Whole Leaf Tobacco
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  1. #81
    Administrator deluxestogie's Avatar
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    Re: Deluxestogie's Endoskeletal Wood Tobacco Kiln / Flue-cure chamber

    I don't really have any suggestions for changes.

    Bob

  2. #82
    Senior Member ChinaVoodoo's Avatar
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    Re: Deluxestogie's Endoskeletal Wood Tobacco Kiln / Flue-cure chamber

    Hey,
    What are your thoughts on having cigar leaf in the kiln at the same time as flue cured, Burley, oriental, etc.?
    This blanket is a necessity. It keeps me from cracking up. It may be regarded as a spiritual tourniquet. Without it, I'd be nothing, a ship without a rudder. - Linus

  3. #83
    Senior Member Smokin Harley's Avatar
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    Re: Deluxestogie's Endoskeletal Wood Tobacco Kiln / Flue-cure chamber

    when I built my kiln I built a plywood box and insulated the INSIDE with the foil faced 1 inch foam. the seams and corners were all taped using aluminum foil tape . I did not glue or use any sort of adhesive to secure the foam , only cut them snug to the box inside measurement (friction fit),installed the top first then the sides (to hold the top up) and then lastly slid a snug bottom piece in ,and then as I said I taped all the corners and seams. I left the door edge of the sides a little heavy so that when the door is closed it makes a tight seal of its own(compression seal?)once the 6 draw hasps are secured and pinned. The door is insulated using the same foam and secured to the wooden door by screws and fender washers so the screw heads dont pull through the foam. When the kiln is running , the evaporated water forms a seal where the sides and door edges meet. I do notice from time to time a small pool of water on the floor at the bottom corner of the door, but that also serves as an indicator ...when the water stops dripping , the water vessel is most likely empty .
    "We make our own Whiskey and our own smoke too, aint too many things these ol' boys cain't do..." -A Country Boy Can Survive ,Hank Williams Jr.

    Entubado...its how I roll

  4. #84
    Administrator deluxestogie's Avatar
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    Re: Deluxestogie's Endoskeletal Wood Tobacco Kiln / Flue-cure chamber

    Quote Originally Posted by ChinaVoodoo View Post
    Hey,
    What are your thoughts on having cigar leaf in the kiln at the same time as flue cured, Burley, oriental, etc.?
    It makes no difference. They don't "meld." They all require 4 weeks of kilning.

    Quote Originally Posted by Smokin Harley View Post
    I do notice from time to time a small pool of water on the floor at the bottom corner of the door...
    I place the inverted lid of a large yogurt container beneath each corner of my kiln to keep the drips off the floor.

    Bob

  5. #85
    Senior Member Smokin Harley's Avatar
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    Re: Deluxestogie's Endoskeletal Wood Tobacco Kiln / Flue-cure chamber

    its a concrete slab floor. Its not a big deal. But I might install a drip trough/tray and maybe it will simply evaporate ,like a refrigerator does.
    "We make our own Whiskey and our own smoke too, aint too many things these ol' boys cain't do..." -A Country Boy Can Survive ,Hank Williams Jr.

    Entubado...its how I roll

  6. #86
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    Re: Deluxestogie's Endoskeletal Wood Tobacco Kiln / Flue-cure chamber

    Quote Originally Posted by deluxestogie View Post
    So in summer, each run is 4 weeks. In winter, I go with 5 weeks per batch.

    Bob
    Bob,

    Do you have any observables on the leaves to tell you whether to continue for another week?

    I am about to complete 4 weeks but I have not been monitoring the water usage carefully. I just open up the kiln when I can and keep the Crockpot filled. I have observed that the cooling down time is shorter (from about 40 min to around 30 min). The kiln is in the garage so it basically operates in outside ambient temperature which has lowered from an average 70 to 60.

  7. #87
    Administrator deluxestogie's Avatar
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    Re: Deluxestogie's Endoskeletal Wood Tobacco Kiln / Flue-cure chamber

    Quote Originally Posted by dchiang View Post
    Bob,
    Do you have any observables on the leaves to tell you whether to continue for another week?
    The smell. If there is any hint of raw tobacco, it's not yet done.

    Bob

  8. #88
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    Re: Deluxestogie's Endoskeletal Wood Tobacco Kiln / Flue-cure chamber

    Very nice done!!

  9. #89
    Administrator deluxestogie's Avatar
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    Re: Deluxestogie's Endoskeletal Wood Tobacco Kiln / Flue-cure chamber

    Kiln update

    It's been nearly two years since I built this endoskeletal kiln. It has been in continuous use, with temps that hover between 120 and 125ºF. I have not yet used it as a flue-cure chamber.

    My greatest concern was that the Tyvek tape, which seals all of the inside junctions, would lose its adhesive, and peel away. That has not happened. The tape looks as effective as it did when first applied.

    The tightness of the seal provided by the silicone door gasket has gradually diminished. I believe this is the result of two effects: linear shrinkage, which has increased the tiny gaps at the corners of the gasket, and chronic compression (evidenced by less effort needed to latch the door hooks). This is not critical at the moment, but replacing the entire gasket with an uncut, continuous one, applied to the door, rather than the door frame, is on my list of improvements.

    The XPS foam walls show no signs of damage or instability. The frame remains solid and true, though it was over-engineered. The outside top of the kiln serves as a seedling heater for two 1020 trays during the spring season.

    I still haven't decided whether or not to test my luck by flue-curing (up to 165ºF), but I do plan to grow some plants this coming season that would benefit from flue-curing. I have until about mid July to make that decision. It would require creating a vent, which I am hesitant to do.

    In summary, this construction approach has been durable under kilning conditions, and still functions well after two years of use.

    Bob

  10. #90
    Administrator deluxestogie's Avatar
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    Re: Deluxestogie's Endoskeletal Wood Tobacco Kiln / Flue-cure chamber

    Endoskeletal Kiln Control Mess-Up


    Original photo of the controller.

    Once my kiln had operated well for about two years, I became concerned that, if the controller suddenly failed, my process would be interrupted for a week or more, while I searched for then waited to receive a new controller. So, I purchased a spare controller (complete with temp probe), for around $15. That was about a year ago.

    Today, shortly after refilling the water in the Crockpot, I noticed that the temp was reported as 158ºF! I immediately unplugged the power to the Crockpot, and opened the kiln again. Lukewarm!

    After cleaning the temp probe, and randomly tapping and thumping the controller (as though a vacuum tube might be loose), it still showed the same high temp. I disconnected the two probe wires, then reconnected the two probe wires.

    Was the problem the probe and/or its cable, or was the controller toast? I reached for my extra controller, and discovered that I had actually purchased two identical extra controllers. Wise decision, Bob.

    Although these new controllers looked just the same, their model number was slightly different. Fortunately, the specs for the temp probe are printed clearly on the controller's tag. It matched those for the old controller.

    I detached the old temp probe, and replaced it with a new one--loosen 2 screws, tighten them again. The temp immediately read 78ºF, and began to rise. Yay!

    All is functioning normally now, and I didn't even have to read through the Chinenglish instructions again, or re-wire a replacement controller. Now, I still have two extra controllers, and one extra temp probe.

    Bob

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