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How much PSI does your splitter run at?

Post in 'The Gear' started by 'bert, Feb 26, 2008.

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  1. 'bert

    'bert Minister of Fire

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    Just finished converting my hydraulic splitter from running off a tractor to a stand alone splitter. Bought an Energy control valve for it. The valve was factory set at 2000 psi and the gauge on the splitter confirms this. I was thinking of moving it up to about 3000 psi as it stalled out on some wood i tried to split this past weekend. I would like to know what other people have the bypass on their splitters set at.

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  2. triptester

    triptester Feeling the Heat

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    Before setting the relief pressure to high you will have to know what the pressure rating of your cylinder is. Usually the relief valve is set for 200 psi below the lowest rated item in the system.
  3. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    Before raising that setting you'll need to verify all parts of the system. The hoses, fittings, and especially the ram are rated to handle that pressure. Your available force will be much higher for splitting after the adjustment. 50% more force than you currently have.
  4. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    I agree with the others. Your chain is only as strong as your weakest link. Typical hoses are rated from 2000 , 2500 or 3000 PSI. Find the weakest link an then set your pressure accordingly. If you have the proper components to allow, I think you would find quite a difference in power going from 2000 to 2500 PSI.

    As an example, If you had a 4" ram (r = 2") and running at 2000 PSI, you would create 25120 pounds of force, basically a 12 ton splitter (A = pi x r x r). If you simply increased the pressure to 2500 PSI you would create 31400 pounds of force (or a 15 ton splitter).

    Please take caution, high pressure fluid can be very hot and very dangerous.

    Note: don't get all caught up with the numbers that are advertised for many of the splitters on the market. They are using Voodoo math to come up with some of them.

    I personally run mine (5" ram) at 2250 PSI, and I don't think it can be stopped.
  5. 'bert

    'bert Minister of Fire

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    Thanks for the words of warning, but all parts are rated at 3000 psi or higher. Plus all the hydraulic parts (other the valve and cylinder - which are one year old) are new, as it used to run off the hydraulics of a tractor.

    So does anyone have actual readings off a pressure gauge of where they max out when splitting wood?

    Further, how does one adjust the bypass on an Energy valve? I see a screw that can be moved - that is covered by a cap screw. Is this the adjustment, and if so do you turn it in or out for more pressure?

    thanks,
  6. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    Mine is set to never exceed 2250PSI if I could find something that didn't split first. I have taken 6" oak logs and placed them in my splitter sideways to test the relief valve pressure settings and the darn thing will just keep cutting, never exceeding the 2250 bypass. Have yet to find anything (and I split some real tough buggers) that stopped my 5" ram at 2250 psi. Mind you, I only use a single wedge, no 4 ways or other such stuff.
  7. triptester

    triptester Feeling the Heat

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    I have built splitters using 4",4.5'', and 5" bore cylinders. The 4" would often surge to 3100 psi then settle at 2900 with ram stalled on very big blocks. The 4.5" went up to 2600 psi a couple times but I sold it before I had a chance to really find the stall point. The 5" bore I have been running usually splits in the 500-1500 psi range. I have not had anything to split that would cause it to exceed 2200 psi.

    I have a Energy valve in the shop I'll check to see where the relief is. I usually use Prince detent valves with them you screw in to increase pressure on the bypass.
  8. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    Couldn't you just extend the ram all the way and hold the valve in extend position to measure max available pressure? or relief pressure?
  9. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    Well sure, but that wouldn't be any where near as cool as popping a 6" oak log in half. ;-P
  10. 'bert

    'bert Minister of Fire

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    Played with the valve a bit last night ( you do move the screw i was referring to to change the relief setting). Not much adjustment is required to gain a few hundred psi. I moved it about a quarter turn and have it running about 2800. This splitter only has a 3" ram so i guess i need a bit more pressure.

    After turning it up i was able to split the logs i had trouble with on the weekend. I think a little more refinement on the splitting wedge is next. If someone wants to post a few pics of wedges they have made that would be great. I built mine with the wedge on the ram.
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