Tropitone introduces modular outdoor fire pits

Tropitone Furniture Company, Inc., opened the International Casual Furnishings Association Preview Market at the Chicago Merchandise Mart by announcing the expansion of its table program with the introduction of fire pits.

"For the past few years, end user customers, designers and distribution partners have urged Tropitone to develop fire pits," said Tom Keddy, director of product management. "We have been cautious and patient about entering the space until we could do it in a ‘Uniquely Tropitone' way. We have incorporated fire pits as integral parts of our table program. The new models are beautiful, functional and coordinate with our current product offering. But most importantly, safety was designed into each model and each model has been certified by an independent agency."

The modular design allows for the combination of one of four table top designs with one common base in multiple finishes. The fire pits include four of the Tropitone brand's most popular table top designs: 55-inch Round Spectrum Cast Aluminum, 55-inch Round Garden Terrace Cast Aluminum, 54-inch Round Banchetto Aluminum and 48-inch Square Banchetto Aluminum. Each table top will include the appropriate pre-installed burner assembly consisting of the burner pan, main burner, pilot, thermocouple and igniter.

Each of the table tops will be paired with a common square chat height base (30"W x 30"D x 25"H). The base includes pre-installed burner system controls. Two doors provide interior access to burner system controls and propane tank. The propane tank sits securely in a commercial-quality aluminum drawer structure that slides out smoothly via durable extension slides to facilitate easy tank exchanges. The table tops and base can be finished with any of the Tropitone brand's 18 powder coat colors.

The burner system produces a wide range of heat output peaking at 90,000 btus. This range of output provides the user with versatility for variations in outdoor temperature and activities. The system utilizes a pilot flame that ignites the main burner. The pilot flame can be lighted automatically with a push of the built-in igniter switch or manually with a match or other ignition device. The pilot flame is lighted and the output of the main burner is adjusted with the simple push-to-turn valve system knob conveniently located on the base. The built-in igniter switch is located next to the valve system knob.

Various media for fire pit burner pans are readily available in the marketplace and can be used with Tropitone brand fire pits. Tropitone will stock American Fireglass "Copper Reflective" as its standard media for burner pans and can be ordered separately.

"Modularity is a key design concept for Tropitone," said Frank Verna, director of sales and business development. "The modular ottoman tables that we introduced in May are a good example. With fire pits we wanted to provide our distribution partners the simplicity of ordering and stocking a single base with pre-installed burner system controls and multiple table tops with a pre-installed burner assembly."

Product safety is always the top priority for Tropitone, said Richard Rivera, VP of engineering.

"From day one our fire pit designs included appropriate safety features and our schedules included the time required for proper certification by an independent agency," Rivera said. "All products include a pilot flame that heats a thermocouple and lights the main burner. In the event the pilot flame blows out for any reason, the thermocouple automatically shuts off the flow of gas to the main burner. To re-light the fire pit, you simply go through the original lighting procedure. Gas will not flow again to the main burner until the pilot flame is re-lighted and the thermocouple re-heated."

"Although we are a casual furnishings company, several of us at Tropitone have had extensive professional experience with fire and heat products," he added. "We understand the protocols required to ensure that fire products marketed under the Tropitone brand must be designed to be as safe as reasonably possible and listed by an independent agency when appropriate."

Fire pits manufactured by Tropitone have received a listing from ICC Evaluation Service, LLC (ICC-ES) of Whittier, Calif., providing evidence that the fire pits meet code requirements. Building officials, architects, contractors, specifiers, designers and others will utilize the ICC-ES PMG (Plumbing, Mechanical and Fuel Gas) listing to provide a basis for use of Tropitone brand fire pits under ANSI Z21.97-2010, Outdoor Decorative Gas Appliance, Listing Number PMG-1114. The products have also been evaluated under the applicable International Codes published by ICC. The ICC-ES PMG program is accredited by the American National Standards Institute. The program operates under ISO/IEC Guide 65, "General Requirements for Bodies Operating Product Certification Systems."

The Tropitone brand was originally established as a commercial brand in 1954.The company is headquartered in Irvine, Calif., with primary manufacturing facilities in Irvine and Sarasota, Fla. Tropitone was named 2011 Manufacturer of the Year by the International Casual Furnishings Association (ICFA). Products are marketed under the Tropitone, Basta Sole and Tropitone MODA trademarks.

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