Front edge of oven floor exposed

So we did this and wish we hadn’t. When we laid the form in place we centered it front to back not remembering that stucco would cover the back edge but the front edge would remain exposed. As we live in Minnesota, there will be some snow and ice buildup in the gaps between the firebricks on the floor. Do we need to worry about this? It seems there might be enough give among the bricks to accommodate expansion. Or should we pack hight-temp mortar into the gaps out front?

Hi Eric,

Well, at first glance that does look like your hearth is a little more outside the envelope than you’d want it to be. If you finish and leave it that way, you’re correct that you would need to take extra steps to protect it from water, ice, snow, and ice. (You did say Minnesota.)

But. are you considering closing off the opening? This would be an additional reason to add a front to your oven. You don’t need to close off much of it, and lately I’ve been thinking it’s a good idea for any Barile, to retain heat and to route more smoke up the chimney.

Closing it off will bring the front of the oven forward, and make up that space, protecting your hearth a bit more.

Let us know what you decide, and good to hear from you.

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