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3 point hitch wood splitter

Post in 'The Gear' started by 94BULLITT, Feb 7, 2011.

  1. 94BULLITT

    94BULLITT Member

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    I'm thinking about getting a 3 point hitch splitter that runs off of the tractors hydraulics but I am worried it will be slow. Is anyone using one on their tractor? Is it very fast? How many gpm are the hydraulics on your tractor? If you want post a video of your splitter in action.

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  2. WhitePine

    WhitePine Feeling the Heat

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    You can calculate the force and cycle time of any given three point splitter running off of the tractor hydraulics if you know the following:

    1. Cylinder bore

    2. Rod diameter

    3. Stroke

    4. GPM at your tractor's remote hydraulic connection at the desired RPM.

    Links to helpful calculators:

    Force
    Code:
    http://www.calculatoredge.com/mech/pushpull hydraulic cylinder.htm
    Time
    Code:
    http://www.calculatoredge.com/mech/speed hydraulic cylinder.htm
    Copy and paste the above URLs into a new browser tab or window. They have spaces in them, and the forum software does not seem to be able to handle them as clickable links.
  3. 94BULLITT

    94BULLITT Member

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    I used a calculator last night but I guessed at the rod diameter but I came up with a cycle time of 18 seconds. I don't know how accurate the calculator was. I was going to try the ones you posted but the links do not work.
  4. WhitePine

    WhitePine Feeling the Heat

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    The links are valid, but have spaces. I didn't notice that. I have edited my post. Try copying and pasting the link code now.
  5. 94BULLITT

    94BULLITT Member

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    That is the same calculator I used last night, I did it again and it said 18 sec cycle time.
  6. WhitePine

    WhitePine Feeling the Heat

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  7. 94BULLITT

    94BULLITT Member

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  8. TreePointer

    TreePointer Minister of Fire

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    I considered a 3-pt splitter, but it didn't make sense for me.

    If you're attempting to save money with the 3-point splitter, note that you you'll need to add in the cost of a PTO pump to get any decent cycle times. This will bring you near the cost of a nice tow-behind splitter.

    Other benefits of the tow-behind splitter over the 3-pt model are as follows:
    - No hassle of swapping 3-pt implements (especially important if you only have one tractor)
    - Doesn't put hours on the tractor engine.
    - Can replace splitter engine at a reasonable price.
    - Can operate splitter without tractor or any other vehicle.
    - Can move splitter with farm tractor, lawn tractor, pickup, car, or by hand.
    - Don't have to tow tractor across town to use the splitter on site.
    - If you move off the farm and/or sell your tractor, you can still use the tow-behind.
    - Easier to resell (IMO, because most people don't tractors.)
  9. WhitePine

    WhitePine Feeling the Heat

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    Actually, it will be faster in reverse (retracting) because less fluid is required. The rod takes up some space. But the force will be lower in that direction, because there is less piston surface area due to the rod. Northern doesn't say what the rod size is, so calculating the retract speed and force is a bit problematic.

    While it may be advertised as 20 tons, the splitters real force calculates out to less than 16 tons extend and and roughly 13 to 14 tons retract. That's if your tractor can develop 3,000 PSI. More often, they run around 2200 to 2500 PSI, which will reduce the power even more.

    I've looked at that unit also. It gets good reviews, but I'm skeptical about how useful the dual direction feature really is. I do like the log cradles that come with it. I may go and take a look at one this week, if I get a chance.

    Added:

    I just noticed that what appears to be the cylinder body slides in and out of the end of the unit during operation. The whole thing looks like it sits quite a bit higher than than the 3PH lower links. It looks like you couldn't just lower the three point to roll some large rounds up on the splitter because it would be at an angle with the rear end pointed into the dirt. That would be problematic with the cylinder sliding in and out.

    It would mean you would have to adjust the top link every time you raised or lowered the 3PH. That would hardly be convenient unless your tractor was equipped with a hydraulic top link.

    Something to think about.
  10. 94BULLITT

    94BULLITT Member

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    I was considering one because it would be cheaper. A splitter with a gas engine would require maintenance. I really don't care about having to change implements. Also a 3 point splitter would take less room to store. Go on youtube and type bidirectional wood splitter. They do a good job but most of them on youtube run off of a pto pump. I feel with the bidirectional splitter there would be no time wasted reversing. I don't know if I like the fact the cylinder slides in and out of it. I don't know what I am going to do I might just keep splitting by hand.
  11. Nic36

    Nic36 Feeling the Heat

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    TreePointer pretty much said it all.

    If you are worried about the maintenance of a stand-alone splitter, you shouldn't. Just an oil change and a new hydraulic filter should be all you need every year, unless you plan to put some serious hours on it. If that is the case, then racking up many hours on the tractor would justify a stand-alone that much more. Storage space of either will be about the same. Plus, you can move the stand-alone around by hand.

    A 3-point hitch splitter on Tractorsupply.com lists for $699. The Huskee 22-ton is $999.00 and comes with hydraulic fluid and engine oil. Sometimes the 22-tons can be had on sale cheaper. At worst, you would only pay about $300.00 more for a stand alone. If well taken care of, you can resell it very close to what you will pay for it.
  12. SolarAndWood

    SolarAndWood Minister of Fire

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    I split a lot of wood with my $125 CL special. Not the fastest with my 8.6 gpm pump and pretty loud running at 2K+, but it got the job done. All I ever did was put longer hoses on it to get to the tractor and I'm pretty sure I would have no problem getting my money out of it.
  13. Stephen in SoKY

    Stephen in SoKY Feeling the Heat

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    My tractor flows 16 GPM and my splitter only uses a 4X8 cylinder so it's much faster than I am feeding it. Another advantage to tractor mount is the the exhaust and engine noise are several feet above and and away from the operator. Also, I've never seen a standalone unit drag logs out of the woods to a convenient/comfortable place to split. Nor have I seen them pull a wagon or trailer of wood to the house. Standalone makes sense for folks in town or who have their logs delivered, but if you're cutting on your own place, a 3 pth really is nicer than a standalone.
  14. 94BULLITT

    94BULLITT Member

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    Pretty much everything you said is the reason I am considering a 3pt hitch splitter plus you don't have to worry about having a flat tire on the splitter, and you dont have to worry about running over stuff in the woods with those little tires that most splitters have. A 3 point hitch splitter would also be easier to back up.
  15. 94BULLITT

    94BULLITT Member

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    The splitter for a $1000 at tractor supply have a briggs motor which I am not a big fan of.
  16. Stephen in SoKY

    Stephen in SoKY Feeling the Heat

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    Also, I hardly ever move a round more than 2-3 feet. I either drop the tree, buck it where it falls, or, pull it to an open spot, and back up beside the tree and start splitting. Every 4-5 rounds I'll hop on the already running tractor, raise the splitter and pull forward a few feet. Repeat to the end of the log. If I have the wagon on the side of the tractor away from the log I can usually throw most splits onto the wagon straight off the splitter. You're VERY correct about maneuvering with a mounted splitter. I can have several rounds split in the time it takes to get a standalone in position to start splitting.
  17. Nic36

    Nic36 Feeling the Heat

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    I have never understood the negativity towards Briggs motors. I have never had any trouble with the ones I have owned, but maybe you and others have. The Briggs on my splitter cranks on the first pull and runs great. I could care less if it isn't a Honda.
  18. TreePointer

    TreePointer Minister of Fire

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    Same here. I have a Briggs engine on a lawnmower from 1989 that's been abused like no other I've had. It's an easier start than the Hondas and Tecumsehs in the same class that I've had over the years.

    There are commercial duty Honda engines on some log splitters, but you'll pay a premium for them. There are splitters with residential duty Hondas, but they are no better than the residential duty Briggs. I know it has only been two years, but the Briggs on my Huskee 35-ton splitter has been flawless. The only difference I've noticed between it and the commercial duty Hondas is that it's louder.
  19. ironpony

    ironpony Minister of Fire

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    [I have never understood the negativity towards Briggs motors. I have never had any trouble with the ones I have owned, but maybe you and others have. The Briggs on my splitter cranks on the first pull and runs great. I could care less if it isn't a Honda.[/quote]

    me neither, when you think about the abuse those little engines take
    its amazing they run at all
    everything I own has a briggs on it and
    I've never had an issue with any of them
    one is on a post hole auger that is probably fifty years
    old beat to death and runs like a top
    the one Honda is on my plate compactor and is a PITA to start

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