First Post! ;-)
I've been passionately lurking on this site for a few months now. I have baked up a few dozen loaves and have been meaning to start up my baker-blog but never could get the stars to line up with a lovely loaf, my digital camera, AND the motivation to write down what I've done. I figured this is the easiest way to get my own personal ball rolling so without further ado, my impressions of the Fibrament baking stone.
I read all the opinions presented in this site and my head was sent twirling. I decided that after seeing the tremendous oven-spring a simple round loaf of wheat bread got on my pizza stone (now broken due to steam) I should look into a larger, more robust piece of masonry.
I couldn't wrap my brain around anything that wasn't a large slab (IE: quarry tiles, bricks, very small rocks) so my choices seemed to be kiln-bottoms or Firbrament. I'm pleased to say I placed my order on Fibrament's WWW site very early on a Thursday morning and received my stone mid-afternoon Friday using standard shipping. (Keep in mind I work by O'Hare airport in Chicago and the Fibrament company is located on Chicago's south side but it still was GREAT turnaround)
After I seasoned the "stone" I whipped up my second attempt at FloydM's pain sur poolish and made two of the ugliest shaped loaves I've ever seen with some WONDERFUL oven spring, crust, and crumb. The ugly part was my fault as my dough stuck to my cutting board (AKA fake Peel) in spite of the corn meal I had sprinkled down to avoid such an outcome.
Bottom line, my oven fits the $66 stone and I consider it money well spent. My bread is turning out markedly better looking and I'm enjoying the "brick oven" feel without the expense of building one. To anyone trying to decide whether or not to invest in ANY type of "baking stone"-like apparatus I whole-heartedly recommend it! It will make your baking experience all the more satisfying.
This post and all my others are just my $.02. Thanks to the FreshLoaf community for turning me back on to a hobby that my mother started me on when I was a wee little lad with a tiny little loaf pan making bread with her.