Solar Cycle Lumber Dry Kilns
The world's simplest, most energy efficient kiln - also produces the best quality lumber possible!
I admit, that may sound a little unbelievable. You will have to see it for yourself to BELIEVE IT!
Again, last week (Feb 1, 2007) a repeat lumber customer told me that our dried oak is the best quality wood he has every used. "It is so easy to work with, compared to wood I have bought from the stores in Madison." I have heard that a thousand times over the past 19 years.
May 25th, 2010, Joe Hemmen in Tennessee wrote:
"I HAVE SOLD A LOT OF LUMBER MYSELF, BUT ITS BEEN SLOW, BUT I BELIEVE IT IS PICKING UP. MY SOLAR CYCLE KILN HAS BEEN FULL EVER SINCE WE PLACED IT IN SERVICE. PEOPLE ARE REALLY AMAZED AS TO HOW HOT IT GETS AND HOW WELL THE LUMBER WORKS. I REALLY LIKE THE WAY LUMBER KEEPS THE COLOR, CHERRY IS RED AND WALNUT IS BLACK NOT GRAY. TAKE CARE." JOE
Here is the BIG DIFFERENCE between our wood and lumber dried in a big commercial kiln:
Most kilns dry the wood as fast as possible. The heat is applied and is steady until the center of the boards reach the desired Moisture Content (MC). The surface of the wood is over-dried. Then steam is put into the room to add moisture to the outer surface of the board. This is called "Conditioning" - such a nice word. That is like calling a commercial Clear-Cut a "Regeneration Harvest!"
Solar Cycle Kilns dry the wood more slowly. We predry the lumber in the open rooms with naturally accelerated air flow down to 12%MC. Then solar generated heat is used to dry the lumber down to 6% MC. Every night, the wood in the piles equalizes in MC so there is no major difference between the center of the board and the surface. No steam conditioning is needed.
Because 92% of the water in the lumber is eliminated for free in the pre-drying cycles, only a small amount of water is removed in the heating cycle. Solar Cycle Kilns can be built from common materials, instead of expensive aluminum or stainless steel needed for commercial kilns that must stand up to large amounts of water vapor and acids.
We use only enough electricity to move the solar heated air from the collector room, down into the wood piles. A simple thermostat in the solar collector room turns the fans on when the sun shines and turn off when the heat is used up. We can go on vacation for a week, and not even think about our kilns working back home, as we relax on a sunny beach.
Other kilns dry lumber - Solar Cycle Kilns also tell our customers that we truly practice energy conservation.
Stacking boards is easy when all you see is $20 bills
When we used to grow hay here at Timbergreen Farm, we stacked $1 bills - usually on the hottest days of the year, in a dark and stuffy haymow.
Now, I stack $20 bills when the weather suits me. It is a lot more fun!
We stack our lumber carefully into the Solar Cycle Kiln, right off the fork lift. At this point, the lumber is wet - about half water by weight. An average 1X6 by 8 Foot long oak board has a gallon of water in it. Carefully removing most of that water is the key to our success for our business.
Our three Solar Cycle Kilns at Timbergreen collect 1,500,000 BTUs for free each sunny day.
This design is now being used on every continent (except Antarctica). Each kiln that is built is more efficient than the last. Better insulation, air tight construction, and one-way air pressure activated valves isolate the heated wood chamber from the solar collectors, keeping all the collected energy in the wood room where it does its work to dry the lumber.
Photos of the Worlds Best Solar Cycle Kiln November, 2009 New - Simple Solar Collector
Here is a Solar Cycle Kiln at Rawnsley Wood Products in Cornwall England.
Richard Lauwers at Imlay City MI built this kiln, using polycarbonate sheeting for the clear window. He also oriented the building with the ridge running North-South with both sides of the room as collectors, plus the south wall is a collector, to catch the morning and afternoon sun more efficiently.
The Super Solar Cycle Kiln collects 2,000,000 BTUs on a clear day, for FREE! This kiln operates at 85 degrees above the outside temperature, with a full load of wood (15,000 bf). Annual production for this size kiln is about 250,000 board feet in Wisconsin's climate.
Solar Cycle Kiln Increases Sales Kiln Monitoring Results
More Information on Solar Cycle Kilns Resource Efficient Wood Drying Kilns
Read about Solar Cycle Kiln in Portland Oregon
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Solar Cycle Kiln Plans - How to build and operate a Solar Cycle Kiln - $29.95 - Mail a check to: Timbergreen Farm S11478 Soeldner Rd - Spring Green, WI 53588 - or use your credit card with the Paypal button below. Now - including our DVD on Solar Kiln Drying at no charge! Click here for a preview of the DVD