Author Topic: Homemade Hearth Kit + Broiler Setup  (Read 1762 times)

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Offline deepsea

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Homemade Hearth Kit + Broiler Setup
« on: February 13, 2012, 09:16:33 PM »
Ok So I got my Firebrick in today and went about setting it up like the 'Homemade Hearth Kit http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,440.0.html' and got an OK pizza it wasn't mind blowing and it took about 12 min or so to get done with my oven cranked to 550 F for over 1.5 hrs. So being a little discouraged I headed back to the boards and decided to take a look at other setups and ran across this one using the Broiler http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,10514.20.html and decided to set it up similar to that one. My IR thermometer comes in tomorrow and cant wait to see what kind of temps i crank out under the broiler. My only worry is that the brick weights so much its bending my rack. Knowing its steel makes me feel a little better but don't want to warp it. any ideas i currently have it braced with some cast iron pans i have laying around but cant keep it like that forever :( maybe i should remove the brick from the bottom and put it around the sides?


Offline JConk007

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Re: Homemade Hearth Kit + Broiler Setup
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2012, 09:47:02 PM »
Steel Plate!
I Love to Flirt with Fire! www.flirtingwithfirepizza.com

Offline deepsea

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Re: Homemade Hearth Kit + Broiler Setup
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2012, 10:02:25 PM »
hrm... any recommendations on where to purchase said steel plate? :)

buceriasdon

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Re: Homemade Hearth Kit + Broiler Setup
« Reply #3 on: February 14, 2012, 07:29:12 AM »
If you use the search function for "steel plate" you will get multiple hits such as: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,12887.0.html
Don

Offline deepsea

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Re: Homemade Hearth Kit + Broiler Setup
« Reply #4 on: February 14, 2012, 03:16:29 PM »
Well called around Chattanooga today and everyone either has to get back with me about steel plate or wont sell due to the fact I am just an individual but i have my tendrils out. However after talking to a few businesses that would give me a quote it was going to run me on the low end of $100 for a 16in Diameter plate 0.5 inches thick at 316L Stainless Steel (food service grade) and upwards of $250 or so on a high guesstimate! I am beginning to think it may be easier to go with the Primo Ceramic Plate http://www.amazon.com/338-Porcelain-Glazed-Baking-Kamado/dp/B0036G8JHG/?tag=pizzamaking-20 I eventually want to build my own pizza oven or have one build that is movable since I don't own my house and want to be able to take it with me (offered to have one built if i could take it out of rent and the owner said i could build it and leave it but I still had to pay rent). I want to recreate the pizza I ate while I lived over in Italy so that is my own personal challenge!

buceriasdon

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Re: Homemade Hearth Kit + Broiler Setup
« Reply #5 on: February 14, 2012, 03:41:23 PM »
Stainless steel is not what you want in any case. Hot rolled carbon steel is actually better then stainless because of it's greater thermal conductivity. Compare steel,carbon to stainless here:  http://www.engineeringtoolbox.com/thermal-conductivity-d_429.html
Noteworthy copper and silver are many times more conductive than any steel.
Don

Offline shuboyje

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Re: Homemade Hearth Kit + Broiler Setup
« Reply #6 on: February 14, 2012, 07:18:10 PM »
I would also forget about round.  A rectangular piece will probably be cheaper.
-Jeff

Offline scott123

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Re: Homemade Hearth Kit + Broiler Setup
« Reply #7 on: February 15, 2012, 09:01:04 AM »
Robert, first of all, if you haven't already, take those bricks out of the oven right now.  That is WAY too much weight for an oven shelf. Full sized firebricks should never be used in a home oven- if you feel absolutely compelled to use firebrick, go with a single layer of the 1.125" thick 'splits.'

Even firebrick splits are a sketchy endeavor for pizzamaking. Firebrick is a pretty poor conductor and takes forever to pre-heat. You also, to hit Neapolitan bake times, have to hit at least 850 degrees.

Your chances of making Neapolitan pizza in a home oven are about as good as winning the lottery. Okay, I'm exaggerating a bit here, but luck plays a role.  Before you go shopping for other hearth materials, it's critical to see what your oven can do.

The first thing you need to do is see if your broiler will stay on indefinitely.  Take either one firebrick or your thin stone and position it 3" from the broiler. Close the door, turn the broiler on, see how long the broiler stays on for, and, once it shuts off, measure the top and bottom of the stone with your IR thermometer.

The next thing you want to do is dig out your oven manual and get the wattage for the broiler OR take a photo of the broiling element and compare it to something like this:

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,16227.msg167250.html#msg167250

This is pretty much the holy grail of home oven broilers. Do you see the number of passes the coils make and the thickness of the coils?  If your lucky enough to have an oven like this, then there's hope for you.

Even with a broiler element of this caliber, if it does shut off with the thermostat, you're most likely going to need to start thinking about mods and about how far you want to push the oven's temperature.  Marlon (Bakeshack) pushes his oven to the high 700s, which is better than some of the cleaning cycle hacks you come across, but I generally try to dissuade people from going that high. If you've got a broiler like this, I think you can dial back the temps a bit by positioning the stone a little bit closer and possibly by using a slightly more conductive hearth material- definitely not steel- but a kiln shelf that's somewhere between the cordierite Marlon is using and steel.

And that's if you've got a kickass broiler. If your element arrangement is sparser/lower wattage, then, in theory, you could go really extreme with the mods (900+), but, in that situation, I would probably recommend just building an LBE.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2012, 09:32:11 AM by scott123 »

Offline deepsea

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Re: Homemade Hearth Kit + Broiler Setup
« Reply #8 on: February 16, 2012, 09:14:52 AM »
hrm lot to think about there.. after playing around and just worrying (Because its a rental unit) i don't want to break anything (so there goes working with the lock) ill just have to play around with the stone i have and the broiler setup (unfortunately i only have a 3 pass broiler setup) but the oven does hit 550F so there may be hopes to get it up to 600 at the stone.. i really want a WFO and have thought about just saving and purchasing a ceramic grill and going with that (must easier to keep up with as i DO have a rental unit and its much more movable than a WFO hearth unless i trailer it and spend oodles of money).  I will just have to be happy with what i can make until i either am able to afford a hearth or come up with a way to build one to work with. I have checked into a steel plate and its going to only run around $40 or so but they said it may not be suitable for cooking on due the the fact it isn't a clean surface (i guess they mean ground) but i have not placed my order for one yet so I am not out anything however its a decent price. Next search: Ceramic grills and Pizza!  :P

Offline scott123

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Re: Homemade Hearth Kit + Broiler Setup
« Reply #9 on: February 16, 2012, 09:42:37 AM »
Robert, I wasn't paying attention and typed 'WFO' instead of LBE at the end of my post.  An LBE is the current best option for those people with ovens that can't swing Neapolitan but aren't yet in a position to build a WFO. Now, getting Neapolitan out of an LBE is no easy task, but it has been done.

Unless the steel you're purchasing is extremely pitted, it should be fine for baking. We've had one member who had good luck with a special rust remover, but I don't think that's necessary.  Unless you live in a salty/rust conducive climate, just give the steel a light sanding and it'll be good to go.


Offline shuboyje

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Re: Homemade Hearth Kit + Broiler Setup
« Reply #10 on: February 16, 2012, 12:17:11 PM »
It's really easy to prep even rough steel.  I took a wire wheel to mine and quickly got it to a clean shiny finish.  Then I cleaned it with rubbing alcohol which will remove any oil on the metal.  I gave it a good rinse the one last was with normal dish soap.
-Jeff


 

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