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Author Topic: High moisture content- flooring  (Read 3903 times)

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Offline RK Ron

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High moisture content- flooring
« on: July 05, 2007, 10:19:08 PM »
Hi folks,
I'm a "newbie" here, figured nothin's on t.v. worth watching so one or more of you cruise the forum as "rescue volunteers".   
  It's confession time and I don't even know you....
I made some flooring before I had the darn stuff checked for moisture content!  Geez, sometimes I can be a DOPE.  9-14% on average.
Now I'm in my rythum- getting out of the mess I got into.

Here's where anyone can jump in- I can see options, all being costly:
1)   Buy 1000 bd ft. kiln dried from out of state and ship it to a loading dockfor pick up($$$)
2)   Throw the !*?#!! back into the homemade kiln and bring the batch to "smolder" point
3)   Install the stuff, cash the check, change my name and move out of state (again)

Help
RK Ron

Offline metalspinner

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Re: High moisture content- flooring
« Reply #1 on: July 05, 2007, 10:46:19 PM »
Quote
Here's where anyone can jump in


OK.


Check the moisture content of wood items around the house where you will install the floor.  You may be surprised.  You can also sticker the flooring in the house for a while for it to equalize with the atmosphere.  Whether the wood gets to 10% in a kiln or by equalizing in the house doesn't matter (I think :-\).
I do what the little voices in my wife's head tell me to do.

Offline metalspinner

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Re: High moisture content- flooring
« Reply #2 on: July 05, 2007, 10:47:12 PM »
BTW,
Welcome aboard. :)
I do what the little voices in my wife's head tell me to do.

Offline LeeB

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Re: High moisture content- flooring
« Reply #3 on: July 06, 2007, 01:57:25 AM »
I ass u me that this is for a customer. I say be honest and let the costomer decide if it can wait till the wood is fit for installation. Good ethics go along way toward more buisiness later down the road.
'98 LT40HDD/Lombardini, Case 580L, Cat D4C, JD 3032 tractor, JD 5410 tractor, Husky 346, 372 and 562XP's. Stihl MS180 and MS361, 1998 and 2006 3/4 Ton 5.9 Cummins 4x4's, 1989 Dodge D100 w/ 318, and a 1966 Chevy C60 w/ dump bed.

Offline Cedarman

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Re: High moisture content- flooring
« Reply #4 on: July 06, 2007, 06:07:12 AM »
Welcome RK,
I agree with LeeB, confess your sins and you shall receive redemption. ;) ;) Well anyway, the wood is what it is. Tell your customer immediately. If time permits, put it back in the kiln, but slowly dry it.  If you kill it with heat, you can set up some bad stresses that will make the wood bend. 

For those that know, how much will the wood shrink from 14 to 10%?  If the boards are 3 or 4 inches how big a crack could develop.  Unless the customer is extremely picky a small crack will add character to the floor.  Also, I have an ash floor from 2 batches of wood.  First batch came from the kiln and was dried right.  Second batch was too green and it shrank after installation.  About 1/8" crack. No one has ever noticed the difference.  Also 85% per cent of the floor is 1/4 sawn and the last 6 feet was flat sawn wood.  I notice, but no one else has ever noticed.

Research the best you can so that you can tell the customer what to expect from their floor.  You will feel better, your customer may be happy or unhappy, but not near as unhappy if you surprise them.  This is how trust is developed in a business.
I am in the pink when sawing cedar.

Offline TexasTimbers

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Re: High moisture content- flooring
« Reply #5 on: July 06, 2007, 11:56:57 AM »
Throw it back in the kiln no matter if you are going to use it on this job or the next. Dry it no faster or slower than whatever rate the kiln gurus tell you it should be be dried going through a second time. Don't ry to rush any type of construction/remodeling job it will always bite you in the butt in terms of the job itself and your reputation.
The customer will almost always balk at a delay but how you present it to them is what will determine their response. What you want to do is give them 2 options, one being a much more palletable one, so that they can make the decision. You channel them to the best choice so it becomes their decision and they feel better about it.
Doing the right thing might not always be easy but it always best in the end.
The oil is all in Texas, but the dipsticks are in D.C.

Offline Grey Eagle

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Re: High moisture content- flooring
« Reply #6 on: July 06, 2007, 01:38:55 PM »
I am just getting into working with rough lumber and recently had some walnut logs sawed.  What is the ideal moisture content before you can start making things?  Also, what are the recommendations on moisture meters that don't cost an arm and a leg?

Thanks!

Jerry

Offline Cedarman

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Re: High moisture content- flooring
« Reply #7 on: July 07, 2007, 04:25:58 PM »
Kevjay, wives practice what you are promoting.  That is how they get us to think it is our decision to do what they want.
I am in the pink when sawing cedar.

Online WDH

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Re: High moisture content- flooring
« Reply #8 on: July 07, 2007, 07:20:26 PM »
I am just getting into working with rough lumber and recently had some walnut logs sawed.  What is the ideal moisture content before you can start making things?  Also, what are the recommendations on moisture meters that don't cost an arm and a leg?
Jerry

Grey Eagle,

Below 10% for interior use.
Woodmizer LT40HDD35, John Deere 2155, Kubota M5640SU, Nyle L53 Dehumidification Kiln, and a passion for all things with leafs, twigs, and bark.  hamsleyhardwood.com

Offline RK Ron

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Re: High moisture content- flooring
« Reply #9 on: July 10, 2007, 06:16:51 AM »
Thanks Folks,
  Your advice has been good medicine to me-- not that it tasted great-- just good medicine.  The flooring's been in the kiln since sunday.  Left it in the van saturday and sunday morning just to let it know what it feels like to be abandoned and lonely.  (didn't even stack it)
Customers were understanding, of course.
The part I don't get is how easy flooring shrinks in winter @ room temperature.  My understanding of "bound water" in wood cells requires heat with low humidity to "break" or release from cell structure.  I know those last single digits of moisture in my kiln charge is most challenging at times-  (read longer time in kiln)  Sorta like trying to lose those last 5 lbs from the holidays...
Another part which befuddles me (as if that's hard to do) is the toal neglect of sealing the bottom face of floor before it's installed.  This goes against the most basic of woodworking principles of interior cabinetry and furniture building.  Perhaps that's why gluing down a wood floor has such good results? (seals the bottom pores)

RK Ron

Offline solidwoods

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Re: High moisture content- flooring
« Reply #10 on: July 10, 2007, 07:26:19 AM »
RK Ron

Would you let us know what the width difference averages when the wood is dry?
How did you mill the flooring,, moulder or the old : planer/jointer/ts/shaper/shaper?
jim
Ret. US Army
Kasco II B Band mill
Woodworking since 83
I mill & kiln dry lumber, build custom furniture, artworks, flooring, etc.
If you mill, you'll be interested in some of my work in one way or another.
We ship from our showroom.
N. Central TN.

Offline RK Ron

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Re: High moisture content- flooring
« Reply #11 on: July 12, 2007, 06:16:21 AM »


  Jim

Old style way of making flooring.  Powermatic 15 planer/moulder, belsaw, 20" grizzly.  Bridgewood shaper/pwr feeder.  Hybrid craftsman w/straight line jig/pwr feeder- edges boards.  8" grizzly jointer.  Random widths- 5"- 21/4".    Job came before I was ready for it.  (1100sq.ft. addition w/all interior trim and stair case- cabinetry, jambs, but no passage doors)
 Another curiosity I'm chewin' on is the attic in my house.  That's where I'm getting my heated air from-  I pump it into the kiln (refridgerated panels).  Seems like the ground level RH can be in mid 40's, but the heated attic air pumpin' into the kiln can be below 19% RH.  Well, that's exactly what I want but the wife has noticed a bald spot on my head from me scratching too long on this.  I'm happy- I just don't know why....
  I thought heated air picks up MORE moisture? (It does)
Only explanation I can rest on is the highest point of roof line, (where I draw from) is 27' off the ground.  I imagine the RH is different up there than @ ground level?

Offline LeeB

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Re: High moisture content- flooring
« Reply #12 on: July 12, 2007, 05:44:10 PM »
The hotter the air the more moisture it can holdis because as the air gets hotter it expands. That leaves more room between the molucules where water vapor can get. The 40% RH air at the ground is cooler than the 19% air in the attic. They both have the same amount of water in them, just that the hotter air has more room between the air molucules so it could hold more water, so "relative" to the cooler air it has a lower humidity. If the attic air was at 40% RH it would then have more water than the ground air at the same RH. I probably really got you confused now. I know what I'm trying to say, I just hope it makes sense.
'98 LT40HDD/Lombardini, Case 580L, Cat D4C, JD 3032 tractor, JD 5410 tractor, Husky 346, 372 and 562XP's. Stihl MS180 and MS361, 1998 and 2006 3/4 Ton 5.9 Cummins 4x4's, 1989 Dodge D100 w/ 318, and a 1966 Chevy C60 w/ dump bed.

Offline RK Ron

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Re: High moisture content- flooring
« Reply #13 on: July 13, 2007, 05:53:07 AM »
Lee
GOT IT!  Thank you-  I knew that info, but I couldn't apply it to my case- THANKS!

Rick

p.s.-  So that explains why a "hot headed guy" is also a "fat head"
     
  Cheers

Offline Cedarman

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Re: High moisture content- flooring
« Reply #14 on: July 13, 2007, 05:55:31 AM »
When hot air with high humidity rises in the sky it gets cooler.  The air shrinks and squeezes the water out and we get rain.  There has been a lot of squeezed air over Texas and Ok lately.  Then this squeezed air heads our way and heats up and sucks up our moisture so it don't rain.  
I am in the pink when sawing cedar.

Offline TexasTimbers

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Re: High moisture content- flooring
« Reply #15 on: July 13, 2007, 03:25:25 PM »
. . . . . Kevjay, wives practice what you are promoting.  . . . .

I asked my wife if this was true and she gave me a multiple choice answer - she said:

"Well it is either:
A) True and you do not know it but you are happy anyway or
B) True and you do not want to know it and therefore remain happy . . . "

I am not quite sure what happened but I feel good about the whole thing and I am quite happy.  :-\  :)

The oil is all in Texas, but the dipsticks are in D.C.

Offline LeeB

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Re: High moisture content- flooring
« Reply #16 on: July 13, 2007, 09:12:17 PM »
Kevjay, just make sure she stays happy, 'cause we all know if momma ain't happy nobody gonna be happy.
'98 LT40HDD/Lombardini, Case 580L, Cat D4C, JD 3032 tractor, JD 5410 tractor, Husky 346, 372 and 562XP's. Stihl MS180 and MS361, 1998 and 2006 3/4 Ton 5.9 Cummins 4x4's, 1989 Dodge D100 w/ 318, and a 1966 Chevy C60 w/ dump bed.

Offline TexasTimbers

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Re: High moisture content- flooring
« Reply #17 on: July 14, 2007, 11:26:13 AM »
Man ain't that the truth. So far she says I am doing a great job. I bet I will be the first to know if I slack off. :o
The oil is all in Texas, but the dipsticks are in D.C.


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