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lumber drying method?

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Forum topic by bent posted 1869 days ago 993 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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bent

311 posts in 2274 days


1869 days ago

i had an odd thought today about drying green lumber. my father is a farmer, and on his farm is a grain bin. attached to the grain bin is a heater and a giant drying fan. when grain is harvested and put into the bin, it is dried to reduce it’s moisture content and prevent rotting. anyone in the midwest should know what i’m talking about. my father is talking about retiring from farming soon, meaning that this grain bin will more than likely be sitting empty. does anyone know if this bin/dryer system could be used as a lumber kiln? i’m pretty sure it’s a similar process to kiln drying lumber. at least the goal is similar if nothing else (reduction of moisture content). let me point out that i know very little about kiln drying, so maybe there’s reasons it wouldn’t work? if it’s a stupid/crazy idea that won’t work, please let me know before i waste any time on it.


7 replies so far

View teenagewoodworker's profile

teenagewoodworker

2727 posts in 2374 days


#1 posted 1869 days ago

how hot does the heater get. i know that when kiln drying i think its like 120 degrees that they aim for in the beginning to make sure that any bugs that are in the wood are killed off. and then just steadily decreasing the heat over the next couple of months.

View Julian's profile

Julian

880 posts in 2131 days


#2 posted 1869 days ago

Go over to woodworkingtalk.com, and post this in the forestry and milling section. There’s plenty of guys drying their own lumber over there that will give you all the knowledge.

-- Julian, Park Forest, IL

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112002 posts in 2183 days


#3 posted 1869 days ago

Drying wood has a lot to do with air circulation and the wood being stacked so it can dry equally on all sides plus a way for moisture to escape.

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View noblevfd's profile

noblevfd

38 posts in 2062 days


#4 posted 1868 days ago

grain drying bins are set up to move high volumes of air through the system we dry down 4000 bu of corn in about 48 hrs. using on average 400 gal. of propane so I would think you would have to completely revamp system to even think about drying lumber in a bin for months but hey you never know till you ask keep those ideas coming I don’t know much about drying lumber but I do dry corn on the farm

noblevfd god bless

View Bill Davis's profile

Bill Davis

226 posts in 2529 days


#5 posted 1868 days ago

Here’s an excellent source to learn more than you ever wanted to know about kilns.
http://www.woodweb.com/KnowledgeBase/KBPPKilnConstruction.html

View bent's profile

bent

311 posts in 2274 days


#6 posted 1868 days ago

thanks bill, that’s a very informative article. after reading it, i’m in agreement with noblevfd and socalwood. the current system would dry it out too fast and damage the wood. oh well, it was just a thought.

View Dusty56's profile

Dusty56

11639 posts in 2293 days


#7 posted 1868 days ago

At least you had the courage to ask the question : ) good idea , but I was wondering how you would regulate the temperature and exhaust the moisture seeing as I’ve never operated a grain bin before.

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

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