Buckley Rumford Fireplaces
Kimmel Fireplace in Italy

Thanks for the time a wisdom, here one of the fireplaces as I found it. - Adam Kimmel

Lucky you. That's a great house. Please keep me posted with your fireplace renovation. Keep it masonry if you can so it will last another 100 years.

Is there an oven in the house? On our recent trip to Faenza, Italy we got some instruction in using an oven.

Indeed there's a beautiful little oven. I'm in the middle of renovating the whole house but I've already tried it out twice and am very encouraged.

Again, a beautiful house. I'm surprised and alarmed that you may be required to use a metal chimney. As a tactic - not that we need to really do it - maybe you should get a permit or permission to build both our six foot Rumford fireplace and 36" masonry oven - because they are more like historic Italian fireplaces, ovens and chimneys than are available these days in Italy. No Italian I know would admit that America can make a more Italian product than Italy can. I'd like to know more about your house, it's history, how you acquired it and how you end up restoring it. Please keep in touch.

Thank you.
I'm going to see where I can get with the guys I'm working with there, I would love to buy the whole 72 inch Rumford kit from you but shipping and import duty will price it quite out of reach for me, so I have to explore building one first. That being said, it might not be possible. Why do you suggest buying the clay oven? I mean the oven that’s there is 36 inches and beautiful. It draws perfectly and it’s exactly the right size to be able to heat it up in a reasonable amount of time. I love it so much I kind of feel like I bought a pizza oven and got house with it…

Well I'm happy to stay in touch and share this with you, it’s already a phenomenal story and adventure. I’m sort of consolidating the notes I took yesterday when we were talking and I’m sure I will have a couple of questions soon. Thanks so much for your help, talk to you soon.

Oh, and we haven't even talked about the thousand olive trees that I'm now learning everything I can about and taken care of, we harvested by hand about 35 of them in the fall just to go through the process and learn and the oil is incredible. Perfect high altitude location.

I would just repair this fireplace with plaster or refractory mortar the way it has probably been repaired many times in the past. The beam across the top of the opening may have been wooden. Stone would be better, of course, but we did hear of a field test for a big American cooking fireplace with a wooden lintel. It didn’t pass by a small margin but I think would have had it been a Rumford with a rounded airfoil shape to the lintel so that it would have been cooled by laminar flowing room air. In general testing under severe conditions - UL says a brisk kindling fire for twelve hours - the combustible must not get hotter than 90 deg F above ambient or about 160 degree F or about 72 deg, C. See https://www.rumford.com/woodburningregulation/clearancetest.html

The smoke chamber walls are pretty thin. US code requires smoke chamber walls to be 8" thick. It may not be a real problem in a stone house with no combustibles near by as long as the walls have enough structure not to collapse.

But through the roof looks like a problem. Maybe you have a masonry roof but the timbers and wood framing need to be protected. Again, US code, based on years of experience, requires chimney walls to be 4" thick with 2" clearance to combustibles, or recently with new testing, 8" thick in contact with combustibles.

How big is that hole in the roof? For a six foot Rumford you need a 24"x24" flue which, enclosed in 4" of solid masonry, would be a chimney 32” square. Or a 20" diameter round metal Class A chimney (ugh) which is about 23" in diameter outside. Both need to be 2" clear of combustibles.


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