Hardest Wood to Split by Hand???

iod0816 Posted By iod0816, Apr 3, 2011 at 6:15 PM

?

Hardest Wood to Split by Hand? 6 Months or less bucked to 18" for those who want.

  1. Oak (any)

    9.8%
  2. Hickory

    5.4%
  3. Black Birch

    2.2%
  4. Beech

    57.6%
  5. Other (post the other)

    25.0%
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  1. iod0816

    iod0816
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    Jan 4, 2010
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    My vote: Black Birch by far. Split a cord of Hickory, no problem. My mystery wood comes in second. Splitting with the X27 kept razor sharp too BTW.

    What's everyone's two cents?
     
  2. Whitepine2

    Whitepine2
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    Try splitting some hornbeam some call it snag around here. It don't split it shreds, grows twisted some are impossible to split even with hydrolic splitter
     
  3. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage
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    When you are through with that, get some elm.
     
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  4. TreePointer

    TreePointer
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    +1 on twisted American elm trunks.

    I understand that the only one who has ever split this by hand (literally) is Chuck Norris, but he didn't like it.
     
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  5. woodchip

    woodchip
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    English Elm is not only difficult to split, it burns just like a mouldy old gravestone.

    Probably best left to rot quietly in the woods.....
     
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  6. golfandwoodnut

    golfandwoodnut
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    Sep 25, 2009
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    Elm. Should be on the list.
     
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  7. k9brain

    k9brain
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    Black gum should also be on the do not scrounge list.
     
  8. DBoon

    DBoon
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    Elm is pretty tough, and I can't say that 6 month seasoned fir/spruce/pine much better if it has all of those branches coming out the sides on every piece...
     
  9. Adabiviak

    Adabiviak
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    Poplar, but only after the round has been seasoned. I've never split elm, but seasoned poplar will pull fibers instead of cracking apart (which requires hacking each split apart). Splits like a champ when it's green though.
     
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  10. TreePointer

    TreePointer
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    I'll attest to that. Last year I took down a large, dead standing Austrian pine that was in a windbreak. It had all sorts of branches and a good twist going up the trunk. Nasty.
     
  11. Duetech

    Duetech
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    For me elm is usually the roughest. Just tears and balls up in the hyd splitter if not seasoned. When seasoned it bounces the splitting maul right back at you ro tears in the hyd splitter. Had a hard time with some twisted apple once that almost made me wish for elm.
     
  12. Thistle

    Thistle
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    American Elm without question. Maybe 5% of the time I'll luck out & get some that dont have that interlocked grain.Not many left around here that are over 10"-12" diameter.
     
  13. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart
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    Sweet Gum. Hands down. I think it is called gum for a reason. It is like trying to split a truck tire.
     
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  14. remkel

    remkel
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    I never enjoyed splitting apple wood that much.....remember it being a bit of a pain.
     
  15. bioman

    bioman
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  16. Hurricane

    Hurricane
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    I vote for sweet gum also.
     
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  17. Vic99

    Vic99
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    You must not have experience with elm to nit have it on your list.
     
  18. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones
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    Lignum Vitae. That's just a guess though.
     
  19. ramonbow

    ramonbow
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    Jan 8, 2009
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    elm and cottonwood. I usually like to leave elm until the bark falls off before i cut it. Cottonwood i usually like to leave until it rots and is reincorporated into a better tree.
     
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  20. 10range

    10range
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  21. certified106

    certified106
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    Definitely Elm for me
     
  22. CTYank

    CTYank
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    Yes. How about long-dead apple that has air-dried thoroughly where it fell? But, well worth the brutality required.

    Worst ever I've split: swamp chestnut oak. For a friend. Could not be split by hand, with the counter-spiraling grain on the outside. Hydraulic splitter worked its little pump off with the stuff. It more like cut it, than split it.
     
  23. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake
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    Other -- elm.
     
  24. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage
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    I'm betting that about now iodonnell has realized he goofed on the list of hard to split. :lol:
     
  25. iod0816

    iod0816
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    Wow ELM across the board! I figured ELM but I don't really have access or touch the stuff so I've not had the hurt. I just had the thought after I split a whole lot of black birch. I have a sharp Fiskars and it'd take a lot of whacks on both ends to split, compared to the Shagbark. Pignut was just as hard but I guess now I'm thinking about the science of wood fibers now. I was splitting 36" rounds of shagbark hickory as fast as I could find them. Switched to some 12" rounds of Pignut, horrible. Switched to 24" black birch and where's my gloves! All 18" length.

    Had some poplar too and that wet was like slicing a cake.

    Now I'm thinking what actually influences the "splittability" of wood in the wood itself? Obviosuly grain, knots, branch formations but comparing apples to apples here.

    Thanks for the replies. Maybe I'll find some elm just for a brusing!
     
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