Fireplace Design - A Real Burning Issue
Mantlepiece and grate styles have altered however the basic structural components of a fireplace haven't radically changed since way back when. The early mix of a big stone or brick opening with a chimney built over it evolved from the most obvious proven fact that smoke rises, instead of from the scientific knowledge of what sort of well-designed flue system works. Consequently early wood and later coal-burning fires were very inefficient also it had not been until a particular Benjamin Thompson (also referred to as Count Rumford) produced his thesis on the principles of fireplace design in 1799 that smaller grates and improvements in the inner form of the openings were introduced.
A brick or stone enclosure forms the foundation of the fireplace. Variously referred to as the fireplace opening or recess or builders opening, it might be set flush with the wall or built out in to the room, forming a chimney breast. This chimney breast rises through the height of the home, emerging through the roof to create a chimney stack. Near the top of the opening the gather and flue combine to transport the smoke up the chimney. If the chimney is shared by several fireplaces on different floors, it could contain several flue.
The masonry on the fireplace opening is supported by way of a lintel or perhaps a brick arch. Old inglenook fireplaces used massive oak beams, whereas a solid iron strap usually supports an early on brick arch. Later fireplaces could have a straight arch supported by angle iron, and by the twentieth century cast concrete lintels were typical.
A hearth, made of non-combustible materials such as for example stone or tile-faced concrete, projects out in to the room to safeguard the ground from falling ashes. Generally in most old houses the hearth was set flush with the ground, although sometimes a superimposed one was used to improve the level. The area within the fireplace opening, referred to as the trunk hearth, is normally level with the hearth itself. Your dog grate for burning wood or coal could be positioned on this back hearth. However, by the mid-nineteenth century the produced in higher quantities cast-iron register grate which filled the opening, had end up being the fashion.
To complete the assembly, a mantelpiece or mantel - or fireplace surround, since it is frequently called today - is suited to frame the grate or fireplace opening. The mantel could be made of stone, slate, marble, wood or cast iron. The walls around it could be finished with wood paneling, or even more commonly with plaster, and perhaps the mantel extends upwards to create an extraordinary chimneypiece. Mirrored overmantels were introduced in the late eighteenth century, and these became the classic feature of Victorian sitting rooms.
Within this fireplace an open fire burning wood or coal is really a cheerful sight, but if it's your only way to obtain heat, since it was for years and years, this romantic image can soon fade particularly if the fire will not burn properly. Obtaining a fire started and keeping it alight then becomes challenging, or even a chore. For wood and coal fires to burn well an excellent way to obtain air is necessary beneath the grate, in addition to a method of escape for the hot gases and smoke. With the fuel safely contained within the fireplace opening on a grate, free circulation of air can be done and waste ash can fall through the grate therefore the fire isn't stifled. If the chimney is inadequate or the flow of air is fixed the fire won't function effectively.