AH/DC Lumber Drying Results in Low Costs, High Quality
Posted: July 27, 2015
Extension Educator Scott Weikert announces that an advanced lumber drying workshop held in Strattanville, Clarion County on March 11, 2015 attracted statewide participation. The focus of the workshop was an innovative kiln process known as the Alternate Heat/Dump Cycle (AH/DC), which both saves energy and produces high quality lumber.
Twenty-eight kiln operators from around the state, as well as a few from New York and West Virginia, attended the one-day workshop at Structural Modulars, Inc., which was offered in partnership with the Keystone Kiln Drying Association. Speaker Dennis Clay, a well known lumber drying consultant, presented an in-depth description of the AH/DC process. Known as “The Kiln Consultant,” Dennis Clay has more than 20 years of hands-on experience drying lumber and managing the drying operations for a large furniture company. As a consultant, he conducts analysis of current lumber handling and drying practices as well as on-site kiln operator training. Noting that “kiln operation managers are now challenged to reduce costs, including energy costs, and still produce high quality dried lumber in less time,” he advocates for the use of the AH/DC process to achieve these goals. (Is Your Dry Kiln Wasting Energy?,Timberline Magazine, April 1, 2012)
Lee Stover of L&E Stover Enterprises (pictured here) provided information about data that his company has collected inside of commercial kilns. This data helped participants understand exactly what happens in their kilns with regard to air flow, dry bulb and wet bulb temperatures, relative humidity, etc. The information went hand in hand with the AH/DC technique and supported operators interested in implementing the AH/DC process.
At the end of the workshop, a kiln clinic was offered, where participants had the opportunity to ask questions about any issues they were having in their own operations. Topics such as lumber quality issues or maintenance problems were addressed.