Running a stand alone wood splitter with tractor pto pump

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Eightball1313

Member
Sep 24, 2019
61
Poconos, Pa
Hey all,

So i got an old 80's Ford 1210 tractor, super nice condition. Got it at a local auction for a fair price.

I currently use it for mowing the field behind my house, works just fine with the 3 pt hitch ford finish mower i had already. i want to use the tractor for more things just to use it because why not?!

Well i have a 16 gpm pto pump and i have a champion 27 ton log splitter that i use to split wood at my house, works just fine. I had a brainstorm about putting some quick connects on various hydraulic hoses and converting the splitter to run it off my tractor pto pump. Id make it so i can switch back and forth from the tractor pump or the pump on the splitter, just in case id ever need the two stage pump on the splitter for some nasty hunks of wood or something.

So right now, the pump on the splitter is an 11 gpm 2 stage pump. It only has like a 5 to 6 gallon hydraulic reservoir, which i feel is already small for an 11 gpm pump?? shouldnt the reservoir be like twice the gpm of the pump? Like 22 gallons? I feel like all the store bought log splitters have really small reservoirs compared to their pump size so maybe its not as big of a deal as i thought... How do you guys feel a 16 gpm pto pump would be with that sized reservoir? Do you think it will overheat the oil quick? Since the pto pump would be a single stage pump, my plan would be to only really hook it up and use it on nice, easier splitting wood and save the knotty stuff for the 2 stage pump. Id hook up pressure gauges and the whole nine yards and set everything up accordingly, im really just curious about the reservoir size and running a 16 gpm pump on it, i dont plan on running the pump continuously for hours on end but you never know, so im just curious what you guys think.

It would be cool to me to use the tractor to split wood with the splitter and pto pump i already have!
 

Ashful

Minister of Fire
Mar 7, 2012
18,038
Philadelphia
. i want to use the tractor for more things just to use it because why not?!
Why not? Tractors are expensive. No way I'd be wanting to put dozens of added and unnecessary hours on my tractor every year, when the cheap single-cylinder B&S engine on my splitter does the job even more conveniently and efficiently than the tractor.

In most cases, thanks for inflation roughly offsetting depreciation, you can sell a privately-owned tractor for what you paid for it. At least that's been my experience, on everything from 5 years old to more than 50 years old, I've never sold a tractor for less than 90% of what I paid for it. That's based on me racking up only 60 - 120 hours per year using the loader, seed spreader, aerator, etc., not the endless dozens of hours I put on my splitter every year.

But to answer your question, I'm running 19.2 GPM (16 GPM pump over-spun to 3600 RPM) on the factory tank on my Huskee 22-ton. I believe the system capacity on that machine is under 7 gallons, and no issues. Usually, when up-sizing the pump on a stock splitter, your biggest problem will be line and valve sizing, most specifically the tank bung and suction line size, NOT system capacity. In some cases, a thin-wall steel hose adaptor into the tank bung can buy precious mm2 cross section required to make it work, as pressure is obviously low there.
 
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Eightball1313

Member
Sep 24, 2019
61
Poconos, Pa
But to answer your question, I'm running 19.2 GPM (16 GPM pump over-spun to 3600 RPM) on the factory tank on my Huskee 22-ton. I believe the system capacity on that machine is under 7 gallons, and no issues. Usually, when up-sizing the pump on a stock splitter, your biggest problem will be line and valve sizing, most specifically the tank bung and suction line size, NOT system capacity. In some cases, a thin-wall steel hose adaptor into the tank bung can buy precious mm2 cross section required to make it work, as pressure is obviously low there.
nice id imagine thats a pretty big upsize from the factory pump on that huskee. i was only concerned about capacity just wasnt sure if it could handle it or not at that gpm. thanks for your reply!
 

Ashful

Minister of Fire
Mar 7, 2012
18,038
Philadelphia
nice id imagine thats a pretty big upsize from the factory pump on that huskee. i was only concerned about capacity just wasnt sure if it could handle it or not at that gpm. thanks for your reply!
Factory setup on the Huskee 22-ton was an 11 GPM pump overspun to something like 12.5 GPM, so yes, I've increased it by 50%. Also had to put a larger (but still only a few hundred $) Intek engine on it, to handle the higher load of the larger GPM pump.

I think the only penalty on capacity is oil temperature, which is easily monitored. If you can keep your hand on the cylinder or tank, you're likely fine. If not, oil coolers on low pressure side can be easily arranged, but I've never seen anyone mention needing one.

You'll know you have a line/fitting size issue when you hear the engine load while cycling the ram under no wood load. You can also check the recommended line sizes for your pump, and ensure you're meeting or exceeding them everywhere in the system. Typically, the limiting factor is the fittings on the cylinder itself, although at 27 tons you're likely have either 1/2" or 5/8" (SAE 8 or 10) fittings on a 4.5" cylinder, which can handle 16 GPM no problem. The next limit, as I mentioned previously, will be the tank bung, which can be improved with a thin wall fitting (low pressure at this location). All other lines and valves are more easily replaced to meet spec of new pump.