Thanks for the info from US Forest Products Lab. Lots of interesting
material there. If I had access to a kiln I'd try the re-moisturizing -
sounds very possible. I suspect that when the stock was surfaced, it
was taken beyond messed up.
Couldn't help myself and have been experimenting a bit. Doesn't seem to
matter how it is cut (half way from each side) or with what sort of
blade is used. It will contort in amazing ways, and does create a
Was thinking about building a hutch. Still is in the back of my head,
but I'll be doing some shopping for some good black ash. In the mean
time, I'll enjoy a beautiful ash fire.
Appreciate the wisdom of the group.
I don't know; I've not had experience directly with either black ash nor
a case such as yours where tried on surfaced material--it was all still
roughsawn when I re-moisturized. Most of what I did was thicker walnut
slabs 6/4 and above which was why felt it worth the effort.
The setup I used was an old water heater tank that I laid on its side
and made flange access on the top end. Used a tap off of the house hot
water supply to run a recycled stream thru it and just let a pool sit
below the material for a couple of days to a week depending on the
thickness (I said this was a homebrew made up formula didn't I? :J) ).
I didn't worry about trying to control the actual humidity level and it
isn't steaming, just keeping it in a warm and humid environment so that
the free moisture content hopefully re-equilibrates. I'm sure the
"kiln" temperature never reached the full 160-180 F but I turned the hot
water supply up to near the max the tank would put out. I don't
remember that I ever did actually measure that temperature; I just used
what I could get.
Most of the pieces I did this way and then air-dried in a stickered pile
with cover and in a south-facing location to get some sun heating came
out successful. In the one big experiment that caused me to make the
effort, I suppose it was about as much as you've got in bd-ft but a
quite sizable fewer number of individual pieces as some was as thick as
10/4 by 8" or so.
Over the years following I did a few other random bits and pieces, but
it wasn't terribly much later that made the move from TN to VA and I
didn't take the setup with me and never got ambitious-enough again. I
was just a young kid fresh out of school when got the woodworking bug
after moving to VA from western KS and was surrounded by all that
gorgeous (and cheap) hardwood...
I did cut 10 and 12-ft stock down to where it would fit lengthwise; that
didn't seem to negate the success rate.
I don't know what would have happened if it had been S2S, though...
Several years ago Norn did a NYW project using a home built kiln
A PVC pipe with couplings and plugs on the ends.
A 5 gallon metal gas can with water on a burner to generate the steam
and connected to the side of the pipe with a radiator hose.
The PVC pipe was inclined about 10 degrees.
Pieces of green oak wood were steamed and bent into a hat rack.
If you can get a length of SCH 10, 8" PVC pipe 9'-10' long and a can
with a nozzle (if still made) , you could probably duplicate using
propane for a heat source.
Might want to poke around the NYW web site for more detail.
I think the melting points of both CPVC and PVC are just shy of 200F. CPVC
will handle something like 20 degrees more.
As an alternative, what about metal heating duct? Some woods like Oak will
react with steel, but I don't know about Ash. You might need a couple
spacers in any case.
Thanks for the info on your efforts. I have a friend with a large home
built steamer box that is oil fired. Sure works nice for bending. Will
load a few of the least checked pieces and see what happens. In this
case, my only expense will be some fuel and my time. Will see how it
goes. Odd thing here is the ends of the boards are still coated with
some sort of wax like sealer.
A great idea. And it would be nice to be able to have a face to go with
the regulars and us lurkers. (And with the beverages and recipies that
have been shared over the years, it would be a real feast of a barbecue.)
Yup, I faithfully check out the group and saw the post. The lab is just
about three hours down the road from me, and I had heard of it before, but
never dug into their wealth of information before. Spent quite awhile
digging through their site last evening. Lots of interesting stuff. The
research on reversing case hardening has been around a number of years from
the article. Was wondering if steaming what do the trick after reading the
article, since I don't have access to a kiln. Then you followed up with
just what I was thinking about. So a question, if you recall, how did your
10/4 turn out after it was steamed and dried?
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