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Forced air drying of New Zealand timbers



Forced air drying of New Zealand timbers



N Z Forest Res Notes 45: 1-17



Tests were carried out in Rotorua to de-termine the rates at which major New Zealand timbers can be forced-air dried at different times of the year. For this purpose 2 small drying tunnels were made, and in one the temperature of incoming air was raised by 5-20[degree]F (heated, forced-air drier). Forced-air drying was rapid in summer (e.g., 1 in. sapwood of radiata pine, a species which dried rapidly, dried to an average of 20% moisture content (m.c.) in 10 days), but was much slower in winter (30% m.c. in 22 days). Addition of heat accelerates drying and enables much lower moisture contents to be achieved. Drying rates would be as fast or faster in most other major timber production areas with more rapid winter drying in the North Island ones. The practical and economic advantage of these drying methods and recent commercial developments are discussed.

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