Cob Oven Base Part 1

A little while ago I hinted that I was embarking on a project that would go a long way to achieving one of my goals for this year.  As the title suggests, today I started to make the Cob Oven.  I have located it under my back veranda, on top of the existing concrete slab.  My good friend David gave me a hand mixing the mortar, and Kim offered her womanly advice at the start, but left to paint the the gazebo and grape arbor in the pool area.

Well, a bricky I will never make, however I am proud of my work so far.  Not bad for a novice and first timer.  As I am so knackered, there will be just pictures at this stage, and you will have to wait for the video to get the good oil on my thought process another day.

In the beginning there was a concrete slab where the wicking bed once had laid.  Holly helping of me course, and Teddy was helping Kim paint!

The materials.  Breeze blocks, 40cm x 15cm and about 14 half bricks

These are the 60cm x 60cm pavers that will make the top of the base that I will lay the oven brick on.

This is the basic structure before adding the mortar.  It is 120cm wide and 135cm long, with a side preparation table top.  The mortar is made up of two parts of premixed cement and six parts sand and all mixed up in the wheel barrow with enough water to make it a thick consistency.

This the first row bedded in.  Square and level.

Note my sloppy joints.  The base will be rendered when complete, so it doesn’t really matter much.  It is level and spaced correctly apart.

Another view.

The second row of bricks go on.

Not yet finished the entire 2nd course.  I had to mix up some more mortar.

The second course of bricks completed and level.

Another angle.  I will be bricking these tunnels up at about half way, mainly because Kim is scared of spiders that may lurk in the deep dark depths!  There still should be enough storage for wood.

My trusty trowel.  I have the hang of it now.

I ran out of mortar at about 5pm so called it quits for the day and cleaned up the surrounding area so that there would not be cement stains everywhere.

All my muscles hurt, my brain is numb but I feel a great sense of accomplishment.  I start again tomorrow morning.  It will be 4 rows high before I put on the large pavers.  So far I have used two 20kg of sand, and about 10kg of premix cement.

What do you think?  Not very climate friendly using all of this cement, however the oven itself will be made of natural and recycled materials from around the yard, so it is not all that bad.

Gav signing off and stuck into a glass of organic wine! xox
   

Comments

  1. says

    I am looking on with envy…and admiration. I know how heavy those bricks are; as I built a big garden bed in the front yard with them….although I didn’t mortar them…I’ve been trying to source more bricks and have already picked a location for my cob oven, but one thing at a time….So much to do, but I will be watching on…I certainly won’t be working on mine every day though. Great work Gav!

  2. says

    I am really looking forward to seeing how it all goes as I would love one for our own. You are a champ to share this at the end of the day -your muscles must be feeling it those suckers are heavy!

  3. says

    Very exciting to watch this going up…will be showing this to the hubs in the morning to prod him along..I would like to know how much the breeze blocks are each ..do you remeber?

  4. says

    Hi Gavin You really do inspire me to all the things I would like to do but am unsure how to go about them. I really appreciate all the instructions and photos.

  5. says

    You have my interest now Gav. I will look forward to seeing the finished project and in particular what you will be cooking in your oven. Great post!

  6. says

    We have a cob oven and it is fabulous our only regret is that we didn’t make the inside bigger. We started with an exterior space of 120cm and it is surprising how small the inside is. We can only cook 1 pizza at a time which is not enough when friends visit, which they inevitably do on Pizza night.

  7. says

    Thanks everyone. I really appreciate each and every comment.

    @ Joyfulhomemaker. I got them from bunnings at $2.50 each. Not cheap, but I could not find a source for free.

    @ Dad, I broke it up, but will put it back together to make smaller beds for the grape vines in the pool area.

    @ Froogs. Hold on to your horses ;-) these things take time. See my latest post.

    @ Sue. Thanks for the tip. We measured it today and figure that it will be about 90cm internal diametre when finished. we reckon that we will be able to fit in two pizzas at a time and maybe a loaf of bread as well.

    Gav

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