Dollar Tree Pizza Peel

Introduction: Dollar Tree Pizza Peel

About: I'm a family man, with restless hands, so I try to think about crafty things that my kids can do.

I made a pizza peel very cheaply.

I recently bought a small patio pizza oven, and my peel is too wide to fit in the mouth of the oven, so I needed a smaller one (10" or less).

I set myself a challenge to make it with things I either already had, or that I could buy very inexpensively.

The Dollar-Tree Pizza Peel would be my goal.

Supplies

The two main components are a piece of metal, or wood for the peel itself, and a handle.

I knew I'd be able to find what I needed at the Dollar Tree.

First I looked for a handle, and it seemed that everything was thin hollow metal or plastic until I found the Plungers in the cleaning aisle.

For the peel I first looked to see if they had a wooden cutting board, even if it would be thin. They didn't.

I then headed over to the bake-ware section where I found the cookie sheets.

These are the two components.


Other things I used were

-Sandpaper (I used the stuff from the dollar tree for this too)

-Nuts and bolts (I think these were from a different Dollar Tree project)

-This may have been better if I'd gone with my original idea of using 1/2" self-tapping screws, but I thought they may be less common for other makers.

-Drill

-Angle grinder with a cut-off wheel (Tin snips would've also worked)

-File

-Tape measure

-Jig Saw

Step 1: Mark Out Roughly What You Want to Do

I used a sharpie to mark where I would cut the handle after discarding the plunger end.

Holding it up to the baking sheet, I traced a rough profile into the wood and mirrored it on the other side.

I roughly outlined what I thought would e a subtle curve on one end of the cookie sheet. having a curve is nice on a peel because it makes turning the base easier while it's in the oven, especially with sides on the pan.

The steel of the sheet is very thin, so I wanted to keep as much of the lip at the sides as possible for strength.

Step 2: Cut the Pieces

I made rough cuts, first with a jig saw on the handle. A scroll saw would've been better, but this is what I had at hand.

I used an angle grinder with a cut-off wheel for the pan. It made short work of the thin steel, I also have tin snips that would've done the job, but I think the grinder was better for the lip at the sides.

Step 3: Clean Up the Rough Cuts.

For the pan, I actually just used the same cut off blade to de-burr the edge of the metal, and finished with the file and sandpaper. Note to self: The sandpaper at the dollar-tree isn't good. It did the job, but I'd recommend gloves as the metal edge sliced through a couple of pieces. Work the top and bottom separately, and only lightly take the edge off with the sandpaper. I used the file on that part too. Be sure to file the corners back, especially on the rim so as to avoid snagging on anything.

I was able to sand off the sharpie, and take smooth out the wooden handle pretty well (or so I thought)

Between the file, sandpaper and angle grinder, you can easily get a satisfactory finish.

Step 4: Attach the Handle

The pan was a 9"x13", so I measured the outside dimensions of the short side to find the half way pint to be at 4 7/8" from the top lip. Using the handle for reference, I tapped two holes where I would be attaching the handle, and punched a couple of holes with a drill bit.

I then drilled the holes through the pan and handle. This is where I'd planned to use some self-tapping screws. I kinda wish I had because I made the mistake of trying to balance things while I looked for the nuts for my bolts on my messy workbench and I dropped the pan, and something heavy onto it. You'll see I have some lovely dents, but they're at the handle end so they won't cause any issue. I also bent the end a little, but was able to manipulate that back. Don't do any of that part.

Anyhow, I drilled the holes a little too small, and drove the bolts through, fastening them with nuts on the underside of the handle.

I could trim those with the cut-off wheel, but I didn't want to risk leaving a sharp edge.

Step 5: Fin

This is finished for now.

We'll see how it holds up. It seems plenty sturdy for a 9" pizza. Peels and fired pizzas are for Neopolitan/Napoli style pizzas anyway, so it shouldn't be loaded up.

You can see in the picture where I dropped it, but up close it doesn't look like it'll cause any problems.

If I were making anything bigger, I'd have wanted to use something more sturdy for the handle too.

I will likely season the pan a little, but it seems like it will work just fine for my little oven.

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