Heat your masonry oven with a clean, top-down fire
The top-down fire works well for masonry ovens, stoves, and fireplaces, as well as outdoor fires. It’s simple: dry fuel, small sticks (plenty of surface area), plenty of volume where fuel and oxygen can mix — and kindling on top, so the fire burns down, clean and hot. Think of a candle: the flame on top pre-heats the fuel (wax) below, as well as the incoming combustion air. The wick burns hot, bright, and clean, so all you get is light and heat — a perfect fire! If you use it in your oven, your neighbors won’t have to breathe your smoke for hours while they’re waiting for the invite to the pizza party.
Fire is what truly distinguishes humans from all the other species — not our brain, our music, or any of our wonderful “achievements.” The one thing we do that none of the other animals do is to make and use fire. Only humans rely on external fire for our survival… All the others keep their fires inside.
The video shares pix, processes, and some tips on fuel prep. It’s also worth looking at the technical articles on the Masonry Heater Association website.