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Thread: MC of wood for a Shed Door?

  1. #1
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    MC of wood for a Shed Door?

    I'm thinking of using some AD ash to build 4 nominal 36" wide doors for my new shed. I know ash is a poor choice from a rot resistance point of view, but it's what I have and they will be painted so I'm OK using it. It's been drying for about a year and checks at 12 - 14% MC with my meter. The shed will be unheated, used to store my wood inventory actually. 12 - 14% MC is about the EMC for wood outdoors in the area I live.

    My plan would be to build typical stile/rail exterior doors, maybe only 1-1/2" thick though, with floating panels made up of tongue and grooved boards rather than a solid panel. Are there any reasons using AD wood for the doors is a bad idea? Thanks.

    John

  2. #2
    I believe that air dried is the way to go.

  3. #3
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    If your panels are captured in a dado at the bottom, that's going to be a critical point for water sealing. If water gets inside the door and sits there, that's where rot starts. You might consider reversing that joint, so it is a tongue-and-groove with the groove up into the panel, and the tongue on the door rail.

  4. #4
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    Or bore some drainage weep holes to allow the groove to drain out the bottom.

    5D20E362-E4D1-4C17-8010-BF48EEE2EE38.jpg



    Thereís a great article in Fine Home Building issue 258 April /May 2016 .

    I think your wood is still a bit to wet at 12 to 14% MC. And you mentioned one year of AD time. The rule of thumb is 1 year per 1Ē of thickness , so Iím guessing you should wait one more year.

    Not knowing how you checked it , but assuming you used your meter in the wood surface , that you didnít cut off 1Ē of wood and stick you pins in the end grain of that newly cut piece , Iím guessing the inner wood is wetter than where you probed it.

  5. #5
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    Thanks for the replies. Turns out you are right, Paul. I just cut a couple of inches off two of the planks and they read 16 - 18% inside. So I'm going to have to put it all in my drier. I was hoping to avoid that for the sake of time, but it shouldn't take more than a week or so to get it down to around 12%. That's some interesting door construction in the sketch you attached. I'd call that the belt and suspenders approach. I don't get why you would use pins and wedges with loose tenons, but to each their own. I have used the weep hole approach though, but I took the holes out the front of the door, hidden in the molding profile. Lots of benefits of going straight down as shown in the sketch though, and I may do that with these doors, unless I go with Jamie's approach which has the benefit of completely avoiding water going into the bottom rail.


    Thanks,

    John

  6. #6
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    Google Prowell Wood works , Charlies has a wealth of information on his website. Itís a educational site, if you are into wood working itís worth the time to look deeply into his work and his opinions , or ways of doing what he does.

    The guy, Charles Prowell , should write a book , really. His website is darn near a book actually. But itís free to read IF you enjoy reading on a computer screen rather than a book you can hold.




    Quote Originally Posted by John TenEyck View Post
    Thanks for the replies. Turns out you are right, Paul. I just cut a couple of inches off two of the planks and they read 16 - 18% inside. So I'm going to have to put it all in my drier. I was hoping to avoid that for the sake of time, but it shouldn't take more than a week or so to get it down to around 12%. That's some interesting door construction in the sketch you attached. I'd call that the belt and suspenders approach. I don't get why you would use pins and wedges with loose tenons, but to each their own. I have used the weep hole approach though, but I took the holes out the front of the door, hidden in the molding profile. Lots of benefits of going straight down as shown in the sketch though, and I may do that with these doors, unless I go with Jamie's approach which has the benefit of completely avoiding water going into the bottom rail.


    Thanks,

    John

  7. #7
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    Charles is a gate builder , and for a entry door weep holes wouldnít work , but youíre building wood shed doors from what I gather , so the weep hole idea could work for you.
    I use it on gates Iíve built for clients.

    Also using Ash for wood shed doors seems a waste of nice hardwood, but I understand the concept of using what you have on hand.

  8. #8
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    Thanks for suggesting Prowell Woodworks. There is indeed a wealth of info. on their website, and now I understand why they choose to use that joinery with their exterior gates.

    John

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