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Wednesday, 4 December 2013

My Plans for a wood fired, masonry barrel vault oven.

4th December 2013 - Time to build an oven

I have been baking all of the bread we eat in our household for about two years.  I have even got my Dad cooking all the bread that him and my mother eat.  I also like to bake buns and pastries.  It's a bit of a trend in my life, that once I get into something, I have take it a bit further, often too far.  I usually produce enough to give a little away each bake, but there is so little and I like to be able to keep everyone happy.  I would also like my bread to be even better, as a result I have decided to build an oven. I have been waiting to build this for some time, have re-designed it numerous times and now we have almost finished building the our house, it is now time.



Here is my design;




This is a stored heat oven, internally fired using wood.  It is my modern interpretation of a traditional oven found all over the world.  This type of often called a barrel vault oven, a name given to this shape of masonry oven. 



Still a lot to complete inside our house, like build a kitchen and lay some floors, but it is looking almost finished from the outside.  This is my last project, every little bit was designed my me while we were living in the Netherlands.  Its been a lot of hard work, we have not used any contractors, most of the hard graft has been done by a young man we have been employing who had no previous experience of building, so I have had to teach every technique and method we have used over the two years this project has been running for.


Almost finished, nappies on the line from our 10 month old little girl Dorothy.


The temporary structure built to keep us dry while we work on this build.


A few alder logs seasoning ready for firing.  Correct length for this oven, 1 meter,  far too thick, they will need to be sliced down to about 3cm thick to burn at the correct speed.

The reinforced concrete support slab with load bearing,  Foamglas insulation covering the slab and a plywood form in which we will be using as a mold to create a 5cm slab of cast refractory.  The small form inside the main will leave the opening for the ash slot.


The fire-clay bricks, ready to form the main structure and heat storing mass of the oven.

A detail drawing of the lintel that will be cast from refractory, it includes the transition between oven and chimney.