Category Archives: Personal

Ask a Fisheries Expert

Do you have any burning questions about fish, sharks, fishing, or fisheries? Want to ask an expert (or at least an expert-in-training)? Well, today is your lucky day! Starting at 4pm EST, myself and a bunch of other graduate students from the FSU Coastal & Marine Lab will be doing a reddit AMA and will attempt to answer all of your queries. Ask Us Anything!

Fall projects 2012 – the pit

A few weeks ago I decided that I needed a project. Not that I had an over abundance of free time, or that there was anything pressing to be done around the house. No, I just needed to build something. So I built a firepit.

Back in the spring, just about when we started seriously talking about building a porch (Spring Break Project 2012), we discovered a hidden 8′ x 8′ brick patio in the yard. While it was no porch, it served nicely as a stage for a very special birthday show by Moonshine Dirt Reunion:

The patio had to get pulled up eventually so we could build the porch, and for six months all the bricks sat in a pile at the back of the yard waiting to be transformed into something awesome. I found some inspiration for the design from,made the first of many trips to Home Depot and started digging.

Firepit stage 1

Hole dug, the first layer of cinder blocks down and filled with concrete, and the first layer of brick is laid out ready to be placed… once I figure out how to mix up some mortar.

Turns out mortar isn’t complicated, but up to now the project is taking far longer than anticipated. At this point I should have constructed guides to ensure that everything was getting laid down square, but I was more intent on just getting the thing done. After the second layer of brick I left gaps for air to flow into the center.

Here’s a better view of how the bricks are going down, with gaps for air flow. Eventually all the bricks got laid, filled the bottom with some mountain gravel, and then waited a long week allowing the mortar to fix. Finally, the first fire was lit and celebrated with good friends: