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Author Topic: Microwave drying small Maple. 8" X 8" X 12"  (Read 1366 times)

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Offline Jim Spencer

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Microwave drying small Maple. 8" X 8" X 12"
« on: February 27, 2007, 08:46:26 PM »
What do you think will happen if I try to dry blocks of green hard Maple in the Microwave?
8 X 8 X 12 inche blocks.
Will they explode?  Will it work?   I need some blocks for a project and have the wood available from freshly cut timber.

Offline Den Socling

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Re: Microwave drying small Maple. 8" X 8" X 12"
« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2007, 09:46:56 PM »
I doubt that it will explode. If you used a small amount of power over a couple days, it might be acceptable. Too little power and I would expect a lot of cracks on the surface. Too much power and I would expect honeycomb.

Offline low_48

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Re: Microwave drying small Maple. 8" X 8" X 12"
« Reply #2 on: February 28, 2007, 05:15:38 PM »
We bowl-turners microwave all the time. There certainly won't be any explosions. If it was full of fat, maybe. (Myth about cats and such  :D) Water doesn't heat up as fast in the microwave as other materials, so it won't pop. There is alot of mass and water there so it will take alot of run time. I usually run the first half of the drying at 30 percent power. For bowls I run a 2 minute run and then take out the bowl and let the steam clear. When it has cooled I run it again. When the sizzle slows I start to weigh the bowl. When it doesn't loose any more weight it's done. If you overdry the blank it will start to burn. And that burn is usually from the inside out. I've taken blanks out the microwave and smelled smoke but could not see anything. Outside it goes and the smoke may continue. I've never had one break out into flames.

Other ways that bowl turners dry the blanks; boil in water and soak in alcohol. Both reduce the stresses that can cause cracking in the bowls, but I have never heard of anyone working with the rough block.  Good luck!

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