If this is your first visit, be sure to check out the FAQ by clicking the link above. I have been suddenly seized by an irrational desire to build a screw splitter for my old 8n tractor (which doesn’t have enough output to run a hydraulic splitter) using one of those conical screw splitter heads that bolt on to a rear axle in place of the wheel. But that petrol driven one in the video with the neat bench should be OK. The wood can’t spin as the base on the bench stops it, and it also has a vertical blade support as well.
I saw one made but it required a taper turning attatchment, the tool was a HSS bit in a holder, 60 degree with side rake, normal screw cutting tool, single pointed the thread, it was a big pitch though, or should i say small if you know what i mean ! The thing that I liked about it (having looked at loads of videos) is the speed and how it will accept strange shaped wood.
I have built several hydraulic ram type splitters over the years and if you understand the basic math and mechanics its rather easy to build one and most parts are cheap if you don’t mind doing a bit of farm and industrial auction searching. To use one of these splitters, the user lifts up a small weight that is on a track, and then thrusts it down, where it hits a wedge and drives into the wood.
Following an interesting series of links I came across this pic on ebay and I haven’t found the manufacturer. Our wood grain is not always well behaved enough for an easy hand-split, so I end up with a bunch of pieces that won’t fit in the stove until I rent or borrow a hydraulic splitter. I have used it to good avail, splitting two tons of near root wood popular, that I simply couldn’t get through by my wedges, axe or Swedish manual splitter.
I do think splitting whole log lengths of say 4-8ft – essentially long riving could make great sense, but only on clear lumber – i’ve done so on ash logs of about 6′ with an axe – then you buck with a chainsaw and they are pre-spit – just come right apart. Making up what it would take to split wood that way in a safe fasion would be more work than building a good splitter, which you could power from the backhoe’s hydraulics. A sliding deck would allow the user to move the log into the screw using only his arms, rather than his full weight.
That said, if you’re interested in wood splitters it’s probably because you’re tired of the hard work and time it takes to chop wood with an first type of manual log splitter looks a lot like some of the common gas or electric ones. I agree that the tough part of hand splitting is the bending over & resetting the log. My brother in law has a hydraulic log splitter (ram and wedge type) that mounts to the 3pth. It is not the best splitter for big blocks of wood but on wood you only need to split once or twice there is nothing faster. The non-electric versions can be used remotely where the splitter can be moved to the location of the cut wood source.