Green rough cut oak questions

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Forum topic by DirtyMike posted 08-19-2016 08:14 PM 688 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View DirtyMike's profile


637 posts in 1317 days

08-19-2016 08:14 PM

hello all, I found a good cheap supply of rough cut 1×6x9 red and white oak boards from a sawmill. All lumber is freshly cut air drying at the moment. My use for this wood would be for farmhouse/ vintage industrial tables.
I have the space in my shop to build a hobo kiln with a tarp and a fan while running a dehumidifier.
I of course would stack and sticker the lumber.

My questions:

How long would it take before the wood is workable with that setup?
Should i just find a real kiln to dry my lumber?

I hate to pass on such a good deal but if its more trouble than its worth I would pass.

6 replies so far

View gargey's profile


1013 posts in 1191 days

#1 posted 08-19-2016 08:44 PM

According to popular opinion, 1 year per inch for air dry. Your “hobo kiln” would speed that up by XX%.


View pintodeluxe's profile


5949 posts in 3228 days

#2 posted 08-19-2016 08:53 PM

I like to stack and sticker outdoors first. Once core M.C. is 15% or so, oak is okay to bring indoors and dry in the fashion you describe. Note that any bugs will not be killed unless you reach 140 degrees.

Problems with bringing green lumber directly into the shop include mold on the lumber, and rusted cast iron tools.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View WDHLT15's profile


1816 posts in 2891 days

#3 posted 08-20-2016 11:35 AM

Oak has to dry slow, so fans and a dehumidifier on green oak can be tricky to control the drying rate. Go too fast, and you will get case hardening and honeycomb. My red oak green off the sawmill takes about 6 months to air dry to 15% in Georgia, so the 1 year per inch of thickness is way way off.

-- Danny Located in Perry, GA. Forester. Wood-Mizer LT40HD35 Sawmill. Nyle L53 Dehumidification Kiln.

View bondogaposis's profile


5452 posts in 2766 days

#4 posted 08-20-2016 03:44 PM

Buy a moisture meter. Speeding up the process may work against you, slow and easy especially at first, water has to work it’s way from the center of the board through numerous cell walls one molecule at a time. It is not a fast process, if you dry the outer portion too fast the inner wood can’t catch up and that leads to problems such as WDLT15 pointed out.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View DirtyMike's profile


637 posts in 1317 days

#5 posted 08-20-2016 07:14 PM

Thanks everyone, Even at 50 cents a bf i think i am going to pass on the lumber. Having it kiln dried is not feasible due to the minimum amount required. I am not crazy about working with oak anyway and by the time it was dry i wouldn’t need it.

View cooperw's profile


14 posts in 1142 days

#6 posted 08-24-2016 07:09 AM

1 year per inch for air dry

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