Hi guys, I believe this may have already been addressed but will ask again. I have seen other builds that appeared to have used 1.5" thick patio pavers for the hearth edging. I plan to do something similar by using 12 x 12 x 1.5 pavers and using split firebrick for the cooking surface versus full fire brick. After I mortar the pavers in it should create about 2" void to lay my splits thus I could still have enough room for leveling sand. Does anyone see a reason not to go this route? Thanks!
I would avoid using splits for the oven floor. You want the full thickness of firebrick as thermal mass to properly retain and radiate the heat from your fire, since you shove the burning coals to the back when its time to cook the pizza.
Additionally, I’d be concerned about the splits cracking if you are too effective in lighting your fires.
I agree with @gdiscenza Gregg here. Don’t stint on your hearth floor for the sake of looks. There’s a reason why it’s named “hearth” to begin with: it is the heart of your oven.
I’d suggest using solid veneer pieces to achieve that look.
Thanks Gregg for your reply, I do agree in regards to thermal mass loss but really was’nt concerned about cracking as my home fireplace insert uses splits and I build alot of fires that get pretty hot in there with no cracking in the last 10 years or so. After reading your and bikerbudmatt’s reply I have decided to move forward with full size brick and finish with the patio pavers though I will most likely have to do some cutting to get my finished look. Thanks again to you both for your advise, I am looking forward to completing the project and eating some wood fired pizza this fall. Cheers!