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post #1 of 6 Old 02-12-2011, 08:23 PM Thread Starter
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Question Red Oak Moisture content

I milled about 350 ft of Red Oak last October (2010) I checked the moisture content today and its down to 13% according to my digital moisture gage. What percent do I need before I can start to use this wood? I tested a piece from LOWES and on my gage I got no reading, of course this is kild dried wood.
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post #2 of 6 Old 02-12-2011, 09:06 PM
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What is the lowest % your meter will register? You should have gotten a reading on the KD wood. Even though it was KD to 6 or 7% it was no longer that by the time you bought it. Most likely it was close or equal to your air dried oak which has reached EMC (equilibrium moisture content) and I'm sure your meter reads at least down to 6% yes?

You can build with wood at 13% but when you put it in the house then winter & the wood gets back down to 5% to 7% it'll cause problems. If you have a dry place to put the wood before you use it (like a spare room in the winter or the attic during the summer) you can get it back down low enough to avoid those problems.

Kiln dried wood that has risen back to EMC is no more dry, or better, than wood that has achieved EMC on its own. The only difference is that by kiln drying you can finish the wood off with a high temp bug killing cycle and set the pitch in species that need that. In fact when it comes to black walnut, many high end furniture artisans will only use air dried because the steam cycle in a commercial kiln lightens black walnut some. With Red Oak as long as you don't have critters in it all you need to do is get it low enough so that when you build with it your joints or even the wood itself won't crack or fail.







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post #3 of 6 Old 02-13-2011, 03:06 AM
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The best MC is one that would be in equalibrium with the average relative humidity where the item is going to reside.
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post #4 of 6 Old 02-13-2011, 12:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wmodavis View Post
The best MC is one that would be in equalibrium with the average relative humidity where the item is going to reside.
Well put. In trying to give a detailed answer I danced all around that but never said it. Thanks.






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post #5 of 6 Old 02-16-2011, 05:48 PM Thread Starter
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Sorry for taking so long to get back, My meter is an inexpensive one, dont know how low it will go, just wanted a quick check of the wood, its been stored in a closed barn since Oct, Ive earmarked it for internment flag boxes and a couple coffee and end tables, when I stored it I did at least paint the ends to slow the drying process down to control checking, cracking and warping so far so good. I made a shodow box out of a piece I milled last year that sat fro about 3-4 months drying a nd so far it hasnt caused problems. Hopefuuly it will work out
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post #6 of 6 Old 02-17-2011, 09:50 AM
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I have found that wood stickered and stacked in my shop, with a fan blowing over it will come down to around 11% to 13% over a period of several months. I have found also, that wood which is in my home, such as the wood panelling, measures around 5% to 6%. Check the wood inside a location where your finished products are going to be. If your wood is in the same range as the interior wood you should be fairly safe to use it. As suggested above, storing wood in a spare room in the house for a few months will generally bring it into the range where you can use it.

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