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The door fits tightly at the oven chamber opening, so that you can:
1. regulate the fire by controlling air flow
2. cut the fire off if you want to get ready for retained heat baking
3. hold heat inside the oven for baking
I used a French precast oven while on vacation in Provence a couple of times, where the door fit the vent opening, not the oven chamber opening, and it was terrible. You really couldn't control anything. I tried to put the fire out, and the fire kept breathing in air from the chimney. You have to chuckle -- a french-made, Italian pizza oven.