Air vs Kiln for Cutting Boards

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Forum topic by AaronH36 posted 02-28-2017 03:44 PM 633 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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1 post in 600 days

02-28-2017 03:44 PM

Hello all.

New to the forums and been lurking around for couple months reading things and watching tons of videos trying to get some more knowledge before I begin my next project. I have been working with pine/poplar just making little odd things here and there. Well we had some store bought cutting boards in the house that have finally split and had to be tossed. So instead of buying big box store cutting boards I figured I would give it a try on making my own boards since I have most of the tools needed to make them.

So went down to the named lumber stores, Good Gosh on the prices of hardwood! So back to the Net, Thrifty Nickle, Craigslist looking for hardwood lumber. First find was 2 lumber yards that had kiln dried wood at what I am thinking is a good price. (2.50bf maple/2.70bf cherry/6.00bf walnut) Well only problem is one is little over 2 hours away other is over 3 hours. I can do both places but wanted to find something a little closer to home. So back to looking and today found some air-dried cherry and maple (1.00bf) that is about a 30min drive and some walnut (2.25bf) that is a 45min drive from somebody that has there own portable mill.

So to my question:
I understand the whole thing with moisture content but is this something I need to be concerned with on end-grain cutting boards that you are keeping oiled anyways. Also how big of a issue is it with the bugs that might be in there? My gut feeling is telling me to go ahead and drive the 2 hours and get the kiln dried wood, but hey if you can save a little on wood and travel why not.

I live in Western Ky so if anybody has ideas/locations on a good place for hardwood let me know. Thanks in advance for ideas or past experience on the whole air vs dried debate.

2 replies so far

View WDHLT15's profile


1780 posts in 2623 days

#1 posted 03-02-2017 01:19 AM

Air dried wood will shrink once you bring it inside a heated and cooled space. That causes movement problems. Most air dried wood is about 13 – 15% moisture content. For in-house use, you need to be around 8 – 9%. Not a huge difference, but it matters.

-- Danny Located in Perry, GA. Forester. Wood-Mizer LT40HD35 Sawmill. Nyle L53 Dehumidification Kiln.

View DirtyMike's profile


637 posts in 1049 days

#2 posted 03-02-2017 01:25 AM

take the term kiln dried with a grain of salt until you have a good moisture meter. one of the the largest hardwood lumber dealers in my state advertises kiln dried to 12%.

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