In this article, I am going to show you how I made this eight sided fire pit ring that I call the FrankenPit.
The bricks are optional. I use them to keep the ring off the ground and to give me a solid base.
The stock I will be using for this project is a bunch of scrap that I cut from an old work cabinet someone gave me. Most of it is 18 gauge, but there are a couple thicker ones that I will have to deal with.
The Heart of the Fire Pit
The heart of this fire pit build is the rectangle component shown here.
Mine measures 10” tall by 17” long. Just about any size rectangle will work as the segments in your fire pit. While the thickness of each segment can very, the height and length must the same.
The 10” will be the height of your pit, most likely it will be determined by the kind of stock you can round up for the project.
Originally mine were going to be 12” tall, but I did not have enough scrap on hand.
The length will determine the overall size of your fire pit. A size of 17” will give you a pit at about 40” from side to side.
Cutting the Segments
You can create the segments by any means you have at your disposal.
I chose to use my CNC Construction Set plasma cutter.
Note that the scrap that I am using is painted, so I had to clean an edge and add a jumper to make sure the torch could transfer the arc.
I do recommend using some sort of torch height control. For this project I am using the CAP04 Capacitance Torch Height Control.
Even though the steel that I was using is warped, I had no problem cutting the pieces I needed for the eight segments.
Note that I did fall short on scrap. On one of the pieces I had to joint two smaller piece together to make one 10” x 18” segment. Hence the name FrankenPit.
Bending the Segments
One inch on one end of each segment needs to be bent at a 45 degree angle.
Here is my HF three-in-One. It struggled to bend this 18 gauge but got the job done.
For the thicker pieces I had to move over to my 20 Ton finger press. The thicker the material you use for the harder it is going to be to bend.
The finished segment.
All eight segments ready for assembly.
Assembling the Fire Pit
My young helper will assemble the eight sections. Here you see here sorting the hardware.
24, 1/4-20 x 3/4” Hex bolts
48 1/4” Plain washers
24, 1/4” Lock washers
24, 1/4-20 Hex nuts
A bolt with a washer is slipped through the flat end on one section and then through the bend end of another.
Another plain washer, lock washer, and hex nut are added to the inside.
All the bolts are added and only finger tightened. Once assembled, she goes back and tightens all the bolts with a 7/16” socket.
Note that one of these pieces was the one I had patch together earlier.
All eight segments.
Testing the Fire Pit
The fire pit ring is placed on my bricks, but could have just as easily been placed directly on the ground.
The pit is loaded with dry wood.
After about an hour of heavy burning, the paint has pretty much burned off both the inside and the outside.
That completes this project. I will probably wait until next spring to paint try some high heat paint, but in all honesty, I have not found a paint product that does not burn off.
If you decide to built this fire pit out of anything thinner than 20 gauge, I would reduce the size. Note that you can also change the number of segments. Just divide 360 with the number of segments to get the bend angle. IE, six segments will require a 60 degree angle.