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any "hand-splitters" using a gransfors maul?

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by dvellone, Sep 11, 2008.

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  1. dvellone

    dvellone Feeling the Heat

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    I've looked at the Gransfors splitting maul - beautiful design and great craftsmanship, I'm sure - but a bit pricey. Anybody familiar with this product?

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  2. sullystull

    sullystull Feeling the Heat

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    I (we) was given the "large splitting axe" as a wedding present (not sure what message was trying to be sent by the giver). I have used it for splitting smaller splits, kindling, etc but this particular model is too small for me--both in handle length and head weight. I split (5-6 cords/yr) by hand and prefer my 8 lb maul. The quality of the gransfors is excellent--its almost too nice--I feel it should be hanging on the wall as a display. If you pick one up, let me know how you like it.
  3. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones Minister of Fire

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    I have a Gransfors limbing axe and a Gransfors hunter's axe. I looked at getting the maul, but I would feel bad hitting it with a sledge! With the axes- the quality difference is something you can smell. With the maul- not sure how much difference it would make.
  4. dvellone

    dvellone Feeling the Heat

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    That's the problem... as far as quality of steel you won't really be ahead spending that much since you can buy several new heads at the local hardware before approaching the cost of the gransfors.

    I'm wondering if the head design and overall ergonomics makes a difference worth the additional expense. A few less swings would be much appreciated by my back!
  5. 94ranger55

    94ranger55 Member

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    Iam also interetsed if anybody has used the splitting maul made by Itilis Oxhead out of germany I think it is a little cheaper and I like the desgin better .
  6. BJ64

    BJ64 Minister of Fire

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    WOW, those Gränsfors are works of art. I just been using those tools sold at the local farm supply. I thought every had tool sold was made in China.

    I agree these things are too nice to use.

    http://www.gransfors.com/htm_eng/index.html
  7. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones Minister of Fire

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    I think the reason that I didn't ask for the Gransfors maul for XMass was that it only weighs 5.5# head weight. That's a bit on the light side for a splitter in knotty hardwoods, IMO.
  8. fugazi42

    fugazi42 New Member

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    I have owned and used a Gransfors splitting maul for almost 5 years. I do all of my splitting by hand. Over this time I estimate I've split about 25 cords with it- red and white oak, red and sugar maple, black cherry, yellow and black birch, and beech. At this point I think I'm fairly well acquainted with my maul :)

    In short, I love it. It's a high quality well made tool that does a great job. The fact that it's a fairly light maul doesn't make much of a difference IMHO. I'm an average size guy and personally I want a maul that I can swing for long periods of time without it fatiguing me. I would rather have the higher head velocity and increased accuracy that the lighter head provides. I'm able to split even the knotty woods like cherry and oak without much trouble. Big crotch pieces and rounds with embedded branches force me to break out the wedges, which this maul has no problem driving.

    A maul is a tool you spend a lot of time with. It better be a tool you like. Personally, I don't have a problem spending a bit more on a tool that gets used this much. I like the fact that I know which smith forged this particular maul. It may sound corny, but it means something to me that the person who made the tool thought it was high enough quality to put his name on.

    Josh
  9. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones Minister of Fire

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    Good to hear this Josh. I love my 2 Gransfors axes. The quality is just crazy.
  10. My_3_Girls

    My_3_Girls Member

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    I have one of the Stihl splitting maul (PS80 I think) - Great design, 6.6 lbs, and splits much better than the $25 hardware store variety.
  11. 94ranger55

    94ranger55 Member

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  12. SnaykeByte

    SnaykeByte New Member

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    I split all my wood by hand too, my favorite maul has a 33 ton head.
  13. My_3_Girls

    My_3_Girls Member

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    Yup, that's about as close as you can get to my Stihl PA80 - but the Stihl is between $75 and $85 with a quick check online. I found mine at our local lumberyard/hardware store who is also a Stihl dealer.

    And believe it or not, I'm a Husq-ey guy!
  14. coug2wolfs

    coug2wolfs New Member

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    You are cheatin bud! Logsplitters are evil, well at least mine is. I bought the thing brand new, 28 tons. Has a Briggs engine on it. For some reson they decided to put a low oil switch in the system. Unless the splitter is plumbed with a level the varmit won't even start as it thinks the oil is low! It takes a couple of stong men and a large boy to pull start the culprit, it drinks gas like its free, and when I was using it, it had to go to the dealer every fall just to get it running. Those trips never cost less than $125 a pop. All toll I'd venture I've put more than the $1200 I paid for it in it again on repairs. I never did cotton up to the way it mashes the wood rather than a nice clean cleave with a maul or axe. Bruised wood is not happy wood and it tells you so when it burns.

    Of course you know I'm funnin you so don't take offense, but I realy do hate my splitter!

    Coug
  15. SteveT

    SteveT Feeling the Heat

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    After reading these posts I decided to go all out and treat myself to the Gransfors for a much needed replacement maul. I haven't yet had the time (or scrounged wood) to use it a whole lot. But from the little splitting I have done I think it was a great purchase! Going through splits MUCH easier than with any of the other mauls I have used.
  16. InTheRockies

    InTheRockies New Member

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    I don't have a Gransfors, but when I moved here I was given a wonderful, old maul by a local woods man who was retiring. It splits anything with ease. I just finished cutting and splitting 565 cf and am going to have to get a new handle for my maul. (Hope it doesn't affect it's performance or feel.) I like the steel collar around the head of the Gransfors. That's were the handle for my maul is showing the most wear.
  17. coug2wolfs

    coug2wolfs New Member

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    I like the idea of the metal collar on the gransfor. I've got a swedish maul I've had for years and as long as you don't go into the knots you already know arent going to split it splits like nothing else. In as far as the beating that the handle takes just below the head, I've been splitting for some 55 years, and I'd like to tell you all my handles are like new, they're not. It happens, you "miss"! Try sanding down the rough spots and run some butcher block oil on at least the upper part of the handle. My swedish maul handle is thinner up there, but it's still pretty strong and still splittin!

    Coug
  18. InTheRockies

    InTheRockies New Member

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    Coug,

    Thanks for the tip. I'll try that--I'll be putting the maul to more work soon. Next week, I'll be heading to the nearby saw mill and getting a truck bed of wood--we've now got snow in our forecast for 3 days this week and I'm worried that I should have more wood than I've got. (I'm just afraid 565 cf is cutting it too close especially is this turns into a doozy of a winter.) Fortunately, they've got some really well seasoned wood that's silver in color. I'll load lots of that and then get it in the woodshed to dry out from all the rain it's been sitting in for the past week and a half.
  19. fattire

    fattire New Member

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    Over the years I have been surprised how a small difference in splitting tools makes a big difference in results. I have one that I really like that I purchased at a local hardware store that has since gone belly up (pushed out by HD). A couple of years ago I saw one that looked pretty similar, but a bit heavier and with a fiberglass handle instead of wood. I bought that one and took it up to our cabin so that I wouldn't have to transport my favorite back and forth. After a couple of sessions I set the new one aside. The extra weight, which I thought would be beneficial, seems to slow down my swing and wear out my shoulders. It splits no better or maybe even not as good. And the glass handle (yellow) has no soul.

    So I recently purchased the Gransfors Maul on a whim. After only a couple of weeks it became the favorite, and now I've forgotten about the cost, which is high. (HOWEVER, I am in colorado and splitting ponderosa pine, aspen, doug fir, and spruce, so you folks from New England can just laugh at the thought of someone splitting engleman spruce having a favorite maul.) Anyhow, I highly recommend the Gransfors if you can afford it. It would be great holiday gift if you can manage to either give or get.
  20. dvellone

    dvellone Feeling the Heat

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    I agree that the design/ergonomics of the tool makes a big difference. I have friends who used to use a maul with a massive steel wedge and a shortish steel bar handle. It was the most uncomfortable and clumsy thing to swing and I honestly can't say that it was an efficient splitter.

    I split mostly hard maple, beech and yellow birch with a single-bit axe when it's not too large diameter or knotty, and when I run into those tougher pieces I have a second bigger axe with a short handle that I use as a wedge driving it with a sledge. I like using the axe instead of a wedge because I can swing it to set it in the wood and the handle makes it easier handling the round. I do intend on purchasing the gransfors maul before too long.
  21. Death Blossom

    Death Blossom New Member

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    This is a great site for information.

    I think I'm intrigued enough to shell out the money for a Gransfors Bruks Splitting maul just on the website summary alone...

    "The poll is designed for pounding on a plitting wedge."
    http://www.gransfors.com/htm_eng/produkter/new_prod/p_slaggyxa.html

    &

    "The poll is not designed for punding on a wedge."
    http://www.gransfors.com/htm_eng/produkter/new_prod/p_storklyvyxa.html



    It reminds me fondly of my Scandinavian grandfather from North Dakota and I couldn't help but read it with an accent in mind.

    Uff da.
  22. Alan Gage

    Alan Gage Member

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    Been wanting to burn wood for a while and this summer bought a small house on a small acreage where I can actually do it. I've had a Gransfors Sweedish Forest Axe for a couple years and it's an incredible little number so I didn't hesitate much when it came to buy a splitting axe from them. I ended up with both the Large Splitting Axe as well as the Splitting Maul. Love'em both.

    I've split about 5 cords so far this summer/fall; most of it Oak, Maple, Ash, Apple, and Walnut. Surprisingly I find the Large Splitting Axe at 3 1/2 pounds is enough to handle most of the jobs with ease and for the tougher rounds I use the Splitting Maul. I'm just a shade over 6' tall and weigh about 170 pounds and I find the 3 1/2 pound head seems about the perfect weight for me. I can swing it hard, swing it accurately, and swing it a long time. The 5 1/2 pound head of the Splitting Maul wears me out a bit faster and hurts my left shoulder after 1/2 day swinging if I don't keep my elbows bent a little but it's still pretty comfortable. I also have an 8 lb. sledge and a wedge for the really tough pieces and I can't imagine swinging something that heavy for very long. Plus it has the fiberglass handle which just doesn't feel good.

    All the Gransfors Axes have a great feel to them and while they may be relatively expensive, in how many hobbies can you buy the top of the line anything for $150? In my opinion they're money very well spent.

    Alan
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