Drying Yellow Pine

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Forum topic by lazyoakfarm posted 03-03-2012 12:41 AM 5198 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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144 posts in 2999 days

03-03-2012 12:41 AM

I live in very humid south east Georgia.
I have a stack of 2×6 x 16’ southern yellow pine. It was in my non climate controlled shop for 2 years and then I moved it to my pole barn up in the rafters a year ago. It’s not getting wet and its out of the wind for the most part, It does not have spacers between any of the boards, they are just stacked on top of each other.

I pulled several boards down for a project. I made some beams, I will have to post some photos at some point…
Anyway, when I went to rip some of them they curled up like I have never seen before. What a mess. I’m guessing it’s a moisture problem. I really wanted to use it to make my workbench, but I don’t dare.

I am considering insulating my shop and adding a dehumidifier. It wont do any good to add one without insulating it, the building is a frameless metal building (30×40 with 17’ cealings) the heat and cold just go right through. I have to keep my tools waxed and covered up with blankets and towels.

And for the question
Am I going to need to put this wood in a climate controlled place for it to be useable? If I can get the shop humidity down to 60%, how long will it take to dry? It was KD when I bought it.
Thanks Y’all

5 replies so far

View Elizabeth's profile


817 posts in 3345 days

#1 posted 03-03-2012 12:57 AM

I’m just getting into the drying of green wood but from what I understand so far, the fact that your wood wasn’t stickered probably had a huge impact on its drying. The wood needs to be exposed to air to dry and only the ones on the edges of your pile were getting that – and of those, only one side has that access.

First thing I’d do is repile the lot with stickers.

View WDHLT15's profile


1792 posts in 2678 days

#2 posted 03-03-2012 03:33 AM

Sounds like stress in the lumber to me. If it was kiln dried and not allow to get wet, it should have acclimated to about 15%. Most southern yellow pine is only kiln dried down to 19% to begin with. I agree that stickering it would be the way to go. It will take only about a month on stickers to assure that it is in equilibrium. Pine dries fast.

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

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144 posts in 2999 days

#3 posted 03-03-2012 12:29 PM

It was Kiln Dried about 3.5 years ago and then stored under a shelter.
will it need to be moved into a less humid area to dry? I did not sticker it when storing it because I thought it was dry and thought that the very high humidity in this area would be bad.
I guess that since its not stickered, the moisture content can not be equal throughout the board becasue some edges are exposed and some are not. Im guessing that the unequal moisture content is what you mean by stress in the lumber?

Will it need to be moved to a climate controlled area to dry?


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1792 posts in 2678 days

#4 posted 03-04-2012 03:23 AM

Unequal moisture content will create stress for sure. There is also natural stress in some trees. Flat stacking the kiln dried lumber was not a problem, but you are right, the moisture profile in the stack is likely not equal. It would be best to sticker it indoors if you have the space.

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

View RussellAP's profile


3104 posts in 2488 days

#5 posted 03-04-2012 03:59 AM

I’ve never been able to find or get yellow pine to stay straight no matter how it was dried. We built a church using it for framing and every Sunday I stared at the curvy drywall. It eats saw blades too. It does make excellent firewood though.

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

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