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I gotta Ax you guys a question...

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by BrowningBAR, May 1, 2009.

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  1. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    Ok, I started splitting and it is moving along better than I expected for the most part. But, I keep getting blisters on my left hand, which is the hand that holds the ax at the lower point on the handle with the right hand higher up on the handle.

    Now, my hands aren't exactly baby soft, so I was surprised at this. Am I griping the ax wrong? Or is it the gloves? I have been using two different pairs of work gloves and I have seen no improvement.

    Or do I need to quit b!tching and just keep at it until those spots on my hands toughen up?

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  2. btwncentres

    btwncentres New Member

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    I've never gotten blisters splitting wood....maybe you need to lighten up on your grip...looser..more relaxed and perhaps a heavier maul...wearing gloves might be the problem...I can't stand wearing gloves and in the winter only use mitts which have a forefinger..always call them chainsaw mitts.....as with most tool use a relaxed grip is key...design or weight of tool should do the work for you....except the odd time when you have to scream and strike as Thor would............................
  3. mayhem

    mayhem Minister of Fire

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    While I can't place my finger on it, I'm inclined to say you're doing something wrong. I've never gotten a blister from splitting wood in the 20 years or so of doing it with hand tools.

    Can you describe more your technique? Are you keeping both hands in place or do you slide the right hand down to meet the left during the downswing? Try loostening your grip a bit and see if it improves.
  4. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones Minister of Fire

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    I sometimes wear gloves, sometimes don't. I've had a little irritation, but never a blister.
  5. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    That's some really nice pottery you have on that link.
  6. Risser09

    Risser09 New Member

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    Personally, I find that wearing gloves causes me to grip the maul way too tight. Try it without the gloves, you might find that you'll have better control, too.
  7. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    Well, I've tried a loose grip and a tight grip. The loose grip actually seems to create more rubbing. The tight grip seems to cause more of a pinching that causes a blood blister/bruise at the base of my fingers.

    Right now I am just moving alone figuring the spots on my hands will toughen up. I was just wondering if anyone else had this problem in the beginning. I will try splitting without gloves and see if there is a difference.
  8. Hurricane

    Hurricane Minister of Fire

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    I also vote for no gloves when splitting.
    I do use gloves when stacking or moving the logs but take them off when I start splitting. And no blisters yet.
  9. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    If I split or shovel or even ride motorcycles all day then I will get blisters. Split a few rounds, no blisters. The trick is letting those blisters heal up without popping, that will give you the calusses in just the right spots. If you work right through the blisters (like in a motorcycle race) then the blister will pop and you will be worse for the experience.

    Are your hands sweaty? sticky? Rub them in the dirt (or some sort of girly baby powder) to allow them to slide without sticking. The sticking causes blisters.

    Oh yeah, no gloves, ever. Unless you are welding and need to pick up the hot metal or if you are loading a hot stove and need to pick up a burning log. Wearing gloves creates a need to wear gloves. Your properly toughened hands will have skin that acts as a glove.

    One more thing: I love your thread title. Omellete you know that I'm about to go get me a fodee and a buloamy samich.
  10. Mmaul

    Mmaul Minister of Fire

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    I used to get one on my left had from the maul handle let it calluse over then you wont have a problem any more, It is interesting to hear the points on not wearing gloves, With my fiskars axe non needed, with the monster maul all steel handle always wear a pair.
  11. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    i'll go with this one "Or do I need to quit b!tching and just keep at it until those spots on my hands toughen up?"
  12. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    Duly noted.
  13. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    I figured the forum would have had that thread title appear several times by now!

    Yeah, what I've been doing is splitting until a blister begins to form and then I bandage the blister. It allows me to continue splitting without popping the blister. Hopefully the skin toughens up over the next few weeks and I can quit moaning about it like an old man.
  14. Arlo

    Arlo New Member

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    t sounds like your alergic to wood. I will take your wood off your hands so you don't have to deal with the alergies. :)
  15. Arlo

    Arlo New Member

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    Nice pottery!
  16. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    at 38 bucks a cord you will pull through!lol
  17. TreePapa

    TreePapa Minister of Fire

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    Another "vote" here for no gloves while splitting by ax (or maul). I do, though, wear gloves while splitting w/ a (rented) hydraulic splitter, 'cuz that's more about wood handling that ax handling. I also wear gloves when stacking, etc. ... if I remember to.

    Peace.

    - Sequoia
  18. daveswoodhauler

    daveswoodhauler Minister of Fire

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    Tried a bunch of gloves too, and I just take them off when splitting.
    I wear when stacking...but only time I wear splitting is when its wet out and I use a pair with the rubber grippy palms.
    Seems to be a pain to wear gloves when splitting
  19. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    It's mine, ALL MINE!
  20. stockdoct

    stockdoct New Member

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    If you know where the blister always forms, just put a band-aid on that spot (on normal, healthy skin) before you split the wood. The friction will be between the maul and the bandaid, rather than between the maul and your skin.
  21. mtarbert

    mtarbert Minister of Fire

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    I am courious to find out what your handle is made from. Is it wood or plastic? The plastic handles are very course and really wear the skin down. If it is wood....what is it coated with. Varnish or poly or sanded bare wood ? I agree it may be an allergic reaction.
    Mike
  22. BrowningBAR

    BrowningBAR Minister of Fire

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    Currently, the axe is a cheap Home Depot Axe until I get around to buying a Fiskers off of Ebay. The ax has a plastic handle with a rubber cover on it.

    It isn't an allergic reaction as I can feel the rubbing taking place. Now, if you want to talk allergic reaction, then let's talk poison ivy, oak, and sumac. Because, quite frankly, I am ready to napalm my property just to get rid of the leafy bastards.
  23. mtarbert

    mtarbert Minister of Fire

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    FYI.....some of the stableizers in plastics can cause problems for the skin of some. Some Nurses have developed dermatise from the gloves they wear. Swinging that tool with sweaty hands and the abrasion from the handle could be working the stableizers into your hands.
    Just a Thought,
    Mike
  24. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    I think it is that sticky rubber grip on a tool that is meant to slip in your hands.
  25. Flatbedford

    Flatbedford Minister of Fire

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    Yup!
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