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Advice on getting a moisture meter

Post in 'The Gear' started by Blackcat, Feb 6, 2011.

  1. Blackcat

    Blackcat Member

    Joined:
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    Loc:
    NW NJ
    So I've decided not to burn any of our fall split wood anymore (see other thread I had..). So my question is now, what is one of the better lower cost moisture meters I can get. And where do I look for one of these? A fireplace/stove store? What is the magic number for moisture also-20%?
    Everyone here is so very helpful and I am learning so much:)
    Thanks in advance!

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  2. GAMMA RAY

    GAMMA RAY Minister of Fire

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    We got ours from amazon. The name on it is General. It works pretty good but you have to push the prongs in a bit and along the grain of the wood. Make sure you measure on wood that is freshly split. And, make sure the setting is on wood not concrete. Our wood measures less than 20 percent generally and burns good. I think less than 20 percent is the goal. Hell, I am just a newbie.
  3. shawneyboy

    shawneyboy New Member

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  4. GAMMA RAY

    GAMMA RAY Minister of Fire

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    That's the one I have that Shawneyboy posted the link to.
  5. golfandwoodnut

    golfandwoodnut Minister of Fire

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    Probably more guys have bought the Harbor Freight MM than any other on this site. I have one and it works well and is cheap. I think you have to buy it online.

    Here is mine in a piece of some dead standing Oak.

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  6. DanCorcoran

    DanCorcoran Minister of Fire

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    Harbor Freight model (above) works great. It's cheaper to get it in the store (which I did) if you have one locally, to save shipping cost.

    P.S. These things are not rocket science...just an ohmmeter calibrated to read wood moisture. (The HF model also has a setting that lets you read moisture in plaster or sheetrock, to determine if you have moisture leaks behind your walls. Great to have when you're buying a house!)
  7. thinkxingu

    thinkxingu Minister of Fire

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    I bought a MM and used it twice. Since then, it sits in my toolbox. I wait two years and throw the wood in the stove; it doesn't care if it's +/- a few %.

    S
  8. Blackcat

    Blackcat Member

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    Loc:
    NW NJ
    Thinking I'm getting one pretty soon to see what we've got going on behind a wall (cedar sided) on the front porch with the melt.
    Thanks!
  9. 94BULLITT

    94BULLITT Member

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  10. Woody Stover

    Woody Stover Minister of Fire

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    I just picked up one of the General MMD4Es, and I've got a question:
    I'm assuming that the wood should be thawed. Are there any variables that affect the moisture reading on the meter? Wood temp or anything? The instructions that came with the unit don't say much at all about the procedure. I've read the advice here to test along the grain...
  11. Kenster

    Kenster Minister of Fire

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    I got my "General" Moisture meter at Lowes for $30.00. I find it very helpful. I've been out cutting downed and standing dead, hopefully to get me through this season. One trunk of Pin Oak I dropped today felt solid but not too heavy. Still, I figured it would be too wet to burn this year. I was wrong. All the splits from this trunk come in at 15 to 18%.
    Sometimes you don't have the luxury of waiting two years. A moisture meter helps me and I use it frequently.
  12. 94BULLITT

    94BULLITT Member

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    Like you said you wnat it thawed. Split the piece of wood open and check the wood in various places you will want to check close to the bark. I have seen some wood 17% in the middle and 38% out close to the bark.

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