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Hi Everyone, my name is Carl. Here are some pictures of The TankHead Pizza Oven. It was made out of a large propane tank head. Inside the steel dome is a thick wall of refractory cement.

The cooking surface is firebrick. There is a fire box below that vents directly into the dome. This allows it to be smaller inside. Works great and turns out two and a half minute pizzas.

I live in Elverson, Pennsylvania. I made the oven in my garage during last winter. The refractory was done in my basement and then lifted out (very heavy). My total cost was around $700. I got the propane tank from an Amish scrap yard. It took a lot of metal work, grinding and welding but is now worth all the work. I came across your site and I really like all the recipes and oven wisdom.

Tankhead pizza oven full profile. Propane tankhead pizza oven

This is a diagram how I went about -it shows how the heat from the fire box below travels upwards then enters the dome through the cooking floor on the right side. The heat then circulates around the dome. The dome is small and has 3.5 inches of refractory inside it. That allows it to reach temps of 800F plus, even though, the fire is not directly in the dome. Here are five progress images from my workshop while I was working on on the oven.

Tank cylinder head firebox-shaft oven diagram.
Shaft Diagram

Apart the technical side of things – current set up allows me to use the oven as a smoker for pork or anything else really with slow and low cooking time at the 250 degrees or around.

Tank head oven Recycled propane tank head ovens - metal work. The tankhead pizza oven outdoors.

I was wondering and wanted to see if I could make an oven but cut down on the size. So far so good. My wife did not get what I was doing at all until the final week when I set it all up. Now she loves it.

I had looked at buying a small pizza oven around the same size as the one I built. I found that there was very little room inside the dome to cook the pizza with the fire in the dome. No way to cook a 14 or 16 inch pizza unless you clear all the coals out. That is why I thought to put the fire box below the dome. Also those small pizza ovens cost $2000 or more and all is pre-made. I enjoy doing things from the scratch.

Respond to the TANKHEAD Pizza Oven article:


  1. Looks awesome, nice steel fabrication and design! That would make a great smoker too! Steve

    By Steve

  2. Thanks Steve, I smoked a pork butt in it earlier this summer using charcoal and soaked applewood chips. It turned out great. This was my first time working with steel and welding. I learned a lot. A good welding machine makes all the difference.

    By Carl Segermark

  3. I would like to buy a print of your stove in detail if that’s possible.

    Nice very well done I’m in the body shop business.

    By George Mourgis

  4. I second that. I’m looking for a small oven for a small backyard.

    By Jim Drouillard

  5. Hey George, I don’t have written plans for this oven. I was kind of winging it and made adjustments as I went along building it. I did send some pictures of the oven at different stages of the build that show more of how it goes together, hopefully they will be up soon. Let me put together some plans for it and then I can send them to you some way in a PDF maybe.

    By Carl Segermark

  6. Hi Jim, I’ m glad you like the design. I will put together some plans for this. Keep in mind that I built this for around $700- table and all but I got the tank for dirt cheap at $50. If you can find a tank for free or really cheap your cost can be around what I spent. Give me a few days and I will make some plans. Large cost items for this are: steel, refractory cement, and wood for benches (cedar is what I used).

    By Carl Segermark

  7. Great looking job. I would like to see the plans. Thanks

    By Mark O'Malley

  8. This is super cool! Looks fantastic. I am looking to build something like this for my new house. If you have any plans for the construction and don’t mind sharing it would be greatly appreciated. Cheers -A

    By Adrian

  9. Looking at designing a small, lightweight pizza oven that could be transported on a pedicab type bike (3 wheeler). What is the average weight of a smaller oven?

    By Joe

  10. This oven is too heavy for that i think. I looked up some small ovens on Forno Bravo and the weight was around 450 pounds. I don’t know if the smaller ones need to be reheated more frequently though.

    By Carl Segermark

  11. “Hey George, I don’t have written plans for this oven. I was kind of winging it and made adjustments as I went along building it. I did send some pictures of the oven at different stages of the build that show more of how it goes together, hopefully they will be up soon. Let me put together some plans for it and then I can send them to you some way in a PDF maybe.”

    Your “Tankhead” pizza oven looks great. I too would like to know more details about it.


  12. Hi Carl,

    I too would love to get the plans for building this. I’ve been wanting to build something like this for my rooftop in Chicago for a long time and your design looks perfect. It’s great that you can smoke in it too.

    Any idea what the total weight is?


    By Tony

  13. Awesome design! I would love to get a copy of the plans if possible and would like more detail on how you got the refractory cement in the dome and what is the mix you used for it.

    By Antonino Giambruno

  14. I, too loved your design. If and when you create a PDF design file, I’d love a copy too. It would go well here in Texas!

    By Ron Barbera

  15. Hey Carl I’m a professional welder … wow you done a fantastic job in building this oven. I’m gonna build one this spring. Hope it’s as good as yours. Great job!

    By Bobby Lynch

  16. Carl im iching to build
    what size LP tank did you use,
    and did you have a chance to draw
    any plans THANK YOU

    By George Mourgis

  17. Carl
    I am also interested on plans. Have you had a chance to put them together?

    By James Hubbard

  18. I would love one of your metal fabrication ovens for our farm. If you are interested in building another winter project please e-mail me at Thanks Greg

    By greg

  19. Hi Carl,

    This is the best tank pizza oven I’ve seen! My son and I are going to try and build one so would appreciate any more information you have in terms of dimensions on the firebox or other photos.

    How did you construct the 3.5″ dome of refractory cement on the inside? Any details you can share would be appreciated.

    Thanks for posting an inspiring project!


    By Paul Hancock

  20. Hi Carl I would like to build this style pizza oven, looks fantastic. Can you send me some pictures with specs or plans to build the oven please?

    By Joe

  21. Hi Carl
    Awesome job.
    I have been trying to do something like this with metal fabrication myself.
    Would love any help tips you could give me.
    Cheers Russ

    By Russ

  22. Hi Carl,
    I am currently cooking on a kettle pizza kit mounted on my Webber. Gets up to 1000 degrees, but only 1 pizza at a time. I was searching for plans to have someone build me a steel oven such as this. Are you making them or do you have plans? Also, how did you do the cement inside the dome?

    By Reco

  23. Hi Carl,

    Great design and execution of your pizza oven. This is definitely going to be my winter project. Do you still happen to have pictures and plans for building this oven you would be able to send?
    Thank you

    By Chase

  24. Hi Carl,

    I too am wondering how you built the 3.5″ refactory cement dome inside the dome.

    Is it something where you set the open end of the metal dome on the bottom and then just form the cement inside of it so that once the cement is hard it just kind of holds itself in place?

    I don’t think it would stick to the metal but perhaps welding a few anchor points to the metal dome would allow for the cement to setup around them and hold the cement against the metal more permanently.

    Any details you can provide would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks, Jeff

    By Jeff

  25. Carl,

    Looks amazing and I like he marble inlay on the left to prep pizza. Do you think you can send me a picture from the left hand side of your oven? And how has it been performing?


    By Rocco

  26. Carl,

    As the fire is below, do you find it difficult to see inside your oven and what you are cooking. A fire inside lights up the oven and you can see how your product is cooking. It looks awfully dark in the dome that you have.


    By Rocco

  27. Hi Carl,

    I am the lucky recipient of your wood fired pizza oven (got it from the guy who bought your house in Elverson)! It was pretty weathered but complete, so I restored it to practically brand new condition. Email me if you want to see the before and after pics scottbcaley at gmail dot com

    Can you give me any tips on getting the oven up to 800 degrees as you mentioned? I’m using hickory.

    Thank you!
    Scott Caley

    By Scott Caley

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