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Splitting question- how small

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by njtomatoguy, Sep 25, 2006.

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  1. njtomatoguy

    njtomatoguy Feeling the Heat

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    Maple Shade, NJ
    How small do you guys split your wood?

    I have read here that the smaller splits dry faster, and with a smaller stove, I would think the smaller splits burn better.

    I am reworking my wood pile, partially due to a collapse from bad stacking, and parttially because it seems like some of the wood was too big..

    I am re-splitting everything down to about 3-4 inches around.

    Does this seem about right?
    Thanks,
    Bob

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  2. suematteva

    suematteva New Member

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    We keep the majority of our wood big...7-inch rounds go in whole..it is at least 18 months of seasoning under cover..We have a 3.2 cf firebox and it will burn for an extended time and efficiently..alot depends on where your wood is moisture wise and size of firebox..

    Usually, open up the air for 10 minutes on reload and then close her down a bit and it will remain in the clean burn range for a couple hours.

    If we went small it would burn alot hotter and faster.
  3. Tendencies

    Tendencies Member

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    Depends on how often you wanna reload the stove, my VC Dutchwest insert likes to start off with smaller splits but after it's got a good bed of coals it likes them big note book sized slabs around 18" long, 12 " wide and 4" or better thick. Put 2 of them in there and it's and easy 8-9 hr burn time. But ya gotta have a good base of coals or no dice on the big splits!

    T
  4. michaelthomas

    michaelthomas New Member

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    I had a-lot of really big red oak that I cut this year (24" across stuff) I would split the round into quarters with the splitter and then start making 2-3" thick splits off the straight side of the quarter. This would give me 5 or 6 3" X 12" pieces. Then cut them down to 3"x4" pieces. it is cool because they stack almost like a 2x4 because they are so straight. I allow for gaps to circulate the air. I opted to split smaller because I need the wood this year (the oak really won't be good until next year) I was hoping that if I cut it smaller that it would dry quicker outside and dry quicker once in the hot stove if not seasoned totally. I would like to get to the point where I am 2-3 years ahead on the wood so I could make the splits much larger and know that they will be seasoned well enough by the time I need to use them.
  5. jabush

    jabush Feeling the Heat

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    Most of my splits end up in the 4-6" range. If I come across an easy pice of wood I'll split that smaller for kindling (1-3") and put it aside. I don't put bigger stuff or logs in the stove unless it's way cold outside and I'm running the stove pretty hot. For me the smaller splits give me more control over the heat and cut down on my smolder factor.
  6. bruce56bb

    bruce56bb New Member

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    bob, i like to keep some of the smaller splits around to help get the fire started etc. but when cutting and splitting i try to make them as large as possible for my firebox. for less loading and better overnight burns, bigger is better:)
  7. Roospike

    Roospike New Member

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    I would mix it up a bit. I normally have less than 20% of my wood as smaller splits and the rest is all larger. The smaller splits are for getting the fire started , bringing back up the coal leval , getting extra fast heat in the A.M. You'll get longer burn time with larger logs. A lot has to do with how large your fire box is.
  8. BikeMedic2709

    BikeMedic2709 New Member

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    Diversity is the key. To reinforce what others have posted. You can make your burning experience alot easier if you have different sized wood. Larger splits for overnighters. Smaller splits for the buildup of a coal base.
    Also keep in consideration the fact of whom is carrying the wood. I work 24 hour shifts, and like to have a smaller stack of wood on our back porch that is split into 4-6 inch splits that my wife would find easier to carry should I get stuck at work, or if she runs low while I am at work.
  9. njtomatoguy

    njtomatoguy Feeling the Heat

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    Maple Shade, NJ
    Wow!!
    Thanks for all the replies-

    it's just me and the 2 dogs, so I carry the wood. I can usually get home every 4 hours to keep the stove going, and probably will burn mostly when I'm home..I think this year will be a sort of "feeling it out" year, first winter with a stove.. I was out back re-splitting --I will leave some pieces bigger, and "mix it up"--larger splits at night, smaller splits during the day or when just chilly..


    btw, cooking on the grill tonight, and threw a little cherry wood ends on---- WOOOO HOOO .. does that smell good!!!!


    Stove willl be delivered on sunday--- hope to have it installed by next weekend..
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