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Gel Fireplace Firebox/Insert

Posted by kleck (My Page) on
Wed, Oct 7, 09 at 17:30

I'm new to fireplaces and am still learning them along with the terminology so please forgive and correct me here if I sound like I don't have a clue.

I have an old wooden corner unit hearth that was built by one of my wife's ancestors with no firebox/insert that we want to turn into a gel fireplace (gas and wood is not an option for us). The fireplace will mainly be used for decoration and mood setting. From what I've read about gel fuel fireplaces, I think it's a perfect for what we want to get out of this.

Here are the dimensions of the hearth.

30.75" wide
20.25" tall (it's possible to make this taller)

Inside of opening:
30.75" wide
40" tall
15" deep (it's possible to make deeper)

I've found a few gel fireplace firebox/insert sets that I could make fit after a few changes to the top dimensions, but they are only about 22"-24" wide and I'd rather have a larger one so we can use a larger log set. Also, because of the overall size of the hearth, a small fireplace just wouldn't look right so I'm thinking of making a custom firebox for it.

I'm very handy with metal and have all the proper tools to make any kind of metal structure. My main concern is safety when we are using it. If I leave an inch or two clearance from touching any of the wood (top and sides) and place some kind of heat resistant rock/insulation on the bottom where it rests on the hearth will this be sufficient to handle the heat from gel fuel? And how hot does gel fuel actually get? I'll have the gel fuel cans set up on a log set so they won't be resting on anything that can't get hot. I just want to make sure that it's safe for use.

Please let me know what you think.


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Gel Fireplace Firebox/Insert

Is it safe to have a gel fuel log set inside a stone/mason fireplace that is surrounded by wood? Instead of making a metal insert for this wood fireplace surround, I could easily make a masonry insert. I'm just not sure if the masonry would get hot and burn and of the wood.

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