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Author Topic: Building a Kiln Chamber  (Read 26277 times)

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Offline Paul_H

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Building a Kiln Chamber
« on: May 24, 2003, 11:06:54 AM »
I am considering buying a WM DH4000 kiln and am wondering what size chamber to build. 10x22 x10 h ? Is a 5' wide stack to wide?Woodmizer has plans apparently,but I haven't seen them yet and would like to run some costs.

I was going to use 2x6 construction.Any thoughts,ideas?

Thanks.
Science isn't meant to be trusted it's to be tested

Offline dewwood

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Re: Kiln Chamber
« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2003, 12:34:53 PM »
Paul,
The WM kiln is a Nyle, I would go with the WM plans or Nyle's plans.  Staying pretty close to their recommendations would no doubt be beneficial.  I have a reefer trailer with additional blown on insulation and it works well but I would prefer side loading to the end loading necessitated with the reefer unit.

Make sure to ask about acceptable materials for use in the kiln application.  

Good luck with your project.

Dewey
Selling hardwood lumber, doing some sawing and drying, growing the next generation of trees and enjoying the kids and grandkids.

Offline Neil_B

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Re: Kiln Chamber
« Reply #2 on: May 24, 2003, 02:57:18 PM »
Paul,
Nyle has blueprints you can buy for 10 bucks US. They are decent plans and lists the materials for insulating and such.

Yeah, I would go with the 2x6 considering our cold Canadian climate. :D
Timberwolf / TimberPro sawmill, Woodmizer edger, both with Kubota diesels. '92 Massey Ferguson 50H backhoe, '92 Ford F450 with 14' dump/ flatbed and of course an '88 GMC 3500 pickup.

Offline Frank_Pender

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Re: Kiln Chamber
« Reply #3 on: May 24, 2003, 08:51:49 PM »
Well, Paul you are really going to do it?   It is going to be a great adventure.  Yes, 2 x 6 walls is the thing.   I would also recommend that you make the building at least 16' wide at the entry side.  For your depth I would consider at least 32' and a 10' ceiling.  These are the spec for my new building on the drawing board of the Summer.  What are you planning on using for heat?  On your floor make sure you place a vapor barrier that is more than adequate.  I would even consider some sort of insolation device before pouring a cement floor.  What I plan on using is an Ebac 3000 DH unit for the size of room I described.   But again I am drying in a very unconvention manner.  For the interior of the room I would recommend sheet aluminum, as wide as you can get.  I would also place a Seka product as a joint compound when laping the lining.    Too, place more than enough electical outlets throughout the structure for fan locations etc.  It's going to be a fun prouect for you, I am sure.
Frank Pender

Offline Paul_H

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Re: Kiln Chamber
« Reply #4 on: May 24, 2003, 10:17:00 PM »
Frank,
That sounds like a big kiln :o How much will it do at a time? It must be far more than 3000 bf capacity.
The heat for the DH4000 is included in the unit(4 KW) It sounds like you're keeping busy!

New_sawyer and Dewey,

I got a look at some blueprints for a L500 Nyle kiln.I forgot that I had ordered them a couple of years ago.Thanks to my wife,who remembers these things,I got the gist of the construction.(but she gave me a hard time about it) ::)

The more I learn,the more questions there are.The kiln chamber for the L500 is quite a bit larger than I would need.
Can you stack loads side by side? eg. In a chamber have four stacks of 8' x 4' x 48 rows high. Or if the chamber was  front loaded in a 16' w x14' depth chamber, load 12' lengths,two lifts deep.(or two 8' stacks deep) Am I making this clear as mud? :D

Thank you all for your help.

Science isn't meant to be trusted it's to be tested

Offline Neil_B

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Re: Kiln Chamber
« Reply #5 on: May 25, 2003, 05:43:52 AM »
I think you can pretty much use any configuration of piles as long as there is adequate air space and the baffles are set up for it. The Nyle plans I have are for the 300 and 500 and there are a few numbers for sizes and configurations that can be played with, as well as the total board feet per load.
You could probably go 2 stacks deep or more if you had more fans to keep the air circulating?!

My kiln is going to be set up so that the ceiling is quite high. The plan is to be able to service my equipment, back hoe, truck and what not, when I no longer use it for a kiln or in between loads for now.

What amounts are you planning to dry per load?
Timberwolf / TimberPro sawmill, Woodmizer edger, both with Kubota diesels. '92 Massey Ferguson 50H backhoe, '92 Ford F450 with 14' dump/ flatbed and of course an '88 GMC 3500 pickup.

Offline Brian_Bailey

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Re: Kiln Chamber
« Reply #6 on: May 25, 2003, 07:48:19 AM »
Paul -

            Don't make the mistake of sizing the chamber larger than the DH unit is designed for ( board footage wise ).  You will have problems maintaning a decent drying rate if you put in too much lumber in one charge.

The rule of thumb on DH drying capacity is 1mbf / 1 hp of compressor for max. efficiency.

The Woodmizer DH 4000 is made by Nyle and is equivalent to their L-200 which has a 2 hp compressor.  Brian...

WMLT40HDG35, Nyle L-150 DH Kiln, now all I need is some logs and someone to do the work :)

Offline Paul_H

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Re: Kiln Chamber
« Reply #7 on: May 25, 2003, 09:01:19 AM »
The kiln I have been planning would hold a maximum of 4 mbf.So I thought two lifts of 12',or two 8' side by side.The guy that dried our flooring last year had the same DH4000 with a 10'x 17' chamber around 8' high.We had to stack everything in the kiln and stagger 6,8& 12' boards.It was a slow process,and a waste of space in the kiln,but it did a nice job on the wood.

If the chamber was 16' wide and 14' deep and I had two deep of 8',could a type of hinged "door" be used to swing in on both ends to block the space on either end?(much like the ones that Nyle has to come down on the top of the load) Is that what you mean by a baffle?

Please let me know if I'm off track.

Science isn't meant to be trusted it's to be tested

Offline Mark M

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Re: Kiln Chamber
« Reply #8 on: May 25, 2003, 09:58:28 AM »
Hi Paul

Did you check Baileys? They sell this kiln for $3995 which is a little cheaper. I have been looking at the smaller Nyle unit the L50 which isn't much cheaper at $3200 but it does run off 110 instead of 220. I figured with 110 I can always plug it into the neighbors outside outlet when he isn't here  :D

Does anyone know the chamber size and how much wood the L50 can dry per load? I ordered the plans but they haven't arrived.

Mark

Offline Paul_H

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Re: Kiln Chamber
« Reply #9 on: May 25, 2003, 10:37:39 AM »
Mark,
I like your "include the neighbours" business plan. :D

I think I'll check out Baileys as well.The Nyle is $600 cheaper than WM's DH4000,but I don't know if there is more included with WM.There is a dealer close to my brother's place,so shipping with Woodmizer would be nil.

Thanks
Science isn't meant to be trusted it's to be tested

Offline Brian_Bailey

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Re: Kiln Chamber
« Reply #10 on: May 25, 2003, 11:02:00 AM »
Paul -

  If it was me,  I would avoid a double stack in this small of a kiln esp. 2)  8' wide ones unless you have reversing fans.

  When I first set my kiln up, I was doing 2)  3' wide stacks side by side and I found that there wet spots in the inner stack. No reversing fans.  Now I do a single 4' wide stack and get a uniform MC through out.  Been thinking of going to a 5' wide stack, but, then I would have to cut longer stickers and add another fan.

 Don't skimp on the baffling,  you need to get all the air to flow through the lumber stack.
WMLT40HDG35, Nyle L-150 DH Kiln, now all I need is some logs and someone to do the work :)

Offline Frank_Pender

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Re: Kiln Chamber
« Reply #11 on: May 25, 2003, 11:23:59 AM »
Paul and Brian

  The reason I am doing and I am planning is that In the unit I now use, The Ebac 300 is no way can remove all of the moisture that is produced at any one time.  I do not want that to occur as the hot steam is retained in the kil and helps in the drying process.  The same would hold true with the 3000 unit.  I will not have exhaust fans in the kil as I do not have them now.  The heat souce is not the DH unit.  It is my Taylor hotwater unit with a heat exchanger.   With this system I can raise the temp in the kil up to and above 165*.  This is to make sure that no "homesteaders" have taken up house keeping  in the wood.   ;D

 Yes, Paul, it is a large space.  I am beginning to have requests for drying that require a large area than what my 24' modified refer trailer can handle. 8) :'(
Frank Pender

Offline Paul_H

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Re: Kiln Chamber
« Reply #12 on: May 25, 2003, 11:35:55 AM »
Thanks Brian,that makes sense.If the chamber was 10'x 22',end loaded,would the two fans included with the kit handle it.Or should more be added?

Mark,
I checked out Bailey's kiln.Identical,but $900 cdn cheaper.I don't know what shipping will be,I won't be able to call till tomorrow.
Science isn't meant to be trusted it's to be tested

Offline Brian_Bailey

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Re: Kiln Chamber
« Reply #13 on: May 25, 2003, 02:01:27 PM »
Paul -  
            My chamber is 10' w x 8' h x 17' long.  On a full charge ( lumber stack 4' w x 6' h x 16' L )  2 fans are not sufficent enough to provide an air flow through the entire stack of 200 to 400 feet/min.  I rarely dry a full load, so by using baffles on the DH side of the stack,  I can get a good air flow  through the stack to get the job done.  I really should install 2 more fans, it's just something I don't get around to if you know what I mean  :).

On a 22' run I would install 4 or 5  24" fans and wire them individually so you can turn them on / off as needed.


Frank -  
               My comment on chamber size was ment for those small DH systems.  Looks like your system is more technical than these units.  
WMLT40HDG35, Nyle L-150 DH Kiln, now all I need is some logs and someone to do the work :)

Offline Paul_H

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Re: Kiln Chamber
« Reply #14 on: May 25, 2003, 02:05:19 PM »
Frank,
Sorry,I missed your last post.We must have both been typing at the same time,only I use two fingers so I don't wear out the other ones.

I'm glad to hear that you are busy enough that you need to expand the kiln division.Do you dry much in the way of Doug Fir,or is it mostly Oak and Cherry etc ?

Brian,
I know exactly what you mean about round tuits ;DIt sounds like I should look into adding the fans right off the bat and save myself some grief.
Can the wood be stacked and stickered at the mill,then place it on the cart at the kiln,or is there problems that arise?
Science isn't meant to be trusted it's to be tested

Offline Frank_Pender

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Re: Kiln Chamber
« Reply #15 on: May 25, 2003, 06:28:59 PM »
Paul, I know not all of your questions were directed to me.  However, as to the stickering issue, I sticker mine right off the mill.  I found it saves me whole "whacks" of time.  As to the Fir, I have not dried any to this time.  I have been running th kil for almost 3 years.  

 Brian, thank you for the comment on being technical.  But, I am far from that term.  What I have done is simply taken and listened and watched what others have tried and done.  I then have filtered their behavior and created my own system of thought action and deed.  

Yes, Paul I have primarely stayed with drying hardwoods.  I even mix the species and have been haveing much success.  I believe, from my experiences, that the bulk of the key in drying the woods that I have dried has been in makeing sure they have air dried for an adequate time.  For our Oak, I like to let it dry for at least 60 days for 5/4 and for any thicker for at least 90 days.  I also keep a lid on the material while air drying and in a heavy stand of 70 year old timber.  The shade, plus the moisture that the warm summers forces from the trees makes for an ideal situation for air drying, in my opinion.
Frank Pender

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Re: Kiln Chamber
« Reply #16 on: May 25, 2003, 06:34:19 PM »
Woops!  Paul, I would suggest that you locate a number of electical outlets throughout the kil chamber.  In this way you can adjust your fan location based on your volume of lumber and size of the stacks.  That is what I have done in the trailer. I located 14 different plugs to  3 different circuits, as to not overload any one breaker.  Everything with electricity is no more than a 110v capacity.  For this unit I have 5 individual 24" fans plus the heat exchanger is operating with a 24" fan.
Frank Pender

Offline Brian_Bailey

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Re: Kiln Chamber
« Reply #17 on: May 25, 2003, 09:04:54 PM »
I agree with Frank,  get the lumber on sticks asp.  

I don't have much experience in drying softwoods, but with hardwoods I like to air dry till the lumber is down to around its fiber saturation point ( approx. 30 % ) before it goes into the kiln.  Casehardening doesn't seem to be a problem with this method.  Going dead green into the kiln will most likely require a conditioning treatment at the end, which is hard to do properly without special equipment in a small DH system.

If you place outlets in the kiln chamber make sure that they're postioned & enclosed in a way that moisture can't short them out.  I almost lost my kiln from an electrical fire started in an outlet.  The outlet was enclosed in a weather proof box  :o.  
WMLT40HDG35, Nyle L-150 DH Kiln, now all I need is some logs and someone to do the work :)

Offline Paul_H

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Re: Kiln Chamber
« Reply #18 on: May 25, 2003, 09:33:36 PM »
Frank and Brian,
Thanks for the information,I'm starting to get a clearer picture of what we're getting into.

It will really help us if we can sticker at the mill.We have a few lifts air drying from last fall,and you've answered one of my next questions regarding green vs air dried.

Please keep the suggestions coming!
Science isn't meant to be trusted it's to be tested

Offline Mark M

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Re: Kiln Chamber
« Reply #19 on: May 26, 2003, 09:49:36 AM »
Hi Paul

I found out that Timberking also sells the Nyle kilns. I know Baileys is cheaper than the price Nyle has listed on their website, I am hoping Timberking will be too. I'm still waiting for info.

Mark


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