Log Splitter suggestions

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by bhowle, Oct 20, 2006.

  1. bhowle

    bhowle Active Member

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    OK gang, what's the best log splitter for the dollar?

    I've got an outdoor water stove and I can see now that this thing is going to take a lot of wood to keep us warm and in hot water over this winter in NW Arkansas.

    We rented a Troy-Bilt splitter this afternoon, four hours for $50 bucks, and still have lots of wood on the ground to cut and split. Renting a splitter doesn't look like it will be cost effective over the life of our water stove - I'd hope a good splitter would last at least 10 years.

    Looking forward to your replys!

    -bob
     
  2. tallpaul

    tallpaul Well-Known Member

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    I am partial to my solution- it started as a three point splitter for a tractor- a plate here- a weld there and... I like my burner but it is work none the less. I believe a good splitter will last more than ten years if ya can do some repairs here and there. I know of several that have been around longer. The engines are not that large and the hydrolics are simple. If ya get a decent/heavy frame you should be fine

    [​IMG]
     

  3. Jack_IA

    Jack_IA Active Member

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    TSC had the biggest splitter I could find. 34 ton and it has run for years now with no issues and everyone that splits wood woth me loves it and always says its the best splitter they ever worked with. would not be without it handles anything up to 26 tall and as big around as you can move no problem.
     
  4. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

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    My neighbor owns a community splitter. Everyone that needs to split wood in the community seems to use this machine. Here are its features. The wedge is fixed and the pusher is guided down a H beam. The HP is only about 5 and the pump is a 2 stage gear pump. The cylinder size and the pressure create about a 20 ton capacity for splitting. The reservoir tank is large enough that the oil doesn't get real hot and the oil is also filtered. The splitting system and the reservoir is all configured into a small trailer setup that is well balanced and is easily connect to a hitch for portablity. The owner told me he paid around $700 for the splitter approximately 12 to 15 years ago. The only disavantage of the unit was stated to be that it is difficult to back when connected to a pickup as the driver cannot see the splitter since it is small.
     
  5. bhowle

    bhowle Active Member

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    jeezum, Tallpaul! I wish you were my neighbor, but that looks like serious overkill to me! Impressive nevertheless. After an afternoon of humping up large logs to our rented splitter I'd love to have your rig.

    Jack_IA - is that a Husky splitter?

    Cheers,

    -bob
     
  6. tallpaul

    tallpaul Well-Known Member

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    Actually... The reason I was able to and needed to make it - well now they sell them... but anyhow I have some tree cutting buddies that bring me a wide variety of wood for free. The trouble is alot of it is bigger than I want to move and handle with just my back :eek: some of the butt ends and doubles were rough. They like it because as you see I take pine and some of the "lesser" woods which are tough to get rid of here along with the good stuff . They get to back into a gravel lot and just dump- I push the stuff around with the bobcat etc- they don't worry about gettting stuck or twisting a truck on rough ground while dumping. I used to use my friends timberwolf three point splitter on the John deere in the background and it is a great unit. I do find the heated air conditioned cab with a radio a bit easier on the body though :D Actually the cost to run this unit is gettin up there. I use a couple gallons an hour and when fuel was cheap it was not an issue. Now it is a factor although not chasing the wood and wearing out a saw helps. I am amazed at both how big and how small of wood I can process with the unit. I can rotate the splitter and quick couple the hydrolic controls that came with the three pint splitter originally and it might be quicker for the smaller stuff but it has not happened yet. I split the smaller stuff to even though I don't need to to fit it in the stove but my back and ability to fill the stove better have taught me too.

    BTW it helps that I already hat the bobcat- it just would not pay to buy one just for the wood...

    As far as "overkill" it seems to be something I tend to believe in and always have ;)

    BTW my unit is a TSC three pint unit adapted to mount on the bobcat. So far its holding up well and I do abuse it a bit. The wedge got bent early on and they replaced it no issues at all. I found that splitting the wood across grain while possible was not a graet idea on some of the tougher woods :D
     
  7. tyusclan

    tyusclan Well-Known Member

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    You might look around some different rental places. I rented a 27 ton here on a Friday afternoon, took it back on Monday morning for $70. Fifty bucks for 4 hours is way out of line for a splitter. At any rate, I only actually used it for a few hours out of the weekend, and we still split and stacked over 3 cords. If I'd have had the wood on hand, I could have easily split and stacked 6-8 cords that weekend. Even if I wind up renting it twice a year, that's only $140 a year, and I can split all the wood we'd need for 2-3 winters in a couple of weekends. I can rent one at that rate for over ten years before I'll spend the price of a splitter, and I don't have to worry about any maintenance.
     
  8. moonwolf

    moonwolf Well-Known Member

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    what type of outdoor wood furnace do you have?
    Many of them don't need wood that needs to be split and can burn whole logs up to the depth of the firebox.
     
  9. Tabitha

    Tabitha greenheart

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    community splitter, that sounds nice, why aren't there things like that, a really ghood and extra heavy duty, you pay a reasonable fee for the use and someone agrees to house it when not in use.
    at home we have a community cider press, this time it is busy as long as there is daylight. we used to press several times a season. you wouldn'tz believe the apples folks have since it is the thing to do to plant fruittrees if you havea a yard.
     
  10. Cabin Fever

    Cabin Fever Life NRA Member since 1976 Supporter

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    Just a few suggestions to consider as you look for your new splitter:
    1. get one that splits in both the horizontal and vertical position
    2. Consider where the engine is mounted. I've seen some brands where the engine is mounted just a few inches above the ground. If you towed such a splitter out into the woods and hit a stump with it, the engine could be easily damaged or, worse yet, torn off. Also, with the engine mounted low, it is easy for a split log to fall off and hit the engine.
    3. Also check out where the tire axle is located. I've seen models where the axle is almost right below the splitting end of the splitter. This location results in the tires being in the way when you are splitting in a horizontal position.

    So, in other words, my recommendation is to buy a machine where the engine is mounted relatively high and where the engine and axle are located forward of the splitting end of the splitter where they are not in the way when you operate the machine.

    I bought my splitter from Northern Tool....it has a very "user-friendly" design.
     
  11. Ole Man Legrand

    Ole Man Legrand Well-Known Member

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    Cabin Fevers suggestion is great. We bought the same from Northern. Jay
     
  12. Shepherd

    Shepherd Well-Known Member

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    We got a used splitter at an auction for the back of our 3 pt on the tractor (which is diesel)... man is that a blessing to have! Got it for $250 too. YIPPEE. It was used when we got it and we've had it 7 yrs... going strong.
     
  13. tallpaul

    tallpaul Well-Known Member

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    sure can- but di ya really want to lift them by hand and feedd the big uns- I ain't little and tired of manhandling the big uns quickly. Also split wood dries better ands dry wood bi\urns better. I have had my out door taylor for 4 or five seasons now I can't remember ;) I can burn 30" by 36" logs if I can get em in there.
     
  14. SmartAZ

    SmartAZ Well-Known Member

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    I have no experience, but I always admired The Stickler as the simplest, cheapest, and most reliable idea I have seen. It mounts on a car wheel, so if you need a full time splitter you might want to get a used car to power it. The car wouldn't need to be any good, just running.
     
  15. bhowle

    bhowle Active Member

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    Thanks for all of the replies!!!

    We have a T-450 Taylor water stove: http://www.peaveymfg.com/TAYLOR.HTML

    The idea of a community log splitter is appealing. If I bought one of the Troy-Bilt log splitters I have about a dozen nieghbors that would probably "rent" it from me @ $ 20.00 a day a couple of times a year.

    Considering 12 nieghbors renting twice a year @ $ 20 / day that would yield around $ 480.00 /year. Since we're the only folks interested in heating only with wood, we'd probably use the splitter the most. All other nieghbors use wood heat for back up or because it looks nice.

    Food for thought.

    -bob
     
  16. Beeman

    Beeman Well-Known Member

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    Luckily I've had the use of OPS (other people's splitters) in the past. problem is when they get to me they always seem to need a days work before I can use them but it's only fair to invest a little into them for the use.
    When I buy or build a splitter it won't have an engine. it will be driven by my tractor as the last thing anyone needs is more small engines to maintain. The splitter that mounts on the 3 pt. hitch allows you to lower it to the ground to roll large logs on. I will also use a PTO driven pump instead of the tractors hydraulics to speed things up with more GPM. The best part about this type of splitter is not many people can or would borrow it.
     
  17. Ole Man Legrand

    Ole Man Legrand Well-Known Member

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    For 10 years, I had a splitter that used the tractor hydraulic, but it was slow compared to the one we got from Nothern. Also the vertical is an asset for heavy wood , just twist he heavy pieces underneath and WHAMO!! The splitter from Northern has a 5 HP honda Moter. Jay
     
  18. Beeman

    Beeman Well-Known Member

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    Your tractor hydraulic splitter was slow because it was powered by the hydraulics built in the tractor which doesn't produce enough flow for an efficient log splitter. the way to have a good tractor powered splitter is with a Prince pump. The pump slides on the PTO splines so you now have a very good pump to drive your splitter, or anything else, driven by your tractors PTO.
     
  19. RedneckPete

    RedneckPete Well-Known Member

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    I have been very happy with my Splitfire log splitter. Mine has a four way wedge, and it splits on both strokes. Thus, if I drop on a ten inch diameter log, it quarters the log with one stroke. While it is splitting I lift another log onto the other side of the splitter bed, then it is quarted on the return stroke. I've found it FAR more productive then any other splitter I've tried. It is available with a log lifter for those with weak backs.

    Come to think of it, if you've got a weak back, what the heck are you doing splitting wood??!!

    Pete

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  20. Jack_IA

    Jack_IA Active Member

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    yes it is and quite overkill built as far as I am concerned.