Buckley Rumford Fireplaces
General Instructions

1. Hearth Base & Framing in Floor
2. Framing around Fireplace
3. Inner Hearth
4. Firebox
5. Backup Masonry
6. Set the Throat
7. Create A Platform
8. Set Rumford Damper
9. Smoke Chamber
10. Build Chimney
11. The Surround
12. Glass Doors
Building a Fire

10. Build Chimney.

Interior chimneys are at least 4" larger in all four directions than the flue they contain. (See article on flue sizing.) A chimney containing a 12"x12" clay flue liner must be at least 20" by 20". Combustible materials must be kept at least 2" away from the outside of the chimney walls. Exterior chimneys only need to be 1" away from the exterior combustible wall of the house.

By code the chimney must extend at least three feet above the roof and two feet above any part of the roof within ten feet. Cast in place or use a pre-cast concrete chimney cap with a drip edge and caulk the joint between the cap and the top flue liner with a silicon sealant.

In Seismic areas place a #4 steel reinforcing bar in each corner of the chimney, preferrably in the cells of the brick or block, and grout solid. If you must place the reinforcing steel between the flue liner and the surrounding masonry we recommend wrapping the flues with 1/8" ceramic fiber paper "socks" before placing the grout to allow the flue liners a lttle room to expand without cracking the exterior masonry. Tie the surrounding masonry horizontally every 18" with steel ladder or K-web, or pencil rod in the bed joints. Exterior chimneys must be anchored at each floor and roof.

11. The Surround.

The surround (the area at least 6" wide around the fireplace opening) can be finished with brick, stone, tile, terra cotta, slate, marble - almost any decorative masonry material. 100 years ago fireplace surrounds were often finished with ordinary plaster and sometimes painted black. The surround should not be used to lower the opening of the fireplace. The part of the surround over the fireplace opening should be just low enough to cover the edge of the rounded Rumford throat and not so low that it might cause unwanted turbulence.
There is really no need to use the surround to make the fireplace deeper. A 4" brick or stone surround is okay but if it's much thicker it may block some of the radiant heat and interfere with the streamline airflow across the throat. Consider mitering or layering a brick or stone surround so that right around the opening it doesn't project into the room more than an inch or two. If tile or other relatively thin material is used for the surround, consider setting it on a backing of cement board or a scratch coat of mortar or plaster over expanded metal lath.
For arched surrounds make the top of the arch at the same elevation as the leading edge of the curved throat and fill in the pockets behind the arch where it drops below the curved throat on each side to make a streamlined compound curve and avoid turbulence.

12. Glass Doors.

Rumford fireplaces don't need glass doors to burn efficiently and cleanly. In fact the glass blocks most of the radiant heat. But, if you or your local building official insist on having doors, consider our Rumford Doors - specially made for tall Rumford openings, visually minimal and easily removable.

When You Are Finished:

We hope you have enjoyed building a Buckley Rumford fireplace. And that it has been the easiest and best quality fireplace you have ever built and that our customer is well pleased with it. The fireplace is ready for the first fire 24 hours after it has been built although curing the masonry longer would be better. Leave the Manual for the homeowner and encourage him to read the section on "Building a Fire in Your Rumford Fireplace".

Thank you.


Buckley Rumford Co.
1035 Monroe Street
Port Townsend, WA 98368
360 385 9974 (fax 360 385 1624)
Superior Clay Corporation
P.O. Box 352
Uhrichsville, Ohio 44683
888 254 1905 (fax 740 922 6626)

Buckley Rumford Fireplaces
Copyright 1995 - 2014 Jim Buckley
All rights reserved.