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Split green wood or seasoned

Discussion in 'Firewood, Heating and Wood Burning Equipment' started by Jensent, Sep 7, 2010.

  1. Jensent

    Jensent ArboristSite Member

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    Do you find it easier to split wood with a splitting axe when it is green or when it has seasoned?
    Thanks
    Tom
     
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  2. burroak

    burroak ArboristSite Operative

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    I've found ash and oak is easier to split by hand when seasoned.
     
  3. Mike PA

    Mike PA AboristSite Guru

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    I think wood is generally easier to split when seasoned because the wood fibers break more easily when dry.
     
  4. Iska3

    Iska3 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    For many years we would always split our wood when it was fresh cut or when it was below zero for a week or more. I used an axe for many years and it seems like the oak would split best on the fresh cut side. There was a time when we would cut our wood 32 inches long and let them age for a year and later cut them to 16 inches so we had a fresh cut side. We just split about three cords of oak that was cut last year and I find it to be full of strings and harder to split even with the splitter.. The fresh cut oak pops right in half.. Some 30 years ago we ran a new fence for the cows; all our fence post were oak and most were split in two (by hand). All were fresh cut right out of the woods. just .02
     
  5. Laird

    Laird Nemo me impune lacessit

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    My personal experience leads me to believe that green wood is easier to split than seasoned. There is no doubt in my mind that green Hickory and Beech are easier to split than after they have dried even partially.
     
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  6. angelo c

    angelo c Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I find fresh oak, maple, ash and cherry to be easier when green. That's most of what we get round these parts. I split some by hand for Chits and Giggles and mostly w/my SuperSplit. The Super defintely prefers green. I find if the wood isn't splitting much the way I'm going I set that round off for a few weeks then come back at it and I get through it better. Something happens to the grains/knots.
     
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  7. jhoff310

    jhoff310 AboristSite Guru

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    I split by hand, and I think its easier to split when its green. I do have access to a splitter if I run into a few bastard pieces but I havent had any problems splitting green wood.

    Jeff
     
  8. slofr8

    slofr8 ArboristSite Operative

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    I like it green.
    Iska3 said,
    "For many years we would always split our wood when it was fresh cut or when it was below zero for a week or more."
    And I have found this to be true. Even a couple nights of temps. in the teens can make a big difference.
    Dan.
     
  9. pipehead

    pipehead Farticus Maximus

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    Softwood can be difficult to split when it's green. It's like splitting a block of cheese.
     
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  10. iowawoodcutter

    iowawoodcutter ArboristSite Operative

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    I like to split my oak when it is green and when it is well below freezing...
     
  11. alleyyooper

    alleyyooper AboristSite Guru

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    Dry seasoned or green I like frozen best. Even the seasoned stuff has moinsture in it that freezes up and makes most hand spliting a easy chore.

    :D Al
     
  12. biggenius29

    biggenius29 Banned

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    What about Elm, is easyer when it is dryed up for a year, or fresh?

    (I hope it is fine after it sat for about a year...) I have some that I havent had a chance to get at yet.
     
  13. ray benson

    ray benson Tree Freak

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    When splitting by hand it's nice to have natural cracks.
     
  14. savageactor7

    savageactor7 AboristSite Guru

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    Back when I was splitting by hand we'd split it all soon after it was cut into rounds. And that was that...whatever way split easier didn't make a difference.

    The overall plan to lessen the times you handled wood had 1st priority. Not say'en one way is better than the other that's just the way I was schooled.
     
  15. CTYank

    CTYank Have saws, will travel

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    Don't know what you mean by "splitting axe" because "axe" to me means a hardened (carbon) steel, acute angle _cutting_ tool. I've known very experienced woodmen to suffer horrible injury from axes, like when they hit on the near-side, pop right through, and hit the lower leg.
    A "maul" on the other hand, is a mild-steel, relatively fat-cheeked, _splitting_ tool, and evolved for that purpose over time. It is much more efficient at converting kinetic energy into spreading fibers.
    IMHO, 6 lb works best. Forks and knots may require prep with chainsaw.
     
  16. Jensent

    Jensent ArboristSite Member

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    CTYank
    A splitting axe is a tool designed for splitting wood. Use the search feature on this site for info. Google "Splitting Axe" and you will find that Fiskers, Granfors Bruks, Stihl, Oxhead Iltis, Mueller,Wetterling and others market splitting axes. The splitting axe is usually lighter than a splitting maul thus allowing an individual to swing it faster than the heavy maul making the splitting axe more efficent than the maul. Kinetic energy increases exponentially as velocity increases. That is not to say that the splitting axe always out-performs the maul. It is just easier to use the axe over a given time period.
    Tom
     
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  17. CTYank

    CTYank Have saws, will travel

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    Just noticed this response. Nonsense. Such lighter toys are hardly more "efficient", just lighter. "Increases exponentially" is pure BS- it's a simple quadratic function of speed, and as mass decreases it's inverse.

    IMHO, a "splitting axe" is good for kindling & such, and campfire wood; I sincerely doubt it EVER out-performs a real maul. Most especially a well-shaped and forged maul. (Read Gransfors, Muller, et al) Not HD specials. (Read some reviews, like of Gransfors on Amazon.)

    Recently arrived here is a 3kg Muller maul from S. Austria. Lets me bust, for example, 16" oak rounds often in one shot. At $150, price is comparable to $50-something for mass-produced blue-light specials. Quality is obvious. It's really a delight to use, and has very much sped up production here.
     
  18. Jensent

    Jensent ArboristSite Member

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    You obviously don't know the difference between a felling axe and a splitting axe which is designed to split wood safely.
    Tom
     
  19. Jeremy102579

    Jeremy102579 ArboristSite Operative

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  20. CRThomas

    CRThomas AboristSite Guru

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    I split my wood as soon as I get it that way all my drying problems are solved. A goo splitter don't know if it's green or dry. As long as you don't tell it what your splitting. Trying to be funny. Bad day to day broke a hydro hose on my hydro saw. That stuff is hot. Later
     

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