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### Author Topic: 2 Stone Idea  (Read 6080 times)

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#### mkevenson

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##### 2 Stone Idea
« on: March 15, 2013, 01:44:35 AM »
Thanks Willard for providing me with a great oven and a challenge.
I have the 2 Stone grill model. I use a camp chef propane stove with a 60 k BTU / hr burner. My pizza is great as long as I bake at 625-650 stone temp. If I go above I get a burned bottom crust before the top is done. I have been trying to solve this problem by changing the bottom stone conductivity. Thanks to Craig 123 I now realize that perhaps the solution is in increasing the TOP heat, so that the pie top is done before the bottom in burned. So I wonder if I changed the top stone to a more conductive stone than the Fibrament, if this would accomplish my goal? I currently have the burner situated to the back half of the bottom stone tray, as recommended by Willard. But the top and bottom stone temps are about the same. So what if the release of heat from the bottom stone were less than the release of heat from the top stone? This logically should decrease the top cook time and perhaps get a nicely done pie with good color on top and bottom. Question is which stone for top to increase heat conductivity to accomplish the goal.

Mark
« Last Edit: March 15, 2013, 11:50:02 AM by mkevenson »
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#### henkverhaar

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• Posts: 59
##### Re: 2 Stone Idea
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2013, 05:12:04 AM »
So I wonder if I changed the top stone to a more conductive stone than the Fibrament, if this would accomplish my goal?

Your top stone is not in contact with your pizza, so I doubt that conductivity would play a major role. Radiative capacity should be important I would think, although I have no idea whether that is a parameter that is available for any of these materials.

#### TXCraig1

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##### Re: 2 Stone Idea
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2013, 07:18:19 AM »
You want to increase the emissivity, not the conductivity. About all you could do is make the stone black. I doubt it would make much difference however. I think Bert tried it in the MPO. You might do a search on that.

BTW, who is Craig 123?
"We make great pizza, with sourdough when we can, baker's yeast when we must, but always great pizza."
Craig's Neapolitan Garage

#### Bert

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##### Re: 2 Stone Idea
« Reply #3 on: March 15, 2013, 07:49:16 AM »
I think Bert tried it in the MPO.

I tried to sugar coat it ... literally ... I tried to cover top stone with sugar/ water solution and bake it. after multiple coat and baking the surface should be covered with dark hydrocarbon surface, the darker the surface the higher the emissivity . It was messy and generated lots of smoke during stone baking. I gave up after couple coats and the slight   dark coat I obtained after couple of bake is no longer visible after using MPO couple of times.
Bert

#### henkverhaar

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• Posts: 59
##### Re: 2 Stone Idea
« Reply #4 on: March 15, 2013, 08:53:02 AM »
I tried to sugar coat it ... literally ... I tried to cover top stone with sugar/ water solution and bake it. after multiple coat and baking the surface should be covered with dark hydrocarbon surface, the darker the surface the higher the emissivity . It was messy and generated lots of smoke during stone baking. I gave up after couple coats and the slight   dark coat I obtained after couple of bake is no longer visible after using MPO couple of times.

I would probably opt for plain old soot in that case - from a candle or oil lamp wick, or better yet, from a small benzene flame (benzene gives great soot - including buckyballs and nanotubes ;-) ). But as Craig sez, it's probably not going to make much of a difference.

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#### Bert

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##### Re: 2 Stone Idea
« Reply #5 on: March 15, 2013, 09:25:43 AM »
it's probably not going to make much of a difference.

yep... I didn't notice any difference
Bert

#### mitchjg

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• Location: Oakland, CA
##### Re: 2 Stone Idea
« Reply #6 on: March 15, 2013, 10:30:38 AM »
Mark, you mentioned you are using a propane stove.  do you "put a lid on it?"  I have a pizza grill which, when I use it, is set up on my Weber grill.  When I heat up, it is vital for the lid to be mostly closed - it is propped open a couple of inches.

Maybe you can take a picture of your setup.

- Mitch
Mitch

“We hate math,” says 4 in 10 – a majority of Americans

#### corkd

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##### Re: 2 Stone Idea
« Reply #7 on: March 15, 2013, 10:33:35 AM »
Mitch,

I agree, it is vital for the lid to be closed for most of the bake.

Clay

#### scott123

• Guest
##### Re: 2 Stone Idea
« Reply #8 on: March 15, 2013, 11:22:27 AM »
Mark, as everyone has mentioned, conductivity requires contact. Since the top stone is not contacting the pizza, conductivity plays no role. The only methods for bolstering top heat are through increased emissivity (a darker color) or decreased proximity (lowering the ceiling or raising the pizza). As Bert found out, high temps tend to take most materials away. You might, though, be able to achieve better emissivity with a darker stone. There are black glazed stones:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B003UI8B2S/?tag=pmak-20
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0036G8JHG/?tag=pmak-20

I'm not sure how well the stones will fit, and cutting a glazed stone might be a bit of a question mark. I'm not sure.

A couple years back, this forum had a member who was doing custom stones in darker colors, but he hasn't been around in quite some time. Dark cordierite stones are out there, but they are hard to find. I just did a quick search and came up empty-handed. This is what I'd look for, though. The darker, the better.

Generally speaking, in bottom heat scenarios, I find it a bit easier and more effective to handicap the bottom heat via deflection and/or less conductive hearths, then to bolster the top heat with darker ceilings.

#### mkevenson

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##### Re: 2 Stone Idea
« Reply #9 on: March 15, 2013, 11:54:50 AM »
You want to increase the emissivity, not the conductivity. About all you could do is make the stone black. I doubt it would make much difference however. I think Bert tried it in the MPO. You might do a search on that.

BTW, who is Craig 123?

My error, I am soooo embarrassed. Of course it is Scott not Craig. Who is Craig 123?

Mark
"Gettin' better all the time" Beatles

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#### mkevenson

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##### Re: 2 Stone Idea
« Reply #10 on: March 15, 2013, 11:59:16 AM »
Thank you all for your time and input. I really want to make this work before looking for another oven. It really does not make sense to me to go with a WFO when I bake 1 pie for the wife and I at a time.
Back to the drawing board.

Mark
"Gettin' better all the time" Beatles

#### jeff v

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• I'm Valentino not Varasano :)
##### Re: 2 Stone Idea
« Reply #11 on: March 15, 2013, 12:11:49 PM »
Hey Mark, have you tried sliding a screen or pizza tray underneath partway through the bake? That and cooking the pizza off the bottom stone worked best for me. Also longer pre-heats and adding quarry tiles to the top stone helped.
Back to being a civilian pizza maker only.

#### mkevenson

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##### Re: 2 Stone Idea
« Reply #12 on: March 15, 2013, 12:21:27 PM »
Hey Mark, have you tried sliding a screen or pizza tray underneath partway through the bake? That and cooking the pizza off the bottom stone worked best for me. Also longer pre-heats and adding quarry tiles to the top stone helped.

Jeff, yes, I did insert a screen last bake and domed. I thought about stacking another stone but it has been suggested by a member that is not a good idea due to uneven heat of the top stone. I have not considered tiles. It has also been suggested that I. Add an air pocket under the bottom stone. I will see what that does?
I had no idea that in order to use this oven at higher heats, >650F, I would need to manipulate so much. Oh well, I like the oven concept and Price, so I will keep plugging away.
I pre heat one hr.
Mark
"Gettin' better all the time" Beatles

#### scott123

• Guest
##### Re: 2 Stone Idea
« Reply #13 on: March 15, 2013, 02:44:40 PM »
My error, I am soooo embarrassed. Of course it is Scott not Craig. Who is Craig 123?

For what it's worth, I don't mind being confused for Craig

#### mkevenson

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##### Re: 2 Stone Idea
« Reply #14 on: March 23, 2013, 12:06:44 PM »
Mark, as everyone has mentioned, conductivity requires contact. Since the top stone is not contacting the pizza, conductivity plays no role. The only methods for bolstering top heat are through increased emissivity (a darker color) or decreased proximity (lowering the ceiling or raising the pizza). As Bert found out, high temps tend to take most materials away. You might, though, be able to achieve better emissivity with a darker stone. There are black glazed stones:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B003UI8B2S/?tag=pmak-20
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0036G8JHG/?tag=pmak-20

I'm not sure how well the stones will fit, and cutting a glazed stone might be a bit of a question mark. I'm not sure.

A couple years back, this forum had a member who was doing custom stones in darker colors, but he hasn't been around in quite some time. Dark cordierite stones are out there, but they are hard to find. I just did a quick search and came up empty-handed. This is what I'd look for, though. The darker, the better.

Generally speaking, in bottom heat scenarios, I find it a bit easier and more effective to handicap the bottom heat via deflection and/or less conductive hearths, then to bolster the top heat with darker ceilings.

Scott, I have seen pics of almost black soap stone. There is a dealer in the Bay Area that will cut a rectangular soap to fit my top stone holder. Any way to know in advance if soapstone will be more reflective than FibraMent?

Mark
"Gettin' better all the time" Beatles

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#### 2stone

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##### Re: 2 Stone Idea
« Reply #15 on: March 23, 2013, 12:23:08 PM »
Hey Mark,

I have taken notice to the issues you are expressing....that is why we have the sliding burner on the Inferno and the Pro.
I have had a fair amount of interest  in the wood burning kit (which uses the same setup as you have) and I am adding two features
that should add the same functionality to yours that the bigger standalone ovens have. I have put the bottom rotating stone on a slide
so you can pull it forward there by cooling off the front and letting more heat in the back. I have prototyped it, and will be giving it a test fire soon.
I am also looking into adding a ceramic blanket in the air space at the top which will also help. Once I have done this, I will be closer to rolling out the wood fired kit.

If you call me (maybe on Monday) we can see if we can retrofit yours.

take care
Willard

#### scott123

• Guest
##### Re: 2 Stone Idea
« Reply #16 on: March 23, 2013, 03:18:06 PM »
Scott, I have seen pics of almost black soap stone. There is a dealer in the Bay Area that will cut a rectangular soap to fit my top stone holder. Any way to know in advance if soapstone will be more reflective than FibraMent?

Mark, what you are looking for in a top stone is emissivity, and, yes, an almost black soapstone will be more emissive then Fibrament.

One other thing to consider, even incorporating Willard's fascinating new features, is that the 2stone insert may not be ideal for a Neapolitan bake time, regardless of how many  BTUs you have coming up from below. What bake times are you presently seeing with a 650 pre-heat? Are you using a traditional New York style recipe and flour?

#### mkevenson

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• Location: Santa Rosa, Ca
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##### Re: 2 Stone Idea
« Reply #17 on: March 23, 2013, 03:29:31 PM »
Hey Mark,

I have taken notice to the issues you are expressing....that is why we have the sliding burner on the Inferno and the Pro.
I have had a fair amount of interest  in the wood burning kit (which uses the same setup as you have) and I am adding two features
that should add the same functionality to yours that the bigger standalone ovens have. I have put the bottom rotating stone on a slide
so you can pull it forward there by cooling off the front and letting more heat in the back. I have prototyped it, and will be giving it a test fire soon.
I am also looking into adding a ceramic blanket in the air space at the top which will also help. Once I have done this, I will be closer to rolling out the wood fired kit.

If you call me (maybe on Monday) we can see if we can retrofit yours.

take care
Willard

Willard, I have reconfigured my stove so that the burner is at the absolute back of the top of the 2stone. The flame is seen coming up the curved portion heading to the top stone. The front of the bottom stone is significantly cooler than the back of the bottom stone. I will call Mon.
Mark
"Gettin' better all the time" Beatles

#### mkevenson

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• Age: 66
• Location: Santa Rosa, Ca
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##### Re: 2 Stone Idea
« Reply #18 on: March 23, 2013, 03:37:41 PM »
Mark, what you are looking for in a top stone is emissivity, and, yes, an almost black soapstone will be more emissive then Fibrament.

One other thing to consider, even incorporating Willard's fascinating new features, is that the 2stone insert may not be ideal for a Neapolitan bake time, regardless of how many  BTUs you have coming up from below. What bake times are you presently seeing with a 650 pre-heat? Are you using a traditional New York style recipe and flour?

Scott, being relatively new I am trying several flours including, KABF, Caputo 00 Pizzeria, and most recently Arrowhead organic with no malt. I have 5 pounds of All Trumps waiting at home.
Since my oven has the ability to reach varying temps I am using what I feel is the appropriate flour for the desired oven temp.
No matter what flour I am using 61-64% hydration, about 0.2-0.3 IDY, 2% salt, 3.5% EVOO. I have eliminated sweetener at least when I bake above 650F, which recently I am about 700F. I am looking for more cornice spring, hence the choice of higher temps.
"Gettin' better all the time" Beatles

#### scott123

• Guest
##### Re: 2 Stone Idea
« Reply #19 on: March 23, 2013, 04:13:56 PM »
Mark, you'll find differing opinions on this, but unmalted flour doesn't realize it's true potential unless it's baked in 90 seconds or less. With your powerful oven, a balanced 90 second bake might be feasible, but it's extremely advanced pizza making. I would, for now, tackle the style that is the easiest to achieve with your equipment. For the insert, that's New York– KABF or all trumps (the all trumps is bromate, correct?), a four to 5 min. bake, 3% oil, 1% sugar, and, for the best possible oven spring, an appropriately low thickness factor– no higher than .075.

Another big player in oven spring is proper fermentation. How long are you fermenting your dough for, and is it between double and triple by the time you stretch it?
« Last Edit: March 23, 2013, 04:16:52 PM by scott123 »

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