Monday, October 15, 2012

Reconstructing Our Wood Fired Hearth Oven Part 1

This is the story of my wood fired brick oven. As with most great adventures ours was born of passion. In this case it was a passion for good bread! In our quest we found the ultimate guide, The Bread Builders: Hearth Loaves and Masonry Ovens by Daniel Wing. This book contains an inspiring discourse on brick oven history as well as oven plans and recipes. It was all my husband needed to design our oven.

Oven construction began late in summer of 2002

A hearth large enough to bake 30 loaves

It was a masterpiece

For two years we used the oven regularly baking for the Farmers Market and throwing amazing pizza parties for friends and family. When we moved to the farm we had to partially disassemble the oven in order to move it. When we had the crane move it to the farm they weighed it. The oven core alone weighs 6,540lbs! There was no time in the midst of moving with five children to dig footings and pour concrete for a new base. We had it set temporally on railroad ties. Temporally? That was seven years ago! We are determined to get it operational again this year.

 This summer we poured a new reinforced foundation and built the new oven base. You can see the oven core on the rail road ties in the background.

 The front loader arrives to move the oven to the new base.

 In order to position the oven on the new base we had to set it down and lift it from with straps from above.

Notice that the oven never touches the base, the rebar provides a gap. This gap allows the heat to stay in the oven and not transfer the base.

I hope you enjoyed these pictures. In part two I'll show how we finished it!

1 comment:

Nohemi said...

Hmm… That’s bigger than a typical brick oven, huh. You can bake a lot of dough there at once! Haha! Kudos to you and to the rest of the guys out there who helped you. Fantastic job!

Nohemi Tutterrow