Author Topic: Home built propane oven advice  (Read 6582 times)

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Offline mikeythai

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Home built propane oven advice
« on: December 13, 2011, 04:42:40 AM »
Hi. I really want to build something like this

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,14268.msg142834.html#msg142834

Could someone please post a link (or two) to similar builds? Thanks. I'd also be interested in looking at threads about building a good custom electric oven with a PID. Possibly even an oven with two pie capability.

Thanks in advance. :chef:
« Last Edit: December 13, 2011, 05:23:46 AM by mikeythai »


buceriasdon

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #1 on: December 13, 2011, 07:51:03 AM »
The builder did a great job with that oven. Similar to the :    http://www.2stonepg.com/2stone-infern2.html         though I have built a version of the hugely successful LBE   http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,4753.0.html   in all honesty I have never really read the thread just bits and pieces to get the idea. Too much repetition and little information gleamed, just too tedious for me to read in entirety. The LBE does require some tweaking and experimenting to get sufficient top heat for a balanced bake but so does any oven with a single hot burner below. I assume high pressure burners are readily available there in Thailand.
Don

Offline mikeythai

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #2 on: December 13, 2011, 06:29:01 PM »
Yes, burners are available here. I'm still in the research stages of this project. Both gas end electric have distinct advantages.

For me, it would seem a gas oven's advantages are lower preheat times, and lower operating cost. Conversely electric's advantages are 'set it and forget it' temp control, and the ability to mount both upper and lower heating elements.

Gas is what I'm leaning toward right now. I might try a "reverse flow" exhaust arrangement. That would channel the hot exhaust gases so they heat both top and bottom of the oven.

I've built a couple of barbeques, and I know the more planning the better. Thanks for the links buceriasdon.

edit: just saw your hot-rodded oven mod. That looks like a winner!
« Last Edit: December 13, 2011, 07:42:19 PM by mikeythai »

Offline Jet_deck

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #3 on: December 14, 2011, 11:13:03 AM »
Don has it right.  Any single burner homebuilt type oven is going to need some tweaking to get the top amount of heat correct.  Most people spend more time tweaking than they did in the build stage.  You notice that the 2stone commercial unit has 2 burners?  You can spend your time later tweaking or spend a bit more time up front building.  Here is another example of a propane fired oven :   http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,11402.msg105321.html#msg105321
My dough skills were still very poor at this time, but I was able to cook some great tasting pizzas.

Most single burner homebuilt pizza ovens are inherently already reverse flow.  It is "impossible" to get a single burner to do a dual job without re-using the hot exhaust gas. ;)
Her mind is Tiffany-twisted, she got the Mercedes bends

Offline mikeythai

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #4 on: December 14, 2011, 10:09:29 PM »
Yeah, Jet, sound advice. I like your oven build, and your pizzas are beautiful!

I'm trying to get the design ironed out. And leaving room for mods has to be part of a good design. I have already realized that the top/bottom heat balance is critical... lucky for me I have lots of time on my hands for pizza daydreams and oven design. ;D

Currently considering a Bayou burner with 1/4" plates top and bottom. Top plate split into a few sections so I could 'tune' the exhaust a little, a la BBQ offset smokers.

buceriasdon

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #5 on: December 15, 2011, 07:39:37 AM »
Mike, Steel plate is great when the heat source is not very efficient because of the plate's conductivity picks up the slack, however my work with with steel plate and high pressure burners or high heat sources has proved to me you can have too much of a good thing. The bottom burns before the top gets done.   http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=13610.0      Reply 10.   I recently started a new mini oven project and using an efficient low pressure burner and ran into the same problem,   http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,16652.0.html
I have since added a clay tile roof and a clay tile pizza stone on top of the plate with very good results. Currently I am having some legs welded to the bottom of the plate as the all thread support rods sagged under the weight, so no pics. My first pizza the bottom burnt as predicted. I also included a pic of the flame to show there are no three inch high flames like a high pressure burner can have. I'm not saying don't try it, just be prepared for burnt bottoms.
Don

Offline mikeythai

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #6 on: December 19, 2011, 10:26:47 AM »
I like the idea of a stone being used on top of the bottom plate. I'm thinking of getting some 'scrap' granite. And then maybe granite on top.

I have a low pressure burner that would work pretty well in this oven. And, lucky me, I should have enough free time in the next few weeks to get this oven built!

Offline Jet_deck

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #7 on: December 19, 2011, 10:57:02 AM »
Granite + heat = DISASTER
Granite NO, NO, NO !
Her mind is Tiffany-twisted, she got the Mercedes bends

buceriasdon

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #8 on: December 19, 2011, 01:04:15 PM »
On and off over the years I've used 10mm thick granite in a gas oven and have never experienced a problem. In fact this week I was going to have a piece cut for my mini oven to see how it worked atop the steel plate. Now having said that I will balance that out with several reviews of a thin, think floor tile thickness granite pizza stone sold by Williams Sonoma reporting cracking problems.
http://reviews.williams-sonoma.com/3177/granite-pizza-stone-stand/reviews.htm
I have only used granite with a steel sheet pan underneath it and it is many times thicker than the WS stone. I wouldn't myself subject granite to direct flame.
Don


buceriasdon

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #9 on: December 19, 2011, 03:58:10 PM »
Ah, I remembered later that I have read somewhere that over 500 degrees granite can crack. Naturally when I tried to find the site with google today it wasn't the one I wanted.  :-[

Offline mikeythai

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #10 on: December 20, 2011, 03:12:11 AM »
I went on a google hunt to research cracking granite at high heat. Instead I ran into a debate on a baker's forum whether granite contertops are harmfully radioactive.  :-D

Actually, since unglazed quarry tiles seem to be the gold standard, I think I will look for them.
« Last Edit: December 20, 2011, 03:14:50 AM by mikeythai »

buceriasdon

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #11 on: December 20, 2011, 07:35:47 AM »
Mike, After thinking more about Gene's admonishment and the way my little oven is configered I backed off from my plan to try granite. The oven has tempered glass in the door that could crack if the granite exploded. It's a tight fit to be able to bake a 10" to 11" pizza in it as it is.
Don

scott123

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #12 on: December 20, 2011, 08:41:02 PM »
Don, I'm going to have to echo Gene's admonishment. The only thing you can dig out of the ground and successfully expose to extreme temperature changes is soapstone, and that's only a particular type of soapstone. I think the odds of granite exploding aren't huge, but there is a risk.  The risk is even greater, though, that the granite will crack. Why use a stone that you know will fail, sooner rather than later?

I guess, at some point, baking stones were really 'stones,' so it kind of make sense for the name to stick around, but, these days, real stones should never be used for baking- the composition and internal structure vary WAY too much to predict baking behavior.

scott123

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #13 on: December 20, 2011, 08:42:26 PM »
Actually, since unglazed quarry tiles seem to be the gold standard, I think I will look for them.

The 'gold standard' for what?  Tiling a floor?  I certainly would never consider quarry tiles the gold standard for pizzamaking.

Offline Jet_deck

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #14 on: December 21, 2011, 01:21:52 AM »
"admonishment "  I really don't even know exactly what it means. Furthermore I will not Google it to see what turns up.

Please allow me to re-phrase to "non preference in this application"

Otherwise, keep planning. :chef:
Her mind is Tiffany-twisted, she got the Mercedes bends

Offline mikeythai

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #15 on: December 21, 2011, 11:13:54 PM »
The 'gold standard' for what?  Tiling a floor?  I certainly would never consider quarry tiles the gold standard for pizzamaking.

I guess I'm outside of my area of expertise (whatever that is  ;D). I'm currently thinking about building an oven with a low pressure burner in the bottom, with a 1/4" plate 4-6" above it. I believe I'll need some sort of ceramic pizza stone laid on top of the steel plate, and then another piece of ceramic material (like a tile) about 4-6" inches from the bottom one. The top tile will be height adjustable so hopefully I can adjust the heat as needed.

Alternately, I could use a steel plate in the top position also.

Does this sound like a decent plan?

Offline Essen1

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #16 on: December 21, 2011, 11:45:33 PM »
Mikeythai,

I have a steel plate installed in my LBE...as a buffer for the heat.

Steel plate baking with a burner right underneath is a recipe for disaster, and perhaps more, because the steel gets red hot and there's no way a pie would survive on this thing. It'll be a pile of ash in seconds.

I used an aluminum ring, as a second buffer, on top of the steel plate before putting two cordierite stones on top. Those stones can withstand heat up to 1200 + F.

Hope that helps...and I'm looking forward to your first pies made in your oven.
Mike

"Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new."  - Albert Einstein


buceriasdon

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #17 on: December 22, 2011, 07:24:15 AM »
Mike, When I get the time today I'll get some pics taken and posted of my mini oven project. It is configured exactly that way.
Don

I guess I'm outside of my area of expertise (whatever that is  ;D). I'm currently thinking about building an oven with a low pressure burner in the bottom, with a 1/4" plate 4-6" above it. I believe I'll need some sort of ceramic pizza stone laid on top of the steel plate, and then another piece of ceramic material (like a tile) about 4-6" inches from the bottom one. The top tile will be height adjustable so hopefully I can adjust the heat as needed.

Alternately, I could use a steel plate in the top position also.

Does this sound like a decent plan?


Offline Jet_deck

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #18 on: December 22, 2011, 02:11:46 PM »
Does this sound like a decent plan?


FWIW, I do think it has merit.  I would make two suggestions though.  If you are not going to make the cooking surface rotate by itself (like the 2 stone), I would consider making the burner be able to take one of 2 positions.  A heat up position where it is exactly centered below the plate/stone cooking surface. Then a cooking position where the majority of the heat is channeled behind the cooking surface then across the top of the pizza, under your adjustable height roof, then exiting out the front.  It is the same general concept as the Godfather of propane pizza cooking (Villa Roma) :-D :chef:

Do you have a link to the low pressure burner that you are thinking of?  Maybe an "H" shaped bbq burner?  Make sure you have allowed in the design plenty of availibility of make-up air (usually where the propane enters the burner tube).
Her mind is Tiffany-twisted, she got the Mercedes bends

buceriasdon

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #19 on: December 23, 2011, 06:41:10 PM »
Mike, Here is a photo of the latest setup in my lil oven. I may pickup some angle iron and figure out a way to mount two of them to the sides and lower the top ceramic tile down an inch or so, though it works well as is. I had four legs welded to the steel plate to support it and the hearth tile. I also plan on lining the inside and the bottom of the upper tile with aluminum foil and see what happens.
Don
ps. I deleted the first pic and uploaded one taken today with the aluminum flashing installed. Well worth the effort to do as I got more even browning with much less turning.
« Last Edit: December 25, 2011, 04:53:58 PM by buceriasdon »

Offline mikeythai

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #20 on: December 23, 2011, 10:39:18 PM »
I like the look of that. Looks like a lot of heat will get to the top tile. Glad to hear it's working! :chef: Just curious, would the aluminum foil prevent the top tile from gaining the heat you want it to?

After watching the ovens with a turning mechanism, I think I want to do something like that. Unfortunately I may be entering analysis paralysis.... I'm still thinking a steel boc for my first oven, but the second one will probably be made from this. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Autoclaved_aerated_concrete. I made a BBQ smoker oven out of it and it worked very well. That's very low temps, though...

I have one of these. It works pretty good. http://www.gassmoker.com/c-burner.htm I also have a couple boxes of these. I think they could come in pretty handy if I knew where to install them. http://grillparts.com/broilmaster/grillparts.asp?product_id=196-315

I appreciate all the advice :).

buceriasdon

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #21 on: December 24, 2011, 08:38:26 AM »
Mike, I highly recommend looking at Omid's modified home oven here Reply #1055 for a picture, same principal I'm talking about:
http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,14506.msg164651/topicseen.html#new
The foil covering the top tile is just an experiment, easy to execute and change back. I'm going to pickup some aluminum roasting pans today as they are thicker than foil and pop rivet the linings to the sides and cover the glass door. I'll take some pics when finished. If I can find some thicker pans I also plan on making some angled deflectors that go from the bottom of the oven at an angle to the sides effectively closing off the dead space where the burner sits.
Don
« Last Edit: December 24, 2011, 08:47:45 AM by buceriasdon »

Offline mikeythai

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #22 on: January 01, 2012, 11:14:48 AM »
Yes, I looked at Omid's oven, and I feel like I'm getting closer to actually building this thing.

Would 1/8" steel plate work okay for the bottom plate of the oven? It'd be cheaper than the 1/4... I would be using some sort of ceramic material on top of that and then probably a pizza screen.

buceriasdon

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #23 on: January 01, 2012, 01:17:22 PM »
Mike, 1/8" would be fine depending on how close it is to the burner. I've used 3/16" plate as support and it worked fine.
Don

Offline mikeythai

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Re: Home built propane oven advice
« Reply #24 on: January 01, 2012, 09:29:34 PM »
When you say that the 1/8" plate is okay depending on how close to the burner, that means too close could be a problem, right? I'm guessing there would be a hot spot on the plate. I'm thinking about positioning the burner 6-8" under them bottom plate.


 

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