1. Welcome Hearth.com Guests and Visitors - Please enjoy our forums!
    Hearth.com GOLD Sponsors who help bring the site content to you:
    Hearthstone Soapstone and Cast-Iron stoves( Wood, Gas or Pellet Stoves and Inserts)

Is a 5 ton enough?

Post in 'The Gear' started by NordicSplitter, Sep 22, 2012.

  1. NordicSplitter

    NordicSplitter Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    May 22, 2011
    Messages:
    397
    Loc:
    Western,NY
    My local Home Depot has a Homelite Electric Log Splitter on sale. It is only a 5 ton. With everyone's experience, will that be enough to do the job? It can hold a 21" long log up to 10" round.
    I have a good stock of Black Locust, Oak, Black Walnut and Ash that I would love to blast threw. Thoughts would be appreciated....

    Helpful Sponsor Ads!





  2. willywil

    willywil Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2012
    Messages:
    16
    Loc:
    Long Island
    It will handle the all the straight pieces but the gnarly ones give it trouble.
  3. bogydave

    bogydave Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2009
    Messages:
    8,426
    Loc:
    So Cent ALASKA
    +1
    80% of it, it should split it fine.
    Some will spilt easy & I've had some that made my 22 ton one groan, but it got thru it.
  4. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2007
    Messages:
    27,815
    Loc:
    Michigan
    Pallet Pete has a small electric one that he likes real well. As stated above though, it will do on the easy splitting stuff, especially the ash but it just is not enough for tough splitting stuff.
  5. weatherguy

    weatherguy Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    Messages:
    3,890
    Loc:
    Central Mass
    I have that splitter, I split 3 cords with it and maybe had 4-5 pieces that it couldnt split, its a good little splitter, if you get something it wont split you can either whack it with an axe or cut it into chunks.
  6. Wood Duck

    Wood Duck Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2009
    Messages:
    4,172
    Loc:
    Central PA
    I don't use a splitter, but it seems that a 5 ton splitter that takes only 10 inch rounds will require you to be the backup. Are you able to swing a maul? If you can't I'd say you need a larger splitter.
  7. Flatbedford

    Flatbedford Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2009
    Messages:
    5,235
    Loc:
    Croton-on-Hudson, suburbs of NYC
    I cut down some kind of fruit tree for a friend of mine last month. I don't know the species, but it was about 18" diameter at the stump and just full of knots and twists. I had a terrible time trying to split it by hand. He bought one of the electric splitters at Home Depot for about $300 and he says that the machine has been splitting most of it just fine. I've never used one, but folks seem to be happy with them as long as they are willing to accept that it won't do everything that a larger gas machine would. I like that they don't make the constant noise of a gas machine.
  8. n6crv

    n6crv Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2007
    Messages:
    332
    Loc:
    Hillsdale Co. Michigan
    Hello, I have one and it does fine for what I need. don't let the 10" limit worry you. I have done some Ash that was 20" if not more. You might just have to split the sides off to start. I have found that you might want to keep the front end up alittle as it helps to keep the Oil running to the back. I can run mine with my knee on the safety level and then just push the button. Also have a block that I put behind the plate that slides so it does not go back as far. Most of my rounds are 16" or less so it speeds up spitting time. Just be sure to remove it when done as you want the ram all the way back so it is covered. I also like that it makes really very little noise. Also be sure to use at least a 12ga cord.
  9. MrWhoopee

    MrWhoopee Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2011
    Messages:
    567
    Loc:
    Shingletown, Northern California (elev. 4000 ft.)
    I love my Homelite (Ryobi, etc.). It is my only splitter and I share it with a friend. We each split about 5 cords/year and this is our 4th year. It still runs great, no problems other than remembering to open the bleeder screw and add oil. Home Depot has them on sale right now for $300, thinking about getting another as a backup. Most of my spliltting is doug fir, lodgepole pine and cedar, with some black oak. It does have problems with knotty pieces, though I can usually split them by rotating to another position or swapping ends. It won't handle tough, crotchy pieces. I have split oak rounds as large as 28" diameter.
    [​IMG]
  10. Sprinter

    Sprinter Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2012
    Messages:
    2,072
    Loc:
    SW Washington
    I got that one a couple months ago and, as others have said, it handles about 85% of my work fine. It depends a lot on how well your species splits. What I do is just put aside the gnarly ones that it won't handle and when I get enough of those, I'll beg, borrow or steal (well, probably rent) a big one for a day.

    These things are pretty rugged. Mine came across country and it got here with the packaging in shreds. Hard to tell how much abuse it got, but it was unscathed. They weigh about 100# and don't travel well. Try to get it locally if you can. First thing you do is open that wing nut. It comes closed to avoid spilling fluid.
  11. fossil

    fossil Accidental Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2007
    Messages:
    10,328
    Loc:
    Bend, OR
    I have the 4-ton version of that ubiquitous electric splitter (mine's yellow, and up on a stand). I mostly use it inside my shop during burning season to re-split (if needed) wood from one of my stacks to better fit my little Century shop stove. I have used it for rounds, like MrWhoopee shows above (BTW, native Californian here, MrW :cool: ), and I've always been pleased with it no matter what. I don't expect it to split the crack of dawn. I do have a gas/hydraulic splitter and manual splitting tools as well. Each has a purpose for this 63 y/o woodburner (as, of course, do all the other tools involved in our relentless pursuit of winter warmth). Rick
  12. Bub381

    Bub381 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2011
    Messages:
    867
    Loc:
    Mid-coast Maine
    I used a splitter from a friend of mine that was a 5 ton.Prob not all built the same way but i had to use 1 hand to push a button to power it and the other hand to power the hydraulics and the wedge was too short and i had to keep turning the split over and the return was horrible slow and if i wanted to back it up and give it another shot i had to back it off the whole way.It was an electric splitter and silver color.Sorry i didn't look it over for a brand.Not much for power,just enough to make it aggrevating.
  13. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    Well I got so many cords out of mine between my friends place and mine that I lost count ! That splitter can really go to town it split everything I could throw at it under 18" round except the gnarliest of woods. It went through oak, ash, maple, elm, pine, and many others no problem. They are good and a major back savor however they are not a big splitter anything over 18" is a crap shoot weather or not it will go through it. That said if you bust a big round in half by hand it will finish them off into splits nicely.

    Pete
  14. EatenByLimestone

    EatenByLimestone Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2006
    Messages:
    4,908
    Loc:
    Schenectady, NY
    I love my electric. I'd say it does more like 90-95% o what I want. Sometimes you have to nibble around the outside though. You won't be disappointed. The stuff that doesn't solit gets turned into pancake shoulder season wood. It's quick to dry, and doesn't pack well in a stove so it burns fast too.

    Matt
  15. Bub381

    Bub381 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2011
    Messages:
    867
    Loc:
    Mid-coast Maine
    It did save alot of work and you are right,they're not a big splitter.Handy but the 1 i used didn't need the 2 switches.No free hands to handle the wood.It sucked on wet birch but of course the oak and ash were a dream to split.
  16. Machria

    Machria Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2012
    Messages:
    1,117
    Loc:
    Brookhaven, Long Island
    I have that splitter, have had it for about 5 years. I've split about 10 cord with it up till now. Although they say "it will split up to 10" round", I have used it to split 25"+ oak rounds, 18" long. You might have to rotate a big one a few times to get it to crack, basically you just found a weak spot in it. But once it's halved, the rest is easy, just pick away at it. The smaller stuff splits very easy without problems. Over 5 years, I've only had 2 or 3 really bad knotty chunks that it just could not get thru. Ive noodeled a few of those, and then worked on it. And one ws just so ugly, I dragged it back into the woods 3 years ago. It's still sitting there stairing at me.

    Now, did it take me probably twice as long to split all that wood than if I had a bigger, stonger, and faster splitter? Sure. Has that ever really bothered me, not really. I would spend maybe 2 days a year gathering wood, and splitting it. Something I enjoy, get outdoors, get some manly work in, exercise... But I used to not burn much wood, I had a fireplace. Now that I have stove, and am feeding it significantly more wood (a full cord up to today since Dec 21st), I'm sure I'll be spending a bit more time in the woods and splitting....

    All that said, I'm currently looking to buy a new, larger splitter. (search for thread "Norther Tools splitters any good" or something like that). So am I and was I happy with the investment of the little 5 ton? Yes. Do I want a bigger better one? Yes.

    The pro's of the 5 ton are; when I wanted to travel with it, I picked it up and threw in the back of my truck. When stored, I stand it up on end and it takes up a space of about 12" by 12" b 3' tall., no maintenance, and of course it cost me $300 but has producred how many 1000's of dollars of fuel? The cons are; you will work a bit harder to split wood, turning big peices around to get them to split. You will be bending over alot since it's so low to ground. It likely takes longer to split wood with, since your workin some peices where big boy would crack it and done, and they are generally faster.

    On the other hand, the pro's for a big splitter are the obvious ones, faster, split bigger rounds, can get one that is Horiz and verticle, less work... The cons might be SIZE/STORAGE, maintanance of the engine (assuming a gas unit), noise (gas powered are much louder), COST $$, and top travel, you will need to drag it (assuming you get one that has high speed wheels...).


    Anyway, come to LI and you can have mine for $150. ;)

    All tools1_resize.JPG
  17. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    Why is it all so new looking ! [​IMG]

    Pete
  18. Machria

    Machria Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2012
    Messages:
    1,117
    Loc:
    Brookhaven, Long Island
    Those tools are all pretty much brand new, except for the splitter. It photographs well I guess, it doesn't look that good in person. BUT, after a few beers ....... ! ;)
  19. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    Mine looks like it got thrown off a cliff then reassembled then hit by a train and reassembled then punched by superman and well that was the end of the road lol.

    Pete

Share This Page