Graduate Thesis Or Dissertation

 

The effects of thin kiln sticks on the drying of two inch western hemlock lumber Public Deposited

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  • New technology allows the production of thinner kiln sticks manufactured of phenolic resin impregnated paper which are both structurally and economically realistic. This project tested the effects of kiln stick thicknesses on dry kiln air circulation and on lumber drying degrade. Three variables, stick thickness (3/4, 9/16, 7/16 and 1/4 inch), fan speed (250, 480, and 660 RPM), and plenum width (13 and 25 inches) were tested in a laboratory kiln in different combinations to explore their effects on air velocity and power consumption of the fan motors. The results indicated that the 1/4 inch kiln sticks produce very ununiform drying with correspondingly, low velocities. However, with 9/16 inch sticks, maximum velocities were obtained followed by a slight drop in velocities with the 3/4 and 7/16 inch sticks. Uniformity of air velocities was maximized when using the wider 25 inch plenum width and any of the three thicker sticks. Power consumption of the fan motors was not greatly influenced by plenum width or stick thickness. However, fan speed directly affected power consumption. In a second experiment, evaporation rates were measured using the four different stick thicknesses. The results indicated the same pattern as the magnitude of the air velocities followed. Highest evaporation was with the 9/16 inch stick, lowest with the 1/4 inch stick. In a commercial dry kiln, the amount of degrade was recorded in lumber cried using both 3/4 inch wood sticks and 1/2 inch phenolic sticks. No significant difference in drying degrade was found. Since air velocities were slightly lower and there was ten percent more lumber using the thinner kiln sticks, a higher moisture content distribution resulted.
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