New member hello, and questions on outdoor fireplace build

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New Member
Oct 5, 2023
kaufman county texas
Hello from Texas. I've been lurking a bit and trying to find some answers. Finally joined since this forum looks like the place to find answers. I'm very much a do-it-myself guy, I built my own home for example.

My latest project in the planning stage is an outdoor patio with fireplace. I live in a rural area, I own 27 acres, can't see another house from mine. Our plan is a patio about 20-30 feet from the house and not connected. Looking at about a 20x24 concrete slab with a 'timber-frame style' build for a covered roof, open on all sides. I would like a wood burning fireplace on one end, I'm thinking a 48" or larger fireplace. My thought is to do a masonry build with cinder blocks, fire brick liner, and stone or fake stone exterior for looks. Probably something like a Texas limestone look. I am also in the process of getting information from a 'pre-cast' manufacturer to purchase the box and flue.

I'm still researching some specifics such as concrete slab thickness requirements and a few other things. I've looked for 'do-it-yourself' books but they don't really give me the details I'm looking for. At this point, I'm not even sure what it is I don't know and need to find out.

I'm looking for guidance, and suggestions from folks here.
Do a lot of planning first including orienting the fireplace wrt the prevailing wind. A big fireplace opening is going to need a big flue diameter.

A search on "outdoor fireplac" in this forum will bring up several threads. Here's a starter.
Thank you. Some of my specific questions are:
  • What stone/concrete is suitable for the structure? Cinder block I'm pretty sure of. what other brick or stone?
  • Specially what stone or brick to avoid?
  • outside of being sure to have a smoke chamber, does the design of a smoke chamber matter? I know it could be to small, but can it be too big?
  • I'm aware of the chimney ratio idea of 10:1 of firebox opening. Can the chimney be too large?
Using local stone often helps it fit in nicely.
To get it right the first time consider getting a kit and then putting on the stone veneer of your choice. A local masonry and stone supply store can help with this.
If this were me.. personally Id do the precast.. youll need to rent a lift to move the sections around and put the sections together.. the largest section will be the bottom weighting roughly 3000 lbs.. then skim coat and do a stone veneer.. you have tons of options with the veneer..