8' x 6' Hearth Slab Thickness
We are building our first Alan Scott oven for a small at home bakery. We're converting plans from the Bread builders book up to a 6 1/2' by 4 1/2' oven. We are doing this with very little experience and with help from a local mason. My question is, with a hearth slab size of 8' x 6', how thick does it have to be?
We were planning on doing 5 1/2" thick hearth slab but the cost of refractory cement was higher then anticipated ($5,500). We were thinking of going down to his suggested thickness of 3 1/2" (for a smaller oven) but we're worried about structural stability especially considering the cladding would only be 2 1/2" on the sides and 3" on top. Note, we will be using firebrick for the floor, walls and dome.
Any feedback from someone who has worked with larger size ovens would be greatly appreciated!
ps. Does the wooden form under the insulation slab really stay through life of oven?
Thank you much + Happy baking!
Wilson & Lela
Mountain Mills Food Co.