Author Topic: Little Black Egg  (Read 327135 times)

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Offline ehanner

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Re: Little Black Egg
« Reply #160 on: February 04, 2008, 01:41:26 PM »
VR,
Have you made any changes with the side loader? Any more tests?
Eric


Offline tommygun

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Re: Little Black Egg
« Reply #161 on: February 05, 2008, 06:25:55 AM »
wow what an interesting thread! I just read it from start to finish.  I've experimented a couple of times with 1/2" stones inside my home bbq (for us New Zealanders, a 'bbq' usually means a gas fired grill like the LBE, but bigger, as opposed to a coal burning bbq).   The main problem i've faced has been finding a happy temperature median so that the top of my pie cooks before before the bottom is burnt to a crisp.  I've resorted to shifting the near baked pie to the oven on broiler mode to finish the top off.

recently i've been giving a lot of thought to setting up a mobile pizza cart and seeing the LBE got me thinking- could this be a viable alternative to building a WFO into a trailer/ truck?  I can 2 or 3 LBE's built into a trailer churning out 3 minute pies for the hungry masses!

Villa Roma and others- do you think the wind problem could be overcome in a mobile setting? have you given any thought to this type of application??

Thanks, and happy pizza making!

Tom

Offline mmarston

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Re: Little Black Egg
« Reply #162 on: February 05, 2008, 08:49:02 PM »
Nobody cares if you can't dance well.  Just get up and dance.  Dave Barry

Online Villa Roma

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Re: Little Black Egg
« Reply #163 on: February 06, 2008, 02:06:24 AM »


Villa Roma and others- do you think the wind problem could be overcome in a mobile setting? have you given any thought to this type of application??

Thanks, and happy pizza making!

Tom


tommygun.....The wind issue would be very easy to solve. Just build a metal enclosure and mount the grills in it. You could even fabricate a motor that would rotate all three stones at once, similar to the 2stone pro but X3. Put a sprocket on each grill and link them to the motor with a bicycle chain.

With this setup you could theoretically crank out over 100, 16" pizzas an hour with a 1 1/2 to 2 minute cook time.

    Villa Roma
« Last Edit: February 06, 2008, 03:11:37 AM by Villa Roma »

Offline DieselAddict

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Re: Little Black Egg
« Reply #164 on: February 17, 2008, 01:40:53 AM »
I've been working to put together one of these little jewels. Today I got it put together and fired it up. After a generous warm up I tossed on a spinach and cheese pie. The results are very encouraging. The bottom stone was about 650 degrees, the top stone was about 525. This resulted in the less browning on top than I was after but the bottom had a very nice crackle in about 4 minutes. I am going to cut out the side to give a "door" to load and unload the pizzas. I know this will improve the airflow and get the upper stone hotter.

I am using a rectangular stone (15"x14") and a cookie sheet for the bottom and a 13" round stone for the top (all from from Bed, Bath, and beyond, cost $60). The grill is a 22" webber kettle. It is the one that has the ash container under the bottom and a hinged lid ($39 at Home Depot). I'm not using the hinge though. I just lift the top off with the lifter from the turkey frying kit that came with the bayou burner. So far the total investment is $100 (I already had the bayou burner). When I get everything finished up I'll take a few pictures to post if anyone is interested in seeing it.

I really appreciate all the effort that has gone before to make this a pretty simple thing to assemble. I expect to send many pies though it. :D


Offline ehanner

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Re: Little Black Egg
« Reply #165 on: February 18, 2008, 01:07:17 PM »
Hey Dieseladdict,
Glad you had a good test run. I look forward to seeing pictures of your Egg.

I'm still waiting for my top ceramic dome to be done, should be any time now. Just in time for the Spring warm up hopefully.

Offline DieselAddict

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Re: Little Black Egg
« Reply #166 on: February 18, 2008, 06:35:13 PM »
OK. I've got it ready to test. Today I gave the egg its smile.  ;D

Its too windy to do a good test so firing it up will have to wait a little longer.

I'll take some better pictures of the opening tomorrow when I have more light.
« Last Edit: February 18, 2008, 06:50:11 PM by DieselAddict »

Online Villa Roma

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Re: Little Black Egg
« Reply #167 on: February 24, 2008, 09:15:20 AM »
Here's my latest experiment and pizza. I put down a layer of ceramic briquettes instead of the bottom stone. The LBE heated up to 650 degrees in 20 minutes at about half throttle.

These pizzas were a combo of whole wheat and 10% rye. They cooked best at around 675 degrees.

     Villa Roma

Offline ehanner

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Re: Little Black Egg
« Reply #168 on: February 24, 2008, 12:27:01 PM »
Villa Roma,
So you are cooking on the ceramic briquettes directly? The pizza looks fantistac as usual. Did you have to rotate or was the heat even? What do you think as compared to the stone? So many questions.....

Offline ehanner

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Re: Little Black Egg
« Reply #169 on: February 24, 2008, 12:29:48 PM »
DieselAddict,
You have certainly jumped into this with both feet! How are you supporting the top stone? Can't wait to see your pie's.
Eric


Online Villa Roma

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Re: Little Black Egg
« Reply #170 on: February 24, 2008, 01:43:31 PM »
Villa Roma,
So you are cooking on the ceramic briquettes directly? The pizza looks fantistac as usual. Did you have to rotate or was the heat even? What do you think as compared to the stone? So many questions.....

I used a 16" stone on top of the briquettes. Yes, I had to rotate the pizza and the heat up time was shorter. Everything else was about the same.

     Villa Roma

Offline DieselAddict

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Re: Little Black Egg
« Reply #171 on: February 24, 2008, 11:24:02 PM »
DieselAddict,
You have certainly jumped into this with both feet! How are you supporting the top stone? Can't wait to see your pie's.
Eric

Thanks!

The top stone is being supported by the warming grate that comes with the grill. I had to drill a couple of holes in the lid and straighten one of the wire supports but is is perfect.

Well, I took it for a full scale test drive yesterday. I was too busy to take pictures but I can report that the pies were being eaten as quickly as I could take them out. I got the egg up to about 650 degrees. The pies were taking 3-4 minutes. I would give them a 180 spin about 2 minutes in.

The only problem so far is I cracked the bottom stone. It is a very cheap one from bed, bath, and beyond. I thought it was too thin and fragile. Yesterday showed it was true. I'm going to work to baffle the airflow in the bottom of the grill to even out the temp in the stone. I think the 100 degree temp spread I measured was the cause of the crack. The stone sits on a cookie sheet and is isolated from direct flame contact.

Next weekend I'm dong a pizza party for 20. I promise to take some pictures and keep you posted on what it takes to even out the temp.

Offline ehanner

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Re: Little Black Egg
« Reply #172 on: February 29, 2008, 01:05:34 AM »
Villa Roma,
What do you attribute the faster warm up to? It looks like the briquettes buffer the heat and still allow some air flow under the stone.Hmmm

You also raised the level of the stone some it looks like.
Eric

Offline Atari

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Re: Little Black Egg
« Reply #173 on: February 29, 2008, 09:43:56 AM »
I used a 16" stone on top of the briquettes. Yes, I had to rotate the pizza and the heat up time was shorter. Everything else was about the same.

     Villa Roma



Ok here's an idea....   what about using some type of 'chicken wire' that withstand the heat and putting a layer of those ceramic bricks in there?

That, or use those unglazed .99 cent tiles that people use, chop them in half or in fours & somehow wall up the bottom half of the grill with them.

Offline Atari

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Re: Little Black Egg
« Reply #174 on: March 01, 2008, 12:08:55 PM »

Welp, I've got an LBE in the incubator. :)

Picked up a used 18" Webber one-touch off Craigslist for $40. Too much $$ IMO... but the guy had it advertised as a 22" & when I got there it turned out to be the 18". What's funny is, due to Villa Nova's test unit being an 18", I really wanted that one anyway.  I only brought 2 $20's and didn't have the heart to haggle down to $30 once I found out it was the smaller unit that I wanted anyway :P.   Be sure to check your local craigslist before buying new... although, some of the Weber products (I think the One-Touch) still seem to be MADE IN THE USA (how odd?), so don't feel too bad if you have to buy one new :)

I ordered my Bayou Classic SP10 burner from Amazon.com for $30 with free supersaver shipping. I believe this is the same burner that Villa Nova uses on his 18" grill. I found that $30 with free shipping was such and awesome deal that I bought two of them! The problem was HomeDepot.com has them online for $30 as well, but charges around $20 to ship. I had a rep in store check to see if any stores anywhere in my area (Northern California) carried it in-store and they do not. He said it was probably online only.  The $30 price for this burner appears to be the lowest you're going to find anywhere.

Long story short:

- Check Craigslist first for your 18" Weber, or buy new MADE IN USA :)
- Order Bayou Classic SP10 from Amazon.com (Currently $30 w/Free super saver shipping)


I'm still mulling over what to do about the stones. I'll probably buy the "Old Stone Oven" brand that Villa Nova uses.

Initially I paid way too much ($20) for a 18"x18"x1" piece of travertine from a stone yard... but I don't think I can even use this thing for anything. I guess it may make people sick or something.


Anyway just wanted to share the tip to buy the SP10 from Amazon because they are currently the best price I've seen for the burner.


Offline Atari

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Re: Little Black Egg
« Reply #175 on: March 01, 2008, 12:42:54 PM »

Ok, here's who I went with for the 16" Old Stone Oven 4462 stone...


http://www.cookinstuff.com/kitchen-supply-stone-round-pizza-stone-p-1280.html 
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CowT5uzy60k&amp;feature=related" target="_blank" class="aeva_link bbc_link new_win">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CowT5uzy60k&amp;feature=related</a>

Price: $28.99/ea  +9.00 shipping (for 2 16" stones)

What a deal :)

I guess I'll be our regular Frugal Gourmet :chef:



Others:

$35.99
http://p4online.com/16rounpizbak.html

http://www.spoonsnspice.com/product.php?product=1045&cat=
$29.99

http://www.target.com/Pizza-Stone-Round/dp/B000QJBOEQ/sr=1-5/qid=1204391707/ref=sr_1_5/602-8125580-8555851?ie=UTF8&index=target&rh=k%3Apizza%20stone&page=1
$36.99   
*Due to the tag on the top, I believe this is the 'old stone oven' and should be the 16" model (4462), but could be 13" (4412)
(See this link: http://www.dominicskitchenstore.com/store/item.asp?DEPARTMENT_ID=34&ITEM_ID=1472)



Since I also bought 2 SP10 burners & the  (2)  8" stones for $19.99, I guess I'm forcing myself to make 2 LBE's here.
« Last Edit: March 01, 2008, 12:45:24 PM by Atari »

Offline Atari

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Re: Little Black Egg
« Reply #176 on: March 01, 2008, 12:51:09 PM »
Here's a rough tally of what it might cost you to build a LBE using new parts:


Weber 18 1/2" one-touch                  $65 (free ship from amazon.com)
(2) 8" stones from                            $20 (free ship from amazon.com)
Bayou Classic SP10                           $30 (free ship from amazon.com)
20# Propane Tank                           $20  (Costco)
16" Old Stone Oven 4462 stone         $35 +/- $5 shipping from CookinStuff.com (if in SoCal you can pick up in Torrance, CA)
Heavy duty tin foil                            $5

So roughly  $175 using new parts.


« Last Edit: March 01, 2008, 12:52:47 PM by Atari »

Offline DieselAddict

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Re: Little Black Egg
« Reply #177 on: March 03, 2008, 09:03:31 AM »
OK. I'm going to have to work to get a better bottom stone. The cheap ones crack too easily. :(

I put a new one in for yesterdays baking and everything was fine till I shifted it slightly and pushed it back against the metal pan that was shielding it from the heat.. CRACK.. Bummer. At least this one was only $9 at Target. I used the wire rack that came with it to create an air gap between the stone and the metal pan. It worked fine and got up to temp with no problems but then when I hit the front of the stone with the peel going in for a pie I pushed it back against the hot edge of the metal pan. The cheap stones just can't take a localized hot spot.

I'm going to have to make some kind of an insulated backstop to keep the stone centered in the pan or get one that can handle a hot spot.

Overall though this thing make great pizza! 

Offline Essen1

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Re: Little Black Egg
« Reply #178 on: March 11, 2008, 11:40:35 PM »
Alright...after reading the entire thread and asking VR a couple of questions, I put one together myself and with the help of a buddy of mine, who's a welder/custom metal guy.

I followed Villa's instructions to the "T", except for two minor changes. The first one involved the top vent and the second, the suspension of the top stone.

In regards to the top vent, my buddy cut out the factory-installed vent with a plasma cutter and installed a heavy-duty metal pipe as an "adapter" for the bendable & turnable pipe that goes on top. Then I attached a 4" vent, which directs the airflow in four different directions. The two parts are removable, as you can see in the pics below.

The second minor change was the attachment/suspension of the top stone. I figured it would be nice if it were adjustable, so I can lower or raise it, depending on its temperature. I bought a 3" bolt, 5/8" in width, two metal washers, two nuts and two "washers" ( I can't remember the exact name), used in plumbing. It will hold the stone, in which I yet have to drill a 5/8" hole and line it on the inside with a piece of an old clock spring.

I ordered a Fibrament-D stone, a IR thermometer and a bag of the ceramic briquettes. The burner is a Bayou Classic Turkey Fryer, which cranks out 50,000 BTU's. I hope that's enough  ::)

Once it's all ready to go, I'll post the results.

Mike

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

http://thehobbycook.blogspot.com/

Offline Essen1

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Re: Little Black Egg
« Reply #179 on: March 11, 2008, 11:42:33 PM »
Sorry, I had to cut this post in half...

Here are the pics of the stone suspension.

Oh, and as you can see, I attached the LBE to the frame of the burner by using metal clamps, running them through three holes, which were drilled in the body, about an inch away from the actual cut of the bottom, in a triangular shape. Now it doesn't move at all and is pretty sturdy.

All in all, I spent about $120 on the entire thing. And a 12-pack of beer for my buddy.  :angel:

« Last Edit: March 11, 2008, 11:49:10 PM by Essen1 »
Mike

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

http://thehobbycook.blogspot.com/


 

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