Drying Balsam Buds II
Answered by: Richard Alan Miller
Question from: Sandra Ross
Posted on: July 12, 2004

Any suggestions on the drying shed/room would be greatly appreciated.

A shed dryer could be very much like the one from my book. I have pictures from another mushroom buyer, who essentially built one like my own. Air is critical, as that is what mostly does the job, not heat.

Thank you for the mushroom dryer pictures. I have photocopied and faxed a copy of the dryer from your book. We do have fans moving in the drying room but I don’t think they have the room vented outside. The temperature of the drying room is 53 degrees F. My thoughts are this room is too cold?

(The solar dryer’s temperature is 68 degrees F.)

YES, you MUST have outside ventilation. This changes the "vapor pressure curve," as is the difference between "them and us." Preferably, it is greater than what is going into the room from cracks and the fan heater.

Also, slant of rack, like from prune dryer technologies. Makes the best dryers for ginseng and other root-like products.

Your temperature, 53F, will not work very well. The room needs to be 10F above ambient (outside) temperature. But, never over 104F. Mostly, it is air flow, not heat, that ultimately dries most products.

I should write a book on freeze, drum, and air drying someday. Basic physics, much like processing. It would include microwave, like what is used now in wood kilns. It all comes back to Boyle’s Law, and the Three Laws of Thermodynamics.

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