Wood is a living material and often reacts to changes in temperature and humidity. It is interesting to know that wood changes its shape by losing moisture, it also changes size by absorbing moisture.
When the tree is cut down and the wood is transferred to the carpenter, a high amount of moisture flows in the wood. Wood must be prepared for use. This means that the process of drying the wood must begin.
Wood that has moisture has problems in the cutting process. The wood must be dry so that you can create the shape you want.
The wood that dries has a high quality and cannot be compared with fresh wood.
The drying process can be done in the open air or in an oven. But natural drying (air drying) is a process that takes a long time and the conditions are difficult. In particular, drying in an oven is required to reach a moisture content below 20%.
Various methods are used for the kiln drying process, but the essence of the process is common to all methods, and drying must be controlled to maintain the proper moisture level.
How to dry the wood
You may be wondering how to dry wood at home. After cutting the wood, you should put them in a sheltered place without moisture. If you have sunny weather in a city with a dry climate, after 60 days the moisture content of the wood will reach 15-20%. If the same conditions exist in a humid city, you will need about 3 to 4 months to reach this level of humidity.
If you plan to dry wood at home, the parking lot is a good place. Avoid direct sunlight to the wood. Let free air circulate between the sticks. You can make the drying process easier and faster by cutting the wood into uniform sizes. Note that the air flow circulates in all parts of the wooden beams.
After the wood has lost a lot of moisture, you can dry it completely by moving it to a warmer place such as a fireplace.
The fireplace is a wonderful place to dry wood. After the initial drying of the wood, you can use the engine room. Of course, be careful of high heat and the risk of wood fire.
Note: Spray the wood storage area with pesticides. One of the common problems that arise in the wood depot is the gathering of insects and vermin under and around the wood.
There are two ways to dry wood. Natural kiln drying is another, long and laborious drying method done in the open air.
To carry out natural drying, an environment with sufficient space in the open air is needed. Choosing a spot that receives the most sunlight is not right for natural wood drying. Choosing a place with shade and some sun will be healthier. Because if the wood dries too quickly, its durability will decrease. It may take weeks for the tree to dry completely.
drying time; Depending on the type of wood, initial humidity, wood thickness, wood density, environmental conditions and drying method, there is a significant difference.
The second method of drying wood is drying in the oven.
One of the most important advantages of drying wood in the oven is to remove the resin inside it. Removing the resin in the wood prevents the problem of resin shedding during painting. All the furniture, wood and flooring we use in our homes are produced from dried and low moisture wood.
Because drying significantly increases the useful life and durability of wood materials. Trees can also be dried using a wood dryer. But these types of chemical wood dryers can damage the wood. The use of wood dryers is very common for people who dry wood as a hobby, especially at home. It is very important to dry the wood with the right methods at the right time.
You may end up with two types of problems at the end of a wrong tree drying process. The first problem that may occur due to wood drying errors is the hardening of the wood bark.
The reason for the hardening of the tree bark is that the outer bark of the tree dries before the core when it dries. The outer shell dries out and tends to shrink, but because the core is still moist, this is prevented.
If the moisture difference between the bark and the core is large, the bark may become extremely dry, and vice versa when the core dries out and begins to shrink. This time the shell prevents the core from shrinking.
If hardened too much, the core splits and an internal crack forms in the wood. Internal cracking, also called honeycombing, is an irreversible problem. Honeycomb is one of the worst drying mistakes. You cannot see or understand the honeycomb by looking at the timber from the outside. For a proper tree drying process, it is necessary to process the tree in time. It is not correct to process bent branches or trees.
Caring for dried wood
Lumber that has been dried to the appropriate moisture content for final use should be stored in such a way that changes in moisture content are minimized.
Lumber piled on the ground sufficiently closed and dry can be stored for a week or two without major changes in moisture content. However, the moisture it receives varies according to the type of tree.
Flooring, joinery, furniture and wood with lower moisture content should be installed as soon as possible after the building is dry.
Disadvantages of natural drying
Drying time is long.
Not drying to the desired moisture level
Damage to fungi and insects due to prolonged drying.
Due to the long drying time, the capital remains sticky and is not commercially economical.
Advantages of natural drying
does not require large facilities,
The tree retains its natural color.
No deformation of the product or element due to lack of moisture exchange at the point of use.
Advantages of artificial drying (oven)
The drying time is very short. Therefore, it is not damaged by fungi and insects.
The wood is dried to the desired moisture level.
The drying timber is obtained.
Disadvantages of artificial drying
It needs a separate facility.
The discoloration is visible in the wood.
In order to obtain optimal efficiency, wood materials must be dried to the appropriate moisture content. It is related to the drying process that is done in the right conditions and correctly. this; It is found free in the cell spaces of the tree and in the cell walls as penetration into the nucleus.
With drying, free water is primarily lost. The fibers remain saturated and swollen until the moisture content is slightly below about 30%. Then drying causes a gradual shrinkage phenomenon.