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    TruckFarmer55's Avatar
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    Log Splitter

    I've been shopping for log splitter lately. I'll be buying my own house soon I hope, as does my fiance. And we would heat with wood. My mom's house also is wood heat and so is my grandpa's. Between the three we have about five different splitting mauls. I don't think I'll have the time to split for two houses and my grandpa is starting to feel age. Currently I have seen Dirty Hand Tools, Countyline, Yardmax and Brute brand log splitters. I think the Yardmax offers the most. We cut and burn everything from the branches to 36" diameter logs. Our furnace takes up to 26" logs but I normally cut them 20-22. I've read that 25-27 tons of capacity is alright for what I do. Or would a 30 ton be better? Thanks in advance.
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    From what I read in my limited search, it depends quite a bit on the type of wood you split.
    If its all softwood, lower tonnage will work great, if its all hardwood, youll need bigger.
    Several of the brands are the same splitter, just rebranded.

    I can say that where I live, I deal with a lot of Ash. My neighbor has loan of an old 22 ton MTD/Yardman? type splitter, and its been well used. It works fine. We split a couple 36" pieces last year just to see what it would do. It took a bit, but it split it.
    For me, and what Im splitting, I know the splitter in your range would work just fine.

    Something else to consider too, is the speed at which it works. I learned that in my search too, but found that info over on arboristforum.
    Find a good site where people process wood and youll get a good idea of what works and what doesnt, and whats overkill.

    I never went any further than that, because I dont use wood for heat except for emergencies. Around here, its just for fun. Splitting by hand is good exercise, but taxing if you have to do a lot of it, and in my case, a lot of what I split gets given away to friends, and thats not fun work, lol. I revisit the splitter thing every time I break out the maul, but have yet to do anything. Im waiting on a smoking deal on a used one to pop up I guess.
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    TruckFarmer55's Avatar
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    Thank you. We cut maple, a lot of ash, some poplar and cherry. Rarely ever do we do oak.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TruckFarmer55 View Post
    Thank you. We cut maple, a lot of ash, some poplar and cherry. Rarely ever do we do oak.
    I'm in CT and I cut those woods along with a bunch of oak. I will say sometimes maple can be harder to split than some oak.In the past, I've borrowed an older 27 ton Yard Machines and a 34 ton Ariens. There were significant differences in splitting capability. From that point I knew I wanted a bigger splitter.

    A few months ago I just purchased a 37 ton NorthStar (from Northern Tool) and I couldn't be happier. I've tried green oak and maple and haven't had any issues. Adding the 4-way wedge also has sped up the process. I'm a big fan of going stronger, that way there won't be any issues down the road. NorthStar is another brand to consider. The splitter is definitely overbuilt and well made.

    https://www.northerntool.com/shop/to...9183_200629183
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    Here in NW Missouri we have hardwood—black walnut, Osage orange, oak and maple. The Harbor Freight 20 ton does a great job...much better than my old 27 ton splitter. It splits in both directions—a feature that once you’ve used, you’ll never go back. I’ve never run into a log it will not split—including some cottonwood over 30”.

    For the price (20-25% off depending on the coupon used, so under $700) this is one amazing splitter. As noted, it performs better than the old 27 ton unit and is much quicker, quiter and easier on fuel. I’m not a HF fan, but this splitter is a purchase that I’m glad I made.

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    TruckFarmer55's Avatar
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    Northstar is the other brand I heard was good. Top of the list that I saw.

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    I have a NorthStar, think it's a 24 ton. I think anything from 22-27 ton will work for what you are doing. I considered the Dirty Hands but went with the North Star. I think the big thing to consider besides the splitting tonnage is the engine and then the cycle speed. I went with a Honda engine. Yes, you will pay more but I bet that Honda outlasts the entire log splitter and maybe the operator. I really like the easy one or two pulls to get it started. The cycle time was also fairly quick if I remember on the North Star. I also like the little trays for the split log to rest on as opposed to just falling off the splitter.

    To be honest I bought too nice of a splitter for what I use it for. If I was going to use it every day then it was the right one. For the occasional use like I have then it's way too much splitter. I should have bought the Dirty Hands or TSC house brand.

    As far as splitting mauls or axes I recommend you consider this X27 Super Splitting Axe (36")

    It works really well. My 13 year old (at the time) was able to use it with ease on oak whereas my traditional splitting maul pretty much owned him.
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    I have used large hydraulic splitters in the past. Lots of power, I think it could split a log in half across the Grain!!

    When it came time for me to get a splitter I went with and Electric (cause the power is free for me, Solar panels) and it was very fast.
    Check into Super Split, they make an electric and a gas powered one and its made in America.

    Not the Best choice for many but it works well for me. I heat exclusively with wood. 3 cords/year to heat our 2700sq ft house.
    I burn mostly shagbark hickory and sugar maple. I leave Poplar (aspen) and soft maples to rot as they contain less heat.
    I cut only live trees, split and stack right away. The only issue I have is on really bad crotches. I have come to the point if I cut a tree with a 3 or 4 way crotch I cut around the crotch and leave it in the woods. I tend to cut mostly smaller trees (under 18") and cut to 16" length.

    Just another option.
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    Quote Originally Posted by scarps65 View Post
    I'm in CT and I cut those woods along with a bunch of oak. I will say sometimes maple can be harder to split than some oak.In the past, I've borrowed an older 27 ton Yard Machines and a 34 ton Ariens. There were significant differences in splitting capability. From that point I knew I wanted a bigger splitter.

    A few months ago I just purchased a 37 ton NorthStar (from Northern Tool) and I couldn't be happier. I've tried green oak and maple and haven't had any issues. Adding the 4-way wedge also has sped up the process. I'm a big fan of going stronger, that way there won't be any issues down the road. NorthStar is another brand to consider. The splitter is definitely overbuilt and well made.

    https://www.northerntool.com/shop/to...9183_200629183
    Do you notice an increased speed over the smaller ton unit or just the power?

    Im curious as Ive read before where some of the higher rated units have a much longer cycle time. I dont have personal experience with it, but from what I read and was told on another forum, I discounted those from my search. Price wise, they dont seem to be too much more, and I too generally thought that a higher rated unit would perform better.
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    Quote Originally Posted by scarps65 View Post
    I'm in CT and I cut those woods along with a bunch of oak. I will say sometimes maple can be harder to split than some oak.In the past, I've borrowed an older 27 ton Yard Machines and a 34 ton Ariens. There were significant differences in splitting capability. From that point I knew I wanted a bigger splitter.

    A few months ago I just purchased a 37 ton NorthStar (from Northern Tool) and I couldn't be happier. I've tried green oak and maple and haven't had any issues. Adding the 4-way wedge also has sped up the process. I'm a big fan of going stronger, that way there won't be any issues down the road. NorthStar is another brand to consider. The splitter is definitely overbuilt and well made.

    https://www.northerntool.com/shop/to...9183_200629183
    Quote Originally Posted by IndianaJim View Post
    Do you notice an increased speed over the smaller ton unit or just the power?

    Im curious as Ive read before where some of the higher rated units have a much longer cycle time. I dont have personal experience with it, but from what I read and was told on another forum, I discounted those from my search. Price wise, they dont seem to be too much more, and I too generally thought that a higher rated unit would perform better.
    I'm coming up on getting a new splitter as well and was curious like IndianaJim as to the speed of the 37T Northstar.
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