Author Topic: choosing the pizza oven  (Read 1175 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Bosinuo

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 7
  • I Love Pizza!
choosing the pizza oven
« on: April 11, 2013, 12:34:51 AM »
Hi guys,

I m doing a due dilingence to prepare opening a pizza activity in China.

I will need a 3 deck electric oven. I found an incredible range of prices and I m not sure how to make my choice.

For example a good quality US oven like this:

http://www.marsalsons.com/default.aspx?pageId=47

is in the 15-20,000 Dollars range

While in China I can find things like this:

http://sencengchi.en.alibaba.com/product/666602861-214745270/SCC_PEO_3_Electric_Pizza_Oven.html

for just a bit more than 1000 dollars!

Of course there are also a lot of options in between...

I know that the quality of the oven makes a difference, but if a chinese oven can give me a reasonable quality I would save a huge amount of money...I could even buy 2 to have a backup in case of failures...

Hope to hear your comments!

Best,
Ste



scott123

  • Guest
Re: choosing the pizza oven
« Reply #1 on: April 11, 2013, 05:48:37 PM »
Bosinuo, you're going to get a few different opinions on this.

Some members, some even from Asia, feel that Chinese ovens are too much of a risk.

I've never met anyone that had a Chinese oven that broke on them, but, at the same time, I have seen ovens that have cut corners on things like stones.

I, personally, don't think there's anything inherently wrong with Chinese ovens. While I'm not a big fan of the wattages, as far as I know, most of the countertop ovens sold in the U.S. are made in China and the build quality isn't breathtaking, but it's sufficient to the task.  For all I know, the way U.S. manufacturers are cutting corners, the full size electric decks might be outsourced to China as well.

There's one thing that I would never do when purchasing an oven, and this is applies to any oven, is to purchase it sight unseen.  Even an American oven needs to have the tires kicked.  A good visual analysis will tell you a lot, such as weld/rivet quality, gauge of materials, and if they're willing to open the panel, you can check the wiring and insulation as well.

What style pizza are you planning on making?

For the $1K oven:

What are the internal dimension for each deck?
Does it have separate controls for the top and bottom elements on each deck?
What material is the hearth? How thick is the hearth?

I'm seeing a metal seam running down the middle of the hearth which doesn't instill a great deal of confidence.  A good oven should have stones that are adjacent to each other. The metal seam, from the photo looks to be a bit twisted as well and isn't flush.

Are you handy and/or know someone that is?  If something did turn out to be defective with the oven would you know a sheet metal worker or electrician that could fix it?  I'm not saying you have to be handy, but it wouldn't hurt should you go with the lesser known oven.

Offline Bosinuo

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 7
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: choosing the pizza oven
« Reply #2 on: April 12, 2013, 01:13:43 AM »
Hi Scott,

thanks a lot for your comments!

I am planning to make squared Italian-style pizza-by-the-slice (i.e., "pizza al taglio"), like the one that is very popular in Rome.

Regarding the oven, I got some extra information by the supplier:

- the ovens are built to order and they can adjust the dimensions according to requirements. The standard, which should work well for me, is that each deck can fit two 60cmx40cm trays.

- The oven has independent controls for top and bottom heat pipes, for each deck

- The heart material (btw, what is the heart of the oven?) is S/S201. The heart thickness is 0.6 mm

I have to say I m not very handy, but here in China I ve no problem to find specialized workers of any kind.


I actually just learned about an interesting thing. The supplier can also produce a small 1-deck, 1-tray, 4kW oven with the same technology and materials. the price is super cheap, around 300$. I thought about buying it and keeping it in my house to check the quality of the machine and possibly make some pizza experiments. However, some guy advised me not to do it, as my home electrical system is 220V, 20A, i.e. 4.4kW and he told me that this oven could blow all my system up. Any opinion on this?


Thanks!

Best Wishes,
Ste




scott123

  • Guest
Re: choosing the pizza oven
« Reply #3 on: April 12, 2013, 08:15:20 AM »
The hearth is the stone that the pizza bakes on.  Stone = hearth = floor.  Are you certain about that measurement? Those stones have to be thicker than .6mm.  If they're .6cm, that's too thin also, imo. A commercial oven should have stones that are at least 3 cm.

I should have noticed this before, but I see that the heating elements extend outside the cooking chamber.  I've never seen this in a pizza oven and I question both the safety and the longevity of this configuration.  The cooking chamber is where the heat should be, with the outside of the chamber being well insulated- both to keep the outside of the unit from getting hot, but also to protect the wiring.  You don't want a hot element anywhere near wiring, as the coating for wiring is only rated to a particular temperature.  I'd have to see behind the side panels to know what's going on re; insulation and wiring, but the fact that the elements go through holes in the cooking chamber is a very bad sign. Perhaps proper element placement could be part of the built to order aspect.

What are the standard internal dimensions on the 3 deck and the smaller 1 deck? The height of the chamber is important as well.

I would speak to both an electrician and the manufacturer about installing this oven in a home.  If it were in the U.S., I'd check and see if my electrical panel could handle the additional amps, and, if it could, I'd install a 220V 25A (or maybe 30A) circuit breaker and run the appropriate gauge wire to the oven. But that's the U.S.  China could be a different story. Do you have fuses or circuit breakers?  Do you know the service (total number of amps) coming into your home?

Offline Bosinuo

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 7
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: choosing the pizza oven
« Reply #4 on: April 12, 2013, 08:33:51 AM »
Hi again!

I m pretty sure the 0.6mm is the thickness of the external steel structure. I ll ask about the stone soon.

Regarding the heating elements and insulation, I got a picture of a semi-finished product that could help understand better. I attach it here.

Regarding my home, I have 220V 20A that should make 4.4kW. The oven is 4, so it should be enough if i turn everything else off. However I heard that when I turn on the oven i could have a discharge higher than 20A that could break the system. Is it true?

Best,
Ste

scott123

  • Guest
Re: choosing the pizza oven
« Reply #5 on: April 12, 2013, 09:21:07 AM »
I need to see where the heating rods end along with the insulation (and it's relation to the wiring) to know for certain.

From what I've read, you want to stay below 80% load on an electrical circuit. This is to allow surges, such as when you turn the oven on.  That means that if the oven is drawing 4 kw (from the literature, I think it's actually 4.4 kw), then you'd want a 5 kw circuit. Like I said, that's 25A.  If your panel can handle it, installing a 25A breaker and running the appropriate wiring, depending on where you want the oven in your home, shouldn't be that big of a job. Talk to an electrician.

It's been a while since I purchased copper wire, so I may be wrong on this, but, if you put this oven on the same floor/in relatively close proximity to your electrical panel and you're not running a huge amount of wire, and, as you said, you have access to an inexpensive electrician, you might be able to wire this for less than $100.   If that is the case, we'd still need more information about wiring, insulation and stone thickness, but, if that pans out, this is definitely worth $400 to play around with.

Offline Bosinuo

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 7
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: choosing the pizza oven
« Reply #6 on: April 12, 2013, 09:25:48 AM »
got it! Thanks a lot Scott!

I ll try to find the missing information and make my decision soon!

All the Best,
Ste

Offline La Sera

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 135
Re: choosing the pizza oven
« Reply #7 on: April 12, 2013, 10:18:16 AM »
I have an oven and mixer from China.
I bought them sight unseen and they work fine.
My mixer has been used every day for a year without any trouble.
The control unit for the top burner of one oven needed to be replaced. It cost me $7.

You just have to accept that the mechanical finish is not going to be very good. After installation, you should probably spend a day grinding burrs and tightening screws and bolts.

Importing an American oven into China is out of the question. It can't be done.

The company you are looking at on Alibaba is not the manufacturer, they are a trading company. Almost all kitchen equipment is OEM and it's best to deal directly with the manufacturer. I would recommend you use a company with at least 3 years of history with Alibaba. Having contacts and/or acquaintances on the ground in China helps you avoid expensive pitfalls.


Offline Bosinuo

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 7
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: choosing the pizza oven
« Reply #8 on: April 14, 2013, 11:05:46 PM »
Thanks for your suggestion La sera! It makes a lot of sense.

I found a machinery market in Beijing and I ll go visit it soon. It will probably be more expensive but at least I can touch the oven with my hands.

Best,
Ste