The Forestry Forum is sponsored in part by:




TimberKing Sawmills




Toll Free 1-800-582-0470

LogRite Tools



Forest Products Industry Insurance


Norwood Industries Inc.


Sawmill & Woodlot Magazine



Your source for Portable Sawmills, Edgers, Resaws, Sharpeners, Setters, Bandsaw Blades and Sawmill Parts

EZ Boardwalk Sawmills. More Saw For Less Money!

STIHLDealers.com sponsored by Northeast STIHL


Woodland Sawmills

Peterson Swingmills

 KASCO SharpTech WoodMaxx Blades

Turbosawmill

Sawmill Exchange

BRUTE FORCE Authorized Dealer

Woodshax Outdoor Vending Solutions

FARMA


Council Tool

Baker Products

Forestry Forum Tool Box

Author Topic: Using the new solar kiln  (Read 1886 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline btulloh

  • Senior Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 840
  • Age: 65
  • Location: Midlothian, VA
  • Gender: Male
  • I never met an air conditioner I didn't like
Re: Using the new solar kiln
« Reply #20 on: October 06, 2017, 06:07:49 PM »
Good info, Gene, thanks.  Iím really just trying to get a handle on this.  Keep in mind that I just report some of the data to get this kind of feedback.  Hopefully I will gain a better understanding of the machine as time goes on.  While Iím waiting for that to happen, I am actually getting good results.  The load of WO has been in for 4 full days now and has dropped from 18.5%mc to 12.5% this morning (which would be three days).  Today I ran the heat up and had the vents closed about 95% all day, and I will check the mc in the morning.  After tomorrow the sun is going to disappear for a few days. 

I started checking the rh in the kiln again today just to try and get a better understanding of whatís going on.  I will turn the fans off earlier this evening as you suggest.  Iím also going to monitor the RH in the kiln through the evening and see when the rh starts to go up.

Just FYI, my kiln is situated with some tall trees to the east side, so it doesnít get full sun until 10:30 am. Consequently I donít get a good jump on the morning heat.  This placement was a compromise.  Itís not always possible to get things in the ideal location, but Iím getting decent results in spite of the late start on sunshine.  At some point, I plan to move the kiln to a better location, but proximity to power forced me into this location.

Noon Ė 126f 36%rh 
2:00 pm Ė 136f 29%rh
3:00pm Ė 138f 26%rh
5:30pm Ė 136f 20%rh
Iíll update the kiln readings later this evening during the cool down period.
HM126

Offline btulloh

  • Senior Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 840
  • Age: 65
  • Location: Midlothian, VA
  • Gender: Male
  • I never met an air conditioner I didn't like
Re: Using the new solar kiln
« Reply #21 on: October 06, 2017, 10:44:32 PM »
Evening data:

6:30pm 122f @22%rh
7:30pm 118f @24%rh
8:30pm 111f @34%rh
9:30pm 106f @37%rh
10:30pm 97f @40%rh

temp and rh readings are taken inside lower vent on air leaving the stack
HM126

Offline GeneWengert-WoodDoc

  • Senior Member x2
  • *****
  • Posts: 2113
  • Location: Bishop, GA
  • Gender: Male
  • Author of "Sawing Hardwood Lumber"
    • Book on Sawing hardwood Lumber
Re: Using the new solar kiln
« Reply #22 on: October 07, 2017, 12:24:17 AM »
If your humidity readings are correct, no need to shut then fans until 10PM.

Your data shows the effect of heating the air, as I assume you are venting as he kiln cools, so you are bringing in outside air! Which is then heated, which drops the humidity.  Foggy air heat around 25 degrees F will drop the humidity to 30% RH.   
Gene - Author of articles in Sawmill & Woodlot and books: Drying Hardwood Lumber; VA Tech Solar Kiln; Sawing Edging & Trimming Hardwood Lumber. And more

Offline btulloh

  • Senior Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 840
  • Age: 65
  • Location: Midlothian, VA
  • Gender: Male
  • I never met an air conditioner I didn't like
Re: Using the new solar kiln
« Reply #23 on: October 07, 2017, 03:11:12 PM »
Thanks for the info.  Humidity readings are pretty accurate, or at least I'm using an accurate device (Kestrel 3500).  I suppose there's always a way to take a bad reading.  I put the instrument just outside the stack and let it settle.

Today turned overcast from about noon on.  Not much sunshine expected until later in the week.  MC readings were 11.3% this morning.  I expected a bit lower, but then again I don't really know what to expect.  It'll be done when it's done.

3pm  109f @41%rh
ambient is 81f @79%rh (overcast)

Fans are running for now.
HM126

Offline btulloh

  • Senior Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 840
  • Age: 65
  • Location: Midlothian, VA
  • Gender: Male
  • I never met an air conditioner I didn't like
Re: Using the new solar kiln
« Reply #24 on: October 10, 2017, 11:38:16 AM »
We're in a bad weather period for solar kilns.  85degr, 90% rh, mostly cloudy, and no rain to show for it.

Yesterday there were a few periods of sunshine but mostly cloudy.  Kiln got to 108f, but internal humidity was still at 50%.  A couple more days of this and then maybe back to sunshine.  Load of WO holding at 12%mc.  I think I've heard that getting from 12 to 7 or 8%mc can be a slow trip.  As soon as I get that big heater in the sky back to work, I'll find out.

On another note, bow season opened last Saturday.  I sure don't like hot weather  for hunting.  Waiting for a cooler spell.
HM126

Offline 50 Acre Jim

  • Full Member x2
  • ***
  • Posts: 200
  • Age: 65
  • Location: Nantahala Forest - West of Franklin NC
  • Gender: Male
  • Norwood Manual HD 36
Re: Using the new solar kiln
« Reply #25 on: December 06, 2017, 08:04:06 AM »
Btulloh, it's been almost 2 months since you updated.  How's the kiln working during these colder months?
Constantly reinventing the wheel...

Offline btulloh

  • Senior Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 840
  • Age: 65
  • Location: Midlothian, VA
  • Gender: Male
  • I never met an air conditioner I didn't like
Re: Using the new solar kiln
« Reply #26 on: December 06, 2017, 08:40:17 AM »
Time flies.  Seems like only yesterday I was putting my first load in the kiln.

The kiln is working well for this time of year - better than expected, I guess.  On sunny days it's getting 60 or so degrees above ambient temp and drying the load well.  The main thing slowing it down right now is the number of sunny days.  I would call the weather this fall good - warmer than usual, not a lot of rain - but there's more overcast and cloudy days.  All in all it's working well for this time of year and we're only a couple weeks from the winter solstice.

I've dried 7 loads now.  It could have been a few more if I was more efficient about the changeover when a load is done.  Proper storage and overall handling takes more time than I'd like because I don't have enough good space at the moment.  I'm also using some of the lumber I've dried - mostly paneling and trim for a small cabin.  The same crew does the machining and finishing that does the lumber handling - ME.  Come to think of it, that's the same crew that does the sawing.  I need a bigger crew, 'cause I have logs sitting around that need to be sawed.

I have a load of red oak live-edge slabs that I need to put in the kiln now, but I can't seem to get to it.  I've dried 2 loads of WO, and it came out well.  It was all 4/4, so it went pretty fast.  The last 2 or 3 percent took a little longer the achieve, but I think that's typical.  These RO slabs will be my first crack at thicker oak.  They've been air drying for about a year so they shouldn't present a big challenge but I think it will take some time.

It's been a good and productive learning process so far.  I'll try to update a little more often as we go through the colder, shorter days.

Having the kiln and being able to produce kd lumber to use has been much more beneficial than I would have thought.  I should have built the kiln sooner.  It really has changed the nature of my sawmilling.

How's that new planer working out?  Sure looks like a nice machine.

Offline 50 Acre Jim

  • Full Member x2
  • ***
  • Posts: 200
  • Age: 65
  • Location: Nantahala Forest - West of Franklin NC
  • Gender: Male
  • Norwood Manual HD 36
Re: Using the new solar kiln
« Reply #27 on: December 06, 2017, 09:48:08 AM »
How's that new planer working out?  Sure looks like a nice machine.
Well, my crew is no larger than yours and my time is spread between sawing beams for my sawmill shed, remodeling a rental house, cutting Red Oak for the floors in said rental house, getting ready for Christmas, cutting a pad for my upcoming solar kiln, studying and designing the upcoming solar kiln, etc.  And in my slow time I'm known to be having a beer or two. 

But so far the planer/sander/molder is working as expected.  It's never going to be a full-on production machine but for what I do it's just fine.  I'm sure it's just a step in my woodworking evolution but and informative step that needed to be made.

Here's wishing you and yours a Merry Christmas (yes, it's coming up quickly!) and lots of good sawdust in the year to come.

Jim 
Constantly reinventing the wheel...

Offline btulloh

  • Senior Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 840
  • Age: 65
  • Location: Midlothian, VA
  • Gender: Male
  • I never met an air conditioner I didn't like
Re: Using the new solar kiln
« Reply #28 on: December 10, 2017, 08:47:18 AM »
Drying has slowed considerably in the solar kiln today  >:(

 

 
HM126

Offline Darrel

  • Senior Member x2
  • *****
  • Posts: 1695
  • Age: 64
  • Location: Sprague River, Oregon, USA
  • Gender: Male
  • Never throw an unopened log on the burn pile.
Re: Using the new solar kiln
« Reply #29 on: December 10, 2017, 11:22:56 AM »
Ya think?  ???
1992 LT40HD

The winds of change are blowing at hurricane force and I don't like it but good shall come even though I see not how.  I'll do everything in my power to see that it does.

Offline Crusarius

  • Senior Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 979
  • Age: 40
  • Location: Canadice, New York
  • Gender: Male
  • Lost in....
    • RockModified.com
Re: Using the new solar kiln
« Reply #30 on: December 11, 2017, 07:30:17 AM »
is it still warmer in there than outside?
I knew what I thought I meant.

Offline btulloh

  • Senior Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 840
  • Age: 65
  • Location: Midlothian, VA
  • Gender: Male
  • I never met an air conditioner I didn't like
Re: Using the new solar kiln
« Reply #31 on: December 11, 2017, 08:47:35 AM »
Just funnin' with that picture.  The snow doesn't sit on the 12/12 pitched lexan very long.  We had a little sleet/freezing rain/snow combo that caused the snow to build up.

I don't have a load in it right now and the vents are wide open.  We've got a couple really cold but sunny days coming up this week, so just for scientific purposes I'll close it up and see what kind of temp it can achieve.  It does pretty well so far with short days and low sun angles.  I've been too busy to really do anything with it since I took the last load of WO out.  I need to put some RO slabs in it that have been air drying for 18 months.
HM126

 


Powered by EzPortal