need help with design of wood stove kiln

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Forum topic by shawneegrove posted 11-11-2009 01:27 AM 2246 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View shawneegrove's profile


4 posts in 3319 days

11-11-2009 01:27 AM

I need to dry a bunch of 2 3/4 inch x 2 3/4 inch x 32 inch red oak table legs. I’m going to build a 8’ x 10’ room inside a very large barn I have and put a woodburning stove inside. I will put the smoke stack straight up through the roof and have a couple of vents on the sides and have access thru a 36” steel door. Any ideas or plans out there greatly appreciated!

5 replies so far

View NathanAllen's profile


376 posts in 3342 days

#1 posted 11-11-2009 10:22 PM

Forest Products Laboratory (USDA Research) offers tons of great (and FREE) publications on lumber.

Search Screen (use Kiln to see just how much is out there)

General Overview Kiln Operations:

Research on Dehumidification Kiln:

The challenge with using biofuel to heat a kiln is that the amount of wood you’ll use to generate enough consistent heat to build the “breathing” cycles will be considerable. You’ll also still need to use electricity to circulate the air, supply higher levels of humidity when required and especially important if using wood to vent the fumes not carried away by the chimney.

My thought is that a DH Kiln is more in line with the capacity. They have a higher intial cost, but compared to a direct heat Kiln the operation cost is significantly lower. The other great part is you can continue to dry green wood since instead of stoking a stove multiple times per day you’re only doing spot checks and grabbing samples. If you have the space why not produce some cheap wood to sell on the side?

Cheapest are solar kilns, but the length of time required to dry the lumber is somewhere in the absurd category.

View BTKS's profile


1989 posts in 3662 days

#2 posted 11-17-2009 09:12 AM

Have to agree with NathanAllen. Have a buddy who DH kilns then runs the heat up with a few heat lamps for the last day or two to kill any insects or larvae in the wood. Works great, minimizes checking and runs relatively cheap. He’s also a HVAC guy so he had an edge on the rest of us. Best of luck. BTKS

-- "Man's ingenuity has outrun his intelligence" (Joseph Wood Krutch)

View millmgr's profile


27 posts in 3310 days

#3 posted 11-17-2009 08:12 PM

Agree with Nathan Allen. Check out kiln drying info. Red Oak has very specific kiln drying schedules. Start temps based on beginning moisture content. Must control temps and air movement related to decreasing moisture.Typically condition at end by adding some steam or moisture to minimize stress. Deviations in schedules based on temps, moisture, air movement etc will cause severe checking and possible honeycomb giving you lots of 2-3/4” firewood.

View Mark's profile


1809 posts in 3472 days

#4 posted 11-17-2009 08:14 PM

ditto? :S

-- M.K.

View shawneegrove's profile


4 posts in 3319 days

#5 posted 11-19-2009 02:32 AM

Thanks for the feedback. Until I come up with a dedicated wood stove kiln or dehumidifier kiln, I have a dehumidifier in my workshop (garage) with my stickered table legs. What setting should I choose to help dry the table leg blanks? I started at 50, now I’m at 40. On 50 it took out about 65 pints in 12 hours (I have about 100 legs drying, as well as about 30 beam end pieces dead stacked, approx. 6”x8”x3’, I picked up from the local sawmill scrap pile. (red oak, post oak, pin oak, red elm).

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