If you burn a little firewood around your cottage, perhaps it’s your main source of heat for those chilly spring and fall nights, or maybe you just have a campfire outside in the evenings you are going to need good dry split wood, preferably hardwood.
We have always burned wood, and I have talked about wood burning stoves in previous posts, so I thought I would share just a couple of wood splitting tips I have picked up over the years.
First of all have a fairly sharp axe that will dig into the wood as opposed to bouncing off and hitting you in the leg. However, I am not as convinced as some that a razor sharp axe is required. Even razor sharp axes bounce sometimes and the idea of striking my shin with a heavy razor sharp piece of metal doesn’t turn me on. So I usually use a “fairly sharp” axe…but that is just me…besides, I can never get my axes razor sharp anyway.
But I digress. Here are the tips I really wanted to share. If you cut your wood up in the fall, leave it in the pile until winter, until it freezes up. Wood that has some frost in it will split very easily. Even the toughest of wood splits quick when it has some frost inside.
Cut your wood short. What would you prefer, having to make a few extra cuts with a chainsaw that is doing most of the work, or struggling to split a long gnarly piece that doesn’t want to cooperate. Short wood, about a foot long, splits much easier than longer chunks.
Use a Wood Splitter Maullike the one pictured. They are better than a normal axe for serious wood splitting and have the added advantage of being able to withstand some hits with a sledge hammer if you run into a particularly obstinate piece of firewood that doesn’t want to come apart easily.
Some folks swear by the wood splitting mauls with the little teeth that push out from the side to pry the wood apart. I don’t find them any better than the less elaborate splitting maul that is heavier and thicker than a camp axe.
Of course if you are a serious wood burner, and need lots of wood to heat your cottage you might just be better off to buy it already cut and split. Save yourself a lot of time and hard work.
And of course, if you are a really, I mean really serious wood burner, consider one of these Troy-Bilt 8 HP Honda OHC 33-Ton Log Splitter #24AD597D766 Perhaps you could “split” the cost with your neighbors and everyone gets their wood from it.
Use a lighter Gerber 45905 Camp Axe – Sheath – Clam for chopping kindling, in fact if you choose a light enough one, you might, like me, convince your wife to use it…..
Finally, if you want to read a cute little blog about firewood, check this out, Firewood Made Easy
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