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Making a removable 4 way splitter on my 2 way!

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by FatttFire, Aug 31, 2008.

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  1. FatttFire

    FatttFire Member

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    So my 2009 wood splitting season is going to start soon. Let me pic your minds and see what ideas you might have to put a 4 way splitter on here that I can take on and off. So let me know what you think!

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  2. abj1969

    abj1969 Member

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    don't know it it helps or not but here is a pic of my 4-way.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
  3. FatttFire

    FatttFire Member

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    basically I have the same idea. I was going to make somethat drops down in the hole of the splitter head, and the blad would go over it, but I am afraid it would bend! SO I am not toataly convinced!
  4. rich81

    rich81 Member

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    the only difference i see is your wedge is on the piston fattfire and abj's is not. i have been trying to come up with a way too (my wedge is on the piston) so let me know if you come up with something that works, i'd be happy to copy it LOL!!!
  5. Dune

    Dune Minister of Fire

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    Change it so its not on the piston any more.
  6. FatttFire

    FatttFire Member

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    RIch 81 I will let you know and send picks with what I change it to!

    Dunebilly, never thought of that good call!
  7. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones Minister of Fire

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    See how only one side of that horizontal blade is beveled, and which direction it's going? I been thinking about it, and that seems an important detail. If bot sides were beveled, the bottom half of the wood would be forced down and bind up.

    You can also buy a 4-way that slips on for a lot of splitters. I think you have to have some tonnage to get it to work on many woods.

    Looking forward to how this goes- I may do it myself
  8. JustWood

    JustWood Minister of Fire

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    If it were my splitter I would take the wedge off the splitter , flip it upside down onto some sharpened 1/2" flatstock and weld away ! Granted it would only be 3 way. AP made a good observation about only sharpening the top of the plate to avoid binding.

    Upon further observation ,the bottom plate under wedge is beveled upward so this may not work. May have to have some type of floating horizontal wedge.
  9. Corey

    Corey Minister of Fire

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    I think the key with the 4-way is that the wedge will have to move up/down a little bit. Even with that single sided bevel, that wedge is still designed to move up and down, and some of the twisty grain wood I have seen, you are going to need it. You could probably get by welding up a "sleeve" that would slide down over your current wedge and have "wings" welded to the side for the 4-way action. The sleeve would still allow for up/down motion if needed. The only issue would be to make the wings short enough that they don't interfere with the guard which is around the current wedge, or cut some slots in the guard to allow the 4-way wedge to fully retract.

    (my poor rendering of this is attached)

    Attached Files:

  10. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    Looks like a nice set up to me just take it off for the elm
  11. bill*67

    bill*67 Member

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    what if you took the sharpened 1/2" plate and bolted it to the top of the wedge by drilling and tapping three holes in a triangluar pattern and holding the edge back 1/2" from the vertical edge of the wedge. that way it would split the vertical first then the horizontal second. you would be splitting 14" rounds in 4 but anything 7" or smaller would be split in 2. by bolting it on, you could take it off if you had to split bigger stuff in the vertical position.
  12. Gooserider

    Gooserider Mod Emeritus

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    Don't know, but the stuff I've seen suggests that multi-way wedges should only be used on setups where the wedge is on the rail, and the piston pushes the wood. Setups with the wedge on the piston aren't suitable for multi-way wedges because they have a tendency to bind on wood that gets jammed between the beam and the wedge, and also put excessive torque and side loads on the piston if the wood is gnarly...

    I don't know, I find I get my wood done fast enough with just the single wedge on my splitter, partly by just short stroking it - go down just far enough to make it split, go up just enough to get the next peice under the wedge. It really shortens the cycle time to do just a 3-4" stroke instead of a 25" stroke... I also like the greater control I have over the size of my splits with the single wedge...

    Gooserider

    PS - moving thread to the "wood shed" area.
  13. Dill

    Dill Feeling the Heat

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    I agree, I've seen very few 4 way wedges on the piston side.
    Also if you make a multi way wedge I like one that can be added and removed quickly and easily. Mine might stay on for 5 or 6 chunks and then come back off for the next 10. I bought one of the cheapies out of northern tool and had a friend make it fit, in exchange for using the splitter for while. One of the nice features he added was a handle so its easier on and off.
  14. Gooserider

    Gooserider Mod Emeritus

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    One of my ideal enhancements would be a quick "upstroke limiter" that would kick the valve out of upstroke and back to neutral at a midstroke point. My friend's splitter doesn't have a reliable autoretract so I have to keep my hand on the lever which slows down positioning for the next stroke, but allows me to bring the piston up just enough to clear the round.

    My splitter has a good autoretract, so I can start repositioning as soon as I shove the lever into the up position - but unless I'm really fast, the piston goes up all the way to the top of the stroke, and then has to come all the way back down on the next stroke.

    I don't know which is more annoying...

    95% of my wood is cut to about 18", +/- 1", with a very few "out of spec" pieces being over 20" - I'd love to have something that would make my splitter stop it's auto upstroke at about 20", so that I'd need to do a manual push to bring it up to it's full 25" range on the few occasions where it's needed (I can put the overlength splits in my trimming jig later and cut them down, but when I'm sitting in front of the splitter I just want to split whatever I put my hands on...)

    I've seen "stroke limiters" that are little aluminum sleeves that go on a piston and keep it from retracting all the way, but they look like something that would be a pain to take on and off. One thought I've had is that I've noticed my ideal "stopping point" is when the top of the wedge is about even with the stuck log ejector - perhaps I could put a little "gate" there that could be flipped in to make the piston stop early, or out to let it go all the way up...

    Gooserider
  15. Dill

    Dill Feeling the Heat

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    I'll swap valves with you. Mine doesn't have an auto retract. The advantage is what you describe it doesn't have to go all the way back. But I don't think it gains me anything, since I have to push the lever to reverse it. And it nevers fails that when I short stroke it the next chunk is too long.
  16. Gooserider

    Gooserider Mod Emeritus

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    Thats what I'm saying.. I have two splitters I spend a lot of time in front of. One is my recently aquired HF 30 ton with an return detent, the other is my friend's 20 ton MTD with an unreliable detent, each annoying in it's own way... Mine goes to far up on the autoreturn, so I have to wait for it to come back down, my friend's keeps one hand busy that could otherwise be spent on repositioning the round being split... Each is annoying in it's own way.

    One of my most frequent desires for short stroking is when I'm making multiple hits on the same log - often it is very nice to split a round once, then turn it 90* and hit it once or twice to make 1/4's or 1/6'ths - in which case I only need about an inch of clearance, but it helps to have two hands to rotate the round in order to hold the first split together...

    As to length variations between logs - that's why I want to stop at about 20-21" gap, I try very hard to get consistent cut lengths - my stove has a maximum length of about 20" and an optimum around 18", so I target 17-19", less is wasting space in the firebox, more is hard to get in... getting a consistent cut length pays dividends all the way down the line - splits better if you can short stroke, stacks neater and tighter, and fits the stove better...

    My friend actually came up with a nice trick, he drilled a few holes in his beam so you can guage the length of the logs as you are splitting, or know just how far up to bring the wedge...

    Gooserider
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