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Old 01-22-2008, 10:36 PM
 
4,285 posts, read 9,751,878 times
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Default Woodsplitters

In the the Tax Rebate thread, NMLN brought up the interesting, (to me ), subject of woodsplitters.


Quote:
As for me, I'll buy a wood splitter. Though it's probably good for me, I'm tired of splitting wood with a splitting maul.
As you likely know there a couple of variations on the splitter theme: there are self-powered models complete with engine, hydaulic pump, and cylinder mounted on a towable chassis; and there are also models designed to be mounted on the 3-point hitch of a tractor which take their hydraulic power from a set of remotes at the back of the tractor.

Towable models tend to be 2 1/2 to 3 times as spendy compared to the tractor-mounted versions. They also tend to have a smaller motor (10-20hp) driving a smaller capacity hydraulic pump. This can result in the unit having a tougher time with some species and samples of wood. However, if you don't already have a tractor, they're the best option.

The tractor-mounted units are fairly light and almost bulletproof. They have the advantage of having a large capacity hydraulic source behind them which can be handy if dealing with species like American elm. When attached to the tractor, they're very portable, and considerably easier to take into the bush than a tow model.


On a limited budget or just want a mechanical splitter for the tough pieces?

Consider fashioning your own splitter.

Find a a 4-foot chunk of heavy I-beam. Weld an 8-inch wedge to one end. Weld a solid, upright plate to the other. Spend a few bucks on a 15-ton air jack. Attach a push plate to the top of the air jack, and then securely attach the unit horizontally to your I-beam with the base of the jack resting against the upright plate. Now run a couple of 10 lb coil springs, one from each side of the jack top plate to the base of the jack. These will serve as an auto return when the release valve on the jack is opened.

You could use a conventional hydraulic bottle jack rather than an air-jack, but the air feature makes things go a whole lot quicker.

Now you can either mount your splitter on an appropriate log near the woodpile, or, if want to be fancy, make a carriage for it. A length of 1 1/2-inch pipe, a foot of 2-inch pipe, a pair of donut-type spare tires, and a couple of retaining bolts will make a fine off-road axle.

Cost for the home-made? Depending on the size of your scrap heap, you might get it down to $100 for the jack.
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Old 01-23-2008, 04:26 AM
 
Location: Northern Maine
5,990 posts, read 7,393,434 times
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Home made wood splitters are a tradition in Maine as are the distinctive hydraulic oil tanks on them. An air jack must be something to watch. The pressure will build until the piston slams forward with great speed. Don't be standing beside the log when it's in use because when that piston comes forward the two halves of the log will be headed for Quebec and Manitoba respectively. (Assuming it's in Ontario, that is.)

Wear your safety glasses when operating any wood splitter. Any log being split can throw splinters and any hydraulic hose can split. Ear plugs should also be worn to protect your hearing and steel toed boots are worth the investment. In Maine you can get a good deal on safety shoes at Mardens.
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Old 01-23-2008, 07:11 AM
 
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If you do not want to buy a woodsplitter, many places have them for rent.
Another safety tip....Watch where you put your fingers!
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Old 01-23-2008, 07:27 AM
 
Location: Virginia (soon Ellsworth)
653 posts, read 1,185,806 times
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thanks cornerguy for starting this thread, i have lots of trees down from clearing the driveway and home site. this is my first winter that required heating, i was tried to split wood with axe and maul to fire the stove, it did not went well for me, good thinks they are some small logs to get me going this winter.
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Old 01-23-2008, 03:04 PM
 
4,285 posts, read 9,751,878 times
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Quote:
An air jack must be something to watch. The pressure will build until the piston slams forward with great speed.
Actually, the air jack I was referring to looks exactly like a conventional hydraulic bottle jack except it has a quick-connect fitting for an air hose. These jacks are designed for lifting heavy vehicles, so the rise rate is calibrated to be relatively slow. The piston and column don't move any quicker than my conventional hydraulic splitter.

Canadian Tire

AlisonL made great point for those who only need to split a cord or two; you can rent a portable unit in this neck of the woods for about $60 for the weekend.

Last edited by Cornerguy1; 01-23-2008 at 03:20 PM..
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Old 01-23-2008, 03:09 PM
 
10,125 posts, read 9,728,283 times
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ebay has some ,,new woodsplitters for sale, ive been eye-ing one model,,,under 500
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Old 01-23-2008, 04:53 PM
 
2,643 posts, read 2,789,534 times
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Weird. Found this one on ebay.

Take off your car tire, put this on, put car in drive, split logs. LOL
The Stickler In Action (http://www.thestickler.com/article.asp?id=5833 - broken link)
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Old 01-23-2008, 05:01 PM
 
Location: Log "cabin" west of Bangor
2,958 posts, read 3,169,355 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 399083453 View Post
Weird. Found this one on ebay.

Take off your car tire, put this on, put car in drive, split logs. LOL
The Stickler In Action (http://www.thestickler.com/article.asp?id=5833 - broken link)
Very interesting...though I can envision a number of ways of getting hurt...especially with natural or alcohol-induced stupidity.
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Old 01-28-2008, 10:25 PM
 
Location: Virginia (soon Ellsworth)
653 posts, read 1,185,806 times
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Quote:
Take off your car tire, put this on, put car in drive, split logs. LOL
that is cool.
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Old 01-28-2008, 11:28 PM
 
4,285 posts, read 9,751,878 times
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Holy crap, I just actually followed that link.

Talk about an entanglement accident look for a place to happen.

I think I'll stick with my Wallenstein on the back of 290 Massey.
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