Question (WOODWEB Member) :
Has anyone built a solar kiln with the collector detached? I have a shed that I could use as a kiln that is already built hence the question. I could build the collector outside of it. Does anyone have any thoughts or ideas? I am in southwest IL - how would the solar kiln work here? I am near St.Louis.
(Sawing and Drying Forum)
From Contributor U:
I have a solar kiln, but it is the smaller VT design. However, when I built my house I put a standing seam galvanized roof on it. I simply put clear fiberglass 4" above the south facing roof and had a solar collector with very little additional cost. If you put a clear surface about 6" above your existing roof, and open it top/bottom to force air through it, it will act as a collector. Depending on pitch and direction it is facing will determine how efficient it is. Before I built my house, I made 4'x8' collectors and put on my porch roof to determine if it would be effective and I heated bedrooms with no problem.
To be honest the hardest part would be cutting the holes in my shed to duct the heat in an the return out. Up to this point I have been thinking of building a DH type kiln. The solar has just been a thought the last few days. I have a buddy that I haven't seen in some time that has a solar kiln. I am going to try to go see it so I can see how it works in person. Gene, how well would a solar kiln work? I live 30 miles NE of the arch in St.Louis on the IL side on the river.
I am impressed with the specs on this shed. You seem to have done an excellent job in planning and construction. However, with all the moisture from drying lumber it would be critical to have a vapor barrier on the inside of the insulation. Otherwise, moisture will get into the insulation and destroy its properties (with more products). Can you add this barrier to walls, floor and roof? You need it for solar or DH.
With a DH, you will have to cut a small hole for a vent fan that will exhaust any excess heat. I do believe that NYLE has plans that should help you locate the fans, etc. They used to refund the cost if you bought a compressor. Or maybe someone nearby has plans and a unit you could examine in detail.