thanks! In part i was thinking it would help me determine numbers of bricks in each course/size. I'll have to checkout that Excel file (can't go wrong with a great spreadsheet.)
              David in Calgary
              My Build Thread

              Comment


              • #8
                A couple observations, the link indicated that the fire bricks you bought were splits, ie 1.25" thick. This mean they are (split) or half the thickness of a standard brick 2.5". On the floor it may be a little thin and you should consider two layers of splits on the floor. You need to be able to load BTUs into the floor for extended cooking, the dome is okay due to the 4.5" depth. On the dome, it just means more courses. Make sure you make this adjustment on the spreadsheet. Based on splits, you may not have enough bricks since 200 splits are only 100 full size. If you linked the wrong spec. then this is a mute issue.
                Russell
                Build Link............... Picassa Photo Album Link

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by UtahBeehiver View Post
                  A couple observations, the link indicated that the fire bricks you bought were splits, ie 1.25" thick. This mean they are (split) or half the thickness of a standard brick 2.5". On the floor it may be a little thin and you should consider two layers of splits on the floor. You need to be able to load BTUs into the floor for extended cooking, the dome is okay due to the 4.5" depth. On the dome, it just means more courses. Make sure you make this adjustment on the spreadsheet. Based on splits, you may not have enough bricks since 200 splits are only 100 full size. If you linked the wrong spec. then this is a mute issue.
                  I had just used that link because it has details about the brick make-up, and i didn't notice that page was for splits. The canadian site didn't contain a spec sheet. I most definitely got full bricks, 2.5" thick.
                  David in Calgary
                  My Build Thread

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    <updated OP with photos, thanks Gulf for pointing out how>
                    I notice that others have created nice albums on here. Could anyone give me guidance on how to create those?
                    Last edited by shanxk8; 06-01-2017, 09:20 AM. Reason: Updated OP with photos
                    David in Calgary
                    My Build Thread

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      This site has an Albums section. The Help section at the bottom of the page has a link to managing albums on the site. Personally, I like Picasa. I started out with that before the forum got it's new format. I really like the options and the way it was set up. But, I don't think they are adding on new customers. I think that we old users are grandfathered in. Google Photos is what is supposed to be what is supposed to replace it. If it has any of the features that Picasa has/had, I would study on how to use it for a web album.
                      joe watson

                      "A year from now, you will wish that you had started today "

                      My Build
                      My Picasa Web Album

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                      • #12
                        Good on the 2.5" thick. Are you tall? I notice in the sketch up mock up that there are 6 CMU courses (48") so the oven height with hearth (4"), insulation (2" min 3-4" better) and oven floor (2.5") could be upwards of 57" +- to the cooking surface. Elbow height is a good rule of thumb.
                        Russell
                        Build Link............... Picassa Photo Album Link

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          It is sitting against an existing raised patio, which is ~16" tall.
                          Will make sense when I get the album figured out.
                          Last edited by shanxk8; 05-31-2017, 09:03 PM. Reason: units
                          David in Calgary
                          My Build Thread

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                          • #14
                            Yay, figured out the forum albums & have added some better photos to my original post
                            David in Calgary
                            My Build Thread

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                            • #15
                              More photos to get to the current state. Concrete has been poured & was much easier than I expected.
                              David in Calgary
                              My Build Thread

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