Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Gear that Works: Swedish Reflector Oven

Reflector ovens are designed for baking on a fireplace hearth or by a campfire. I've also had good results propping one against the metal side of my wood-burning tent stove. It doesn't seem to matter if they're shiny or dark, so don't bother polishing them, as some people advocate. Think of them as "trapping" heat rather than "reflecting" it.

My folding Boy Scout reflector oven is a flimsy, frustrating piece of junk. An antique we own is sturdy but bulky. My favorite is from Sweden, made by a fellow named Svante Freden. I bought it here:


It's an ingenious folding design, and his workmanship is outstanding. It's replaced my Dutch oven for almost everything but car camping. It's far lighter, and doesn't require coals - in fact, it prefers flames. It's the perfect size for a nine-inch pan. Biscuits or a bannock are ready in about ten minutes.

Svante Freden was kind enough to post plans for anyone who would like to build their own. Just Google "Do It Yourself Svante Freden foldable Reflector Oven". I've been thinking about building a large, non-folding version that could double as a food storage container, with a wooden cutting-board lid. I have no illusions about being able to match his quality of construction, though.


eric said...

Wonderful! Thanks for sharing. Since you have an interest in tinkering and tinkerers, thought you might get a kick out of this item. http://watershedevents.typepad.com/photos/shack_in_the_box
Made it myself when I couldn't bear the cost of a commercially built pop-up.

eric said...

Noticed that the url is cut off. Last section should read as "shack_in_the_box"

Anonymous said...

That's ingenious.

46hillbilly said...

Cover it with Tyvex for house walls and it will shed water like a duck; with No leaking seams maybe?