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Author Topic: Questions About Building A solar Kiln  (Read 776 times)

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Offline sawmillhand

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Questions About Building A solar Kiln
« on: November 21, 2013, 04:56:58 PM »
Ok i have read a lot of Post regarding Kilns and maybe i have missed it but I have a 10 by 24 shed that has a concrete floor in it and a regular pitched roof.

Question 1  Do i have to put anything down on the concrete? I am going to build a rail system in it with a big cart that i can pull out with my tractor.                 
                     So the lumber will be off the ground.

Question 2  Will it hurt to have a regular pitched roof With the clear panels on it versus the steep slope type

Question 3  I know i will have to insulate very well, but with that big of drying area would it be better to use spray foam or just reg  insulation and pack
                 it good? I will be using 2x6 studs for it.

I have a lot more questions that i will ask later on but this will help with the planning side of it. Oh the building is standing now plan on tearing it done due to rot and rebuilding it
1990 woodmizer LT40 Hyd  2004 Ford F350 Flatbed. Plenty of tractors.

Offline GeneWengert-WoodDoc

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Re: Questions About Building A solar Kiln
« Reply #1 on: November 22, 2013, 07:51:38 AM »
The concrete will act like a heat sink, adsorbing heat and preventing the higher temperatures.  So, it would be critical to put an insulated floor on top of the concrete and seal this new floor so heat and moisture would not get into the concrete.  Also, if you use the concrete floor, dry soil is a good insulator, so dig a narrow trench around the edge of the concrete about two feet deep and put styrofoam insulation vertically around the edge of the floor...also called perimeter insulation...to prevent heat from getting out the edges.

The best slope is equal to your latitude, so in Mississippi 35 or even 30 would be fine.  A flatter roof would mean drying time would be a bit longer.  I suggest 1 sq ft per 10 BF capacity for oak.  More collector area for pine, y-p, hackberry, etc.

I suggest 2x8.  The key is to keep the insulation dry.  Spray foam is fine, assuming the heat will not damage it, causing it to shrink and deteriorate.
Gene - Author of articles in Sawmill & Woodlot and books: Drying Hardwood Lumber; VA Tech Solar Kiln; Sawing Edging & Trimming Hardwood Lumber. And more

Offline Planman1954

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Re: Questions About Building A solar Kiln
« Reply #2 on: November 22, 2013, 07:55:46 AM »
How about a photo of the building as is? That might help to get some more suggestions..
Norwood Lumbermate 2000 / Solar Dry Kiln /1943 Ford 9n tractor

Offline sawmillhand

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Re: Questions About Building A solar Kiln
« Reply #3 on: November 22, 2013, 10:03:27 AM »
thanks guys for the input on that. I will take some pictures and post it  i am currently at work right now in africa,but will post some pics as soon as i get home. I just had the question about the concrete. I didnt want to waste my time building it and it not work properly.
1990 woodmizer LT40 Hyd  2004 Ford F350 Flatbed. Plenty of tractors.

Offline bedway

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Re: Questions About Building A solar Kiln
« Reply #4 on: November 22, 2013, 10:52:15 AM »
Im going to follow this post as i am also brain storming a kiln build.

Offline sawmillhand

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Re: Questions About Building A solar Kiln
« Reply #5 on: November 22, 2013, 11:07:57 AM »
Mr Gene

   The concrete is already there its a old shed that my granddad had and does not use. The roof and framing is rotting down and i was just going to tear it down  and start over on the slab. So i would still need to insulate the floor with something correct? 

Bedway if you have any questions of your own please feel free to ask on here.
1990 woodmizer LT40 Hyd  2004 Ford F350 Flatbed. Plenty of tractors.

Offline GeneWengert-WoodDoc

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Re: Questions About Building A solar Kiln
« Reply #6 on: November 23, 2013, 09:03:43 AM »
Maybe you could rebuild the shed and use it for shed drying with open walls or close it in and use it for dry lumber storage.  Then use a new location for the kiln, using a wooden floor.  If you use the existing slab, it should be insulated indeed.
Gene - Author of articles in Sawmill & Woodlot and books: Drying Hardwood Lumber; VA Tech Solar Kiln; Sawing Edging & Trimming Hardwood Lumber. And more

Offline Planman1954

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Re: Questions About Building A solar Kiln
« Reply #7 on: November 23, 2013, 09:24:48 AM »
Why not look upon the floor as your footing, and simply lay a 2x4 joist system right on top? Then you could put insulation in between the 2x4's and no longer have the heat sink. That is what I would do. Then you could make the kiln 5' wide x 24' feet long (Set on one edge of the slab) leaving you a 5' approach on the long 24' side...perfect for your front tractor wheel to rest on while loading. Problem solved...and easy to boot! (And I like easy.)
Norwood Lumbermate 2000 / Solar Dry Kiln /1943 Ford 9n tractor

Offline sawmillhand

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Re: Questions About Building A solar Kiln
« Reply #8 on: November 23, 2013, 10:18:15 AM »
Yeah i could do that. I like simple to trust me lol . I have thought about that just use it as a place to store lumber that i have dried. I am really in no hurry i would say to build this kiln because there is a guy about 30 miles from me that has a kiln. I do want to build one for sure just looking to get all the facts straight before i start so i cant say i should have done that lol
1990 woodmizer LT40 Hyd  2004 Ford F350 Flatbed. Plenty of tractors.

Offline Planman1954

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Re: Questions About Building A solar Kiln
« Reply #9 on: November 23, 2013, 01:53:51 PM »
Just look up the thread I did about "solar dry kiln construction." You can build one in about 2 weeks time. It's not that hard. Then you'll have it for a lifetime.
Norwood Lumbermate 2000 / Solar Dry Kiln /1943 Ford 9n tractor


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