Author Topic: Low-Flat Dome Ovens  (Read 7206 times)

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Offline Barry

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Low-Flat Dome Ovens
« on: January 03, 2009, 04:35:13 AM »
Hi All,

This is my first topic, and the core of my passion of pizza making. I have been a great fan of pftaylor and his topic - Pizza Raquel. I have followed pftaylor's persuit of his perfect pizza, especially his pizza oven design and construction.

I visited the USA in 2007, and visited most of the top pizzarias, including a "closed" Pizzeria Bianco in Phoenix Arizona. I checked out all of the ovens, as well as dough management techniques revealed in questions and observations.

I travelled to Naples, Italy in July 2008, and visited most of the famous pizzarias, including the amazing Salvo just outside Naples. Once again, I gleamed as much information as possible, and then came home to design my "ultimate oven".

Home is Cape Town, South Africa.

The 3 pic below show the current 2-piece design, before insulation.

Kind regards.

Barry


Offline David

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Re: Low-Flat Dome Ovens
« Reply #1 on: January 03, 2009, 10:07:57 AM »
Congrat's Barry.Superb looking job.Looking forward to seeing the results of your research and hard work,
David
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Offline pftaylor

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Low-Flat Dome Ovens
« Reply #2 on: January 03, 2009, 03:34:59 PM »
Barry,
I can't wait to see your pies in the coming days. Say, what is your door made out of? It is a nice touch. It isn't some sort of calcium silicate fiber board is it?
Pizza Raquel is Simply Everything You’d Want.
www.wood-firedpizza.com

Offline Barry

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Re: Low-Flat Dome Ovens
« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2009, 01:28:39 AM »
Thanks David and pftaylor,

The first batch of pizzas were pretty good for a new oven. Everyone that tasted them said they were fabulous, and that the "wood smoke note" in the taste was a definite improvement on my gas fired pizzas.

I personally felt that we cooked too early - ie before optimum temp was reached. The cook time was 90 - 110 seconds. I want to bring the time down to 60 - 90 seconds. I have always found that a Margherita cooks in about 30 seconds quicker than say, a pizza packed with a lot more toppings.

After the cook, we continued to heat the oven, and could definitely detect a much higher temperature. Next time !

The pics below show the first pizzas from the oven.

Kind regards.

Barry

Offline Barry

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Re: Low-Flat Dome Ovens
« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2009, 01:38:16 AM »
Hi pftaylor,

I am not sure what the board is made of. It was acquired from the same supplier of the fire bricks and thermal ceramic blanket. They swore by it, and said that furnaces were lined with it.

In the floor construction, I used the boards below the perlite concrete, on top of which the fire bricks were placed. I cut a spare piece of the board into the shape of the oven mouth, and put a steel handle on it.

I will confirm if it is calcium silicate fiber board when I get back to my suppliers. They are all closed for the Christmas holidays.

Kind regards.

Barry

Offline Barry

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Re: Low-Flat Dome Ovens
« Reply #5 on: January 04, 2009, 11:01:53 AM »
pftaylor,

You asked about the recipe that I am currently using for my dough.

I have access to bread flour (11.5%), cake flour (10.5%) and stone ground (artisan) flour (11%) here in South Africa. There is also some "00" flour available, but this is more suitable for pasta. My experiments have not been good with this flour, nor with the stone ground flour. My current favourite flour is Snowflake Cake Flour which has consistently been the best for the past year.

My recipe (per 12" pizza base) is:

100 %     Flour      150 gr
65.33%   Water      98 ml
2.0%      Salt         3.0 gr
1.0%      Honey      1.5 gr
2.0%      EVOO       3 0 ml
0.23%    IDY          0.35 gr

I use the same mixing proceedures that you use for Raquel. Bulk rise in the refrigerator for 2 days, then split into balls 4 hours before making the first pizza.

I intend to change this recipe now that the new oven is up and running. The foirst will be to eliminate the honey and EVOO. I will also crank the salt up, and then start with my sourdough starters. Lots to look forward to !!

Kind regards.

Barry

Offline Pizza_Not_War

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Re: Low-Flat Dome Ovens
« Reply #6 on: January 04, 2009, 12:19:01 PM »
Great looking oven! That takes some real skill to make your own design. Do you have a background in that kind of work?

If you have any interest in producing them for sale, sign me up as a candidate for one!!


PNW

Offline Barry

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Re: Low-Flat Dome Ovens
« Reply #7 on: January 07, 2009, 04:18:43 AM »
Hi PNW,

No, I don't have any background in design, but I have looked critically at many, many pizza ovens around the world !

I may look at producing the oven set commercially, and I will let you know details when this happens.

The pic attached shows the oven wrapped in the thermal ceramic blanket (and chicken wire) before the final coat of perlite insulatoin concrete was applied.

Kind regards.

Barry

Offline Ronzo

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Re: Low-Flat Dome Ovens
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2009, 02:27:45 PM »
We want more pictures!!!

:)


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Offline Barry

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Re: Low-Flat Dome Ovens
« Reply #9 on: January 24, 2009, 07:11:22 AM »
Hi Ronza,

After about 5 or 6 firings of the low-flat ovens, I decided that the oven needed extra insulation. I was quite surprised when pftaylor posted that his Raquel oven was "cool to the touch" even when his oven was at baking temperature (950 deg F). I will take any advice from the Master of Raquel, so better and better insulation it had to be !

My low-flat dome oven, with it's insulation consisting of a single layer of ceramic blanket + 3-4" perlite concrete was "warm to very warm to the touch" when the oven hit 950 deg. Just not good enough, and a waste of wood and time.

I have now added another 2" of ceramic blanket + 3-4" additional perlite concrete.. The pic below shows the new shape with the additional insulation.

This oven has the dual capacity of wood and/or gas. The second and third pics show the floor slot (inside) and the access slot (outside) for the 2 foot industrial gas burner. More on this later.

Kind regards.

Barry


Offline Pizza Rustica

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Re: Low-Flat Dome Ovens
« Reply #10 on: January 24, 2009, 02:40:00 PM »
Barry, I love the shape of your oven. Very Nice. Did you use forms to pour the oven pieces? Could you describe your process in more detail? After you added the extra layers of blanket and perlite how did you finish it?
Russ

Offline tmsolek

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Re: Low-Flat Dome Ovens
« Reply #11 on: January 30, 2009, 03:45:24 PM »
How big is this oven and whats the inner hieght of the dome?  I am planning a refractory oven to be built on a trailor.  I plan on the inside diameter to be 42" any recommenations for inner dome hieght. 

Thanks,

Todd

Offline Barry

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Re: Low-Flat Dome Ovens
« Reply #12 on: February 01, 2009, 06:56:31 AM »
Pizza Rustica,

The oven's design was fine tuned on a computer using CAD. This informaion was saved on a disk, and sent to a company that makes "plugs" out of super wood boards stuck together. The plug was used to produce moulds for the 2 intergral parts being, (1) the inner dome, and (2) the cowling.

These 2 parts are cast using refractory material. The wall thickness is 40 mm throughout. The castings are carefully dried and heat cured (using small fires) over a 2 week period.

The (amended, thanks to pftaylor) insulation proceedure is to wrap 3-4 layers of ceramic blanket over the 2 pieces stuck together. A layer of 2" chicken wire is laid over to keep the blankets in place, and to provide re-enforcing the perlite concrete.

The perlite concrete is relatively dry when applied in a 4" layer. The outer surface is "floated" using first wooden trowels, and then steel trowels to render them smooth.

tmsolek,

The oven's INNER dimentions are 43.3" wide by 29.5" deep. The height of the flat ceiling is 12.4"

The back of the oven has a flat section of 24" to accomodate an industrial gas burner for quick firing up (only if necessary). Gas also burns hotter than wood, so it can be used to "boost" the temp to around 1,000 deg F quite quickly.

Kind regards.

Barry