Author Topic: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas  (Read 32860 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline pizzablogger

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1334
  • Location: Baltimore
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #25 on: July 10, 2011, 03:12:09 PM »
From the field notes....

The flat steel directional plate is a problem. Still only stone temps of 390 after 25 minutes preheat. I just gloved up, pulled stone out, ditched the plate and put stone back in. We'll see....
"It's Baltimore, gentlemen, the gods will not save you." --Burrell


Offline pizzablogger

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1334
  • Location: Baltimore
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #26 on: July 10, 2011, 04:07:17 PM »
Colossal fail!   :(

3 pizzas, 2 inedible and hit the trash can. One pushing burnt on the bottom while being as pale as a Siberian hooker's derrier on the top crust.

Conclusion: Better ceiling configuration needed, big time. In addition, test pizzas should be a simple marinara. No need to attempt pizzas with several dollars of ingredients on them only to have them thrown away!

Back to drawing board....
"It's Baltimore, gentlemen, the gods will not save you." --Burrell

scott123

  • Guest
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #27 on: July 10, 2011, 04:18:35 PM »
Kelly, I'm sorry to hear that it didn't work out for you.

You mentioned the bottom of one of the pizzas almost burning.  Was this one of the later pies? It's safe to assume that you're cranking the burner to high during the bakes, right?  Any idea of the beginning temps and end temps of the hearth?

Without a deflector in place, multiple pies are almost impossible, because the full blast during the baking of the first pie drives up the hearth too much so later pies burn. If you have an idea how much the hearth goes up during the bake, though, you could, on the first pie, pre-heat it a little lower to accommodate this bump. That way, at least you're insured of getting one good pie.

Offline pizzablogger

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1334
  • Location: Baltimore
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #28 on: July 11, 2011, 12:39:31 PM »
Wow, I was texting my dad a lot (who is a pizza nut) while the LBE was pre-heating and thought I included that info here as well.

Scott123, it wasn't you, it was user malfunction. There was no angled deflector plate like you recommended in this bake.

I did a trial run with no flower pot or saucer and a much larger opening on the flat steel deflector/directional plate (placed immediately under my stone) yesterday. After a long enough time it was obvious the stone was not getting enough heat because of the steel plate. So I got frustrated, took off the stone, ditched the plate (hot!) and put the stone back on......but I forgot to put the flower pot back in to provide some type of relief from the hellfire. Too much heat in the stone indeed.

So I have got half of a cardboard template for the angled deflector Scott123 recommended complete and will try that out.

Also thinking, what if a cast iron skillet was suspended from the ceiling...almost like a "heat stamp". Meaning if you cook, for example, a 12" sized pizza, you suspend an 8" or so (maybe 10"), inverted, cast iron skillet/griddle into the ceiling. The sloping sides of the cast iron would almost be like a "stamp" reaching farther towards the interior of the pizza and away from the rim/lip/cornicione.

This would require pretty accurate launching of the pizzas, and kind of locks you in to a specific size pie, but I would imagine the airflow would hit the side of the skillet, which would act as an airflow director kind of like in Chau's or Mmph's LBE setups...and the entire cast iron skillet would be radiating heat over the pizzas and especially to the inner part of the rim/lip. Theoretically, this may save fuel, as less heat may be needed to cook a pizza in as fast a time?

Finally, does the side vent (and access to colder air outside the oven) play the role of primary driver in the way the air flows...meaning the air gets above the stone towards the back of the grill and is immediately drawn toward the vent.....or does the fast moving air in fact "bounce" when it hits the artificially lowered, flat ceiling created by a pizza pan, stone or whatever is screwed to the lid?

If so, wouldn't a scoop be better? Maybe Chau's setup, where the air gets to flow along the curvature of the dome for a least a short moment, helps him get good bakes with relatively little mass in the ceiling (just ash catcher and airflow director)?

Just random thoughts. Pic (not to scale):

A: Lowered ceiling (pizza pan, stone, etc)

B: Inverted cast iron skillet

C: Some type of scoop to reduce "bouncing" and provide more of a straight shot out of oven.
« Last Edit: July 11, 2011, 12:41:08 PM by pizzablogger »
"It's Baltimore, gentlemen, the gods will not save you." --Burrell

Offline pizzablogger

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1334
  • Location: Baltimore
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #29 on: July 13, 2011, 12:19:44 PM »
Another quick test set for tonight. Have not made a same day dough for years now. Made dough for 2 pizzas....will only be 8 hours all-in. I had to make a best guess on the formula as I am in a rush.

I'm more interested in air-flow & temperature differentials at this stage of the build anyway. Hopefully tonight's experiments will point the way to a clearer next step and repeatable success in the not too distant future. I need some more spare time damn it!  :)
"It's Baltimore, gentlemen, the gods will not save you." --Burrell

Offline Jet_deck

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 3054
  • Location: Corpus Christi, Texas
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #30 on: July 13, 2011, 01:42:55 PM »
I would like to see a picture of it in its current state.  What does the galvanized look like now? Has it turned smokey and white?

How large is the hole in the bottom of the egg, where the burner gets its fresh air?
« Last Edit: July 13, 2011, 01:46:25 PM by Jet_deck »
Her mind is Tiffany-twisted, she got the Mercedes bends

Offline pizzablogger

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1334
  • Location: Baltimore
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #31 on: July 13, 2011, 02:24:27 PM »
I would like to see a picture of it in its current state.  What does the galvanized look like now? Has it turned smokey and white?

How large is the hole in the bottom of the egg, where the burner gets its fresh air?

Will get a picture up later when I get home.

The galvanized almost looks like a clear lake of water, but pebbles have been thrown into the water, waves rippled out from the pebble and disturbed some portions of the lake and then a picture was taken at that moment. That is what it looks like.

The bottom of the egg has a 12" hole cut out, which now that I compare is wider than some LBE set-ups. User Mmmph's bottom hole is about the same diameter as the black support ring of the SB-10 Cajun Cooker...about 10" in diameter.
"It's Baltimore, gentlemen, the gods will not save you." --Burrell

scott123

  • Guest
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #32 on: July 13, 2011, 04:56:30 PM »
Kelly, take lots of temp readings before and after bakes of both the hearth and the ceiling. You might also, a la Chau (and I'm sure others), try a little smoke test by putting a stick through the burner hole and seeing how well the smoke makes it to the top vent. Lastly, I'd also try putting a stick in front of the vent while the burner is going full blast and, after a few seconds taking a temp reading of that.

The inverted cast iron skillet is a pretty good idea, as long it's a relatively low profile skillet such as a griddle.  If the walls on the skillet are so high that you have to lift the ceiling at all, that would be inadvisable.

In the same way that the slant helps to direct the heat toward the back wall, I think a curve should help direct the heat better up and over the pizza.  I'm not 100% you'll need it, though.

Offline pizzablogger

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1334
  • Location: Baltimore
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #33 on: July 14, 2011, 09:46:37 AM »
Well, I did another trial last night and.....fail.

I got a Lodge 10.5" cast iron skillet, which Mmmph uses in his LBE and tried using that as the deflector down below....being that I have not had enough time to finish the cardboard template (and eventual cutting of the steel deflector) for the angled deflector plate mentioned earlier in this thread.

I also installed a new 13" pizza pan up against the lowered ceiling (created by a 19" pizza pan), and cut the pan so it would create a downdraft onto the pizza.

The pizza stone was put directly on the grill grate, with nothing else under it (the stone is now flush with the top of the grill)

Once again, after 20 minutes, the stone temperature readings were in the 380 to 395 range. Too long as even on the minimal setting, having to wait 30-40 minutes to reach a stone temp of 650-675 is eating through some propane. So I put the heat up to half strength. After another 10 minutes the stone was only up to 550. It was pitch black in my "backyard" and getting late...I was out of time so I launched a test pizza and jacked the heat to max.

Looking closely through the front vent from a distance and shining a light into the oven, I noticed I had bent the airflow directors of the 13" pizza plate too far downwards....they were nearly touching the pizza and likely blocking far too much of the airflow from moving over the pizza and out of the oven. I need to shorten the length of the bent pieces of the pizza pan to allow more air to flow over the pizza and out of the front of the oven.

So, where as last time I had too much bottom heat without any type of deflector, this time I had too little bottom heat and not enough top heat either.  I need to work on the airflow director....but on the second test pizza there was a strange smell coming out of the oven. I couldn't tell if the cast iron skillet was maybe melting or if the aluminum pizza pan deflector was melting a bit.

Starting to become uncomfortable with the whole aluminum pizza pan parts in the ceiling from a safety perspective. I may just try a large diameter 20" round by 1/2" thick cordierite kiln stone with a thin, 14-16" skillet affixed under that in the middle directly over where the pizzas cook and see what that does.

Two more pizzs, both wound up in the trash can. Back to it! :)

Rouch conceptual of set-up from last night's trial run.
« Last Edit: July 14, 2011, 10:08:30 AM by pizzablogger »
"It's Baltimore, gentlemen, the gods will not save you." --Burrell


Offline Mmmph

  • Lifetime Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1032
  • Location: ILM NC
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #34 on: July 14, 2011, 12:38:40 PM »
Sorry I haven't chimed in, as my name has been mentioned here. I moved to Wilmington NC recently for a new job and my time is limited. I haven't even used my LBE since May.

Kelly...Wow, I don't understand your probs. Your setup is so close to mine now and temps are not a problem for me at all. I'm questioning your regulator...

Question: When you crank it up, does it sound like a rocket blasting off?

When I turn on the gas to its lowest setting and drop the dome, I can hit 600 on the stone in 25-30 min. If I'm not careful (even at low gas setting) my stone can go 800 within an hour. To test, I ran it once at medium and hit 950+ in 30 minutes. I've mentioned that "If I find the the stone is getting too hot, I just lift the lid and set it back down at a rakish angle, a la Frank Sinatra's fedora, to allow some of the heat to bleed off into the atmosphere."

See http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,4753.msg129495.html Reply 1039

Mysterious.
Sono venuto, ho visto, ho mangiato

Offline pizzablogger

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1334
  • Location: Baltimore
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #35 on: July 25, 2011, 10:11:31 AM »
The parade of lackluster pizzas continues.

Heat wave. Had a brown out Saturday night. Got hotter than hell and I went downstairs after a fashion and the temp gun said the dough balls were at 86F at 3:00am or so. Power came back on and I put them in the fridge for about two hours.

Took the balls out in the morning to proof. Went grocery shopping and....the battery in my car dies....and of course I lent my neighbors my jumper cables yesterday. Murphy's Law.

So the dough was pretty much going to the crapper by the time I got around to it.

After 45 mins of pre-heating at low temp, the stone was still at only 420F, so I jacked the heat to get it to 600F.

Three tests last night. All simple, cheap test pizzas as I am still not dialed in.

1. First Pie (Marinara). Launched at 600F, immediately opened the dump valve to max. Top was ready to be pulled, bottom super white-pale. Cook time 3:52. Bahhh.

2. Second Pie (margherita-ish). Launced at 738F, then dump valve cranked. Bottom ready to be pulled, top crust as pale as all get out. Cook time 2:26. Bahhh

3. Third pie (simple. sauce & parm-regg post bake). Launced at 650F and crank. A lot closer to bottom and top being done at same time, but cook time too long at 3:28. All three pies had the very pale uncooked look on the inner cornicione.

Next step. Rework #3 of ceiling airflow director and replace 19" pizza pan in ceiling with 20" pizza pan to drop ceiling another 1/2 inch or so.

Very frustrating, but fun. It's like taking several steps back from my broiler bakes in the oven in order to eventually go forward.

The pics. More for my inspiration to get better ASAP!
"It's Baltimore, gentlemen, the gods will not save you." --Burrell

foolishpoolish

  • Guest
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #36 on: July 25, 2011, 10:30:20 AM »
K,

You're going to have to tell me which dictionary you use because lackluster means something completely different in my book. Those pies look @#$%ing great.

To give you some perspective, I've just gone online and ordered the HK equivalent of D@m!n#'s and in the spirit of complete honesty:- it's not even the first time I've done it since I've been here  :o
So - please keep pumping out those pies, lackluster or not! Hope all is well with you. My best to you and yours.

Cheers,

T
« Last Edit: July 25, 2011, 10:40:07 AM by foolishpoolish »

Offline Villa Roma

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 498
  • Location: Edmond, Ok
  • In search of the ever elusive leopard spots!
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #37 on: July 25, 2011, 10:54:19 AM »
Try this.

   Villa Roma

Offline Mmmph

  • Lifetime Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1032
  • Location: ILM NC
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #38 on: July 25, 2011, 11:35:58 AM »
Again, I question the regulator (or needle valve).

I've read that some SP10s have shipped with 10PSI regulators. This will only pump 55K BTU.

Mine, when running at its lowest will still hit 600 on the stone in half an hour.

It just feels like your setup is too close to mine to have such a disparity.

Sono venuto, ho visto, ho mangiato

Offline pizzablogger

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1334
  • Location: Baltimore
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #39 on: July 25, 2011, 11:46:22 AM »
Thanks T. Believe me, if I would have posted an upskirt of the marinara so you could see how bone white it was (not any spots at all....or even a hint of one. Like snow) and a more direct top shot of the margherita-ish (that white on top), you would see why I said lackluster. Although I'd take either over Pizza Hut!

Thanks for the suggestion VR. Will give it a shot.

Mmmph, are the 10psi regulators a different color than the 20psi that was supposedly came with mine? Could you post a close-up shot of your regulator? Thanks! I have no idea how to tell if I got a 10psi regulator or not (probably says so on the regulator).

Interestingly...and I didn't tinker with it until it was too late at the very end of the last bake.....my large metal grill spatula barely fits through the side vent, but it does. If I had a longer handle, I might even be able to rotate the pizzas with the lid in place...I certainly would be able to "dome" pizzas. Hmmnnnn........
"It's Baltimore, gentlemen, the gods will not save you." --Burrell

Offline Mmmph

  • Lifetime Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1032
  • Location: ILM NC
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #40 on: July 25, 2011, 11:51:41 AM »
Mine is identical to this one on amazon.com. Red regulator, green twist knob, braided steel hose.

« Last Edit: July 25, 2011, 12:02:16 PM by Mmmph »
Sono venuto, ho visto, ho mangiato

Offline Jet_deck

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 3054
  • Location: Corpus Christi, Texas
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #41 on: July 25, 2011, 12:20:54 PM »
.....my large metal grill spatula barely fits through the side vent, ....


Is there even any heat coming out the side vent or is it all going out the bottom?
Her mind is Tiffany-twisted, she got the Mercedes bends


Offline pizzablogger

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1334
  • Location: Baltimore
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #42 on: July 25, 2011, 01:23:26 PM »
Oh, you'll burn your hand if you put it next to the side vent while the burner is on full tilt.

"It's Baltimore, gentlemen, the gods will not save you." --Burrell

Offline pizzablogger

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1334
  • Location: Baltimore
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #43 on: July 26, 2011, 11:48:58 AM »
Mmmph, my regulator looks the same as yours. Same green connector, red regulator and braided hose.

Pics....
"It's Baltimore, gentlemen, the gods will not save you." --Burrell

Offline Mmmph

  • Lifetime Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1032
  • Location: ILM NC
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #44 on: July 26, 2011, 12:19:20 PM »
Strange. Looks identical.  ???
Sono venuto, ho visto, ho mangiato

Offline pizzablogger

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1334
  • Location: Baltimore
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #45 on: July 26, 2011, 12:53:38 PM »
Mmmph, I think one potential area may be that the bent flaps of my current airflow director is not deep enough/long enough.

I made some cuts into and bent the 13" pizza pan I had initially posted pics of so that it was more like your set-up. However, I made the cuts too deep and the deflector was too long....nearly touching the pizza. So I circular filed that pizza pan.

I recently made a more simple deflector from galvanized sheet metal with flaps that are about 1.25" long (measured from false pizza pan ceiling downwards).

You can see a pic below. I am going to drop the ceiling so it is almost flush with the top of the side vent first. Then if that ain't happenin' I am going to make longer flaps or punch myself in the nuts while downing a shot of tequila....maybe both and we'll see where that goes to!  ;D
"It's Baltimore, gentlemen, the gods will not save you." --Burrell

Offline Jet_deck

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 3054
  • Location: Corpus Christi, Texas
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #46 on: July 26, 2011, 01:14:20 PM »
Kelly, I should have  thought of this earlier. If you open the valve on the tank after you open the valve to the burner, the the OPD is shutting off most of the flow to the burner.  Probably not the issue, but be aware that it does cut off 85% of the flow and if your not aware of it, can cause problems. Low heat, etc..  One way to reset it if it does happen is to shut the burner valve, and tank valve.  Disconnect the regulator to the tank, then reconnect it, always being sure to never open the tank valve with the burner valve open first.

Does the deflector plate and stone still look exactly the way it does in picture number 7 from the first page of this thread?  The cutout on the lid is placed opposite of the cutout on the deflector and stone, right?
« Last Edit: July 26, 2011, 01:20:34 PM by Jet_deck »
Her mind is Tiffany-twisted, she got the Mercedes bends

Offline pizzablogger

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1334
  • Location: Baltimore
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #47 on: July 26, 2011, 02:22:53 PM »
Kelly, I should have  thought of this earlier. If you open the valve on the tank after you open the valve to the burner, the the OPD is shutting off most of the flow to the burner.  Probably not the issue, but be aware that it does cut off 85% of the flow and if your not aware of it, can cause problems. Low heat, etc..  One way to reset it if it does happen is to shut the burner valve, and tank valve.  Disconnect the regulator to the tank, then reconnect it, always being sure to never open the tank valve with the burner valve open first.

The very first time I used it, having never used a propane cooker before, I did indeed fool with the burner valve before opening the larger tank valve. I will disconnect the regulator from the tank and reconnect.

I like to shut off both the tank valve and burner valve after cooking. Is that unwise?

Quote
Does the deflector plate and stone still look exactly the way it does in picture number 7 from the first page of this thread?  The cutout on the lid is placed opposite of the cutout on the deflector and stone, right?

Yes that is correct, although the size of the opening behind the stone is larger now.

Thanks for the insight. Open tank valve before burner valve...my new mantra!
"It's Baltimore, gentlemen, the gods will not save you." --Burrell

Offline Jet_deck

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 3054
  • Location: Corpus Christi, Texas
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #48 on: July 26, 2011, 03:39:45 PM »
I like to shut off both the tank valve and burner valve after cooking. Is that unwise?   No, that is fine.



Thanks for the insight. Open tank valve before burner valve...my new mantra!  

Tank valve then burner valve AND open the burner valve gently.  If you get aggressive with it before it is lit, the OPD can slam shut also. :'(

I think your getting close.  On your next cook if the top is not still as hot as you want it save 1 dough ball for the end.  Make a 2" ball out of some tin foil and prop the lid open a bit with the ball. (directly below your cut out in the lid)  This will articificially simulate the cut out being larger.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2011, 03:42:02 PM by Jet_deck »
Her mind is Tiffany-twisted, she got the Mercedes bends

Offline pizzablogger

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1334
  • Location: Baltimore
Re: Pizza Ruby, A Little Black Egg & Pizzas
« Reply #49 on: August 17, 2011, 09:52:49 PM »
Well I am getting frustrated, make that effing pissed....I'm sure my neighbors heard a few curse words emanating from my backyard tonight.

This makes me even more determined however.

I unhooked the regulator end from the burner and reconnected it per Jet Deck's helpful recommendation.

I made an emergency type dough as I was not expecting to make pizza today, but took advantage of being home early. Only 3 hours bulk and 3.5 hours balled (25% starter....mon dieu that's a lot!). Not the best dough, but I'm shooting for test pizzas for baking properties anyways at this point. I know, who cares, get on with it....

Fired up the LBE, turned the regulator just a tad to what would be considered a low setting. 30 minutes later, center of stone only 430F. So I turned the regulator a full half rotation. 15 minutes later the stone is only at 530F and I need to eat 'cause of time constraints. Launch the first pizza, lid on, immediately crank heat balls to the wall. Full on Rocket to Venus sound erupts from the Cajun Cooker....louder than previously.

Pulled the first pizza at 5:03 on the stopwatch.

Stone had crept up to 630F when I pulled the pie. That's a huge variability in stone temperature during a 5 minute baking cycle....and a hint that I may need more mass than just a single stone to lower temp volatility on the floor, but that's another story.

I turned the burner back down to a half turn, went inside and ate a few slices, made the second and last test pizza and launched at a stone temp of 650F, lid on, immediately jacked heat. 45 seconds into the bake comes that smell that you just know means the floor is too hot and the bottom is already approaching being ready and the top is still as bare as a vanilla coated arse. Ended up slipping the grill spatula through the side vent while wearing an oven mitt to keep the bottom off the floor in an attempt to cook the top without scorching the bottom. Still a 4:09 cook time to get the top "satisfactory". The bottom was overcooked.

I need to lower my ceiling more for quicker top heat time to completion. There is a kiln shop 10 minutes from my house. I may just get a 20" kiln shelf (3/4" thick!) even though it weighs a good bit and then affix a 10" cast iron skillet to that in the center so there is only about 1.50" of clearance above the bottom stone and see where that gets me. I also think it is time to give up on the 100% Caputo on my LBE and cut in some HG and shoot for a 3:00 bake or so.

Pictures from my cell phone. Two crumb shots and an upskirt. You can clearly see the leathery texture of the outer crust, as well as the bottom pushing being to burnt in places. I sometimes tend to push how thin my pizzas get towards the center and these long cooking times with Caputo 00 makes these areas of the pizzas far too brittle. BooOOooo!

Back to the drawing board. I feel like a newbie all over again.....although we are all ultimately beginners when a new day starts, one of the great things about life. --K   :)
« Last Edit: August 17, 2011, 09:55:21 PM by pizzablogger »
"It's Baltimore, gentlemen, the gods will not save you." --Burrell