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I had no formal training in building trades

Hi Rado……..
thank you! thank you! thank you! The CD of tutorial pics was truly invaluable. I think I wore the CD out.

I looked at it so many times, between the CD, the website, and the bread builders book by Alan Scott. I was able to complete something I was so unsure about. I have no formal training in the building trades and I am no artist either. But I went into it with the common sense and that was my only course to learn how to work with building tools. I do like to mess around and construct things, not too perfect, so this was a challenge. I started building it on a former terrace made of broken concrete pieces (I got the dirt and the concrete from a demolition sight.)

Red brick oven - built without building training course.

Pizza oven front The oven dimensions are inside 22″ high, 31″ deep, 29″ wide – I slightly adjusted it. Doorway is 14″ by 16″. Using the formula I came up with 18-24″ high. So I chose 22″. It seemed to work for the arch. That seems to draw well and we are happy with the way the oven cooks. Pizza oven roof We did heat a turkey and a ham and it worked well. The oven is about 20″ in the ground. Since I had the hole already, I put a 3 1/2″ drainpipe around the base of the oven and have it drain in the front. I used fire brick for the floor, walls and ceiling. I insulated with cement block walls filled with cement and in between about 6″ of loose Perlite for walls and back. For the top I used a thermal blanket for a water heater, 4″ thick, and the rest with a Perlite and cement mixture. (5 to 1 strong mix) Pizza oven outside The walls are 20″ thick. Oven top 20″ thick. Back wall 16″ thick. Seems to hold the heat well. The pizza cooks in the oven at 600-650 degrees. And the oven will stay at about 450-500 degrees for 2 to 3 hours with the door closed. It will stay about 200 degrees overnight. We are happy with the way everything cooks. Had to learn about using the right kind of wood …. oak or almond I use …….. and how to build the fire. I decided to use a red brick front, with counter space in front to work on. Also tile and bullnose brick.

Pizza oven bricks Pizza oven insulation Pizza oven flue vent

I used stucco on the top and sides to match our house. And a flat roof b/c it was easier, and we don’t get snow here. I started having fun when I finally got the arches in and I was about to connect the flue to the front of the oven, making sure there was a space in between and cutting the bricks into the right angles, and how much fire clay and regular mortar volume to use. That was the hardest part for me. With a little research I was able to find all the materials in the general area I live in. Pizza oven inside During one of our pizza parties there was a lot of smoke when I first started it up, and the fire dept. happened to be coming by, and stopped and asked where all the smoke was coming from. I invited them in, and they looked at the oven and were impressed. They inspected everything, and said there were no problems and everything was OK. So our guests had a big laugh.

Your tutorial was totally amazing. Even without audio words, your pictures were very clear on what to do.

Every time I cook a pizza I think of you.
Again, thank you so much!

Sincerely, Andy from El Cajon, California USA

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