Continuing part two of the DIY tutorial on making a fire pit in your own back yard.
Add Materials for Support
In the first blog on constructing your fire pit, step two was focused on putting the fire pit walls into place. Once this step is complete, begin to backfill with dirt around the outside base of the fire bricks. Backfilling the dirt will lend the walls needed support. Tamp at the supporting soil, the soil should be firm. Now add several inches of desiccated gravel to the floor of the fire pit, the desiccated gravel is used as a non flammable base for your fire pit. Desiccated gravel is also a porous material and will allow water to filter on through and avoid the water from sitting on the surface. Once the desiccated gravel is down and in place, tamp it for a smooth surface.
Install the Top Caps
The top caps are the very last addition to the fire pit walls. The top caps should be similar material as that of the firebrick walls. If you desire, the firebrick capstones can have a different type of texture or color in order to deliver a more interesting design. Begin by laying the capstones out as you blend the color patterns, then once you are satisfied with the layout secure each into place. Use a premixed mortar and attach the top caps onto the firebricks firewalls. Make sure the top of the walls are clean and dry before you begin to apply the premixed mortar. Keep in mind that the caps should be made level, straight, and dry. Let the newly applied caps sit in place until completely set and dry. Finally, there is no need for side mortar, as the caps will be placed close together.
This last step should leave you with a complete fire pit. However, you must let it sit for 24 hours in order to allow the mortar ample time to dry. Once dry its time to make that beer and hot dog run… unless your Mormon, then you might want to make it a marshmallow, graham crackers, chocolate, and roasting sticks run, just in case someone decides to tell the bishop!