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Author Topic: Why not do this with your solar kiln  (Read 532 times)

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Offline Tree Dan

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Why not do this with your solar kiln
« on: June 30, 2017, 07:44:14 pm »
I have been thinking of installing a L53 in my solar kiln.
I have expermented with the home style dehumidifier and it did draw some water out...like the Pinny woods kiln.
On the dull cloudy days the L53 would or should give the drying a boost.
even on the sunny days the temps should increse and pull more water out of the wood.
What do you think of this?

Tree Dan
Wood Mizer LT40HD, Kubota KX71, New Holland LS150, Case TR270
6400 John Deere/with loader,General 20" planer, Stihl 880, Stihl 361, Dolmar 460, Husqvarna 50  and a few shovels,
60" and 30" Log Rite cant hooks, 2 home built Tree Spades, Homemade log splitter

Offline GeneWengert-WoodDoc

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Re: Why not do this with your solar kiln
« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2017, 08:42:01 pm »
What is the maximum operating temperature of the L53?  The solar kiln is designed to dry 4/4 oak at the maximum safe, so we need to be careful with that wood and generally would not benefit from faster drying. 

It is also important that we achieve a very high humidity in the solar kiln at sometime during the night to relieve casehardening stress.

In the solar kiln, we vent to the outside to lower the RH.  You could put your 53 on the vents to capture the heat in the vents.  This idea of using a heat exchanger on the vents is not new, but it only works really well on a fast drying species indeed.

What is the coolest temperature that the L53 will work at?  If it is 85 F or 90 F, there will not be too many days when the kiln reaches that value by mid morning.  So, the number of operating hours per day is low.  On a cloudy day, maybe never, especially in cooler months.

Obviously, the DH needs electricity.  Is the cost of extra operation worth the benefit?

These are a few questions to think about.
Gene - Author of articles in Sawmill & Woodlot and books: Drying Hardwood Lumber; VA Tech Solar Kiln; Sawing Edging & Trimming Hardwood Lumber. And more

Offline YellowHammer

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Re: Why not do this with your solar kiln
« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2017, 10:20:36 pm »
Personally, if I would install the L53 in its own chamber.  It's not a hard thing to build, not much more complicated than the solar kiln, maybe a little easier, and then you would have the best of both worlds, as they are both complimentary to each other.  The footprint for the L53 is approximatly ten x ten feet, which is pretty small.The solar kiln does an excellent job of drying oaks and other slow species, as well as thicker stock, while the DH kiln can be used for everything else as well as to sterilize loads from the solar kiln.  The DH will has safeties at relatively low temps, and the vertical baffle in a solar kiln does not lend itself to the unique, horizonatal baffle design of the L53.  Before I built my bigger kiln, I used the solar kiln and L53 as a very effective one two punch, and even with my bigger, third kiln, the solar kiln is still full of wood, and I'm even thinking of building another. 
Hobby Hardwood Alabama.com
LT40 Diesel Hydraulic, Stihl 028, MS440, MS660, 2 Kilns

Offline Tree Dan

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Re: Why not do this with your solar kiln
« Reply #3 on: July 02, 2017, 08:09:05 pm »
Thanks for that Gene and Yellow Hammer.
I do plan to build a box or use a small reffer container for a L53 but Its going to be at another location, and later on down the road.
So I was thinking if I had a L53 I could very easily rig it up to my solar kiln.
We have some cool days and many days with little sunshine, I was thinking that this L53 could keep the kiln cooking the wood on the dull days.
I dont mind spending a few extra bucks on electricity if it cuts my dring time down
Happy summer to yaa all!

Dan
Wood Mizer LT40HD, Kubota KX71, New Holland LS150, Case TR270
6400 John Deere/with loader,General 20" planer, Stihl 880, Stihl 361, Dolmar 460, Husqvarna 50  and a few shovels,
60" and 30" Log Rite cant hooks, 2 home built Tree Spades, Homemade log splitter