BolDesign Now Offering Kilns for Drying Softwood Lumber

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HUDSON, North Carolina — BolDesign, which has been supplying lumber dry kilns for the hardwood industry since 1985, has begun offering kilns for drying softwood lumber. The company will continue to offer lumber drying technology for the hardwood industry.

Based in North Carolina, BolDesign decided to enter the softwood arena because the company’s structural design is a good match for the so-called dual path kiln design, explained Jeremy Pitts, the company’s marketing representative. “We didn’t realize just how quickly we would pick up steam in that market, but we are excited and welcome it,” he said.

Dual path kilns are also known as continuous dry kilns. Green lumber is loaded onto two tracks, and they are conveyed through the kiln in opposite directions, moving in increments. In the first chamber the lumber is preheated, in the middle chamber it is dried, and in the last chamber before exiting it is equalized and conditioned. The lumber goes in green at one end and comes out dry the other end.

BolDesign kilns are designed and built so the structural frame is inside the walls, Jeremy noted, comparing the construction to an airplane wing. Welded 2×4 aluminum components are inside the wall. “When the skin goes on, it is completely smooth.” The design and construction allows for smoother, improved air flow and circulation, and better lumber drying.

In addition, dual path or continuous kilns operate at a very high temperature, and the moisture released from the wood is very acidic, which can corrode kiln structures with steel framing.

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The company is working on several large dual path kiln projects, said Jeremy. One project is for Andy Pollard, owner of Pollard Lumber Company in Appling, Georgia. Pollard conceived of the concept of continuous dry kilns. He developed the first ones at his company, which manufactures Southern Yellow Pine lumber, and obtained a patent for the innovation.

“He has chosen Boldesign to build his newest Dual Path kiln at Pollard Lumber Company,” said Jeremy. “To us, that’s like Steve Jobs calling and asking us to make the next iPhone.”

“That’s what we’re most proud of,” added Jeremy. The dual path kiln design “is his baby.”

“If he trusts us to build a kiln based on his design…I think that speaks volumes about who we are and what we do.”

The kiln at Pollard Lumber will have a capacity of 332,000 board feet. It is under construction and is expected to be operating by November.

BolDesign has obtained a few contracts to supply other companies with dual path kilns for drying softwood lumber. The company also is ramping up marketing efforts to let other companies in the softwood lumber industry know that it is now offering kilns for drying softwood wood products.

BolDesign is known for innovations like its bi-fold door system that opens the kiln with the push of a button. The company’s kilns provide excellent air flow and best-in-class strength ratings with easy installation and relocation.

“Our kilns are the strongest in the industry,” said Jeremy. Completely installed with BolDesign walls and truss system, the roof can support the weight of a railroad box car.

BolDesign was founded by Howard Bollinger and has been building dry kilns, steamers, and heat-treaters since 1985. Starting in a small, 10,000-square-foot facility, the company’s operations now are contained in a 70,000-square-foot plant.

Howard invented and patented wet air venting technology in lumber drying. Wet air venting allowed BolDesign to achieve much quicker drying times and greatly improve lumber drying efficiency. Other kiln companies have since embraced this technology that was pioneered by BolDesign.

For more information, see the company’s website at or search for the company on Facebook as ‘Boldesigns Dry Kilns.’