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a splitting question

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by geo91324, Feb 5, 2012.

  1. geo91324

    geo91324 Member

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    Feb 3, 2012
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    Loc:
    nw VA
    Pardon if this has been asked before but I'm not sure how to search for the answer. I've been cutting and splitting wood for many years but I generally don't split anything less than 6" in diameter. I let all my wood cut from dead trees season for at least a year; newly felled trees at least 2 years. About 40% of my wood is oak/hickory/walnut/beech, another 40% or so is poplar, maybe 10% is cherry and maybe another 10% is cedar.
    Question: is not splitting a 6" round causing it to not be seasoned enough? How small is small enough to not split?

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  2. Dune

    Dune Minister of Fire

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    Opinions vary...I split nothing under six inches. If it is oak, I season it for 3 years. Most other wood, two.
  3. SolarAndWood

    SolarAndWood Minister of Fire

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    I split everything because I don't want the little stuff around any longer than it has to be.
  4. wishlist

    wishlist Minister of Fire

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    My rule of thumb is if I can "palm" the wood on the end then I don't split it. Works for me... :)
  5. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    6" is a pretty good sized round but if your stove can handle it okay, I see nothing wrong with it. Just give it extra drying time, especially the oaks.
  6. blwncrewchief

    blwncrewchief Burning Hunk

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    Northern, IN
    For me it depends on what kind of wood it is. Oak and black locust I usually split 4-7" in half but soft maple or pine I might leave in rounds up to 5-6". Same thing with my splits. 8x8"+ blocks of black locust don't burn worth a crap for me but 8x8" blocks of soft maple burn great. You just have to experiment what works best for you.
  7. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa Minister of Fire

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    I split everything that can be split. From 2" to 7" I split in half. 7" to 12" I quarter. Bigger than 12" I tic-tac-toe. My rule is no face larger than 7", the height of my wedge.
  8. NH_Wood

    NH_Wood Minister of Fire

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    Depends on how long you can let the wood sit. All wood I gather has at least 4 years to season, so I set aside any large rounds, especially oak, in their own single row stacks to season. They are great for the overnight burns. If I wasn't so far ahead, I'd split almost everything. Cheers!
  9. Woody Stover

    Woody Stover Minister of Fire

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    I'm not that far ahead so anything 4"+ I'm splitting. 2-4" I try to crack but not split apart.
  10. Pat53

    Pat53 Minister of Fire

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    Thats kind of what I used to do as well. Anything 6" and bigger was split, smaller than 6" did not get split. I burn mostly oak, soft maple and white birch, and even after 3 years in the round, the 5-6" pieces are still rather heavy and steam out the ends when you throw them into a hot fire. So from now on I'm splitting all pieces that are 5" or bigger. I probably should even go down to 4" but that just seems like too much work to me.

    Pat
  11. Got Wood

    Got Wood Minister of Fire

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    Thats the way I do it too. I hate throwing a 2" branch in the fire and find it is a sizzler after 2-3 years in the stack. Seems those little ones take forever to season
  12. fireview2788

    fireview2788 Minister of Fire

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    My stove likes splits more than rounds so I split anything more than 3".


    fv
  13. jimbom

    jimbom Combustion Analyzer

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    My 6" oak needs splitting to have any chance of getting down to a nice moisture content.

    A six inch dia 20 inch long oak round is going to weigh a lot even if seasoned. Just too heavy for me to wrestle into the stove. I split anything bigger than my wrist, but I am retired and am able to waste time.
  14. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    This is pretty much what I do . . . unless I am bored and enjoying splitting in which case I may split up smaller stuff . . . or if it is getting late and I am getting tired in which case I might keep some bigger stuff in the rounds that would normally get split.
  15. ScotO

    ScotO Guest

    +1, I'm with you Jake!
  16. Thistle

    Thistle Minister of Fire

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    Up to 4"-4 1/2" they stay whole,a few 5"-6" rounds are left for long burns,though most are halved, 7"-8" are 3 pieces,over 8"-9"are quartered,anything larger is anywhere from 6-8 pieces & more.
  17. bogydave

    bogydave Minister of Fire

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    Under 6" with birch, I just crack it, helps it dry. The bark is pretty water tight.
    Sometimes it splits & iI have small pieces to fill in the voids on a full stove load.
    Spruce 8" & lower, not split, just stack it. Dries fast & no worries about getting punky in the middle.
  18. valley ranch

    valley ranch Feeling the Heat

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    Ranches in Sierra Nevada mts,Calif & Nevada
    I like to split some large but if it's wet We'll split it real small. This year we got our wood in early, dries fast up here, and it sure is nice having dry wood. Smaller stuff I used to pitch to one side we now stack, it all burns.

    Haven't been a year or three ahead like some.

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