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Author Topic: 2000 bd ft of White Oak  (Read 2850 times)

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Offline tim1234

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2000 bd ft of White Oak
« on: November 18, 2006, 10:24:31 AM »
I had about 2000 bd ft of white oak sawed about 2 years ago from a dying 40" tree.  I had the boards quarter sawn into various thicknesses 4/4, 5/4 and 6/4 by a local sawyer.  The tree was over 100' tall.  They had to use a 110' crane to get it down.

I have been reading the posts about how difficult it is to dry WO.  What I did was to stack all the wood in my garage with plastic on the ground first followed by 2x4's and then the boards.  I didn't have access to any quality stickers nor would I have had any idea of where to get them.  So I used wood lath from HD.  The boards on top did have some fungus and a little sticker stain, but it all seemed to plane right off.  I don't know about the boards in the center of the stack are since I haven't used enough wood to get that far yet.  I don't seem to have any surface checking which I understand is an issue with WO.  I didn't put a fan to circulate the air based on advice to dry it sloooow.  The woodshop attached to my garage does have a small window AC unit, which probably helped to keep the humidity in check.

I bought a Wagner pinless moisture meter.  I made my best guess at which type of WO I have to set the correction factor.  There are a lot of types of WO and they differ in density al little.  To my suprise it makes a few % difference in the reading by changing the density by only a few hundreths.  Best I can tell the wood is down to 9% to 13% MC.  I didn't have the meter when I started the drying process so I don't know where I started at but I can tell you based on the weight of the boards....it was a LOT.  I think this is pretty good for air dired lumber, what do you think?

Just to get some opinions on the type of Oak (I think it is swamp oak).  The trees produce long flowers, sort of like a small string of beads about 2 to 3" long in the spring, followed by the leaves which are long thin and rather pointy.  I get a lot of acorns that wreak havic with the hoods on my cars!!  Is there a good way to tell exactly what type of WO this is?  I can't really find any good resources online.

Why do some on the forum say that air dried wood will never be as good as KD wood?  Especially if wood will always seek equilibrium with the environement and KD wood will increase it's MC depending on where it is stored.

I tried to post some pictures but, I can't seem to get them to upload.  Wrong file type (jpg) and too big 40k?

Tim
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Husky 372XP, 455 Rancher, Echo CS300, Alaskan 30" Chainsaw Mill

Offline footer

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Re: 2000 bd ft of White Oak
« Reply #1 on: November 18, 2006, 10:52:43 AM »
I cant answer all your questions, but kiln drying will kill any living creatures that might be living in the wood. Also if the wood is being used for furiture/flooring in a heated and air conditioned house, air  dried lumber would shrink a bit after a while as the indoor humidity is lower that  of where the wood was air dried, unless of course, it was "finished off" air drying in the house.  Normally, if you build something out of wood, and the wood expands slightly from regaining moisture, there is less damage or signs of it than if it shrinks after it was built, such as joints opening up and weekening, or gaps in your flooring. Kiln drying is not necessarily better, it just depends on what it is going to be used for and if it will be in a climate controlled environment, or outdoors, and of course how soon you need it. You would obviously be able to use your wood a lot sooner if you had it kiln dried. Also, most wood has a lot better chance of having fewer drying defects if it is kiln dried, as long as the kiln operators know what they are doing.
One more thing, Softwoods such as pine benefit from kiln drying in that it sets the pitch, so it doesnt ooze out of your furniture/ trim or what not, and keeps it from gumming up your power tools as bad.

Offline Riles

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Re: 2000 bd ft of White Oak
« Reply #2 on: November 18, 2006, 01:27:07 PM »
If you have the patience and you're not worried about bugs, air drying is perfectly fine for woodworkers. Lots of people air dry outside as low as it will go and then bring it inside to finish it off.

Your moisture meter wouldn't work at the beginning unless the tree had been dead for some time. Meters don't work reliably until all the free water in the wood is gone. (They also don't work when most of the water is gone from the fibers, so 6-30% would be a pretty good meter). Pin meters are more reliable than pinless ones.

Virginia Tech is my favorite dendrology site, so here's your swamp white oak:

http://www.cnr.vt.edu/DENDRO/DENDROLOGY/syllabus/factsheet.cfm?ID=313

The leaves you describe sound more like a red oak. If the tips are rounded, it's a white. If they're pointed with a little bristle on the end, it's a red.

The feds also have a pretty good site, especially if you'te trying to figure out the native range of a tree:

http://www.na.fs.fed.us/Spfo/pubs/silvics_manual/volume_2/vol2_Table_of_contents.htm

2000 bd ft of quartersawn oak is a great score. Should keep you busy in the shop for a while.
Knowledge is good -- Faber College

Offline Furby

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Re: 2000 bd ft of White Oak
« Reply #3 on: November 18, 2006, 01:55:09 PM »
About your pic uploading.........
JPG is the only file type you can use, you are using the wong process to upload.
Look under the help button at the top of the page for instructions on uploading pics.
See: TUTORIAL: HOW TO POST A PHOTO
If you need any help, drop me a note.

Offline tim1234

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Re: 2000 bd ft of White Oak
« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2006, 12:10:20 AM »
Here is a picture of the leaves off my trees.  The pointy one which I now know is red oak off of a single tree in the yard that looks decidedly different then the rest of my trees.  The rest of my trees including the one I had milled have the more rounded leaves which is white oak.









Riles,  Great site for trees.  I looked at the site and then ran out into the yard to find a few leaves that didn't get sucked into the shredder.  See the picture above.

According to the site, the trees are just plain White Oak.

Tim

Tim
You buy a cheap tool twice...and then you're still stuck with a cheap tool!!
Husky 372XP, 455 Rancher, Echo CS300, Alaskan 30" Chainsaw Mill

Offline tim1234

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Re: 2000 bd ft of White Oak
« Reply #5 on: November 22, 2006, 10:18:28 AM »
I didn't get an answer to one of my first questions.   I read on one of the posts that said that KD lumber is always superior to AD lumber.  I understand the point about fungus and bugs, but the post seemed to point out that even if KD lumber absorbs more moisture after it is out of the Kiln it still has better properties.  I don't really understand this. I would think that KD lumber a 10% MC and AD lumber at 10% MC would be the same from a performance standpoint.

Was this difference just an opinion, or is there merit to the differences.

Thanks

Tim
You buy a cheap tool twice...and then you're still stuck with a cheap tool!!
Husky 372XP, 455 Rancher, Echo CS300, Alaskan 30" Chainsaw Mill

Offline beenthere

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Re: 2000 bd ft of White Oak
« Reply #6 on: November 22, 2006, 11:07:37 AM »
 :) There is that word "always" again.  :)

Probably could hear good arguments in a debate for either KD or AD.  There is such a thing as "hysterisis" that might enter in favor of the KD to a % below that 10%, and that when it comes back up to 10% it is more stable (less movement) than AD that comes down to the 10%.  But I wouldn't say "always"  :)
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Offline Tom

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Re: 2000 bd ft of White Oak
« Reply #7 on: November 22, 2006, 11:15:42 AM »
There are situations where craftsmen don't want Kiln Dried lumber.  One example, off of the top of my head, is wood that is being bent.   I provided some Oak to a maker of garden entrances and he was pleased to find some lumber that had been Air Dried.  I also gave him some Green oak and he was doubly pleased. 

Marketing may be another reason that Kiln Dried wood is touted as being better.  Construction softwoods are Kiln Dried to about 19 percent, a range easily reached by air drying.   It is done for the sake of getting the wood to market sooner, not especially for reasons of insect control or stability.  Although they may benefit some secondarily in these areas.

Look at the stamps on the construction wood in your lumber yard and see if it doesn't say KD19.

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Offline Engineer

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Re: 2000 bd ft of White Oak
« Reply #8 on: November 22, 2006, 09:54:02 PM »
Air dried wood seems to retain its' color better than KD, and also seems to be less brittle/machines easier.    A good compromise, if you have the time/space/resources, is to air dry until about 12% and then move it to a kiln, get it up to 130 degrees and get it out.  Should only take a few days, it seems to retain the color but kills any critters and also seems to stop any further decay if there's spalting or staining going on.

Offline scgargoyle

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Re: 2000 bd ft of White Oak
« Reply #9 on: November 23, 2006, 09:23:06 AM »
Boat builders always used to say AD was better, and green was best for bending stock, such as ribs.
I hope my ship comes in before the dock rots!


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