Thinking of buying a gas splitter

MainePatsFan

Member
Nov 24, 2007
42
Southern Maine
Thought I read recently that the average colonial-era home required 40 cords of firewood for cooking and heating for a year. Imagine all that with the hand saws and axes of the time.
 
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MainePatsFan

Member
Nov 24, 2007
42
Southern Maine
Have you givin an electric one a look ? You might be surprised.
I have neighbors that use an electric splitter to further split firewood they paid to have delivered. These people have a 90 year old grandfather living with them who feeds an old Jotul stove with these extra small splits all day while rocking next to the stove with his cats. I think I would have to place the electric splitter upside down on top of these 22" rounds. It might have been a fun try, but I'm happy to have gotten the 27-ton hydraulic, even if it is more than I need.
 
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WiscWoody

Minister of Fire
Dec 24, 2011
1,927
Winter WI
Ahhh... didn't think of that. Would make a lot more sense. I remember reading a post from someone in Alaska who burns 14 full cord (I think it was mostly softwood), which I could believe but certainly wouldn't want to process every year...
I had a neighbor that said cord when he meant face cord and I asked him that right away when he said he burned some ungodly amount of “cords” in the last winter lol... he meant face cords but he never changed it to face cords later, it was always cords when he talked wood used When he meant the other.
 

Highbeam

Minister of Fire
Dec 28, 2006
17,682
Mt. Rainier Foothills, WA
I brought home a brand new Champion 27-ton splitter from Home Depot. They knocked a $100 off the price when there was a snafu trying to open a HD credit card to get $100 off $1,000+ purchase. I didn't get to use it too long as I was just filling it with fluids and getting used to how it worked, but I am already in love. I love how it slows slightly when first hitting a 22" round and then just breaks through as if saying, "Yeah, right, you think you can stop me?" This red oak is so fibrous (is that the right word) that I have to let the splitting wedge go all the way down many times to split it completely. I can see how it would be faster if the wood just popped apart at the first split. I also have to support the part of the round not on the plate with a 2x4 to keep it level because I am definitely splitting these heavy rounds in the vertical position. I end up using another round as a stool to sit on while I am doing it and it is comfortable like that. When I get up from my desk where I work from home all day and look out the window I see it down there and I feel like playing hooky and going down there to split wood all day. :)

Thanks for the advice and the encouragement. I can see a lot of fun
Don’t bother putting a 2x4 under the round to make it level. Just get the round on the foot. It will split just fine.
 

Simonkenton

Minister of Fire
Feb 27, 2014
1,745
Marshall NC
"Thought I read recently that the average colonial-era home required 40 cords of firewood for cooking and heating for a year. Imagine all that with the hand saws and axes of the time. "

Yes. I built my log cabin.



This is in the style used here in the mountains 200 years ago. I had the logs cut to six inches thick at the sawmill. Then I cut the dovetail notches with a chain saw, and used chisels to clean up the notches.
But, 200 years ago, the guys got a round log, and hewed it to six inches thick, with an axe, and a broad axe, or an adze.
Good God imagine a ten hour day of that work. Men were pretty tough back then.

As Tennessee Ernie Ford said of the coal miner in the Appalachian Mountains, loading coal into the coal car by hand with a shovel
twelve hours a day back in 1920:

"If you see me coming, better step aside
A lot of men didn't, a lot of men died
One fist of iron, the other of steel
If the right one don't get you then the left one will..."
 
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tdot_steve

Member
Oct 31, 2017
13
Toronto, Canada
Think about how much time you can save with a $1000 splitter. If it saves you 15 hours/year then after 10 years it's saved you 150 hours. I'm pretty certain that most people value their time at more than $6.67/hour.
 
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WiscWoody

Minister of Fire
Dec 24, 2011
1,927
Winter WI
Think about how much time you can save with a $1000 splitter. If it saves you 15 hours/year then after 10 years it's saved you 150 hours. I'm pretty certain that most people value their time at more than $6.67/hour.
Speaking of saving time with a splitter, I’d like to try a kinetic splitter sometime. I see Home Depot has a 40 ton equivalent model that boasts a 1 second cycle time. It’s not cheap at $2369 but I could sell my nearly new 37 ton splitter for $1000 if it came to that. I’ll have to look for a deal in one on the Black Friday deals coming up soon.
 
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cadyfatcat

New Member
Sep 25, 2020
4
NY
If you nail an old tire to a splitting round to prevent your log from falling after each stroke, you can really gain a lot of efficiency when splitting by hand. In some cases be faster than a hydraulic gas splitter. Hand splitting most of the time is spent setting up the wood over and over again. If there are super gnarly pieces just cut half way into them with the chainsaw and give them a whack with the axe and they'll break right apart.
 
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Lakeside

Minister of Fire
Feb 6, 2009
545
Mike's World
Speaking of saving time with a splitter, I’d like to try a kinetic splitter sometime.
I went with the original SuperSplitter even, picked it up in Massachusetts at Paul's. I went the electric route too. Yes - you do save time and I have not had problems splitting large rounds either. They are only horizontal so handling large rounds can be hard, lucky for me my staging area has an elevation difference so my splitter table is at ground level Yes -- they do cost a lot more.. Some manufactures are now making a smaller model I would be interested in knowing how well they work.
 

Sawset

Minister of Fire
Feb 14, 2015
1,009
Palmyra, WI
Think about how much time you can save with a $1000 splitter. If it saves you 15 hours/year then after 10 years it's saved you 150 hours. I'm pretty certain that most people value their time at more than $6.67/hour.
I don't.
Considering the time spent on skis, bikes, backpacking, paddling, splitting is one more mode of repetitive adrenaline.
I really enjoyed getting out on a crisp January morning, touch base with what's outside in the world before anyone else is up, hand split some frozen rounds for an hour. In the fall I would set up lights and mess around on warm clear nights. There is a 40ac pc just across the fenceline out back that someone has a herd of carabou. Moonlit nights they would be in full rut in the fall, and you could here them chasing and knocking around in the dark. My day job is where the money is at. Off time is my time. If I had a giant pile to split for someone else or for some other reason though, then heck yah, get it done and make a buck while I'm at it. It's a tough way to make money though - there are efficient ways, and of course those then cost money too.
 
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Rob711

Feeling the Heat
Oct 19, 2017
351
Long Island, ny
Get a splitter. Like a/c you’ll wonder how you got along without.
 

WiscWoody

Minister of Fire
Dec 24, 2011
1,927
Winter WI
Think about how much time you can save with a $1000 splitter. If it saves you 15 hours/year then after 10 years it's saved you 150 hours. I'm pretty certain that most people value their time at more than $6.67/hour.
Speaking of saving time with a splitter, I’d like to try a kinetic splitter sometime. I see Home Depot has a 40 ton equivalent model that boasts a 1 (Probably 3) second cycle time but I t’s not cheap at $2380
 

Rob711

Feeling the Heat
Oct 19, 2017
351
Long Island, ny
Totally missed that. Congrats! I’m happy with my champion 9k generator. Hopefully there splitter is good as well.
 
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MainePatsFan

Member
Nov 24, 2007
42
Southern Maine
Yep, it's the weekend, and after looking longingly at that beautiful yellow and black machine all week, I get to use it the next couple of days. Yeah, I got that look of "That's why I married you" from my wife when I looked out the window and said "I can't wait to split wood all weekend".
 

WiscWoody

Minister of Fire
Dec 24, 2011
1,927
Winter WI
Yep, it's the weekend, and after looking longingly at that beautiful yellow and black machine all week, I get to use it the next couple of days. Yeah, I got that look of "That's why I married you" from my wife when I looked out the window and said "I can't wait to split wood all weekend".
Don’t get it dirty now lol.
 

WiscWoody

Minister of Fire
Dec 24, 2011
1,927
Winter WI
If you nail an old tire to a splitting round to prevent your log from falling after each stroke, you can really gain a lot of efficiency when splitting by hand. In some cases be faster than a hydraulic gas splitter. Hand splitting most of the time is spent setting up the wood over and over again. If there are super gnarly pieces just cut half way into them with the chainsaw and give them a whack with the axe and they'll break right apart.
I’ve seen people put a tire around a round before they go at it with their choice of axe but I don’t recall them nailing the tire to the wood.
 

MainePatsFan

Member
Nov 24, 2007
42
Southern Maine
Don’t get it dirty now lol.
Hah, too late. I spent all day rolling and wrestling 22" red oak rounds onto the splitting plate. I would probably be in the hospital right now if I tried to split these by hand, but I will tell you, my body is feeling the reality of splitting this size wood even with a gas splitter. But more to do tomorrow.
 
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WiscWoody

Minister of Fire
Dec 24, 2011
1,927
Winter WI
Hah, too late. I spent all day rolling and wrestling 22" red oak rounds onto the splitting plate. I would probably be in the hospital right now if I tried to split these by hand, but I will tell you, my body is feeling the reality of splitting this size wood even with a gas splitter. But more to do tomorrow.
Oh yeah theres a lot of weight in those big rounds. I might be a fool sometimes but I never put my splitter in the vertical position and I end up hoisting some real heavy logs up to the table but at 58 my back has never been hurt... yet* ;)
 

fbelec

Minister of Fire
Nov 23, 2005
2,844
Massachusetts
Oh yeah theres a lot of weight in those big rounds. I might be a fool sometimes but I never put my splitter in the vertical position and I end up hoisting some real heavy logs up to the table but at 58 my back has never been hurt... yet* ;)
don't jinx yourself_g
 

Ctwoodtick

Minister of Fire
Jun 5, 2015
1,346
Southeast CT
A hydraulic /gas splitter allowed me to get well ahead on the wood pile. I get the same meditative benefit fro using it as I did with hand splitting. I love the fact that I’m probably working 4x as quickly too and don’t have to agonize over tough pieces to split.
 

MaintenanceMan

Minister of Fire
Feb 25, 2010
524
Southern IN
If you have a hard job to do and you want to find the easiest way to do it ask the laziest SOB you can find how to do it... That'll be the easiest way.... That guys going to tell you to buy a log splitter....