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Thread: Wood Moisture Meters

  1. #1
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    Wood Moisture Meters

    Lots of years of experience on this forum so I thought I'd toss out a question about the merits of different Wood Moisture Meters.

    My criteria:
    • "Good enough" - I am not in a woodworking business so my bottom-line isn't affected by a less than .00000001% accurate reading.
    • Pin/Contact Type - It isn't necessary for me to measure the moisture content of a piece of wood from across the room. I'm OK sticking pins into it.
    • Not "too" expensive. - I am lucky in that the 'day job', my 'wife's day job', 'no children', etc. allows me to buy "as good as it gets", but as with accuracy, it should have quality in line with cost.
    • Periodic usefulness - Because I am a hobby woodturner, I like to turn to finish, which is usually more successful with dryer vs. wetter woods. Much has been said about different drying methods, and the ability to use a weight chart to measure dryness, but I just want to know the approximate dryness of something before I turn it.
    • Digital Readout - Flashing LEDs are nice, but, what the heck, give me easy to read numbers.
    With all that in mind, I can buy a Lignomat, Delmhorst, Farmex, Extech, etc. or I can go to eBay (or other retail) and get a PSI or PSI-clone for less.
    What are your thoughts as to my optimal buying choice?

    Thanks in advance for your thoughts
    Last edited by Frank Townend; 01-17-2009 at 03:13 PM.



  2. #2
    Not sure what your question is, but I have a PSI and it works great. The only gripe I have with it is it doesnt turn off automatically, so if you forget to turn it of manually, the 9v battery will be dead the next time you use it.

  3. #3
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    I have a Delmhorst pin type analog meter that has worked quite well. The newer models are now digital
    Jim D.
    Adapt, Improvise, Overcome!

  4. #4
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    Thank you both.
    Barry, your answer is the type of answer I am looking for. I like your observations about a auto-off function. Are you satisfied with that unit?
    Jim, if you had to do it again, is the Delmhorst your manufactured of choice?



  5. #5
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    .............
    Last edited by John Bartley; 05-08-2012 at 09:54 AM.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Townend View Post
    ...Jim, if you had to do it again, is the Delmhorst your manufactured of choice?
    Well, I'm satisfied with the Delmhorst, but since I haven't used any others for the past five, or more, years, I don't really have anything to compare it to.

    I do know that my meter agrees almost exactly with the one my local kiln operator uses, so either mine is very accurate, or both meters are out by the same amount. The one at the kiln is a high end digital - Ligno, I think.

    Anyway, I'm happy with mine, and have no plans to 'upgrade.'
    Jim D.
    Adapt, Improvise, Overcome!

  7. #7
    Frank, the PSI unit meets my needs, and it's 30 bucks or sometimes less. It has a bar-type indicator scale in 2% increments, I believe, not digital, so it's more of a ball park reading. It bottoms out at 6%. Wood thats been in my garage here in AZ in the summer doesn't even register on the scale. But it's good enough for my needs. When the wood gets below 10%, it's good enough for me. Barry

  8. #8
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    Excellent choices and suggestions from each of you, thank you.

    Amazon and eBay sell this:

    Prices are $25 - $35, with the following copy:
    Products trademarked HQRP are marketed and sold exclusively by Osprey-Talon. 2-pin version, it is easier to insert and it will leave only 2 little holes instead of 4! 2-pin version, it is easier to insert and it will leave only 2 little holes instead of 4! General Features: Digital large size LCD display; 2-pin version; Model # JT-2G; Test Range: 5% to 40%; Resolution: 1%; Accuracy: 1%; Measuring Range: 5% - 40%; High resolution and quickly response; Can hold value; Symbol and unit display, read and get conveniencly Low battery symbol "-+"; Power: one 9V battery INCLUDED; Dimension: 126x70x29mm; Operation temperature: 0'C to 40'C.

    The problem I have with it is the low price/you get what you pay for.

    I am thinking about the Lignomat mini-Ligno DX/C around $200

    Measuring Range: 5-65% dependent upon species setting*
    Resolution: 0.1% for values below 10% and 1% steps above 10%
    Species Corrections: 20 settings for wood species corrections with chart for domestic and tropical species
    Reference Scale: 0-99 for non-wood building materials
    Calibration Check: The calibration is internally checked and automatically adjusted if necessary
    Pins: 2 pair of pins, measuring depth of 3/16" and 7/16" (5,10mm)
    Size: pocket-size 2 3/4"x 5"x1" (70x140x25mm)
    Weight: 8 ounces (200g), made out of high-impact plastic



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