Moisture meter

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    George Bridgeman

    As I’m going to be resawing air-dried timber, I thought it was a good idea to get a moisture meter so I can figure out how much I can expect the resawn boards to move, as the moisture content in the middle of the beam will be higher than the edges.

    There are a bajillion different makes and models but the main decision is whether to buy a meter with or without pins. The ones with pins are much cheaper but only read the moisture content where the pins are inserted. The pinless ones are crazy expensive but measure moisture quite far beneath the surface. Seeing as this is my first one and I didn’t want to shell out too much, I went for a model with pins. Here’s the link to the particular one I got:

    It arrived today and I’ve been measuring moisture in every piece of timber in the shop (including the shop itself!). Readings change slightly depending on the orientation of the meter relative to the grain direction, depth of pins in the wood, and whether you’re measuring end or long grain. They’re all pretty close, though.

    Time will tell if it’s a valuable tool. It’ll be interesting to see how the moisture content of the redwood I buy drops when I bring it into the shop. Once the readings stabilise, the timber shouldn’t move much more.

    Does anyone else use one of these?


    "To know and not do is to not know"


    Not using one as of yet, George, but my plans for the future certainly seem to point to a requirement for one at some point. I will be interested to see how this works out for you in the coming weeks and months.

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