This question is asked a lot, should I use a flat pan or a bowl style pan? Today we will talk about the different style pans that HPC Fire Inspired™ offers on our CSA certified stock appliances. Along with the many shapes HPC offers, you will see we also offer different styles of pans as well. Flat pans and “Bowl” style pans, each has its own advantages to apply to any fire pit that you may be planning. We will go over how to choose between a Bowl Pan or Flat Pan for your fire pit build in this tech talk.
Let’s Start with bowl style pan, or spun pan as we call it. HPC Fire Inspired™ bowl pans are made through a manufacturing style called spinning. Metal spinning does not involve removal of material, as in conventional wood or metal turning, but forming (molding) of sheet material 18ga. 304 stainless steel over an existing shape. This results in a much more ridged finished product than a flat pan as it has the sides and the lip for added rigidity and does not rely on the burner for rigidity. Our bowl style pans also incorporate a 1-3/8” lip, or collar that is perfect for a floating installation into an opening. The bowl style pans are perfect for glass media as well, due to the sides and the cleaner install with the lip of the pan. The bowl pans will not hold water due to the ¼” weep holes in the pans. All of our CSA certified appliances: electronic ignition (EI), push-button flame sense (FPPK), and match-lit (MLFPK) are available with the bowl style pan. As you look through our bowl style sizing keep in mind that the size of the pan reflects the inside diameter (ID) of the pan, and does not include the 1-3/8” lip.
HPC Fire Inspired offers flat pan models as well. The round, square, and (with exception) the “Interlink” units are available with a flat pan. The flat pans are a little more economical than the bowl style pan, but they do not have a lip for easy installation. The installer must find a way to support the flat pan within the opening, with support lips, rebar or supports on the sidewall of the opening. Because the flat pans do not have sides or a lip they rely on the burner being mounted to the pan to provide rigidity the pan needs to support the added weight. Any type of media can be used with a flat pan including glass, but the gap between the edge of the pan and the opening must be within a 1/8” to keep the glass from falling below the pan, so the larger the pieces of media the better for a flat pan. As above, all of our flat pans also have ¼” weep holes to mitigate any water that may stand on the pan. Due to heat from the flame, the flat will deflect a bit as they are burned but this hidden by the media being used over the burner. Each flat pan is cut out to size from a sheet of 18ga. 304 sheet of stainless steel. Keep in mind, all of HPC flat pans are cut ¼” smaller than the listed size. For example, our 36” flat pans measure 35-3/4” to help with perfect sizing.
Hopefully, this clears up some questions about our different pan styles. Whichever style, shape, or size you choose, HPC Fire Inspired has the size, shape, and ignition system you need to create the perfect backyard oasis.