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Fiskars Splitting Axe/Maul

Post in 'The Gear' started by ArsenalDon, Jan 6, 2013.

  1. HDRock

    HDRock Minister of Fire

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    Nothing better, to relive the stress n tension than beaten the chit outta some wood :)
    OldLumberKid and Hearth Mistress like this.

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  2. ArsenalDon

    ArsenalDon Minister of Fire

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    Thats what she said!
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  3. ArsenalDon

    ArsenalDon Minister of Fire

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    And the final Pic of splitting that beast?
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  4. OldLumberKid

    OldLumberKid Feeling the Heat

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    I gave that limb-knot section, two photos up, to my son as his first ever round to split. I figured I'd use some of his youthful energy on it while he was still fresh. Fortunately he's used to working outdoors and he's big and strong, and was not daunted by the resistance it put up.

    Not sure that I remembered to take a pic of exactly that one after he bonked it...I should have -- it was an epic first for him...the satisfaction of finally busting it.

    I think the pic below was a round or two later ... after I figured I ought to tale a pic ... but you get the idea.

    I think that one with the limb-side knot in the photo above actually broke weird and different than the one below — I think there's a rectangular-shaped tortured chunk of it still left in the pile that's been designated for additional splitting at a later date.

    So this round below, I think, was from an easier later round.

    [​IMG]
  5. OldLumberKid

    OldLumberKid Feeling the Heat

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    Yeah I figured I go for more of the same today. Might have underestimated how tired I was from yesterday.

    This piece had an old blackened limb-cut section on the side, and it did not want to give in.
    Interesting to see how it splits around where the limb connected, but does not want to split right down the center.

    Embarassing number of whacks and near splits, to get this one to give it up,

    [​IMG]
  6. ArsenalDon

    ArsenalDon Minister of Fire

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    Some rounds are just better off being smaller splits...I just whack these kinds around the edges and figure they are good for leaing the wife with small splits during the day
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  7. trailmaker

    trailmaker Member

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    I never liked mine until I put a proper edge on it and polished up the sides. I got the idea from the popularity of the Fiskars; I noticed that the Fiskars come pretty sharp and have the teflon coat. Any axe will perform better if you can give it those two things; sharp edge and low friction.
  8. tbuff

    tbuff Feeling the Heat

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    Got an X7 for kindling... Little thing is awesome! Have had the X25 for a few years and love that also.
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  9. OldLumberKid

    OldLumberKid Feeling the Heat

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    I gotta remember that. Thanks Don.
  10. gerry100

    gerry100 Minister of Fire

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    looks like cherry that would have been dispatched much easier with an 8 pounder, some times you need max mv2.
  11. ArsenalDon

    ArsenalDon Minister of Fire

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    This is what makes the Fiskars special....an Ax is too thin, a maul is too thick...the fiskars is juuuuuuuust right....said Goldie Locks as she cut into the round. Seriously...for fun since I do not use it anymore my 8lb maul is going to the grinder this week. Imma see if I can grind the heck outta it and thin it out, maybe it will work then!?
  12. Jerry_NJ

    Jerry_NJ Minister of Fire

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    I ordered my X27 from Amazon on Sunday, the price dropped to $40. From reading on this forum seems there is at least a 95% endorsement of Fiskar - of course this is a gathering mostly of people who own them - still a lot of loyalty, it must be earned.

    My main concern now, being an old guy who was big enough to be a pro athlete but never coordinated enough, is safety. I don't split a lot and in fact am very happy with my electric wood splitter but the Sandy storm that hit NJ/NY in late October made me the owner of a couple (maybe more) of cords of White Pine, the storm just snapped the trees off at about 4' of the ground, right through healthy looking trunks. I have always burned hard wood, with a few pieces of softwood, mostly eastern red cedar. The pine has always just been put aside to compost. But, I have so much and I have to move most of it so I'm out cutting into rounds, about 18" long. Some are approaching 30" in diameter and I have split several of these rounds with an 8# maul and when needed, most of the time to start, a couple of wedges. One a chisel shaped big boy the other one of the cone shape which gets very wide at the top and has yield a center split even when I was starting with a plan to break away from the edge. Right now I have the two wedges buried in a round that didn't split and I will likely take my chain saw out to rescue the wedges, that's not the reason for my interest in the Fiskar. Swinging the wedge is what makes me interested in the Fiskar. After a few swings of the maul and I'm ready to quit.

    Now, if don't wear steel toe boots and chain saw chaps can I still survive the Fiskar? I use one round for a platform when working a group of rounds but expect there are a few round I don't want to move and will work on them on the ground. I take the time to use both hands/arms and to stand squarely in front of the split with feet a foot or so apart - swing from directly over my head, no side swings. Does this sound like the safest style? I have had some experience in the past with a single axe bouncing/ricochet that missed but put some scare into me and had something to do with my decision to buy the electric splitter. From what I read the Fiskar is to be kept sharp enough to bite into the wood... which makes me wonder how often it gets stuck.
    OldLumberKid likes this.
  13. Danno77

    Danno77 Minister of Fire

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    Are you saying you don't wear Steel toe boots when you split? I'm not saying I'm a good boy and I do that every single time, but it's a good idea to start.
  14. Flatbedford

    Flatbedford Minister of Fire

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    If you work with the round you are splitting up off the ground and you keep your feet apart a bit, you should be ok with the longer handled X27. The short handled Fiskars tools can be a little scary at first, but the X27 is gonna pose much less danger to your feet. I have used both of them for quite few hours.
  15. Jerry_NJ

    Jerry_NJ Minister of Fire

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    Yep, that's me. In fact I don't own any steel toe shoes and don't remember the last time I had any - hum, I wonder and will check, I have some high top hiking boots that may- I'm not sure how one checks, if the toe area is real hard does that mean steel toe?

    I always protect my eyes, but just with eye glasses - the polycarbon (or whatever the safer type is called) type. I wear ear protection too, having already lost much of my high frequency hearing I am now a believer - something about closing the gate behind the runaway horse.

    I did understand the longer handle could be safer, but I am rather tall - so my arms are longer, it may all work together to put my feet at the same risk as a shorter person.

    I don't plan to split more than a few hours total, my heating with wood is mostly supplemental heating when it is real cold, as it has been for a week here in NJ, and when I don't have electric power as was the case for 10 days following Sandy. I also purchase some split and delivered hard wood. I suppose I split at least a cord last year, almost all with my electric splitter.
  16. Thistle

    Thistle Minister of Fire

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    I've been wearing steel-toed boots in the woods & on jobsites since I was a teenager over 30 years now.Years before it was mandatory by OSHA & commercial construction contractors I work for.Been splitting manually with axes,mauls,wedge/sledge since I was 15.

    However this is what happened when this old man gets tired after a 10 hr day cutting/splitting Fall 2011.X25 just behind the steel cap,not as bad as it looks.Bounced off a knot nearest I can remember.Took boot & heavy sock off,1 tiny scratch & 1 small drop of blood from the point on foot. :eek:

    I quit for the day then.

    Attached Files:

  17. Jack Fate

    Jack Fate Feeling the Heat

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    Have been wearing steel toes a long time at work (industrial ) they have saved my feet so many times ,once a saw , & a bunch of times falling / Dropping wood . No axes yet . A neighbor tried to amputate some toes here a couple months ago .They would have saved him . Actually thinking i should have metatarsal guards also .

    Just wanted to say i'm a believer
  18. Flatbedford

    Flatbedford Minister of Fire

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    I wear my steel toe logger's boots when doing just about anything outside.
  19. ArsenalDon

    ArsenalDon Minister of Fire

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    I am almost 6' and the X27 puts me far enough away from the blade that I have no issues. A taller person with a better reach will have less issues even than I might. You should have no problems with safety. With big rounds start at the edges about 6 inches in from the edge and be amazed how much less energy it takes.
  20. OldLumberKid

    OldLumberKid Feeling the Heat

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    [​IMG]



    Once in a while it buries a little. This wee round was a stubborn one, however. Since it had no visible knots, it surprised me. I think it also produced a bouncer — that's always interesting. There is a crack to the side that I think I exploited next.


    Still even with the tiny nick in the top corner, (from an understrike on some concrete on day 1) it gets the job done. I sure was glad I was standing with my feet apart. it hit somewhat degraded concrete about 10-12 inches infront of me. But the axe is great. My son 6'3" splitbeast proves that to me when he routinely explodes rounds on one hit. Yes, beware out to the sides, the wood really flies sometimes.

    Even Mr Frisky gets tiring. (I can't imagine doing it all afternoon, but then I'm an amateur and 50+)
    Tired to me = time to stop. That's when it gets dangerous, as that thing can just plain slice. You just rest it on a piece of wood and it cuts right in! But the long handle keeps it at a good distance at my height (5-10).


    I'm in the market for a pair after seeing a video of how a chainsaw can make super quick work out of kevlar toecaps, anyway.
    My CAT boots only offer superficial protection in comparison to steel. Vs a saw or a Fiskars. I think Thistle got lucky there.
    Oh and here's the remnants of that knot that beggared my patience a while back. I'm not sure what it is, but it's a beautiful piece of wood in an ugly knotted kind of way.

    P.S. I'm still searching for a wider platform stump for safer cutting, and because I want to have at that beautiful piece of wood under there. It's all dirty right now, but it was clean and white as a pet rabbit when I got it.

    [​IMG]
  21. tbuff

    tbuff Feeling the Heat

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    I only wear flip flops when I use my Fiskars, and i'm fine....

    [​IMG]
  22. Jerry_NJ

    Jerry_NJ Minister of Fire

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    Lots of good advice, I'll look for some steel toe, and "tbuf" nice looking toes. I still have the one you're missing but it is old and starting to turn under. Still I think I'll go to a food doctor if it ever causes problems walking...god knows I have enough trouble as it is (age).
  23. Sisu

    Sisu Feeling the Heat

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    It looks like one little piggy did not stay home.....
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  24. Jerry_NJ

    Jerry_NJ Minister of Fire

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    This Fiskar arrived yesterday evening. It started off with some fun on the porch. Our Westie (a small white terrier) must have it in for the UPS (or mail, or any delivery) truck because he was waiting for me to open the front door... he knew the boxes were there. The Fiskar box was of course long and narrow and was leaning against the wall. When our dog went flying out the door to hit the boxes (I mean hit, tearing out pieces of cardboard with his teeth) he hit the Fiskar box low (what else could he do, he is about 20 pounds and short legs) and thus knocked the base out causing the box to fall on him and knocking him down and over on his back... ha! He was not hurt nor deterred from his mission, he immediately returned to tear at the box.

    When I was able to take control of the box I got it open and pull out the X27, and said "Wow". It is very long and while streamline looking it is hefty. It came with a protector on a separate card - an item that one might expect to have to pay another $10 for, but it was included. I was also happy to see Finland, not China, on the head - USA would have been even better. They must sell enough of them in the USA for open a factory here - I'd think USA manufacturing costs would be similar to Finland (not to China).

    Today I took the Fiskar out for a test drive. Looking for steel toe shoes I found my hiking boots appear to have a very stiff leather toe, no steel. The Fiskar puts some fear in my mind, I may go buy a pair of steel toes. That said I found I had better than expected accuracy with my swing. I was splitting White Pine set on a round to get it off the ground. Except, I also worked on one round that was one of the 30" or so diameter that was still holding one of my wedges full sunk in in spite of the fact I had taken a chain saw to the round - this did recover one of the wedges. The few swings I took at this round didn't accomplish much - there is still a place for a 30 ton hydraulic splitter and even for wedges and a sledge.

    On splitting smaller rounds, say 8" in diameter and 16" to 18" long the FIskar always delivered a split per blow, and if it didn't it was mostly do to a wimpy swing - I get tired easily. I split 10 or so of the smaller rounds and one of the shorter (not so thick) bigger rounds, working from the edge in, during the test drive. My grade for manual splitting for the Fiskar is a "A" - still would like to have a gas hydraulic and I will continue to use my electric hydraulic splitter when near an electrical outlet.

    I think I hit the ground once or twice and I did see two nicks in the blade when I was done, time to sharpen already. I purchased a Lansky Puck (shaped) two sided stone for sharpening. I have never liked the pull through type that is offered by Fiskar.

    I believe the X27 is too long for anyone under 6'. I am (or was before shrinking started) 6' 6" and the handle seemed long but comfortable to me, for my height. But if one is under 6' I think they would be better served with the X25 (28" think) which is about the same length the maul I have.

    The information on this thread and other threads on the Fiskar subject were very helpful - still it was not a big financial investment, but I try to be careful on all purchases regardless of cost.
  25. Jerry_NJ

    Jerry_NJ Minister of Fire

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    WPSplit1.JPG WPSplit2.JPG
    Back again with a couple of picture of the Fiskar site. The first shows a small stack of splits with the splitting round holding a heart-core of a large round. The second picture is a closeup of the heart-core which is less than 1/2 of the round from which pieces were peeled, mostly with a chain saw and sledge/wedge. I drove my two wedges all the way in with no split and had to cut them out a couple of times. The Fiskar may have split some of the big pieces taken off with a wedge.. don't remember. But many of the splits in the stack came from single blows of the Fiskar on smaller rounds.

    I decide to take the pictures mainly to show how White Pine not only produces rounds with branch twists to make splitting difficult it even grows around branches leaving the original branch buried into the heart wood.

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