LumberJocks

How to tell if wood is dry enough.

  • Advertise with us

« back to Woodworking Skill Share forum

Forum topic by pariswoodworking posted 06-01-2013 03:50 AM 4856 views 0 times favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View pariswoodworking's profile

pariswoodworking

381 posts in 1951 days


06-01-2013 03:50 AM

I recently ordered a piece of Claro Walnut, and when I got it, it had a note attached saying that it may still be green, and may need to be seasoned.

How can I figure out how wet it is? I know there is a meter I could get (if home depot sells them, otherwise I’d have to order one), but I would prefer not getting something I wouldn’t use much. Is there like an old trick to doing this?

The wood is about 6”x6”x2” and it doesn’t feel or look wet at all.

Thanks

-- Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former. -- Albert Einstein


10 replies so far

View Loren's profile

Loren

8313 posts in 3114 days


#1 posted 06-01-2013 04:24 AM

Hold it against the tender skin on your forearm. If it
feels cold, it’s above 7%.

Are you going to turn it?

View pariswoodworking's profile

pariswoodworking

381 posts in 1951 days


#2 posted 06-01-2013 04:41 AM

It fills slightly cold, but that may be because it’s really cool in here. :)

I was going to use half of it to fix the tip of an old gun stock. The other half will probably be used for pens.

-- Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former. -- Albert Einstein

View pariswoodworking's profile

pariswoodworking

381 posts in 1951 days


#3 posted 06-01-2013 04:42 AM

Ok, I compared the temp to a few other things. I’d say it’s about room temp.

-- Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former. -- Albert Einstein

View Loren's profile

Loren

8313 posts in 3114 days


#4 posted 06-01-2013 04:50 AM

You’ll probably be ok. The main issues are movement,
splitting, and shrinkage. These are mostly issues with
larger boards because if the board twists a lot or splits
after it’s built into a piece, that’s a real pain to fix.

View Drew224's profile

Drew224

25 posts in 1788 days


#5 posted 06-01-2013 06:17 AM

There was a trick using a voltage meter. but I cannot find that article.
Honestly, having a moister meter is a very good investment regardless.
if you can cut a 1/4 inch off the long grain side the whole length.
Weigh it then double check the thickness, width and length.. WRITE DOWN that information.
set it outside in the sun for the day. then weigh and measure it all over again.
IF you find that it has gotten thinner or narrower by a 1/32” or more, and you have lost roughly 5 to 10% of it’s earlier weight.. you have a wet piece of wood.
Whom did you purchase this from? IF it was from Cook Woods, you can bet it is between 15 to 20% moisture.

-- "...Be sure to read, Understand & follow the manufactures safety rules... And there is never more importaint rule than wearing safety glasses."

View Kreegan's profile

Kreegan

1452 posts in 1612 days


#6 posted 06-01-2013 01:12 PM

If it feels noticeably cooler than the ambient temperature, then it’s still wet. I just use a little kitchen scale and weigh the wood, write the weight on it, then let it sit a month or three. When the weight hasn’t changed since the last time you weighed, it’s ready to work.

View Biff's profile

Biff

126 posts in 1480 days


#7 posted 06-01-2013 04:09 PM

Buy a moisture meter. You can find them at Harbor Freight and maybe even the box stores. In fact, just got my latest Woodcraft sale flyer and they have the General one on sale for $19.99

I would question a wood dealer that sends you green wood without you knowing first!

-- Interested in Oregon property? Visit me at http://www.willamettepropertiesgroup.com

View Loren's profile

Loren

8313 posts in 3114 days


#8 posted 06-01-2013 04:13 PM

You can cut off a piece, weigh it, then bake it in
an oven for awhile and reweigh. You might have
to dust off your algebra skills to figure out how
much moisture the unbaked piece has in it.

View bold1's profile

bold1

262 posts in 1313 days


#9 posted 06-01-2013 06:35 PM

Cut off a small piece including the thickest part of the piece. Weight the piece you cut. Place piece in oven at approx. 100 deg. F. weight every 2 hr. When weight stops going down piece is dry. Moisture in percentage is equal to the weight of the water(what you lost) divided by the weight of the now dry sample times 100. On a piece this thick I’d also go with a prong test moisture meter for a center reading. Sometimes the outside is dry but the center still is high enough to cause problems when milled.

View pariswoodworking's profile

pariswoodworking

381 posts in 1951 days


#10 posted 06-11-2013 05:57 PM

Thanks for the advice guys. It looks like the wood is pretty much dry, but I’m going to let it sit in the shop a while just in case.

-- Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former. -- Albert Einstein

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

HomeRefurbers.com