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View Full Version : Let's Talk Firepits.....


White Gardens
06-11-2010, 08:48 PM
So I'm working on a project right now that will require a fire-pit and three crafted flagstone benches.

So, I have an idea on size, but I wanted to get a couple of opinions.

First. When do you guys think a fire-pit gets "too" big. Basically what do you think the max size would be in out-side diameter.

Second. Height and how high to make it. Part of me wants to make it seating wall height, but I'm wondering if that will be a shade high. I want to be careful also as I might make the benches the same height.

Third. How far back would you set the benches from the pit. Basically not so close to get burned, but not too far away.

Thanks.

Here is a pic. The shaded area is where the pit and 3 benches will be. Basically there could be a fourth bench, but that area will be left open so if you were sitting at one of the three benches you'll have an open view of the beach.

191076

shovelracer
06-12-2010, 06:45 AM
Thats a tough one there being as you have room for a huge pit. I like my pits to be 42-48" minimum inside the walls. As for distance I like it so you can sit on seat with legs kicked out and your feet just shy of the wall. Maybe 36-42".

White Gardens
06-12-2010, 08:20 AM
Thats a tough one there being as you have room for a huge pit. I like my pits to be 42-48" minimum inside the walls. As for distance I like it so you can sit on seat with legs kicked out and your feet just shy of the wall. Maybe 36-42".

Yes, yes it is.

I think the main thing is that I need to keep it in proportion to the rest of the project.

Any thoughts on height?

4Russl5
06-12-2010, 01:50 PM
Every clients needs are different. We built this with our low flat tops at 18" in height. Kids and older people present.... We measured for the chairs they wanted to use and then added room for people to move away from fire, as well as walk around the chairs. So we had 5' between dry stone retaining wall and fire pit. I am a big advocate of plenty of maneuvering space around the fire pit so the wind doesn't make your work/project fail. The dry stone retaining wall also functions as seating. Choose your stone well so it doesn't crumble from hot spots against it. This design is also based on the client wanting to cook salmon on cedar planks in the fire. These boulders are cut, and polished Olivine. Olivine doesn't start to melt until 3200 degrees. We are lucky to have one of two quarries in North America, in our backyard.

shovelracer
06-12-2010, 09:09 PM
I would cook a pizza right on that one rock. That is beautiful. As for height I like them low, and too high is bad, but you need to consider that on the water that wind will ruin the fun real fast if the walls are not above the coals. Seat height of 15-18" should be fine. Anything over 22 is probably too much.

2low4NH
06-14-2010, 08:41 AM
the pit should be about 12"deep but height of the unit should be no more then 24" off the ground. basicly sit in a chair and where your knee bends is the best height. the pit or fire box should not be to deep as it traps the heat inside

amscapes03
06-19-2010, 11:00 PM
4Russl5........now thats an awesome fire pit! Love it when fellow contractors think outside the box and get creative. To bad the patio wasn't bigger, extending out maybe 4 or 5 feet towards the water. Looks like you ran out of space. Very nice work!

4Russl5
06-20-2010, 10:28 AM
Thanks. Not every client gives you this kind of freedom in their landscape as you know. The patio is 4' deep along the front by the water, and 5-6'(can't remember) deep the remainder 270 degrees around it. The clients couldn't afford more patio. It is big enough for 6 adults and a couple kids to hang out and 'slum it' around the Salish Sea.

SmartWaterApps
07-23-2010, 08:08 PM
Nice work! This looks amazing.

MajesticPaving2
08-12-2010, 08:39 PM
Like so many others have said, this is all about personal preference. I think that anywhere between 12 and 18 inches is a good height for a firepit. Anything higher than that and you actually have to reach down to add more wood to the fire. Also, 12 inches is high enough to block any light breezes that might be blowing over and help divert some of that smoke up into the air.

White Gardens
08-12-2010, 09:20 PM
Here is the final pit.

http://www.lawnsite.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=192880&d=1277955338

http://www.lawnsite.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=192881&d=1277955346

4Russl5
08-12-2010, 09:35 PM
Right. Build what your client wants and needs and you will be successful. That client smokes salmon on alder or cedar planks that would lean against those stones. Plus during the day they function as additional seating.

2low4NH
08-12-2010, 09:48 PM
why the choice of 2 different stone? looks kinda funny capped with those stone.

White Gardens
08-12-2010, 10:12 PM
why the choice of 2 different stone? looks kinda funny capped with those stone.

It was hard to find a flagstone that was hard enough to go on top and to have it match perfectly.

The only other thing I could have done was to use a totally different color of flag that would have been an accent, but, it wouldn't of matched with the rest of the project and probably like a sore thumb. But, as a whole, I'm happy with it.

http://www.lawnsite.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=192979&d=1278123209

http://www.lawnsite.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=192975&d=1278123181

http://www.lawnsite.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=192982&d=1278123409

2low4NH
08-12-2010, 10:20 PM
It looks good i am just very picky when it comes to stone work. It has been drilled in to my head about what works and what does not. I try and have very few joints in the top of my work. I do need something like this in my back yard though.

White Gardens
08-12-2010, 11:34 PM
It looks good i am just very picky when it comes to stone work. It has been drilled in to my head about what works and what does not. I try and have very few joints in the top of my work. I do need something like this in my back yard though.

Oh, same here. I wish someone had a better color flag available that would have matched better.

When I broke up the pieces I did use, it just shattered like glass and was hard to control the breaks. I had more smaller pieces than I wanted, but I made it work.