Do note that I was responding to the OP's statements about the slide hammer, not the spring arm splitter. I agree the spring arm splitter is easier to throw.
But even so, I'd not want to heft most of the rounds I see on a regular basis up onto that table, an axe still looks easier than lifting any rounds over 100 lb. onto a table. The OP mentions popular and pine, which I would never even bother splitting, but they also mention oak. At 63 lb../cu.ft. green, it doesn't take a very large diameter tree to make some 500+ lb. rounds of oak.
Perhaps with the two machines, the slide hammer and the spring arm, you have a workable system.
This year I'm heating with a combination of pine, red oak, white and black ash, and birch. I'm shooting for a 50/50 mixture of hard and softwood. I don't waste my hardwood during shoulder season; absolutely not necessary. Back to the splitter though, I'm actually starting to wonder if I need a table at all at this point. The more videos I watch as I tweak mine, I'm seeing that not everyone uses one. Mine is not fine tuned yet, but it still works great overall. Maybe with a broader stroke without a block, I can get more force behind it to have less sticking.
As far as wood goes, I heat with whatever wood I can get my hands on. I took a gamble on 30 pickup truck loads of free pine a few years ago and heated my house on nothing pine but for 2 years straight (even in the dead of winter in -30 degree nights) after extensive research right here on hearth and learning that the old wives tales about it were completely bunk. I'll never ever
consider it a gopher or junk wood again. It simply isn't.
Ironically maximum BTU numbers in wood stoves are often measured using Douglas fir. If they were smart, they'd be resin/pitch soaked too to bump those numbers, which isn't factored into the BTU measuring of the actual wood as far as I know.
I did a multi year write up comparison somewhere here on hearth years ago comparing creosote from pine years to hardwood years and got less creosote from pine than I did hardwood. MC on pine was 14% after 6 months cut from fresh, hardwood, about 20% after 2 years. I used approximately 20-25% more firewood using pine as sole fuel source than I did with oak/ash, but it's also significantly easier to split and no one wants it so you often get it for free. I got overnight burns and coals even with old inefficient pre-EPA stove using it. I regularly used to burn 22-25 face of hardwood, or 30 face of pine. Now that I have an EPA stove, it's only gonna get better I'm sure.
While I'm not here to defend pine, it's certainly not a junk wood, and has more legends about it than bigfoot. I'll purposely choose it during the shoulder season months -- yesterday it was 45 in the morning and 92 in the afternoon. Perfect for a short hot fire to take the chill out of the air and open the windows by the time the fire is starting to die out.