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Adhoc 36" Oven in Lake District, UK - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community

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  • MickyPizza
    started a topic Adhoc 36" Oven in Lake District, UK

    Adhoc 36" Oven in Lake District, UK

    HI everyone. Ive been reading and poring over these posts a while now and holding off posting. But I'm getting to the stage where experienced advice would come in useful. Let me introduce myself. Im Micky and I live in the UK in the Lake District and have been making pizzas nearly 15 years. Many said I should do 'MickyPizza' as a business and moving here, the opportunity presented itself. I got the council on the phone and they instantly signed me off with a 5 Star hygiene rating. Arghhhh....!!! Reality HITS! This had become REAL!
    I want to go mobile and do outdoor catering etc, but first I wanted to build my OWN oven in the back garden. Bit like the old Remington advert/commercial - "I liked these razors so much, I bought the company" ....ME :- "I like my pizzas so much, I built my own oven" etc etc.. Another plan was, once built, I would then commission myself to build them for others. Yeahhh... that plan was a bit screwed eh!
    Once this oven is built, I'll be providing them locally and build a name and reputation for myself. Plus its good practice for using and managing a wood fired oven when I go out there properly.
    But, enough caffuffle - onto the BUILD >>>

  • MickyPizza
    replied
    Thanks for the feedback SableSprings and cbailey Problem I was worried about was - Ive never HEARD that old adage about concrete pours! Ive heard many a time about "There are ovens with cracks and those who lie about the cracks" But seen nothing on the concrete slab as such. Im not worrying about it. The pizzas are coming out really good and I got a fantastic trip advisor review the other day.
    Vermiculite is looking very light in colour now and once its almost entirely that way, I think I'll be ready for my cement and slate rendering. What mix do I use of sand/cement and should I add anything in there to add elasticity (for cracking) or weatherproof related stuff?
    And thanks cory - I do have a central pillar of breezeblocks underneath already. I'd thought that far ahead. Your's looks Nukeproof in comparison mind! Your build is coming along great

    Leave a comment:


  • cbailey
    replied
    Micky,

    Like the others, I don't think you have anything to worry about. However, you might want to reinforce the hearth with a center support. I built mine in an "H" pattern too provide additional support in the center. If your stand is rectangular you could build a block support/center stand in the middle of your slab?

    Cory

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  • SableSprings
    replied
    Remember the old adage "There are two types of concrete pours...those that have cracked and those that will crack." As Doug said, the interior reinforcing (rebar/wire mesh) is the primary factor in the lateral/flex strength for any concrete slab...concrete is providing mostly compression strength. As to others with similar problems...there have been many folks that are concerned with minor cracks in their stand's concrete top platforms. Most folks have done some sort of external enhancement such as tile or stone on their stands and hearth, so you just don't see/notice that fairly common minor cracking.

    Relax and have a tasty, adult beverage to celebrate your excellent build!

    Leave a comment:


  • MickyPizza
    replied
    Originally posted by Karangi Dude View Post
    {"alt":"Click image for larger version Name:\timage_22364.jpg Views:\t2 Size:\t132.1 KB ID:\t412387","data-align":"none","data-attachmentid":"412387","data-size":"medium"}{"alt":"Click image for larger version Name:\timage_22604.jpg Views:\t2 Size:\t118.8 KB ID:\t412388","data-align":"none","data-attachmentid":"412388","data-size":"medium"}

    Micky,

    I would not be to concerned about the cracks it is only hairline you have put enough mesh in the concrete to hold it all together most concrete will crack at some stage thats why they put expansion joints in concrete slabs as I said the mesh is there to hold it all together
    Micky unfortunately people get the use of mesh and reinforcement wrong, mesh is for use when laying concrete on the ground and rebar is used when pouring a suspended slab most would use 1/2 inch rebar for a suspended slab and perhaps F7 mesh for concrete driveways etc

    Cheers Doug
    Thanks for the response Doug. Nothing else appears affected. Looking at my pre-concrete pour pic, there is actually doubled up metal mesh around the area of crack. Just caused a minor panic. Don't see anyone else on here with similar issues!

    Leave a comment:


  • Karangi Dude
    replied
    Click image for larger version  Name:	image_22364.jpg Views:	2 Size:	132.1 KB ID:	412387Click image for larger version  Name:	image_22604.jpg Views:	2 Size:	118.8 KB ID:	412388

    Micky,

    I would not be to concerned about the cracks it is only hairline you have put enough mesh in the concrete to hold it all together most concrete will crack at some stage thats why they put expansion joints in concrete slabs as I said the mesh is there to hold it all together
    Micky unfortunately people get the use of mesh and reinforcement wrong, mesh is for use when laying concrete on the ground and rebar is used when pouring a suspended slab most would use 1/2 inch rebar for a suspended slab and perhaps F7 mesh for concrete driveways etc

    Cheers Doug
    Last edited by Karangi Dude; 04-18-2019, 02:42 AM.

    Leave a comment:


  • MickyPizza
    replied
    Could anyone advise on my last post please? Should I be concerned at all? Cheers

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  • MickyPizza
    replied
    But then, Tues morning this week - woke to Disaster? ?

    My concrete hearth slab revealed a full length CRACK! Side to side, centre of slab, down full thickness.

    Some info - It IS all reinforced with wire mesh (see pics) there are no cracks in brickwork either on slate base walls or inside oven. Exterior of oven - no cracks. Underneath the hearth slab, whilst it gets pretty warm - crack does not show on underside. On top of concrete slab, I used some cement/mortar to place and level ONE calsil board (not two...wish I'd done so!) Then fireclay on top, with oven floor bricks on them.
    Concrete is 4 inches thick at max but as low as 3.25 inch thick (where the crack is on one side)

    The crack is hairline and appears to have closed up a bit more now. The concrete slab sat for weeks before any fires were lit. Boards and supports were under for a LONG while too.All but one of the support legs came out with little or no effort.

    Should I be concerned?

    Leave a comment:


  • MickyPizza
    replied
    Pizza Time!!!! Sat and Monday I got the oven in full blown pizza mode. Heated for an hour to hour and a half and started cooking. All came out amazing on the 2-3 day old dough!

    Waiting a few weeks or til May before I do the concrete rendering with slate, as recommended by UtahBeehiver

    But, after two or three good, long, hot firings - no cracks to the dome, internally looks good, Outside stays very very cool. At most it has got to 50c on the outside - after many hours post cooking.

    Leave a comment:


  • MickyPizza
    replied
    Over the rest of last weekend, I set about sorting out my chimney. My pal sold me a section of 6 inch flue pipe for £20 and I just had to figure out how to attach it. Once again, Im adhoc, making it up as I go along here. I had seen a post on here about cuts to the pipe to create bendable flanges. Great idea!

    When building the opening arch i'd deliberately left a squareish aperture to make it easier down the line when it came to sort of chimney situation. I used an old metal sign that I found in the garage made of road sign type metal and thickness. Thin enough to cut easily, thick enough to be strong for the baseplate. I fashioned a makeshift baseplate in sections and bolted it together. I drilled through it and through the thick piece of slate I'd spanned across the front of the dome. However it wasn't quite enough to stop it moving fore-aft, even with some pieces of slate mortared in over the arch on top of that baseplate section. So, I got a good sized piece of slate put on top to span the front edge
    That chimney is moving NOWHERE now! But not only that, it caps off the slate work and makes a neat looking finish I'd thought. I cleaned up some of the mortar splashes etc off the slate and took a couple of pictures.

    Leave a comment:


  • MickyPizza
    replied
    Listening to your advice, but also taking my own instinctive judgement into account, I fired oven back up to temp, but with a view to leaving it after an hour at full gas and not adding anymore wood to it.

    I cooked my first proper pizzas in it (I've done two others so far) but again this was first day dough, so results (in my opinion) were ok I suppose.

    During the whole heating process the dome was cool to the touch. Surely a good sign that the insulation, expecially the blankets, are working really well. I covered it back up, next morning outside of vcrete dome was warmish, and some moisture, but no steam, no cracks or anything.

    Leave a comment:


  • UtahBeehiver
    replied
    Even though the oven is cured, if you heat from cooling will still turn the water to steam and pressure will build up between the dome and the vcrete and possibly crack the vcrete too. So go slow. David S suggest placing a sheet of plastic over the dome while heating and if you see condensate there is still water in the vcrete. You see steam, you are heating too fast too quick.

    Leave a comment:


  • MickyPizza
    replied
    Originally posted by UtahBeehiver View Post
    You really need to let the vcrete dry out well before you do your render coat. This type of insulation contains a tremendous amount of water and when if sublimates to steam during the curing process the volume of the water vapor increase by a factor of 1500 that of liquid water. This will crack you insulation and/or render. It may take several weeks or a month for the vcrete to dry.
    Thanks for the advice!! I have it fully cured already and have hit the top temps. I will focus on the Chimney situation, and the rest of the building work around the rest of my plot. will start cooking in it this weekend, and the repeated fires should dry it out ready for an end of April rendering coat. Don't wanna see the final finish crack after all this work!!!

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  • UtahBeehiver
    replied
    You really need to let the vcrete dry out well before you do your render coat. This type of insulation contains a tremendous amount of water and when if sublimates to steam during the curing process the volume of the water vapor increase by a factor of 1500 that of liquid water. This will crack you insulation and/or render. It may take several weeks or a month for the vcrete to dry.

    Leave a comment:


  • MickyPizza
    replied
    Originally posted by david s View Post
    Iíve found that a 10:1 mix is about as lean as you can go whilst still having the mix workable. Also a handful of powdered clay for every 10 litres of vermiculite helps enormously to give the mix more stickiness. The correct amount of water in the mix is vital. Generally 3 litres for every 10 litres of vermiculite is about right, but this varies depending on the grade used. A fine grade needs more water. I always mix the dry ingredients in the barrow first then add about 1/3 of the water, mix well with a spade. A mixer tends to enrage the grains and the stuff sticks to the sides and blades too much, whereas a spade and barrow allow you to mix gently, see and feel the mix. Continue folding the 2nd third of the water in and break up any lumps that form with the back of the spade. Finally add the last third of the water and use the same technique to fold it in. The correct amount of water is when it just starts to pool in the bottom of the barrow, too much and it will wash the cement off the grains resulting in an inconsistent mix. Iíve been using this method for more than 0 years and have hand mixed tons of the stuff, works pretty well for me. Itís essential to wear rubber gloves if the mix is applied by hand, or youíll be sorry. Start from the bottom creating a ledge on top to take the next row. Hope this helps.
    Thanks for the tips david s - wish I'd seen them earlier haha. The 'ledge' at the bottom is probably the best way to go. Also fell foul of the leaks in gloves thing too!!!

    But... tonight, after ANOTHER 5 hours of doing it, I FINSHED!!! Now I need to think about how to attach my chimney pipe!? Then its a cement render with slate pushed into it. Is that just standard cement and sand?

    Leave a comment:

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