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THE DRYING PROCESS

Posted on February 18 2018

The Drying Process | Scanteak Singapore

Why does wood need to be dried?

Wood drying is to ensure that any shrinking is limited to the drying process. This is to keep further dimensional change in wood to a minimum. It is probably impossible to completely eliminate movement in wood. In order to minimize the changes, wood is usually dried to a moisture content that is close to the average equilibrium moisture content to the surrounding air which it will be exposed.

 

What is moisture content?

Moisture content is the percentage of moisture that remains in a piece of timber after drying.

 

What is the moisture content of timber used in Scanteak furniture?

At Scanteak, our teak wood is dried to the moisture content of 8 -12 %, which is far drier than the industry average of 12 – 15 % in Singapore. Scanteak uses a method called Kiln Drying to dry timbers.

 

What is kiln drying?

The process of kiln drying introduces heat to timbers. This may be directly, using natural gas and/or electricity or indirectly, through steam-heated heat exchangers. In the process, deliberate control of temperature, relative humidity and air circulation is provided to give conditions at various stages (moisture contents or times) of drying the timber to achieve effective drying.

The timber is stacked in chambers, called wood drying kilns, which are fitted with equipment for manipulation and control of the temperature and the relative humidity of the drying air and its circulation rate through the timber stack. In kiln drying as in air drying, unsaturated air is used as the drying medium. Almost all commercial timbers of the world are dried in industrial kilns.