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Theory: Dehumidifier + green wood = good wood

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Forum topic by Zuki posted 01-28-2010 12:57 AM 6280 views 1 time favorited 18 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Zuki

1404 posts in 2744 days


01-28-2010 12:57 AM

Topic tags/keywords: zuki dehumidifier

I was thinking. Could a dehumidifier be used to lower the moisture content in wood.

My theory:
- Built a small rectangular frame (large enough to put in a home dehumidifier)
- Cover the frame in plastic leaving a flap on each end to give access to the interior
- Put the dehumidifier in one end
- Stack the wood in through the other end
- Lower the flaps
- Turn on the dehumidifier
- Wait

I’m guessing that this would be a more aggressive way of removing moisture, however if it ran for an hour or two every day for a week . . . one should be left with usable wood.

What do you think?

-- BLOG - http://www.colorfulcanary.com/search/label/Zuki


18 replies so far

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Dan'um Style

13018 posts in 2650 days


#1 posted 01-28-2010 01:00 AM

yep … it would work

-- keeping myself entertained ... Humor and fun lubricate the brain

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Russel

2199 posts in 2606 days


#2 posted 01-28-2010 01:04 AM

Interesting idea. I might be concerned about the wood drying evenly. Would the wood closest to the dehumidifier be drier than that furthest away?

-- Working at Woodworking http://www.VillageLaneFurniture.com

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Zuki

1404 posts in 2744 days


#3 posted 01-28-2010 01:08 AM

Rotating, flipping and restacking the wood could also be incorporated into the equation.

Of course the wood would be stickered (?) . . . separated by small strips.

-- BLOG - http://www.colorfulcanary.com/search/label/Zuki

View PaulfromVictor's profile

PaulfromVictor

220 posts in 2012 days


#4 posted 01-28-2010 01:12 AM

I think that just a little warmth and good air circulation would work better than making the air drier. I have never actually dried wood, but I have worked with plenty of air dried wood. People that are good at it have it down to a science. I don’t recall ever reading about a dehumidifier being included as part of the equation.

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Tim Dahn

1471 posts in 2232 days


#5 posted 01-28-2010 01:14 AM

You probably want to investigate to what humidity level the dehumidifier cycles, it may not be low enough.

-- Good judgement comes from experience and experience comes from poor judgement.

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Zuki

1404 posts in 2744 days


#6 posted 01-28-2010 01:19 AM

Good point Tim. Our lowest setting was 45%, however there is an override that will allow it to run much lower.

-- BLOG - http://www.colorfulcanary.com/search/label/Zuki

View Rasta's profile

Rasta

120 posts in 2109 days


#7 posted 01-28-2010 01:40 AM

I read an article about a home built kiln like this possibly Wood magazine? Try theirr website.

-- Roscoe in Iowa

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bsherman

76 posts in 2194 days


#8 posted 01-28-2010 05:08 AM

Are dehumidifiers expensive to run? (Like air conditioners?) If so I wonder how cost effective that would be

-- Brian

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GFYS

711 posts in 2138 days


#9 posted 01-28-2010 05:20 AM

Not only would work…does work. Daren has a plan for a small dehumidifying kiln on the Woodworkers Forum
http://www.woodworkingtalk.com/f23/small-wood-drying-kiln-plans-dry-your-own-lumber-3103/index2/
He is also a member of LJ

View alby's profile

alby

8 posts in 1734 days


#10 posted 01-28-2010 05:32 AM

zuki

Yes a dehumidifier does work but you have to be carefull.

- The ends of the wood should be sealed with a oil base paint or something that prevents moisture from excaping.
- You should have the wood stickered, and it should be waited down.
- You have to keep air, fan 24/7, on it so the wood will dry at an even rate.
- If the moisture is drawn off too quickly, you can “case harden” the wood. You won’t know that until you shove it through a saw. Then it’s too late.
- 45% air moisture will problablely bring the wood down to 8 – 10 %
- Try a small amount first.

Alby

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bill1352

130 posts in 1788 days


#11 posted 01-28-2010 01:29 PM

Not sure if Dan with the ebay link is the same guy but there is an ad on ebay for plans to build a home kiln. $25. gives a phone number to talk to the guy if you buy the plans.

-- Keep Your Stick On The Ice

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snowdog

1132 posts in 2649 days


#12 posted 01-28-2010 01:59 PM

I have not had a lot of luck drying wood so far but I have not really did a deep dive on the science of drying wood. But what I have seen is that slow is good fast is bad <laugh> not a lot of new news there .
One of my first errors was using a latex paint to seal the ends, yes that did not work. Oil paint keeps the wood sealed so it drys slower (less checking and splits)

-- "so much to learn and so little time"..

View Julian's profile

Julian

880 posts in 2192 days


#13 posted 01-28-2010 01:59 PM

Dan’s link is not to ebay, it’s to another forum that talks about the plans for sale by Daren. They are great plans and Daren is a real stand up guy.

-- Julian, Park Forest, IL

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snowdog

1132 posts in 2649 days


#14 posted 01-28-2010 02:00 PM

I have not had a lot of luck drying wood so far but I have not really did a deep dive on the science of drying wood. But what I have seen is that slow is good fast is bad <laugh> not a lot of new news there .
One of my first errors was using a latex paint to seal the ends, yes that did not work. Oil paint keeps the wood sealed so it drys slower (less checking and splits)

-- "so much to learn and so little time"..

View Daren Nelson's profile

Daren Nelson

767 posts in 2572 days


#15 posted 01-28-2010 05:04 PM

Zuki your theory is sound and so far the advice you have been given here is good. I will throw this link out to maybe help you, it’s a calculator for EMC (equilibrium moisture content) of wood at a given air temperature and rh (relative humidity) http://www.csgnetwork.com/emctablecalc.html Like you said you will want to go lower than 45% on your unit. Good luck.

-- http://nelsonwoodworks.biz/

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