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Building a Brick Fire Pit

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Postby Metroid » Mon Sep 18, 2006 11:09 am

Omaha you may have been typing when I made this last post, look up^ ;-D
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Postby Omaha Red Sox » Mon Sep 18, 2006 11:25 am

Metroid wrote:
knapplc wrote:
Omaha Red Sox wrote:
Metroid wrote:
Omaha Red Sox wrote:
Metroid wrote:
Omaha Red Sox wrote:
Metroid wrote:
Omaha Red Sox wrote:Well, it's plain red brick so I may be out of luck. It was basically just an idea since I have so many bricks left over and the wife wanted a firepit. I won't be tackling this job for another month or so, so I'll add this to my favorites and let you know if I have any further questions.

I have some friends who know about this stuff, but I wanted to get the Cafe's opinion. First, to get an idea on how to get it started and the steps/tools needed, and also so when I chat it up with my buds I can kind of sound like I know what I'm talking about.

Thanks Metroid. ;-D

No problem ORS,

Yeah hhf is right it is very hands on and hard to explain I have an Advanced Masonry Skills book that I use for reference its pretty good. I could look up some others if you wanted. Also if you do try to whip something out I'd be more than happy to answer any questions. And people at the masons supply store should be able to help you out.

Also I know its not the coolest but its damn cheap and instant no mortar. And these are just the most basic lanscape block or Diamondbacks. I now here on the west coast we have quite a few different variaties.

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Wow, I like that. Pretty simple and probably no mortar needed, huh? We poured the first installment of the patio today. The next 3 weekends are booked up, so it'll be another month before I get serious about the firepit.


That pick=zero mortor needed. I dont think I'd set it up on your new concrete patio but it be great out in the lawn. ;-D


Why not on the patio?


Just cuz a fire would scorch your new concrete. But if you put firebrick in the bottom...... ;-D .


So I could put a layer of firebrick on the bottom, in the circle like the picture, then put those retaining-wall-looking bricks on top? Are these materials sold at hardware stores or do I need to go to a special brick and mortar store?


You can buy that retaining wall stone at Lowes or Menards or Home Depot. I buy mine at Menards because they're usually cheaper than the other two. I'm pretty sure Menards would have fire brick as well.

Omaha I think you might be inspiring me. Maybe I'll do this in my backyard too. If the retaining wall stone works that would be pretty easy.


Yeah any building supply store should have them and maybe firebrick as well. I'd recomend checking out a massons supply store, they might have more varities. Or look in your phone book for block/brick yards this is where you may have to get the firebrick. Heres a couple more pics showing different styles colors etc. I know there is even more styles I just cant find pics online.

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Heres a link to a site with more pics.
http://www.geostone.com/Landscape_Page.htm

The Block have a lip on the bottom that locks them together break it off with a hammer for your first layer so it sits flat.(see bellow)
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Also its unlikley they will lay out without cuts the brick/block yard usually have block spliters you can borrow or rent(sucks if you have to rent though since you'll probably only have one cut. Lowes or HomeDepot or whatever the heck is in your neck of the woods might have one too. I never thought I'd be talking shop here. :-b Anyways good luck bro, lemmie know is you have any more questions. ;-D

I just threw this last pic up cuz I thought it was awsome, lake front with and endless swimming pool and built in hot tub,what a killer backyard. ;-D
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Yeah, I missed this one. :-B

Some great feedback you're giving me here Met. Thanks.

I guess the only question I'd have, if this is what I'm going to go with, what do I used to line the bottom of the pit if I put it at the corner of the patio?

Oh, and do you know anything about tile grout? :-b
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Postby Metroid » Mon Sep 18, 2006 12:22 pm

If its gonna be on the concrete I'd line the bottom with fire brick in sand. Put a bout 2-3 inches of sand in the bottom and compact it down then lay in your fire brick with out joints just slam them together tight. the only thing is you'll have to meke cuts but cutting fire brick is really pretty easy with a mash hammer and a brick set.(Basicly a short handled slege and a wide masons chisel)
after thats all said and done brush sand to fill the joints and voids. Warning: Regardless whether you line the bottom with firebrick or not it will still stain your concrete, like a potted plant thats been in one place too long, but at least it wont burn it and cause the concrete to crack. Just to be sae you may want to ask a concrete guy what he thinks about it even with firebrick, I'd hate to have you screw up your concrete.

If its gonna be on the grass I'd line it with gravel and compact it. or some of those red brick you've got just to have a flat surface to scrape ash out of the bottom

I know a little about tile and tile grout-Iknow I hate doing it-but whats your question maybe I can help. ;-D
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Postby Omaha Red Sox » Mon Sep 18, 2006 12:43 pm

Metroid wrote:If its gonna be on the concrete I'd line the bottom with fire brick in sand. Put a bout 2-3 inches of sand in the bottom and compact it down then lay in your fire brick with out joints just slam them together tight. the only thing is you'll have to meke cuts but cutting fire brick is really pretty easy with a mash hammer and a brick set.(Basicly a short handled slege and a wide masons chisel)
after thats all said and done brush sand to fill the joints and voids. Warning: Regardless whether you line the bottom with firebrick or not it will still stain your concrete, like a potted plant thats been in one place too long, but at least it wont burn it and cause the concrete to crack. Just to be sae you may want to ask a concrete guy what he thinks about it even with firebrick, I'd hate to have you screw up your concrete.

If its gonna be on the grass I'd line it with gravel and compact it. or some of those red brick you've got just to have a flat surface to scrape ash out of the bottom


Sounds like I should probably just keep it off the patio. I just wanted to avoid mowing around it. :-b

Metroid wrote:I know a little about tile and tile grout-Iknow I hate doing it-but whats your question maybe I can help. ;-D


Small cracks in the grout and I didn't get the stain sealer on it quick enough, so it appears dirty now. Anyway to get that cleaned up without having to regrout, like I've already done once?
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Postby knapplc » Mon Sep 18, 2006 12:48 pm

Omaha Red Sox wrote:
Metroid wrote:If its gonna be on the concrete I'd line the bottom with fire brick in sand. Put a bout 2-3 inches of sand in the bottom and compact it down then lay in your fire brick with out joints just slam them together tight. the only thing is you'll have to meke cuts but cutting fire brick is really pretty easy with a mash hammer and a brick set.(Basicly a short handled slege and a wide masons chisel)
after thats all said and done brush sand to fill the joints and voids. Warning: Regardless whether you line the bottom with firebrick or not it will still stain your concrete, like a potted plant thats been in one place too long, but at least it wont burn it and cause the concrete to crack. Just to be sae you may want to ask a concrete guy what he thinks about it even with firebrick, I'd hate to have you screw up your concrete.

If its gonna be on the grass I'd line it with gravel and compact it. or some of those red brick you've got just to have a flat surface to scrape ash out of the bottom


Sounds like I should probably just keep it off the patio. I just wanted to avoid mowing around it. :-b

If you end up putting your pit in the lawn line the outside of the pit with one row of regular brick. It'll keep the grass from growing right up next to the fire pit and it'll be easier to mow.

Omaha Red Sox wrote:
Metroid wrote:I know a little about tile and tile grout-Iknow I hate doing it-but whats your question maybe I can help. ;-D


Small cracks in the grout and I didn't get the stain sealer on it quick enough, so it appears dirty now. Anyway to get that cleaned up without having to regrout, like I've already done once?

Have you tried bleach? It sounds like you might have a mold/mildew set in. Is this in your shower or kitchen?

If you do try bleach try to find an inconspicuous spot in the grout and test the bleach on it for color-fastness.
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Postby Metroid » Mon Sep 18, 2006 1:36 pm

knapplc wrote:
Omaha Red Sox wrote:
Metroid wrote:If its gonna be on the concrete I'd line the bottom with fire brick in sand. Put a bout 2-3 inches of sand in the bottom and compact it down then lay in your fire brick with out joints just slam them together tight. the only thing is you'll have to meke cuts but cutting fire brick is really pretty easy with a mash hammer and a brick set.(Basicly a short handled slege and a wide masons chisel)
after thats all said and done brush sand to fill the joints and voids. Warning: Regardless whether you line the bottom with firebrick or not it will still stain your concrete, like a potted plant thats been in one place too long, but at least it wont burn it and cause the concrete to crack. Just to be sae you may want to ask a concrete guy what he thinks about it even with firebrick, I'd hate to have you screw up your concrete.

If its gonna be on the grass I'd line it with gravel and compact it. or some of those red brick you've got just to have a flat surface to scrape ash out of the bottom


Sounds like I should probably just keep it off the patio. I just wanted to avoid mowing around it. :-b

If you end up putting your pit in the lawn line the outside of the pit with one row of regular brick. It'll keep the grass from growing right up next to the fire pit and it'll be easier to mow.

Omaha Red Sox wrote:
Metroid wrote:I know a little about tile and tile grout-Iknow I hate doing it-but whats your question maybe I can help. ;-D


Small cracks in the grout and I didn't get the stain sealer on it quick enough, so it appears dirty now. Anyway to get that cleaned up without having to regrout, like I've already done once?

Have you tried bleach? It sounds like you might have a mold/mildew set in. Is this in your shower or kitchen?

If you do try bleach try to find an inconspicuous spot in the grout and test the bleach on it for color-fastness.


I'm not tring to discourage you from putting it on your patio just saying do a little more research before you do. Ive never done flat concrete and really dont know much about how it reacts to high heat. But Ive seen plenty of firepits similar to what you want on concrete so who knows.

If you do put it on the lawn,I would recomend brick around it as well, if you want it to match the block a little better they make a thin cap like 2 1/4 inches thick you can see some in the pics above I think. I'd put everything on a layer of compacted gravel like a couple inches. This helps with dranage and leveling(if one Block sits too high scrape some gravle away and pound it down, if ones too low ad some more gravel) Dig down say 4-5 inches compact a couple inches of gravel, Lay your block, line with brick if you want, lay your brick or caps around the edges, throw some wood in and start a fire! ;-D Another good thing about building itwith out mortor is you dont have to wait a month to use it.

As far as the tile is it colored grout? If its not I would maybe try a muratic acid and water mixture and scrub the tar out of it. I'm sure you probably have some left over tile around with grout on it, test it on that first and let it dry to see what it does. Make sure you ventalete(sp) the area well muratic acid is nasty and wear gloves and eye protection. Ive had a bucket full splash in my face and let me tell you its a real good way to ruin your day. If ithe grout is colored there is this stuff called Sureclean is like a detergent for masonry but it doesnt work very well. I'm pretty sure the acid will clean it up(it'll take a birthmark off your ass)but it can make colored grout fade.

Call a tile store they could probably tell you what to use or tell you if you should use acid or not. ;-D

Metroid Villa always happy to help. :-b
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Postby Metroid » Mon Sep 18, 2006 1:40 pm

Oh if the grouts cracked its cracked not really much you can do except what you dont want to do. :,-( Is it the sealer, a stainer or dried grout thats making it look dirty?

Also dont miss the post above this one.^ ;-D
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Postby gablefan » Mon Sep 18, 2006 3:37 pm

Metroid, Where did you fins that pic of my back yard over looking the lake???
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Postby Metroid » Mon Sep 18, 2006 4:34 pm

gablefan wrote:Metroid, Where did you fins that pic of my back yard over looking the lake???


I took it this morning after you went to work, you really need to lock your back door. :-D
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Postby Omaha Red Sox » Mon Sep 18, 2006 7:12 pm

The dirty grout is just in the more trafficked area of the kitchen. Won't hurt to try the bleach, but if it's not mildew/mold it probably won't have much of an effect. As far as the color, it's pearl, a light gray. The cracks are hardly noticable. Probably only noticable to the one who laid the tile himself. :-B
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