Plans for a Masonry Heater Core

The world needs more masonry heaters and masonry heater builders! A shortage of viable plans as well as education opportunities means there are very few masonry heater builders in North America. This design work reflects an effort to simplify things in order to make the process easier for everybody involved.

New approach to masonry heater building!

For the masonry heater we are currently working on, we took a new approach to the design and construction of the core by casting the most complex parts. The goal of this is to simplify both the design and construction process so that we can streamline the process for our own projects as well as produce a viable strategy and parts for other masonry heater builders.

Masonry Heater Clearance to Combustibles

I was invited to examine a masonry heater that was built by another mason in a town one hour north of us. One of the wooden studs immediately behind the heater, in the wall adjoining their bedroom, had been heated to the point that it had at least reached a smoldering point inside the wall….

Wintergreen Heater Core Design

These are the kinds of drawings that I wish I had had more exposure/access to when I was starting out in masonry heater building.

It still takes a somewhat trained eye to understand the overall flow of gases through these sections.  Further refinement and artistry would render them more understandable still.  Basically, wood is burned very efficiently in the firebox, goes up and around a “white” oven and then down and around into a heated bench before coming back up and exiting through the chimney.  A bi-pass damper will be installed in order to be able to prime the flue.

It has long time been a desire of mine to contribute to sustainability and ultimately to peace and happiness.  I am hoping to put more energy into communicating through writing and drawings, and also into sharing both the artistic and emotional parts of this process.  Subscribing to Firespeaking’s mailing list and/or following us on Facebook are two good ways to stay in touch and show your support!

Decorative Brick & Tile Masonry Heater

This is an initial photo report of a recently completed masonry heater with inline wood-fired oven built in Grants Pass, OR.  The heater uses Balmoral brick and tile details that the client provided, along with polished concrete details made in our shop.

The core:

The craftsman: Max Edleson of Firespeaking and Jeremiah Church of Boreal Heat!    

Detail of Polished Concrete: