Testing for dryness
hop drier was a skilled man.
As the thickness of hops in the kiln varied from between a depth of
four and six inches skill was need to ensure that the hops at the
bottom were not too dry and the ones at the top not too moist. As
the hops were fairly warm the continued "cooking" when taken out of the
kiln. If they were properly mixed the over dry ones would extract
some of the moisture from the under dried ones ensuring a batch
of correct dryness. An excess of moisture in the hops would mean
them going mouldy.
This photo shows the drier, Percy Webb, testing for dryness by hand.