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Thread: Drying question

  1. #1
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    Drying question

    can you dry white oak along with maple or hickory in the same batch in a kiln? 4/4 stock.
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    Wisconsin Dells, WI
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    I'm by no means any kind of an expert, especially with a kiln, but I don't know why it would be any different than air drying. Same thing just a shorter period of time with a kiln.

    That being said when I had all them trees cut a few years back I was air drying maple, cherry, oak and box elder at the same time in the same stack. I didn't have them mixed, but all part of the same stack.

    My $1.398 worth of wisdom.

    Karl

  3. #3
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    Mountain Home, Arkansas
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    I've never heard of problems with different woods in same kiln. Might have different drying rates. Sure with Jim King visited here more often, he would know fer certain, fer sure.
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  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by larry merlau View Post
    can you dry white oak along with maple or hickory in the same batch in a kiln? 4/4 stock.
    Larry,

    It depends on several factors but it boils down to probably not if green but, if air-dried to 15%-25% first, probably.

    In the former case, you want to dry maple relatively fast from green to maintain the really white color while oak, and to a lesser extent, hickory, you want to dry much slower to prevent checking.

    However, after air-drying, you will have already gotten past the checking issues in oak (or they will have end-checked) but the maple will probably have turned brown on you. Even while air-drying, you have to be careful with oaks and hickory as they will often dry to fast even with air drying. If you start the drying process during the fall/winter here in Michigan, probably not an issue but if you mill the lumber in the heat of summer even air drying may be an issue. If you take steps to slow the drying for the oak, you may cause issues for the maple (beyond color issues) but if you don't take these steps, you will probably end check the oak.

    At least this is how I understand things. I will end this by stating that I am no expert but I have cut and dried around 4k bf of mixed hardwoods over the last 2-3 years.

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