I finally got around to making my hotbox. Once I got started it came together pretty quick. Had to rewire it three times. Tried to install a dimmer with it to regulate the light output but not having prior electrical experience it proved to test my patience but calmness prevailed and we have ourselves a little dyhydrator with 4-100watt bulbs for heat source inside a foil wrapped 1" insulfoam board box. Dimensions 2 x 1.5 x 6.5 ft. I also put a little fan in there on low to give us the benefit of the heat and the moving air to aspirate the moisture as it rises to the surface of the staves. I also realized that I may be able to do plant starts and dry herbs in it so that will be a bonus for sure.
The staves are all from "the matriarch" I harvested with Jeremey(woodbow) last Sept. ( see "Hunting the Osage tree"). I figure being 6mths old they probabley still have 6mths to go before I should work them. Lets see if I can coax them along a little quicker without getting any check. I re sealed the ends and the back with shellac. I intend to let em cook for about 3wks at 100F with air movement. I weighed them all before I put them in. They range from 5.6lbs to 7.9lbs. It should be interesting to watch the weight drop to a stable moisture content. I intend to check them daily for the first few days and then maybe once every 3 after that. Then once we get them to where they are safe to work we shall embark on our first Osage endeavor. Next on the list will be building the caul per Ken's tutorial.The only exception there is I will do mine hinged as he suggested for easier transport and storage.
Whatcha all think?