Concrete Fire Pit
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    EmersonHart13's Avatar
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    Concrete Fire Pit

    How are we today?

    My wife and I are doing some landscaping upgrades and have decided to install a permanant fire pit. I would like to do it in concrete and then stain it. I was thinking about doing it in the square bowl shape:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Dimension wise I am thinking 3' by 3' at the top and 2' by 2' at the bottom and a height of 2'. These are approximate measurements....

    My questions is how thick does it have to be to support itself? I will probably end up making it thicker anyway for aesthetic purposes, but just curious. My other questions is reinforcement. I know a couple pieces of rebar into the ground and some mesh would be good practice, but are they required? Then I just have to spend a weekend making the inner and outer forms of plywood and 2 by 4s.

    My only other though is to be sure I put a drain in the bottom so it does not turn into a bird bath. Anyone have any other thoughts?

    Thanks,

    John
    John Deere GS45

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    Brian's Avatar
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    I would question if this will work as the concrete has to expand and contract, thus I would think crack. Also, if it has moisture in it, it can "explode". Not a boom, but parts can go flying or crack off.



    Brian

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    EmersonHart13's Avatar
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    I am fairly certain that concrete can handle the heat of a small wood fire... Putting the rebar and the mesh in would hopefully prevent the cracking... And yes the concrete would certainly have to dry before use.
    John Deere GS45

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    RRMCCABE's Avatar
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    I would question it as well. The rebar is just going to hold it structurally together but wont stop the flying chunks when the concrete explodes.

    I have seen this personally.

    I am sure you can find a special mix with more clay or something that would be OK. Something suited for that task.
    1967 John Deere 110 (round fender) tiller & Model 80 Cart
    2010 John Deere 2305, 200cx loader and 62" MMM, 54" blower, I-Match

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    EmersonHart13's Avatar
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    Interesting. I found some plans to build a square one online and all I was going to do was modify the shape.
    John Deere GS45

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    RRMCCABE's Avatar
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    Are you sure it didnt have a liner in it? Either steel or firebrick?

    I have been hit by flying concrete when using a cutting torch and hot slag drops on the floor even.

    One of the guys on the workshop forum recently posted a picture of exploded concrete after he had set one of those charcoal chimney's on it. It actually tipped the unit over and caught the fence on fire.

    Picture attached.
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    1967 John Deere 110 (round fender) tiller & Model 80 Cart
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    Brian's Avatar
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    Here is a link if you want to read his experience. The concrete that exploded was probably 10-20 years old.

    http://www.workshopaddict.com/forum/...crete+charcoal



    Brian

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    EmersonHart13's Avatar
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    Yes, Firebrick in one and metal in the other. I was leaning towards firebrick as I can do that myself where as I would have to get the metal one made.

    That is crazy....
    John Deere GS45

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    RRMCCABE's Avatar
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    Well I think as long as you line it you are good.

    I have seen concrete pits that they fill with rock and then set a metal bowl or box in. Those look pretty nice.
    1967 John Deere 110 (round fender) tiller & Model 80 Cart
    2010 John Deere 2305, 200cx loader and 62" MMM, 54" blower, I-Match

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    EmersonHart13's Avatar
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    I'll probably do rock in the bottom, as it is good for drainage too. Fire brick on the side. I suppose if I could find a premade bowl I could use that. I just don't see myself getting one made...
    John Deere GS45

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