Crisp crust - Conveyors

Yes, another post!
Did some test bakes on a MM WOW oven last week at a testing center.
Mostly the same MM I have used for 30 years, but not… of course.
Sensors that slow the burners if the oven empty, new controls, tech, etc.
I’m sure my 360Q’s are like antiques to them.
Anyway… I liked the ability to control the oven’s ability to cook the bottom differently from the top. That’s always been a struggle for me on my 36o’s, naturally: I mean- short of playing mechanical or physical games with the physical aspects of the pizza (double or triple screens, pushing it in the cavity, something over the pie, etc)… a 575 degree oven is… a 575 degree oven.
Has anybody experienced or used the Lloyd discs in conjunction with the conveyors to get a crisper crust?
I used screens at the testing center and I know that is NOT the best way to go in regards to what I am trying to achieve.
I did use lloyd discs for a short time as a DPZ store but eventually went back to screens, and it wasn’t really done to test for a crisper crust so… never really evaluated that aspect.
My thought is that with a higher temp on the bottom of the pizza- possible with the WOW oven- and discs, you may be able create a crisper more “deck-like” crust.
Not sure if Tom Lehman has any thoughts on all my rambling, as I know he’s the king.

I’ve never used a Wow oven, are you saying that the bottom can be set to cook at 575 and the top at 475? Over the years that I have been using Edge ovens, they have worked with me to improve the bake of my pizzas mostly with different airflow from the fingers. Not just with full open, half open, full closed, but different covers with different shaped holes, fingers with raised holes, fingers with flat holes ect. Each change altered the bake, but I’m not sure that one was superior to the other. Differing temps could be the key to getting the perfect bake.

I use the Lloyds hex disks but not necessarily to crisp the crust. It’s been so long since I’ve used screens, I’m not sure the difference in the cook.

We use both wow and Lloyd disk. I done this for 4 years. Sales and compliments have gone way up since switching to this set up.

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I found going from a deck oven to a conveyor, I needed to reduce my hydration which Tom will elude to I’m sure. I par-bake a skin on an American Metalcraft perforated pan for 2 mins, build the pizza and run it thru the oven for 6 mins without a pan at all. Just put it straight on the belt. Super crispy. Garlic butter baste on the crust when it comes out. Holds up well on delivery too.

Sounds cool. Ever stick to the belt? Like a piece of cheese glued to the bottom of it?

No, because it’s par-baked 90-120 seconds, it doesn’t stick whatsoever. Never tried it straight onto the belt with raw dough but it’s a metal wire belt so once it bakes a bit, I doubt it would stick if you were to do so.

Yeah… once you get that tiny bit of bottom or skin, you are good to go.

The Lloyd Hearth Bake Disk is designed SPECIFICALLY for use in air impingement ovens, to get the best performance from these disks remove all sugar, milk or eggs from the dough formula, set the oven temperature at 500F to start with and the conveyor speed (bake time) at 4.5-minutes. Since all ovens are different the bake time may need to be adjusted. The normal pizza finger configuration works well with these disks but in some cases the bake might be improved slightly with a more specific (custom) top finger profile. The overall bake quality in very comparable and for the most part, indistinguishable from a true hearth bake. Done it hundreds of times and we used to demonstrate it at both the PMQ Pizza Shows as well as the old NAPIC Show in Columbus, Ohio.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

I’m going to call my dough guy and see what the sugar/eggs/milk # or % is.
I bought the Lloyd discs to see how I did in a regular conveyor- just curious.
Like the MM HB concept…
Thanks, Tom- you’re a wealth of knowledge.

What kind of top finger profile in general works best? I bought a lloyd disk to experiment with and have never really gotten results that seem different than just using a screen and I almost always end up with the bake time way higher than 4.5 minutes. I have both XLT and Edge ovens and would be interested in trying the hearth disk with a different finger combination to see how it performs.

There is nothing carved in stone regarding the 4.5-minute baking time with the Hearth Bake Disks, that’s just a starting point. My experience is that “some ovens” may give satisfactory results with a 4.5-minute bake while others will require a longer baking time. In any case the final baking time will be less than that in a deck oven.
To get a custom finger profile with your oven using the Hearth Bake Disks you will need to work with your oven manufacturer to identify the top finger profile best suited for use in Your specific oven using Your specific ingredients.
As an example of why I don’t give specific recommendations on finger profiles anymore, we one asked a major oven manufacturer to provide us with all of the different profiles (finger sleeves) for one of their ovens (which we had) so that we could experiment with how different finger profiles affected the bake of the pizzas. We were provided with a FULL PALLET, and I do mean a FULL pallet of different sleeves and inserts! Yikes!!! It took us over a year to sort it all out. Add to that, they are constantly adding to their inventory to develop proprietary finger profiles. Their tool bag has a lot of tools for them to work with.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

I wish there was more information on the hearth bake discs; With all of my searching for pictures or video of product using the hearth bake disc I think I’ve only found one half decent picture.

What do you want to know about the Hearth Bake Disks?
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

A product video would help. Demo, side by side, I’d love to see what a 4.5 minute pizza on that disk looks like coming out of the oven, the sound of the crust, if it folds like a NY slice. On Lloyd’s site, they have a picture of one pie that looks really good.

I’m not aware of any comparison videos out there, in fact I don’t recall ever seeing any videos comparing different types of pans/disks/screens. But don’t get hung up on that 4.5-minute bake time, remember it was given to you just as a bench mark baking time. This means that it is where you set the baking time for the first test and then adjust the baking time as necessary to get the pizza you’re looking for.
Gee, some may disagree with me but I don’t remember ever getting a crispy pizza served to me in New York City. The crust was always rather soft and foldable, but then there are just soooo many pizzerias in NYC that anything is possible.
Your best bet is to get a Hearth Bake Disk and experiment with it. Remember, when using the HBD that the oven temperature should be right around 500F for one of the new generation air impingement ovens and around 515F (about maxed out) for any of the older generation ovens like a MM PS-360 or 360 WB. Every oven is a law onto itself and only onto itself so what might work in one oven may or may not work in another like oven.
Play with it, test it, see if it will work for YOU, if it does you have a decision to make, if it doesn’t, the decision has been made for you.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

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Waiting on the HB discs- ordered an 18" and a 12"
Will try it in an older 360 and then a wow.

I ordered a 14" to try out too! Gonna try it on our 360. Will be a huge difference compared to our pizzas that we bake in aluminum pans currently. @Tom Lehmann, should finger profiles be the same coming from a pizza baked in a pan?

Finger profiles normally don’t change when going from one type of pan to another but baking time might change slightly with any change to the top of the pizza being addressed easily through a slight temperature adjustment.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

I did some test bakes with the 18" disc.
Not bad but not great, either.
Test was in a MM360 at 560 and 7 min bake.
Still not that crispy crust I was looking for.
Took a bunch of pics but they are on my phone.
Will retest with my camera to get some pics loaded.
I don’t know if my expectation is unrealistic. I will say that results were far better than pies baked on a screen, which should be expected.