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Newbie Wood splitting question!

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by Johnnyguitars, Oct 15, 2009.

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  1. crazy_dan

    crazy_dan New Member

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    I like the great big Sanford ones you know the ones that have the metal body and people in the next state know you took the cap off. they draw a big fat line so it is easier to follow :cheese:

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  2. kenny chaos

    kenny chaos Minister of Fire

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    That explains why my splits have been cock-eyed all these years.
    It wasn't the splitter?
    I'm suck a fool.
  3. quads

    quads Minister of Fire

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    30" is the biggest oak I ever cut, split, and put in the woodpile. But, I split it the same way as I mentioned above. Worked each round in a line right across the middle, back and forth from one side to the other until it split. 30" rounds other than oak may split differently, I don't know, but large oak rounds usually don't split too hard. Many of them split easier than the smaller stuff. Sometimes those smaller oak rounds are real buggers.
  4. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    A large round like that does not split any harder than a small one. The difference is that it probably won't split on the first swing. So take two swings. No problem.

    To be honest, I feel the large ones split easier and you can get a lot more done in the same amount of time. It is all in learning how.

    I'm not so sure I agree with the diagram as each piece of wood has its own character. It is a learning process. It is an art, if you will and fun to learn. Sure, you'll get frustrated once in a while. That's when you hit the hardest. lol Just keep at it and learn as you go. Realize that it is not always best to split through the heart and it is not always best to slice around the sides. Learn which type like to be split in which way.
  5. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Wood Duck, I admire your ability and congratulate you. However, you must realize that everyone is not the same (thank God!). For example, some of us learned how to split wood a few years ago and now our bodies argue a bit with us from time to time.

    I split wood for years only using an axe. I had never heard of a splitting maul. Then about 25 years ago life dealt me a mean blow. I now use a hydraulic splitter and love it. Not only that, but I now also sharpen my chain with a dremel tool rather than a file simply because my hands will not take the filing.

    So I hope that gives you just a little hint of why some of us use hydraulic power. Its sort of the same difference why we use chain saws instead of crosscut saws.
  6. dave11

    dave11 Minister of Fire

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    But if you're new to chainsaws, and it sounds like you are. make sure you understand how to use one safely, and wear the proper gloves, goggles, hearing protection. I wear chaps as well, and my neighbor laughs at me, but I don't care. I haven't had a close call (yet) but you should minimize the risk wherever you can.

    There lots of youtube vids about chainsaws, and also Stihl and Husky have vids on their webpages.

    I have taken to splitting most rounds first with a wood grenade, then split the remaining pieces with the Fiskars Super Splitter maul.
  7. Danno77

    Danno77 Minister of Fire

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    I totally agree. That was just something to get him to think about splitting in a different way than many people perceive it to be when they start. Splitting is not busting something into halves and then repeating until they are the appropriate size.

    like you said, each piece of wood is different. You can usually look at the rings, knots, size, how round the round actually is, etc.
  8. Spikem

    Spikem Member

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    My two cents worth...

    There is absolutely no reason to not split the wood now. It simply seasons faster that way.

    Go for a chain saw but find a store (not a Home Depot or a Lowes but a power equipment place) and develop a relationship with them. Ask questions and listen to the answers. It's in their best interest to deal well with you *and* you'll find guys that are genuinely into what you're getting into. They'll even likely let you try out some of the equipment there to get a feel for it.

    Be *very* anal about maintaining your tools. They'll be expensive but will last if you treat them right.

    Use PPE (personal protection equipment).
  9. golfandwoodnut

    golfandwoodnut Minister of Fire

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    I agree with splitting ASAP but try the maul first. I use a Monster Maul, its is 16 lbs of steel, I love it, great excercise and never gets stuck in the wood. You can buy a clone for around $50 most people would use a lighter maul, and that is how I started. Get one with a fiberglass or steel handle, the wood handles chip when you miss hit. If you check the threads you will find the ones people like(some are only 4 or 8 lbs). You can always move up to a splitter if you are going to do a ton, but I did about 7 cords in about 2 months with the monster maul. Also I had a huge cherry that was down for probably 6 years. Fortuneatly the main truck was off the ground and I cut it this year. This stuff was beautiful and ready to burn right after splitting so I would not give up hope on the cherries on the ground. They often have ants in some spots but I bet you will get alot of good wood that will be ready to burn before you know it. As far a saws I have both a Husky and a new Stihl 390. I like them both but I have been warned the cheaper models in Husqvarna's are now a lot cheaper made than before (alot of plastic in the carburator etc). You can find them on EBAY cheap as well. I have had my Husqvarna for about 20 years and it still runs great. The Stihl is also awesome. If you are new to cutting you may want a 16 inch bar, the 20 inch Stihl is great for the bigger stuff and it will handle even larger bars but I hear some people have trouble with bars pinching on some of the larger ones. The 20 inch is great even on small stuff because you do not have to bend as much.
  10. savageactor7

    savageactor7 Minister of Fire

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    Wicked excellent graphic illustration Danno ...when I try to feebly explain that to folks it gets a big FAIL.
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