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Life is tough, but living doesn't have to be



When Bernie decided he wanted heat circulating andirons for our fireplace, I told him I was sure I could find some on-line. He immediately informed me that he and Tex would make some. So the two of them got together, and sure enough, we now have heat circulating andirons! I could not be there as they built it, so naturally there are no pictures - but I will try to capture the process as Bernie described it to me.

They used 1 1/2 inch hollow square stock and 1/2 inch solid round stock. Below are pictures of the final product and also some pictures of modifications that we had to make at the last minute.

This is a picture of the final product! The idea behind these andirons is to draw heat from the bottom, where the fire sits, and pull it through the hollow tubes (1 1/2 inch hollow square stock) and push it out the top of them. Each "bend" of these tubes was cut at a 45 degree angle and welded.
The hollow tubes form the andiron by being welded to the 1/2 inch solid stock. You'll notice there is an extra hollow tube on each side of the bottom. These are to add height and allow for cinder and ashes that will collect.
When we tried to fit the andirons in the fireplace, we learned that the middle hollow tube hit exactly where the flue handle is. So we removed the middle tube. This is a picture of Bernie using the angle grinder to remove the weld spots that held it on.
Tex's welding isn't easy to undo!
It took some work, but we managed to get the middle tube out. But once we tried to fit it in the fireplace again, we learned that the bottom tubes were just a little too long!
Maintaining two homes makes it difficult to remember what we have where, and as it turns out we don't have the blades to the sawsall here at the homestead. So Bernie ended up using the hack saw to manually saw off an inch of each of the bottom tubes.
It took a little while to make it through those thick tubes by hand!
I even got in on the action and gave Bernie a little break.
We finally got the 2 bottom tubes sawed down by and inch or so, and now it fits like a glove!
Once Bernie got the fire going, it didn't take long for those andirons to start pumping that heat into the room! These things are really hot! We do close the screen while it's in use, but the picture didn't come out very well with it closed, so it's open in these pictures. I discussed the andirons in the latest blog entry.


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