Author Topic: Convection for a WFO  (Read 1647 times)

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Online scott123

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Convection for a WFO
« on: September 09, 2013, 09:02:32 AM »
I was helping a friend cure their oven and we found out that we could get much more even temps using a computer fan with the double hot plate we were using for heat.  I didn't think it was possible, but the plastic computer fan survived to an average oven temp of around 275.  We didn't push it any further because, after we hit around a 300 dome, we starting burning wood fires.

My friend would like to get a more even pre-heat by utilizing some form of convection, but, to hit the 650ish temps he's working at, the computer fan obviously wouldn't work.

Doe anyone have any ideas?  The fan would have to circulate the air in the oven and not introduce fresh air.


Online TXCraig1

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Re: Convection for a WFO
« Reply #1 on: September 09, 2013, 09:27:37 AM »
I think you will have to power the fan from outside the oven. Certainly you can find a fan and shaft that is suitable for sustained operation at 650F+. Drill a hole through the wall and have the motor on the outside.
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Offline derricktung

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Re: Convection for a WFO
« Reply #2 on: September 09, 2013, 09:37:07 AM »
While I haven't tested this yet, it has promise:

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1025864883/bbq-dragon-the-barbecue-and-fire-supercharger

I don't know if it will create "even" heating for you, but it should supercharge your fire nicely.  I didn't end up buying it, as I felt I could just use a hair dryer (which I do at times) to help fire up when necessary (when wood just won't catch right, or if my fornino is new and missed a key moment to throw a log in to keep the fire going).  You essentially need a push of hot air inside which should help the fire burn stronger as well as move the heat around more evenly.  Alton Brown used this technique to push his Weber up to high temps, so we use it to re-fire logs when we're at market and need to get the fire stoked quickly again if it goes out.

I imagine it would help distribute the heat throughout the inside of your oven more evenly while speeding up your heating process...


Online TXCraig1

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Re: Convection for a WFO
« Reply #3 on: September 09, 2013, 09:56:19 AM »
I think he's looking for something that can go inside the oven for continuous operation - not for starting the fire, and that thing has a 2.5 second life inside an operating WFO.  :-D
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Offline sub

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Re: Convection for a WFO
« Reply #4 on: September 09, 2013, 10:07:33 AM »
maybe an hairdryer bought  at salvation army coupled with a long metal tube like for a metal forge.

Online TXCraig1

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Re: Convection for a WFO
« Reply #5 on: September 09, 2013, 10:10:06 AM »
maybe an hairdryer bought  at salvation army coupled with a long metal tube like for a metal forge.

He said you can't introduce fresh air.
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Offline MightyPizzaOven

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Re: Convection for a WFO
« Reply #6 on: September 09, 2013, 11:17:14 AM »
How drill hole for a motor shaft to rotate metal fan blades like this one http://item.mobileweb.ebay.com/viewitem?itemId=380708414915
Bert,

Online scott123

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Re: Convection for a WFO
« Reply #7 on: September 10, 2013, 12:33:59 AM »
I think you will have to power the fan from outside the oven. Certainly you can find a fan and shaft that is suitable for sustained operation at 650F+. Drill a hole through the wall and have the motor on the outside.


How drill hole for a motor shaft to rotate metal fan blades like this one http://item.mobileweb.ebay.com/viewitem?itemId=380708414915


Yes, I was thinking about a long shaft and running it in through the door.  Something like this:

http://www.jamestowndistributors.com/userportal/show_product.do?pid=2592

but with a fan blade like the ebay one. It's not a bad idea, but I wouldn't mind something a little less DIY.

I definitely don't want to drill through the oven wall, as I'll be going through stucco and insulation and trash the weatherproofing.

Offline MightyPizzaOven

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Re: Convection for a WFO
« Reply #8 on: September 13, 2013, 03:15:08 PM »
Yes, I was thinking about a long shaft and running it in through the door.  Something like this:

http://www.jamestowndistributors.com/userportal/show_product.do?pid=2592

but with a fan blade like the ebay one. It's not a bad idea, but I wouldn't mind something a little less DIY.

I definitely don't want to drill through the oven wall, as I'll be going through stucco and insulation and trash the weatherproofing.


Make sense. You can attach that to a cordless drill...
Bert,

Offline Auralnauts

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Re: Convection for a WFO
« Reply #9 on: October 22, 2013, 08:38:58 PM »
How about an industrial fan?
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Offline Tscarborough

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Re: Convection for a WFO
« Reply #10 on: October 22, 2013, 09:00:01 PM »
Or you could just build small/medium fires for a week and dry it out.  The whole "curing" thing is overrated.  Especially if you use blankets/board for insulation instead of perlite or vermiculite, there isn't that much water in it to begin with, and refractory cements do not cure the same as portland/lime ones do.  They do not want/require a 28 day cure like concrete, they reach strength much faster and are less prone to shrinkage, which is the cause of most cracking.  If you are curing a castable, you should let it dry at room temps for a week or two, then fire it as high as you want, but doing so gradually.  That is the key to curing, gradual application of heat, gradual being hours not days.

Offline Chaze215

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Re: Convection for a WFO
« Reply #11 on: October 22, 2013, 11:21:02 PM »
Don't mean to highjack this thread but has anyone used that BBQ Dragon to start their wfo? Looks pretty neat vs using propane torch. Just curious. Sorry Scott.
Chaz

Offline derricktung

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Re: Convection for a WFO
« Reply #12 on: October 23, 2013, 06:44:39 AM »
Don't mean to highjack this thread but has anyone used that BBQ Dragon to start their wfo? Looks pretty neat vs using propane torch. Just curious. Sorry Scott.

Same thing can be accomplished with a hair dryer really.  (We bring one to market typically just in case our fire guy doesn't pay attention when to reload the wood and loses all flame).  The BBQ dragon seems to use heated coils to force hot air in, which stokes the fire to burn faster and hotter. 

The nice thing is that the BBQ dragon is rechargeable and clickable, so you can just walk away from the look of it. 

Online TXCraig1

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Re: Convection for a WFO
« Reply #13 on: October 23, 2013, 05:21:43 PM »
Don't mean to highjack this thread but has anyone used that BBQ Dragon to start their wfo? Looks pretty neat vs using propane torch. Just curious. Sorry Scott.

I have a hard time seeing it help start a wood fire. It takes a lot more heat to start hardwood than charcoal. Maybe if you built the fire paper-charcoal-wood, but why mess with that when a torch works just fine? What don't you like about a propane torch?

It would certainly help the wood burn faster and thus hotter once it gets going if that is what you want.
« Last Edit: October 23, 2013, 05:26:13 PM by TXCraig1 »
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Online TXCraig1

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Re: Convection for a WFO
« Reply #14 on: October 23, 2013, 05:28:24 PM »
The BBQ dragon seems to use heated coils to force hot air in, which stokes the fire to burn faster and hotter. 


They say it's pushing cool air. Hot air would be a big battery drain for no benefit.
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Offline Chaze215

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Re: Convection for a WFO
« Reply #15 on: October 23, 2013, 06:21:20 PM »
I have a hard time seeing it help start a wood fire. It takes a lot more heat to start hardwood than charcoal. Maybe if you built the fire paper-charcoal-wood, but why mess with that when a torch works just fine? What don't you like about a propane torch?

It would certainly help the wood burn faster and thus hotter once it gets going if that is what you want.
Good point about it starting hardwood Craig. Even though they show a video showing it start a wfo, I'm pessimistic. I like the torch but this thing would be a lot less cumbersome to bring to private parties, markets etc...
Chaz

Online TXCraig1

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Re: Convection for a WFO
« Reply #16 on: October 23, 2013, 08:43:08 PM »
You don't need a torch. I start campfires all the time without a torch. All a torch does is eliminate the need for kindling.
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Offline widespreadpizza

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Re: Convection for a WFO
« Reply #17 on: October 23, 2013, 10:25:40 PM »
Scott,  this is not an answer to the problem,  but there is no problem,  unless you mean for curing only and that is still not a problem
.  Otherwise he or she should learn the oven rather than messing with other things.  One step at a time...  haha  -marc

Offline Dan R Brauchtt

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Re: Convection for a WFO
« Reply #18 on: January 20, 2014, 10:48:21 PM »
"Convection" . . . well I'm glad to have seen this post. I've just completed my testing of (convection) in my Low Mass Wood Fired  Barrel Oven.  It was well worth the effort. Your cook time is decreased about 25%. A very easy thing to accomplish, even for the DIY.

    I have Not gotten an up-dated photos of my add-on convection fan, but you can use a stock fan from a convection oven. I've mounted mine on the oven door. Later to be mounted on the back of the oven using an extended shaft.
Enjoy looking; http://www.flickr.com/photos/procomfort/sets/72157634639807783/