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Log splitter pusher plate question

Post in 'The Gear' started by BrianK, Nov 29, 2012.

  1. BrianK

    BrianK Guest

    I made the mistake of lending my log splitter to a friend who is not mechanically inclined. One of the nuts on one of the two hold down straps holding the hydraulic cylinder to the I-beam vibrated off while he was using it, and one came lose on the other strap. He didn't realize anything was wrong and kept using it. It tore apart the pusher plate. That was a poor/weak design anyway and there was never anything attaching the rear of the hydraulic cylinder to the I-beam.

    Here is the original configuration:
    [​IMG]

    I took it to a friend who fabricated a new pusher plate:

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    I had shown him several photos of typical pusher plate assemblies and how they need to wrap around the I-beam for proper function and safety. Here is a typical example which I showed him:

    [​IMG]

    I don't know if he forgot, thought that was overkill, or was being lazy. However, my hydraulic arm is pretty well cradled on the I-beam:

    [​IMG]

    and he did a decent job of fabricating a hydraulic arm mount where previously nothing held it in the rear:
    [​IMG]

    So the question:

    Is it safe to use this with the pusher plate the way it is configured now in the second photo above, or should I ask him to revise the pusher plate to something like the fourth photo above with it wrapping around the top of the I-beam?

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  2. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    Nothing there to absorb side thrust if the end of the round isn't perfectly square. Could wind up breaking a mount or bending the cylinder rod.
  3. BrianK

    BrianK Guest

    Yeah, that was my fear.

    I'll be taking it back tonight for further revisions. Then the 16gpm pump and auto return control valve.
    MasterMech likes this.
  4. TreePointer

    TreePointer Minister of Fire

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    On my Huskee 35-ton splitter, there is only a large clevis mount (single bolt) on the back end of the cylinder and only the ram is secured to the beam on the other end (not the cylinder itself).

    If your metalworker isn't up for all the work in your picture, tell him that he doesn't have to drill all those holes:

    [​IMG]
    BrianK likes this.
  5. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    I believe the Huskee/Speeco machines like yours have the wedge running in a track, no? That would give the support necessary.
  6. TreePointer

    TreePointer Minister of Fire

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    You are correct, but it's the same principle. The cylinder walls aren't immobilized by brackets or cradles. The cylinder is secured only on the back end with a clevis pin/bolt. The front end stays on the beam because the ram is secured in the track. There are no brackets or cradles that support the middle of the cylinder.

    The point of that Brave splitter picture is that securing the pusher or ram can be done with many fewer bolts than BrianK pictured.
  7. WhitePine

    WhitePine Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2010
    Messages:
    497
    P1000508Edit.JPG

    My Ramsplitter's cylinder is secured only by a clevis and the pusher plate carriage.
    BrianK likes this.
  8. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    Which is the key. Absolutely necessary.
  9. WhitePine

    WhitePine Feeling the Heat

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    After I posted, I realized the pic doesn't show it, but the carriage end is also secured with a clevis, but vertical in this case .
  10. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    Do not use that pusher until you have it secured to the beam. Without it being secured it is very dangerous. The pressure developed for splitting could be transferred into sideways motion. Literally, that cylinder could swing off that beam like a cannon. If you or any one of your squishy body parts (and to hydraulics, thats ALL of them) were in the way it could really clock you.

    Edit: also - it is my opinion that the shoe (the part that rubs on the beam) is not large enough when compared to the size of the actual push plate. This thing really does need a "re-do". Sorry, not trying to be a downer.

    There really is no advantage to a large push plate. The larger they are, the more torque, flex and leverage they will have - and that is not a good thing. I left the pic in large format in case you wanted to look closely. For reference that is a 5" diam. ram and the push plate is 1-1/4" thick.

    Attached Files:

    triptester likes this.
  11. BrianK

    BrianK Guest

    Update:
    I took the splitter to a local metal fabricator who knew what he was doing and had the pusher plate properly mounted, as well as a Harbor Freight Truck Crane: splitter6.jpg splitter3.jpg splitter9.jpg
    swagler85 likes this.
  12. MrWhoopee

    MrWhoopee Minister of Fire

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    Much better on the pusher carriage, I would have expected the rods that held the cylinder down to fail, pushing the cylinder up out of the cradle the first time you applied any significant pressure. Those grade 5 bolts should be up to the job, but check them from time to time. If they start to stretch, you will find the nuts loose. If that happens, replace them with grade 8 bolts. The second man wasn't quite the weldor that the first one was, but welds are incredibly strong and you won't be lifting that much weight.
  13. gzecc

    gzecc Minister of Fire

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  14. BrianK

    BrianK Guest

    One of my patients wanted my old 11gpm pump for a splitter build he is working on so I gave it to him in exchange for mounting my new 16gpm pump.

    The fabricator charged me $125, and I thought that was reasonable. He also cut off part of the base of the truck crane to fit it on the splitter axle/tank and he cut off and centered and rewelded on the splitting wedge. It had been moved on the I beam by the prior owner and needed moved back.

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