When you have land that needs to be cleared or you have a fireplace that requires regular cut timber you are probably use to the burden that is swinging an axe. Or you maybe currently using a saw to take down the trees and then swing the axe to cut them into pieces. If so, you’ve probably heard that there is a better way to do this mundane task and know want to know how does a electric log splitter work and will it do the job for you?
Anyone that remembers news reports showing the former President Bush Jr. cutting pieces of wood may have thought wow, that looks like great exercise. Anyone who has cut wood with an axe certainly knows that it is fantastic exercise. If you want to get strong hands, arms and forearms you will do well by cutting lots of wood with an axe.
But in addition to those muscles you are building, you’ll also find there comes a lot of blisters and aches and pains. After many years swinging an axe/maul, the old back starts to give way. So much so that the thought of moving to a warmer climate has creeped into the mind. Stop, this is not the answer. By using a quality electric log splitter you are doing the longevity of your back a well deserved service.
Another problem is the amount of time that it takes to cut wood with an axe. For many people who have the need to cut wood in such a way might be well served by getting themselves an electric log splitter.
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What Size Electric Log Splitter Do I Need?
An electric log splitter is best suited to the home fire place and not for commercial use. So it is safe to say that a lot of Americans could easily get by with these Electric models. Here you can find the best electric log splitters for the home. These models will be suitable for most people that prefer to use an electric model over a more powerful gas model.
While most logs can be cut by an electric log splitter (Within reason), we have listed a few of the more common wood used for firewood and what rating log splitter is best suited. For this table, the average cord is 128 cubic feet of stacked wood.
Electric Log Splitter Buyers Guide
|Maple||Pine||Western red cedar||Oak|
|6 Inch Diameter||7 Ton Minimum||6 Ton Minimum||6 Ton Minimum||10 Ton|
|12 Inch Diameter||20 Ton||15 Ton||15 Ton+||22 Ton|
|Hardness Rating||1450 Lbs||860 Lbs||900 (Cedar)||1620 Lbs|
|Heat Value - Gallons Fuel Oil Per Cord||150-250||100-150||100-150||200 - 250|
How Electric Log Splitters Work
An electrically powered log splitter works very similar to the way an individual would cut the wood using an axe. The only difference is that the cutting action is powered by electricity rather than by a person’s physical exertion. There are two types of motions that splitters use and which one yours will use depends on the model you choose. The first type will push the log into and through a blade. The second type will swing a blade at the log splitting it into 2 pieces.
Using an electrically powered splitter means that almost anyone, regardless of size or gender, can easily cut the wood. It is simply a matter of placing it or positioning it onto the splitter and then turning the machine on. The machine will do all the work itself so that the only exertion an individual is making is picking up and placing the piece of wood onto the machine.
The Specifics Of A Typical Electric Powered Log Splitter
Commonly, this type of log splitter will come with a 24-inch long hydraulic cylinder that is 4 inches in diameter. It will generally contain a three and a half gallon hydraulic oil tank and have a 2 stage hydraulic oil pump. Most typically it will be rated for 11 gallons per minute, max. They are powered by a 5 horsepower electric motor.
Having a 2 stage hydraulic pump is great for saving time. It has an internal pressure valve and 2 pumping sections. One of the sections is used to pump at a low pressure which pulls the piston back after the log has been split. That action doesn’t require a tremendous amount of force. It’s when the piston is pushing the log through the blade to split it that it will use the most force. Because flow rate is not so much of a concern during this action, the pump simply switches to high pressure to split the log.
For an average homeowner, the horizontal splitters work perfectly. They are far less expensive than other types of splitters and in most situations, for an average homeowner, the logs are not huge and so this type will do a very nice job. These produce smaller pieces which are often ideal for burning in the fireplace.
This type is better suited for logs of different sizes, in particular large knot filled logs. If you have a situation where you’re cutting small, medium, and large logs then this might be the right choice for you. This type of splitter will cost more than the one above and is often used by professional loggers. There isn’t a huge selection when it comes to electric vertical log splitters, but we have found the Swisher 22 Ton Electric Vertical Splitter to be the best of the limited selection. The vertical mode is when a splitter can be transformed into a up and down machine rather than left ot right scenario. So you put the log on the base of the splitter which is on the ground. Force down with the electric blade to split the wood. If you have a small tree removal service and you remove trees and other debris than this could be a suitable choice.
Cost And Risk
Anyone who has a reason for splitting logs may benefit from this type of splitter. Those who have back pain or shoulder issues and who find that splitting wood with an axe is unbearable, then an electric splitter is a great choice. It should be noted, however, that like with any type of heavy machinery there are dangers when using this type of tool. Anyone who is not careful when using this machinery can suffer serious injuries. These are the basics for how electric log splitters work.