The First Load is Drying PDF Print E-mail
Written by Randy   
Monday, 19 May 2008 00:00
The first test load of lumber went into the solar kiln on April 29th. This first charge is about 2/3 red oak and 1/3 cherry - all of it 4/4. When this first charge is complete, I'll update the "Running a Kiln" page with some of the kiln performance data. This News section will be an informal blog of any observations that I make along the way.

During the sunny spring days, with the vents slightly opened, I've been consistently removing about 2% moisture content a day. We had some overcast and rainy days so the drying has slowed down some. The lumber started out at around 50% moisture content and it's now down to about 26%. I'm hoping to get some more sunny days so I can determine if I can get back to 2% a day.

Now that the charge is less than 30%, the drying rate will probably slow down regardless of the weather. I've had the vents wide open for the last four days in anticipation of the overcast days, but if the drying rate has decreased because it's below fiber saturation, then I may have to close the vents again to get the temp way up. I'm probably monkeying with the vents too much, but it's fun to see how the kiln responds.

 
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