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Split green or seasoned?

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by jensent, Sep 7, 2010.

  1. jensent

    jensent Member

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    Loc:
    central Ill
    Is it easier to split wood when it is green or seasoned? Is the rule different for various kinds of wood?
    Thanks
    Tom

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  2. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones Minister of Fire

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    Most of my recent experience is with oak- which is so much easier when very fresh. A sharp 8# maul just about splits 10-12" rounds by falling from overhead when they have just been cut.
  3. gerry100

    gerry100 Minister of Fire

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    NY Capitol Region
    I know that maple is much,much easier when fresh. Oak I'm not sure about.

    I've heard that after a good freezing splitting is easier.

    After 30 years of splitting, the Maple staement is the only one I'm sure about.
  4. oldspark

    oldspark Guest

    There is only a couple of wood types that split better seasoned that green, elm (from expierence) and eucalyptus (from book) and a few I do not know about, other wise almost all types of wood split better when green, after the rounds have set and dried completely they split fairly well again, its that in between time that is the hardest for splitting.
  5. TreePapa

    TreePapa Minister of Fire

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    I don't have the luxury of nice straight hardwoods or even conifers. Most of what I get is landscape wood, rarely do I know what the wood is. Sometimes I do though.

    Anyway, when I get green wood, I give it a few wacks right away. If the implements of distruction bounce off, I stack it and wait for it to develop splittin' cracks - 6 months usually. Then I try again. If it still won't split, I'll wait another six months. If after a year or so it won't split by hand, it's time to rent a splitter.

    Eucalyptus is special. It is almost impossible to split by hand, green or seasoned. Even a 20 ton splitter has problems with green eukie - it more tears the wood apart than splits it.

    And splitting frozen wood sound like fun, but I can't fit much in my freezer!

    Peace,
    - Sequoia
  6. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    I split green or seasoned wood . . . for me it is more of a matter of when I'm ready to split. I also should confess that having a hydraulic splitter means splitting wood is not really that hard of a task. That said, most wood seems to split the easiest and cleanest when it is fresh cut . . . the exception being elm which always does better when it has been aged for a bit.
  7. Flatbedford

    Flatbedford Minister of Fire

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    I'd say that as a general rule splitting green is the way to go whenever possible. Wood will season faster when split than in round or log form. Elm, green or seasoned, should be left in the woods to rot.
  8. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones Minister of Fire

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    LOL- I was going to say that elm takes 4 years to season and should be burned without splitting :)
  9. Jaugust124

    Jaugust124 Feeling the Heat

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    Someone suggested to me once that wood splits better after it has been frozen for one winter. I haven't tried it, but it kind of makes sense in my mind. If the wood has a high moisture content then the water inside would freeze, thus expanding, causing the wood to split / check. I would think that in the spring, after the freeze - thaw cycle, the wood would be easier to split. Am I wrong?
  10. onedog

    onedog New Member

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    Loc:
    Wichita, KS
    I burn mostly hedge and split all my wood with a maul and wedges. My findings are that hedge splits much easier after 6 months or so in the hot Kansas wind.
  11. CTburning

    CTburning New Member

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    Western CT
    I have a bunch a swamp maple and find that it is easier to split after a month or two of sitting in a round. Green pieces have a ton of water and after a month they are deeply checked. Many split easily with my Friskars but when freshly cut were a bear!

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