Quantcast
  • We invite you to join UKWorkshop.
    Members can turn off viewing Ads!

moisture content Help

UKworkshop.co.uk

Help Support UKworkshop.co.uk:

radicalwood

Established Member
Joined
18 Nov 2004
Messages
224
Reaction score
0
Location
birmingham
Help

This is where I start showing how little I know, and how much I have to learn. :oops: Only really used pine and some off cuts up to now.

So after buying the wood at the auction, what would be a typical moisture content I need to get the wood down to for it to become usable. As an engineer I don't have this problem with metal :lol: :lol: :lol: .

All assistance gratefully accepted and don't laugh too loud :D :D :D .

Also what would be a good cheep moisture meter.

Thanks, all the best

Neil
 

Alf

Established Member
Joined
22 Oct 2003
Messages
12,079
Reaction score
0
Location
Up the proverbial creek
Neil,

No, no, this is where we all show how little we know... :wink:

Now I could have sworn we had not a bad thread on typical moisture contents for various applications, but blessed if I can find it. Although this thread will give you the heebie jeebies about what kind of trouble it can cause. Anyway, obviously worth typing them up again for the archive (Courtesy of the notes from a Materials Appreciation Course a friend of mine used to run, and with the benefit of having been written with British conditions in mind.):

22-15% Usual level for thoroughly air-dried timber, although 15% unlikely unless a long, dry summer (remember those?)
20% Dry rot safety line
16% Outdoor furniture
15% Joiners' work in new buildings, church work
14-12% Occasionally heated rooms
13-11% Normal heating including reasonable central heating
11-9% Continuous high degree central heating, offices etc
8% Radiator shelves etc

As far as a moisture meter goes, I've never owned one, but last I remember the Timber Check was considered pretty good.

Cheers, Alf
 

Dewy

Established Member
Joined
11 Jan 2004
Messages
602
Reaction score
0
Location
Gloucester
radicalwood":37srtprg said:
Help
As an engineer I don't have this problem with metal :lol: :lol: :lol:

Thanks, all the best

Neil
Never worked in a climate controlled room jig boring Neil?
That was my first lesson when being shown round the machine shop when I applied for my apprenticeship a lifetime ago.
Over 40 years later I can still see the jig borers face and his father who worked in the same shop.
They had bothed moved to Gloucester from west London with the firm and it was quite a surprise to find out that I had been at infant and junior school with the jig borers younger brother 8 years before when I lived in W3.
We soon got together to rehash our days in the cubs when he had been in the gang show pantomime as a fairy.
Did we rib him at schoold the next day!

Working with wood is similar to working with steel.
Before long you just do things without giving it much thought.
It has become second nature.
Splinters aren't as sharp though. ;)

It's always better to lay the wood in the place where it will be used for 7-14 days for it to acclimatize to the prevailing moisture level.
This may be OK when laying timber floors but is not so easy when you will be working in a shed or garage with the surrounding air containing the same amount of moisture as under cover outside.
This entails taking possible expansion and contraction into account when making the piece.
 

Scott

Established Member
Joined
18 Oct 2004
Messages
846
Reaction score
0
Neil

I splashed out and got myself a Wagner MMC205 moisture meter. It's not cheap but it does seem to do the job. It's pin-free and I guess it'll do me for the rest of my days so I'll hopefully get my money's worth!

I went mad for the first week I had it, testing the moisture content of every bit of wood I passed and it was quite interesting to see the difference in them all! I live in a drier climate but there were big moisture content differences between the centrally heated part of the house and the other (unrestored and drafty) bit.

I even found that some ash off the log pile was surprisingly dry so I resawed the logs and used some of it.

Up until I bought the meter I kept wood under the bed and hoped for the best but it's getting more & more difficult to get away with that :( . If you're doing it, don't forget to bring it back in after you've finished in the workshop for the day. I've had a couple of (self-inflicted) bad experiences of getting the timber settled then starting the job, leaving the timber in the shop overnight, and finding it all twisted the next day!

If it's of interest, the last timber I bought in the UK was some American Black Walnut from SL Hardwoods that arrived at a uniform 12% moisture content and hasn't moved at all. That's code for ...."I've machined it but I haven't actually got round to using it yet". At least it has stayed flat though and the MC is still the same!

All the best
Scott
 

Losos

Established Member
Joined
24 Aug 2004
Messages
1,469
Reaction score
0
Location
West Suffolk
Neil - FWIW I can confirm Alfs' recommendation. I have a 'Timbercheck' & find it does the job OK - Not as swish as a pinless types but very tough & was left out in therain one day with no ill effect. Got mine from Brimarc. It comes with a good instruction sheet which includes lots of info about MC & the adjustment factors needed with different woods
 
Top