As winter draws in, those of us with a wood burning stove or an open fire will be looking at our log piles and starting to plan on splitting up our large logs, ready to use.
Traditionally large axes have been used, and this is fine if you only have to split small numbers of logs. A splitter axe is purpose made for this task, with a thicker blade than a normal felling axe and a large area behind the blade than can be struck with a sledge hammer if needed to force the blade through the log. A "log grenade” is also a handy little tool for this task, tap the end into a log and then strike it with a heavy hammer and the wedge will split the log in two!
For more heavy duty logs or if you are splitting larger quantities, a mechanised splitter will be the best choice. These can be either manually driven, or powered, either electrically or by a petrol engine.
The manual variety will usually use a ratcheted pedal, which, when pumped, will push the log onto a fixed splitting blade. As they require no external power, they can be used anywhere. Manual splitters have a smaller capacity as they are driven by us and not a motor.
Powered log splitters are for those amongst us who have access to larger quantities of logs, they can be powered by either an electrical motor, or petrol driven one.
These machines have a larger capacity to handle bigger logs, the amount of force they can produce to split the logs can reach up to eight tonnes and they will be able to split virtually any log that will fit into them.