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Harbor Freight 7-ton Splitter Video/Review

Post in 'The Gear' started by Bster13, Feb 2, 2013.

  1. Bster13

    Bster13 Minister of Fire

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    I picked it up today. As far as I can tell, it's the same thing as the ~$500+ 7 ton Pow'R'kraft/Woodeze model, except it is missing some of the side cladding, it has a different engagement handle, and it's cheaper!

    What tipped me off that this was a 2-speed splitter (even though it was not advertised as such) was this video:


    You can see how his back hand is manuvering the engagement handle and varying the speed. Without that, I would go nuts waiting for the splitter when it is applying all 7 tons of force.

    So far so good... I split my gnarly stuff I had left over today:


    The stuff I was splitting was way over the recommended 10.5in diameter stuff, but I was really quite satisfied it. It got through all the knots except for the most major one or two. I had this type of wood I can't identify, but my splitting ax would just bounce and bounce off it.....finally after many weekends of splitting my hand, my hands had had enough. They were sore I think from the shock (when u swing that ax, if the wood doesn't budge, the force has to go somewhere), though my bad was fine.

    The HF 7-ton splitter is one sale, then I applied the 20% HF coupon and off we went!

    BTW.... it's too heavy for all but the NFL Linebacker types to put in and out of a truck. Would of been nice if I could bring it to a friend's house to help in splitting, but it's heavy. Though two people can easily do it (I did it with my Fiancee).
    northwinds and raybonz like this.

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  2. DanCorcoran

    DanCorcoran Minister of Fire

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    I agree. I have the 7-ton PowR'Kraft and have examined the Harbor Freight model several times in the store. The HF lacks the side cladding, but has much better wheels. If mine dies before I do, I'll replace it with the HF.

    P.S. Don't get me wrong, I really like the PowR'Kraft. It's just that the HF appears to be the same unit for less money.

    P.P.S. TMI: "Though two people can easily do it (I did it with my Fiancee)."
    chazcarr likes this.
  3. EatenByLimestone

    EatenByLimestone Minister of Fire

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    That looks like the $200 6 ton unit that grossmans used to sell. It is a great little tool.


    Matt
  4. Bster13

    Bster13 Minister of Fire

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    $200 would of been great (not sure how they arrive at 5-6-7 ton ratings).

    Today I went through all the knotty oak and maple I had from 4.5 cords of wood I had set aside over time. You definitely need a certain level of skill to attack the weirdo stuff, but it'll get there slicing off piece by piece. So far so good!
  5. Lumber-Jack

    Lumber-Jack Minister of Fire

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    Thanks for posting.
    A friend of mine had an insert and flue installed by an outfit last fall, and they had some deal on that offered an electric splitter as a bonus package as part of the stove deal. he happen to come by my place just after he picked it up, so we took it out of the box and tried it on some of the wood I had on hand. I think it was rated at only 5 tons. but it had no problem splitting the type of wood I usually burn. An electric splitter is probably all I would ever need if the time ever comes that I need hydraulics.
    FrankMA likes this.
  6. EatenByLimestone

    EatenByLimestone Minister of Fire

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    The only complaint I have about electric is its slow.

    Matt
  7. DanCorcoran

    DanCorcoran Minister of Fire

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    No problem for me...I'm just as slow as the splitter.
    Bster13 likes this.
  8. Bster13

    Bster13 Minister of Fire

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    Splitting with a Fiskars X27 was definitely faster with straight grained wood....but it hurt my hands so bad when I contacted with stuff that was slightly twisted/tough and I was left swinging over and over.

    I am happy to say, that in two days I went through a bunch of new wood and more importantly my wood lot no longer looks like a graveyard of twisted chunks I could not split by hand. :)
  9. HDRock

    HDRock Minister of Fire

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    I like my HF 7 ton I picked up a couple of months ago paid $340 out the door.
    I did the research before I bought it , and found on this site that it had two speeds.
    Most of the time you don't have to run it full cycle except with the elm, then you need a block behind the chunk to. get er done
    I have busted up, up to 22 inch oak, I got the batch of elm I had, split up with it also, although I had to get innovative and it was tricky
    It takes care of the knotty stuff and crotches
  10. Bster13

    Bster13 Minister of Fire

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    Exactly my findings. :)

    Oh... BTW, the HF sales people will try to sell you a 1 or 2 yr warranty, stating that it only has a 90 day one. But... if you read the manual it's 1yr for consumers and only 90 days for commercial outfits.

  11. HDRock

    HDRock Minister of Fire

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    Never tried pushing button with my foot but I will ==c
  12. FrankMA

    FrankMA Member

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    The HF model weighs close to 200 lbs. vs. only about 100 lbs. for comparable Lowe's, HD versions. That's a big difference in weight but I wonder if it makes any difference in performance? I notice that almost all of these 5 - 7 ton electric models have virtually the same specs - 2 HP motor, cycle time, size of log that can be split, etc... The biggest difference is that the hydraulic fluid capacity of the HF unit calls for 1.7 gallons vs. only 0.7 gallons in the other units. I'm guessing that this must be what makes it a 7 ton instead of a 5 ton.
  13. Bster13

    Bster13 Minister of Fire

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    Re: foot... I changed my style. I now just sit on a stool and use either my foot or hand to operate the safety switch and the other hand for the handle to modulate speed. Works much better for me.
  14. DanCorcoran

    DanCorcoran Minister of Fire

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    My 7-ton PowR'Kraft unit has a 1.7 gallon capacity and weighs 172 pounds. Another reason I suspect they are the same splitter, with some cosmetic differences.
  15. Bster13

    Bster13 Minister of Fire

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    The HF unit is heavy, but less heavy that the woodeze/powrkraft ones.

    But yeah, I'm not educated enough to know how they get to their ton ratings.
  16. HDRock

    HDRock Minister of Fire

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    I figured if I really wanted to take it to a wood lot , I could, just roll it up my trailer ramp,roll in the generator N go
  17. Bster13

    Bster13 Minister of Fire

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    two people can pick it up (I'm 34 years old). But do that on the regular would give me problems. The wheels are better on the HF though. Not highway rated, but great for around the yard and wider stance.
  18. DanCorcoran

    DanCorcoran Minister of Fire

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    The HF site only shows a shipping weight (184 pounds). This puts it very close to the splitter-only weight of the PowR'Kraft at 172 pounds.
  19. Bster13

    Bster13 Minister of Fire

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    Maybe I'll weigh mine tonight... u weigh yours?
  20. DanCorcoran

    DanCorcoran Minister of Fire

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    Yes, I've had to strap my PowR'Kraft to a dolly to move it around my rocky yard at the cabin. From looking at them in the store, I think the HF wheels would do a lot better. I do like the side guards on my model better, though, than the exposed rods on the HF. Six of one, half dozen of the other...take your pick. Can't weigh mine tonight, as it's 3 hours away at the cabin, so I'll go with the manual's spec of 172 pounds.
  21. FrankMA

    FrankMA Member

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    I was looking hard at the Task Force 5 ton splitter available at Lowe's for $319.00 as it has gotten generally good, positive reviews. I came upon this thread and decided to go and look at the HF 7 ton splitter in person and compare it to the Task Force. I did that earlier today and am now convinced to get the HF model. It seems to be very solidly built - almost overbuilt in some respects compared to the 5 ton units. It's on sale for $399.00 and with the 20% coupon, I can get it for the same price as the Task Force model - $319.00.
  22. DanCorcoran

    DanCorcoran Minister of Fire

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    There are some good YouTube videos of both the WoodEze and PowR'Kraft splitters. Since they seem to be virtual clones of the HF model (or vice versa), you may want to watch them for an idea of what you get for your money.
  23. Bster13

    Bster13 Minister of Fire

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    Agreed, I just searched for "7 ton splitter" and away I went!
  24. FrankMA

    FrankMA Member

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    Thanks - I've been looking at Youtube vid's of these 5 - 7 ton splitters and most seem to work pretty well if used as intended. Definitely leaning towards the HF 7 ton as it seems to offer the biggest bang for the buck - especially at the discounted price.
  25. HDRock

    HDRock Minister of Fire

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    Here is a 20% coupon to print

    20off912-aff17549.jpg

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