Author Topic: DIY WFO $40  (Read 9007 times)

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Offline Jet_deck

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DIY WFO $40
« on: September 13, 2010, 03:08:23 PM »
I'd like to hear ideas on how to mod a chiminea into a WFO. Specifically, to see if it is suggested that I build a partial dome inside (just above the mouth of the chiminea) to catch some of the heat, but still letting the exhaust go out the top -OR- to make a new dome and hearth on top of the chiminea and to cook up there.  :chef: :chef: :chef:
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Offline Ev

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Re: DIY WFO $40
« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2010, 08:15:11 PM »
Personally, and with all due respect, I think the closest thing to a WFO you're gonna get with a chiminea, is to order a pizza from your favorite take out joint, and burn the box in it when you're done eating. ;)

Offline Ronzo

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Re: DIY WFO $40
« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2010, 09:07:00 PM »
Personally, and with all due respect, I think the closest thing to a WFO you're gonna get with a chiminea, is to order a pizza from your favorite take out joint, and burn the box in it when you're done eating. ;)
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Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: DIY WFO $40
« Reply #3 on: September 13, 2010, 09:35:33 PM »
EV - you are funny... :-D  I bet with enough motivation someone could get it to work.

JD, I was at Sam's today and when I saw this grill, I thought of this thread.  I think it's possible to turn this thing into a WFO. 

-The grates are strong enough to hold up firebricks.  I could even put firebricks along the back and side walls.
-The lid seems to be about 12" in height.  It is even arched so I'm thinking the coals would go towards the back and the fire would arch forward.  I could also put about 1" of refractory cement into the lid.
-I could cut a slot out where the handle is for loading and turning a 12" pie.  I could relocate the handle above the slit for opening.  The oven would only be open for fire management (spreading coals and adding wood).  It would take very little time to recapture the oven temps with refractory cement in the lid.
-I could even put some type of insulation under the hearth.  There are 2 charcoal grates underneath the main grates that move up and down.  I could place the insulation here and move them all the way up so they would be under the hearth. 
-I could even leave a spot on the main grate open far left or right and secure a LP burner head to add additional heat to the inside if needed.

Questions:
-what type of refractory cement would I use?  I know very little about cement.  Is portland cement best?
-What type of insulation under the hearth?
-Do you guys think this would work?
-would the 2 small vents on the sides plus a vent up front be enough to exhaust the smoke?   
-would having the fire arch from the front to back deposit ash on the pie? 
-How far do you guys normally cook away from the fire?  There seems to be enough room to spread the coals towards the side and some towards the back but space is somewhat limited.  I'll have to measure out the distance from front to back minuse 1.5" for the backwall firebrick.

Pics...

Sorry for hijacking your thread JD. 
« Last Edit: September 13, 2010, 09:47:52 PM by Jackie Tran »

Online scott123

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Re: DIY WFO $40
« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2010, 10:10:55 PM »
JD, I think you can do it.  Not on top, though- inside the firebox. Just build a wall-less box inside the box- a flat firebrick hearth, 13" kiln shelf supports and a single piece ceiling, preferably made from something thermally strong, like soapstone or cordierite on a thin steel slab (to protect it from the flame).  Burn the wood on the hearth, sweep it aside and you should be good to go. The square flat ceiling might not be ideal for draft, but I think with your setup, it should draft fine, as long as the ceiling is high enough.

Chau, I wouldn't use that for a WFO. The refractory probably won't stick to the inside of the steel and the wheels are guaranteed to fail with the extra weight.

Offline Essen1

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Re: DIY WFO $40
« Reply #5 on: September 13, 2010, 10:22:45 PM »
Chau,

With a little bit of planning you could turn this BBQ into a state-of-the-art pizza oven.

But I saw that you might want to get a WFO so I'd save the cash for that, imho.
Mike

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buceriasdon

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Re: DIY WFO $40
« Reply #6 on: September 13, 2010, 10:54:30 PM »
A few years ago some friends of mine here in Mexico asked me to help them work out a way to bake pizzas in chimineas they wanted to sell here in the state of Nayarit. Produced elsewhere in Mexico. First off chimineas are by nature very lossy, most heat goes straight up the chimney. Quaint, yes, efficient, no. I came up with a stand for a tile to bake on that could be assembled inside the chiminea as I had concerns that drilling holes in the ceramic could lead to cracking and nothing I devised could be inserted inside because of the size of the opening. I found the pizzas to be difficult for the average person to bake correctly and the cost of of the stand was more than they thought they could get out of the unit combined with what I felt was a rather steep price to begin with. So my consulting days were over, though I was a bit perturbed they included my dough recipe in the cook book that went with the chiminea. Didn't make any sense to me to include a recipe that couldn't be used, but oh well. BTW, they have stopped trying to sell them.

Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: DIY WFO $40
« Reply #7 on: September 13, 2010, 10:59:04 PM »
Some good ideas to think about there Scott.  You're right, I'm not sure the wheels would hold up either.

As far as keep the refractory cement in the dome.   What if I put some screws or blots through the lid and wire some chicken wire to the inside.  Do you think the refractory cement would stay put then?  I just need maybe 3/4".   The other concern is that the wimpy hinges wouldn't hold the lid especially with cement in them.  

I do like your idea of build the oven inside the box.  The only concern or tricky part is how to support a heavy hearth below.  The wimpy charcoal grates below aren't strong enough?  Maybe buy an extra set up grates like the ones above and build supports down below?  Like a 2 shelf system right?

Then, how would I load the pies?  Through one of those charcoal doors?  I'd have to measure the door to see if it's big/wide enough but by the looks of it, I'm guessing not.  

Mike I have been contemplating a poor man's WFO (similar to the mortarless oven's) or a real authentic prefab one.  That is until you reintroduce your disk mod for the LBE.  Now I have to go back and do some thorough testing again.  Thanks.   ;)  If that works out well, then I'll be happy to stay with that.  If not, this idea could work.  But getting a $200 home made Jimmy rigged oven to work well maybe a few headaches.  At least that is the assumption.  Hell, who knows it may work great!  Just tossing around the idea and hoping to get some brainstorming going.  

If I have time this week, I may swing by and take a measuring tape with me and get some dimensions just for giggles.  

Offline Jet_deck

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Re: DIY WFO $40
« Reply #8 on: September 14, 2010, 03:29:52 AM »
Personally, and with all due respect, I think the closest thing to a WFO you're gonna get with a chiminea, is to order a pizza from your favorite take out joint, and burn the box in it when you're done eating. ;)

No, seriously, tell me how you feel. As an example of constructive criticism, please point me in the direction of where this particular method failed. Please post pics of your WFO, I am curious as to how they are built.
Her mind is Tiffany-twisted, she got the Mercedes bends

Offline Ev

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Re: DIY WFO $40
« Reply #9 on: September 14, 2010, 06:40:02 AM »
Sorry, I didn't mean to sound like a p***k. That was a few brews talking. >:D
The post above from buceriasdon pretty much sums it up. I just don't see any way to capture and hold enough heat to properly cook a pizza, using a chiminea.
 My wfo is here. http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,11155.0.html
And a portable oven I built is here.http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,10071.0.html, starting at reply #6


Offline Jet_deck

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Re: DIY WFO $40
« Reply #10 on: September 14, 2010, 12:11:17 PM »
The post above from buceriasdon pretty much sums it up. I just don't see any way to capture and hold enough heat to properly cook a pizza, using a chiminea.
 
  I can think of several ways.

Your WFO is beautiful, and great craftmanship to boot.  Functionally I do believe a chiminea will work for a WFO, it can't be that hard to make it work.  Hell, ive even seen an Ugly Drum Smoker (UDS) converted into a pizza oven.
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buceriasdon

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Re: DIY WFO $40
« Reply #11 on: September 14, 2010, 03:58:18 PM »
A google search will turn up chimineas that have a grid in them for cooking on. They are different in their construction and their size, as they are larger in diameter than what you show in your pictures. Metal is much easier to work with than ceramic really can't compare the two.
Don

Offline Jet_deck

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Re: DIY WFO $40
« Reply #12 on: September 14, 2010, 04:21:11 PM »
..... Metal is much easier to work with than ceramic ....
Don

Thanks Don, agreed.

Chicken wire, and ferrocement.  Where is everyones sense of adventure?
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Offline Tscarborough

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Re: DIY WFO $40
« Reply #13 on: September 14, 2010, 09:06:58 PM »
I think it is a matter of wasting a dollar to save a dime.  If you want to do it for fun, go for it, but if you want a functional cooking appliance, forage, scavenge, and build something that will last and work.  I saved materials for about 5 years, and spent less than 200 bucks on mine, and it ain't no chiminea.

Offline jpc

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Re: DIY WFO $40
« Reply #14 on: September 14, 2010, 09:10:17 PM »
I think it is a matter of wasting a dollar to save a dime.  If you want to do it for fun, go for it, but if you want a functional cooking appliance, forage, scavenge, and build something that will last and work.  I saved materials for about 5 years, and spent less than 200 bucks on mine, and it ain't no chiminea.


Methinks you should have spent a few bucks on learning how to use a level... Your rows are anything but!



J/K.  Great looking work!!!

Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: DIY WFO $40
« Reply #15 on: September 14, 2010, 09:11:38 PM »
I like your advice Tscarborough.  Along the lines of do it right, do it once...

Offline Tscarborough

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Re: DIY WFO $40
« Reply #16 on: September 14, 2010, 09:26:35 PM »
Level!?  I don't need no stinken level!

I did that just to irritate all of my mason friends.  It drives them crazy, but was 10 times the effort of laying it level (Everything is plumb and square, and level where it counts though, you bet)

Offline jpc

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Re: DIY WFO $40
« Reply #17 on: September 15, 2010, 01:04:44 PM »
What is that in the keystone?  Do you have a close-up pic of it?  Looks interesting...

Offline Jet_deck

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Re: DIY WFO $40
« Reply #18 on: September 16, 2010, 12:29:02 PM »
chiminea insert, will it work? 
« Last Edit: September 16, 2010, 12:31:17 PM by Jet_deck »
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Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: DIY WFO $40
« Reply #19 on: September 16, 2010, 12:42:45 PM »
Yes it should work fine JD.  I would loose the pizza stone and double up on the FB hearth and you should be good to go. 

As far as the ceiling, I would use something other than FB.  I would use a steel or iron slab top with FB.  The FB will help prevent lost of heat while the metal will help reflect heat better.  I may be wrong but that's how I would do it. 

I would also limit the ceiling height to 2-2.5" max.  That's what I would start out with and make adjustments as needed.

Chau