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Drying Cherry and maple in a greenhouse?

1387 Views 7 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  JackDuren
A friend of mine gave me a few lengths of cherry and maple tree. I have cut them into sections, cut out the pith and sealed all surfaces except the bark side with two coats of Titebond 3. I wondered about putting them on the shelves in my small 10×12 greenhouse. Any advice would be helpful. I live in the Pacific northwest so it doesn't get real hot, but on a sunny day it can get close to or over 100 degrees inside.
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From what I have read, the big thing is not to dry too fast. I get a lot of logs sawn, and keep them in the shade. Maybe you could put a shade cloth over the greenhouse to keep the temp down.
The sections you've already cut need to release moisture, so you might need to rethink your sealing of all surfaces except for the bark side. I've dried slabs of hardwood outdoors, and have found you only need to seal the ends to prevent splits. And, the sections should be "stickered" apart-i.e. just put slats or 1×2's between the sections allowing for airflow to aid the drying process.
My opinion is you should move the wood outdoors and just cover it with a tarp to keep the rain off, but leave the ends of the sections open.
Rule of thumb is drying time using this method is 1year per inch of thickness for hardwoods. ibewjon's advice about drying at lower temps is good.
Hope you find this helpful.
With 2 coats of tb the wood should stay wet for a long time, which is good. Wet wood is much more fun to turn. Finding a cooler area than the greenhouse would be better.
The only way I would use a green house for drying wood is if I had a lot of wood to dry (almost fill the green house) with it was stickered and with a fan to keep the air moving, pulling outside air in and moving the moist hot air out. Essentially a kiln with the sun providing the heat.

Otherwise treat the ends of the cuts, sticker it, cover with a tarp to protect from rain if needed, and put in a shady cool dry place for a year of more.
I already wrote, but I repeat - leave the bark 10 -15 cm at the ends. The middle bark is removed. Put plastic bags on the ends and dry with electric current through a light bulb. Drying time 3-6 months, depending on the diameter of the trunk.


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If you’re using the greenhouse for growing plants, it’s probably going to be too humid for drying wood efficiently, especially in the pacific NW. The reason you want heat is so that the air can carry away more moisture. If you’re not turning the air over with a fan or vents, where’s the moisture supposed to go?
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