single burner blodgett vs. double burner pizza oven

Hi all. I’m opening up a pizza place soon (my first one) and I had a question I need some help with. I have found some very good prices on two different Blodgett pizza/roasting ovens. The models are double stacked (2) 999’s and secondly a model 981 (has top and bottom baking compartments two doors). These are both single burner ovens with 50,000 btu. My question is at peak hours would these ovens be able to handle large quantities of 12" to 15" pizzas popping in and out. This is a start up pizza business and I am on a budget so that is why I am considering these ovens. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks, Ron.


Hi Ronv:

Those ovens are not good pizza ovens. Not enough power (BTU’s) you will be best served by ovens with at least 120 BTU.Per deck

A good set of Blodgett 1000 ovens would serve you well.

George Mills

Does anyone out there have specific experience with these ovens being in their shop? The 981 is offered at $1000 and the two 999’s are offered at $1500. Both are in good condition. The 999’s I saw operating in a pizza shop, but not at peak hours. They are selling because they have bakers pride y600 in all their shops, but these were already in the space when they rented and have used them for six months. I guess the double 999’s are the better of the two for peak hours. Any other opinions with experience please chime in. I appreciate all the answers given. Thanks, Ron.

We drove a 981 in our shop for a few years before we finally upped to the Y600. There is a reason people move FROM 981 TO Y600. The 981 is, as others have said, underpowered for pizza. For baking, it is just fine . . . 50K BTU is not enough muscle to recover the heat from open/close/open/close/ repeat of volume pizza. It simply wasn’t designed for that application.

Consider 16" pizzas . . . 981 can hold 6 pies at 50K btu with 2 decks and one burner, likely a steel deck.
Y600 has one deck that holds 6 pies . . . 120K btu . . . and stone/rockite decks. There is simply no comparison when you consider the same number of pies and almost three times the power.

YOU WILL USE LESS GAS WITH THE Y600. We even leave the Y600 on overnight @300F to reduce heat-up times where we did not with the 981. Our 981 burner kicked in about 5:30 PM and burned full on most of the night until 9:30PM. That is constant burn. Not only fuel consumption costs . . . but it melted through the heat baffles/diverters in the fire compartment with the constant fire. Y600 spends less fuel maintaining heat due to more powerful burners and greater thermal mass. It is more massive and holds more heat better.

We kept the 981, converted to propane use, and take it on the road for low hourly demand events.

Thanks, for the reply Nick. Very insightful. The 999’s I looked at I did notice the center diverter on the top oven which was used most was exactly as you said burning through the diverter/deflector. This item alone costs $300. What would be a fair price do you think for the two 999’s with one eventually needing a deflector. They are priced right now at $1500 and they have been listed for sale about six weeks now. The 981 I have not looked at yet it was just listed at $1000. It has stone bottom and steel top. Looks good condition from picture.

Hi Ronv.

Please pay attention to what Nick says The ovens you are looking at are not pizza ovens. They are designed for baking cakes etc where you put product in, close the door and don’t open it again for 45 minutes or so. The constant opening and closing of the door on a pizza oven requires a vastly greater heat input than those ovens can sustain.

These type ovens are constantly appearing on E-bay and else ware as pizza ovens and they are not.

You state that those ovens have been listed for 6 weeks. Perhaps the buyers are wising up that those are not pizza ovens.

George Mills


As far back as 7 years ago, the Blodget small PIZZA ovens were their 961P and 911P models. (P for pizza)

If you look at their website, the 981 is listed as a baking and roasting oven. I am not arguing what your experience may have been with Blodgett in the past . . . I am just stating what is here and now as options. The “P” models of the above models have three things in common . . . (1)rockite decks (fake stone); (2) higher thermostats 300F to 650F; and (3) a 30% higher BTU rating than the base models. The base versions have steel baking shelves and 200F to 500F thermostats. You will notice at the link I put above, the pizza ovens are the “P” models of the smaller ovens.

While BTU per square foot of baking surface may not be a scientific measurement of baking efficiency for pizza, it does illustrate where the deck oven models diverge.

981* . . . . . deck area 18.68 sq. ft. (1.74m2). . . . . BTU 50,000 . . . BTU/sq ft 2677 (2 decks)
961P . . . . . . . . . . . . 9.34 sq. ft. (0.87m2). . . . . . . . 50,000 . . . . . . . . . . 5353
911P . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.04 sq. ft. (0.47m2). . . . . . . . 27,000 . . . . . . . . . . 5357
1060 . . . . . . . . . . . 14.6 sq. ft. (1.4m2). . . . . . . . . . 85,000 . . . . . . . . . . 5822
1000 . . . . . . . . . . . 12.2 sq. ft. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 120,000 . . . . . . . . . . 9836
[size=2](300F to 650F)[/size]

Y600 . . . . deck area 15.0 sq. ft. (1.74m2). . . . . . BTU 120,000 . . . BTU/sq ft 8000
Y800 . . . . . . . . . . 20.1 sq. ft. (0.87m2)). . . . . . . . 120,000 . . . . . . . . . . 5970

*Steel baking floor . . . 2 decks

BOTTOM LINE: the 981, 1060 and Y600 all accommodate six (6) 16" pizzas at one time. The Blodgett 1000 may hold 5 at once. Which oven(s) from above do you want to stick those 6 pizzas into at 7:30pm on a Friday night? That’s really what we are talking mostly about . . . peak performance. 981 @ 50K BTU just isn’t the same as even the 1060 @ 85K BTU. Under powered is “no bueno” at peak time. Heat recovery just cannot be under-valued when the oven gets opened and closed repeatedly, and 50K vs 120K is huge. AND those steel decks in the 981 don’t store heat anywhere near what the 1 1/2" stone decks hold onto.

981 is a fine oven that performed okay for me as a moderate volume pizza oven until I got my 600. Now the 981 does what it was engineered for . . .roasting and baking. (and occasional on-site pizza events)

Nick, that explanation required one of my favorite lines from my old job. I used to preface an explanation like that with “from an engineering standpoint…” :smiley:

I love that. I am passionate about “the right tool for the right job”.

A conveyor high volume oven is waaaayyy overkill for my shop. And the 981 was too weak. From an engineering standpoint :slight_smile: Once you know what anticipated demand is . . . then you can match the tool that will best meet that demand. Best practice is sizing the oven to the business.

Why USED electric? It seems to me a top heat source is essential, no??

In connecticut, especially southern ct, Blodgett is the oven of choice. We only use the old blodgett 1000, 120K

Thanks for letting me know about levitra other good stuff!

I have an ancient double stack of 961’s. Frankly, the plate is so worn, I don’t know if they were a “P” model or not, but i think they are. They work side by side with a Brand new Marsal SD. Normally, we reserve the SD for our Chicagos, but on special occasions we use it for our thin crusts as well. In my application (low hydration dough, 550 degrees, 7 minute bake time), I think the 961 performs just as well as the more powerful oven. Additionally, the 3/4 stones in my Blodgett may cool down more quickly than the bigger Marsal stone but the converse is also true - the Blodgett recovers much faster.

We made pizzas for an elementary “Trunk or Treat” a few weeks ago. We made 130 pizzas in about 2 hours. At the end, all the ovens were dead (especially the bottom Blodgett). But it definitely took a LOT longer (20 minutes) for the Marsal to recover.

Note, that this is my personal experience in my application. Your mileage may vary. I also have an old frankenstein Bakers Pride that has pavers in it which I have excluded from this equation for obvious reasons.

I have baked on the Y600s and they are fabulous ovens. You will pay a premium and it is worth it. Unless you don’t have the money :slight_smile:

For the record, we can get 4 15" pizzas in the 961 if we are very careful about placement. We can get 6 in the Marsal. Same with the Baker’s Pride. So that means we can get 20 on the deck at a time. So when we did 130 in two hours, that’s 6.5 turns of the ovens with a minimum cooktime of 7 minutes (had to be closer to 11 or 12 by the end of it). That’s rockin’ (for the record) and I was very proud of my guys that night.