How to build a fireplace with a bench for your own garden.
Working time approx. 2 days.
Step 1: Digging In...
Use a pole to establish the center of the fireplace. This will be a reference point so make sure to use a long pole. Use a string and some spraypaint to mark the edge of the fireplace.
Then you can start digging... To find the right height you can add sand and some cobbles. Make sure the height is approved by apropriate authorities (wife, girlfriend, whatever) and then make sure this stays where it is as this will be another reference point for you.
Step 2: Adding Gravel
Use at least 5-7 cm of gravel and stamp it firmly.
Step 3: Adding Sand
Then you can add some sand. Use your 'cobble reference' to determine the amount of sand. I suggest at least 10 cm of sand. Do not stamp it but make sure it is evenly allocated according to your spirit level.
Step 4: Laying Cobbles
Use your spirit level and your 'cobble reference point' to make another two or three reference points at the outer perimeter of the fireplace.
Then make the inner perimeter. Again you should use a string on the reference pole with your chosen radius.
In order to keep the right level at all times you should lay down a few 'spokes' of cobbles wich will turn out helpfull when laying the rest of the cobbles.
You should use a rubber mallet when laying the cobbles.
Step 5: And More Cobbles
Use your reference points and take it away!
I suggest you start from inside and out. Make sure not to add sand between the cobbles yet.
Step 6: Checking Your Own Work
Use something long and strait to check if you have done your work properly. As long as you did not add the sand you can easily move, lower or raise each cobble.
Step 7: Tadaaa....; Fireplace!
Add sand on top of the cobbles, water it down and repeat and repeat. Hope for some rain and then you can walk on your new fireplace.
And now on for the bench...
Step 8: Preparing the Posts
As you can see the bench has 4 parts therefore I need 10 posts. These are approx 100 by 100 mm impregnated.
I wanted the height to be 40 cm above the cobbles so I have made each post 1 meter.
I used my router to round off the edges before painting them.
It is not nessesary to use cement or similar when digging them in as the battens will stiffen the entire construction.
Step 9: Mounting the Battens
I used two screws in each end of each batten
Step 10: Gables
Just for the looks of it I made a small gable in each end, and when ever I look at it I am happy I did.
Step 11: Placing the Hard-wood Rods
Use your reference pole again.
I made this batten my own tool for placing the rods right. Take a good look at the photos to see how it works.
Step 12: Mounting the Rods
I used stainless steel screws to mount the hard-wood rods from below. Make sure you pre-drill!
Step 13: Done!
That is it!
Invite your favorites and enjoy the fire and their admiration!