Drying kiln project: mechanical installation

The photo shows installation work underway on two drying kilns while the adjacent zones are drying

In this series of blogs, our experts explain the different stages in a drying kiln project and other important elements in the world of kilns as part of sawmill operations.

In our previous blog, we went through the different stages and content in a tender for a drying kiln. Once the contract has been signed, the drying project can begin. This blog takes a look at everything this entails.


Project kickoff meeting gets things going

Once a project deal has been agreed, the project kickoff meeting is also agreed to basically recap on what’s been bought and sold on either side, and to ensure a brisk, flexible start to installation.

Kickoff meetings are gatherings where initially people involved in the project meet others they will be working with. We seek persons in charge of mechanical, electrical, automation and safety issues. If a project has particular features, we review these immediately in the initial stages.

It’s good to have all facilities ready when installation begins. Since more than 100 truckloads of goods may be delivered to the installation site, storage facilities too need to be good shape. Sawmills don’t usually have extra storage facilities, and so logistically the stream of goods needs to be managed and scheduled.


Building can begin

Once the drying kiln building foundations are ready, we carry out control measurements and check to ensure the foundations are the right type. The next step is the installation itself, which often means storage shelters.

Building a progressive drying kiln begins with installation of the tracks and drying kiln elements. Next come the structures above the kilns and process doors. Then the storage shelters with kiln tracks are installed and finally all equipment and instruments such as the heating radiators, pumps and control valves.

Electrical installation work at the site is done by electrifying the equipment and the property. At the heart of all this is an equipment room, which houses all the components needed to control the drying kiln, together with programmable logic devices, frequency converters and switchboards. We test the entire equipment room at our plant so that it is ready to be lifted above the drying kiln at the installation site.


Efficiency and safety are key aspects in mechanical installation

When can drying begin? That of course is one of the main things that interests our customers. Buying a new drying kiln almost always means greater capacity, efficiency and safety. The latter two are also key aspects in installation.

We always make every effort to ensure minimum inconvenience to sawmill operations otherwise when installing a drying kiln. It’s usually possible to build a new kiln beside an existing one without disrupting ongoing drying operations. Also, weather conditions, such as strong winds, which may prevent the lifting of heavy elements, pose timetable and safety challenges.

Safety is being increasingly highlighted and this is definitely a positive trend. Installation teams are often required to complete site-specific safety training before they are allowed to install a drying kiln. Also, installation and lifting plans at the site are thoroughly assessed from the safety aspect.

Teamwork, thorough planning and experience ensure drying kiln projects move forward to schedule and safely to reach the goal.

Marko Kaukonen
Product Manager
Drying Kilns
+358 44 2313 405

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