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Firewood Processor Recommendations

Case1030

Case1030

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Hello, I'm looking for some recommendations on reliable wood processor brands that are capable of cutting/splitting up to 17inch diameter logs, and an output conveyor.

For simplicity sake only looking at hydraulic bar, not circular models.

Thanks in advance to any members that are able to help!
 
Ted Jenkins

Ted Jenkins

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For the kind of money you are referring to you should go to the dealer or site and have it demonstrated. What I need and want can not be purchased so some what building what I need. You might be able to have some thing modified to your exact specs. Thanks
 
Case1030

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For the kind of money you are referring to you should go to the dealer or site and have it demonstrated. What I need and want can not be purchased so some what building what I need. You might be able to have some thing modified to your exact specs. Thanks
A palax ks45 would work for these specs. I'm willing to buy used to get what I want. 15-30k is my budget. Just don't want to be disappointed after paying that amount.
 
cantoo

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I have a Wallenstein processor but don't use it a lot. I have some pictures of it posted here if you search a bit. Cuts max of 18" I have a 6 way on it. I usually cut less than 14" so the 6 way splits a little too small. It saves wear and tear on the body but isn't a speed demon. I also have a homemade 36" splitter with a hydraulic adjusted 4 way wedge on it and I feel it's faster but a lot more muscle work.
https://www.wallensteinequipment.com/ca/en/model/wp1624
 
Sandhill Crane

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A palax ks45 would work for these specs. I'm willing to buy used to get what I want. 15-30k is my budget. Just don't want to be disappointed after paying that amount.
What are your expectations of a processor?

And, what is the point of a processor if re-splitting is required?

Edit: Take a look at the Eastonmade splitter w/box wedge and pull back arm. They also offer a pintle hitch option for connecting a conveyor for moving within the wood lot as a single set.
 
Case1030

Case1030

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What are your expectations of a processor?

And, what is the point of a processor if re-splitting is required?

Edit: Take a look at the Eastonmade splitter w/box wedge and pull back arm. They also offer a pintle hitch option for connecting a conveyor for moving within the wood lot as a single set.
The main issue I'm dealing with is I cannot keep up with firewood demand. By hand it's really becoming a PITA bending over and trying to dummy an 18inch log onto a splitter... which is fine at first just not after a few 8 hour days.

The trees I have average 16 inchs (with the odd 18-20 inch. Splitting 6 ways on an 18-20 log may need resplitting but at least it's not a huge round.

I have a lineup on a cord king with a 24inch bar capable of processing 20 inch logs. It has a live 12 foot infeed table to avoid trying to play around with logs.

All I expect from a processor is to limit the amount of times I need to handle logs, while increasing productivity. Sure it's not be all end all... but with majority of my logs being 16 inch split 6 ways that will help alot. I already have a loader with forks so other than purchasing a processor that should be it.

Ontop of that a conveyor into my end dump will also increase efficiency.
 
cantoo

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Wallenstein.
 

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Sandhill Crane

Sandhill Crane

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By hand it's really becoming a PITA bending over and trying to dummy an 18inch log onto a splitter... which is fine at first just not after a few 8 hour days.
I get that.
I built some make shift log decks to cut on.
Last spring I decked one over completely to handle short pieces and larger logs, so as to noodle them without dropping the halves on the ground.
IMG_1832.jpg IMG_0592.jpg IMG_7979.jpg IMG_8118.jpg IMG_0084.jpg 58800488096__E06709CF-DEB3-4DC2-857E-331E65246B96.jpg IMG_0589.jpg
 
Case1030

Case1030

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That's a decent setup both of you have.

Being that I will be bucking and trimming all of my logs. I want to limit the labor to just that. I will be using my loader with bale forks to load all logs onto the table. That is all I am willing to do now. I hope to buck/ process atleast 8 cords per day which would normally take me many days. Labor+time is money... I can only count on my self.
 
CentaurG2

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Not trying to discourage you but we used to run a 3 man crew on a top of the line cord king and if we managed 10 cords a day without a major break down, it was a good day. This included a log truck to load the live deck and a front end loader to remove debris. The build quality on a cord king is marginal at best. I think your 8 cord a day goal is very optimistic.
 
Case1030

Case1030

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Not trying to discourage you but we used to run a 3 man crew on a top of the line cord king and if we managed 10 cords a day without a major break down, it was a good day. This included a log truck to load the live deck and a front end loader to remove debris. The build quality on a cord king is marginal at best. I think your 8 cord a day goal is very optimistic.
Well there should be no problem if the logs are stacked beside the processor that I can't do at least 1 cord per hour. I dont think that's being overly optimistic being that the machine in rated at 1.5 - 2 cords per hour.

I'm going to be loading 12 foot logs about 16 inch diameter very straight. Also I'm not trying to defend cord king... but there equpitment is very simple, not much to go wrong. I'v heard the circular saw models having issues but not the bar and chain.

I'll make a detailed report after a month of operation. You very well could be right. I'm going to have 15 chains on standby sharp as a razor, sounds like limiting downtime is a huge step to getting proper production by the sounds of it.
 
rancher2

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I am looking forward to see what type of processor you can buy for 15 to 30 K that will run 8 cord a day for days on end. Making firewood is tough on equipment. I know when I was looking for a processor in that price range it was tough to find something that would process the kind of wood we were wanting to run.
 
Case1030

Case1030

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I am looking forward to see what type of processor you can buy for 15 to 30 K that will run 8 cord a day for days on end. Making firewood is tough on equipment. I know when I was looking for a processor in that price range it was tough to find something that would process the kind of wood we were wanting to run.
I will keep you updated. There have been a few reviews on these 1820 cord kings. All are in line with each other saying 1 cord per hour with single operator. If there is another guy loading the production can be doubled to 2 cords. Remember I'm buying used, new these machines are 40k.

Manufactures always over exaggerat production amount, so if they say 1.5 -2 cords per hour I lower my expectation to 1 cord per hour which I find fairly reasonable.

I'll also be posting sometime next month a project I'm working on to convert a hay elevator to wood elevator.
 

DSW

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Manufactures always over exaggerat production amount, so if they say 1.5 -2 cords per hour I lower my expectation to 1 cord per hour which I find fairly reasonable.
That's a smart thing.
I'm sure the numbers they throw out are realistic in a perfect scenario for a limited amount of time. The longer the span, the more you get to the realistic average.
 
cantoo

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Case 1030, see if you can find a grain elevator instead of a hay elevator. I have both and the grain one is the best. I also convert mine to gas engines. I direct belt drive them and just adjust the idle for the speed and power that I want. I also keep the belt just loose enough so that when a piece jams it just slips the belt. Saves time eating break downs. This is the grain one, closer and smaller paddles. I also keep a pair of used motor oil to lube things up. Chains and the center where the paddles rub. This one is a gasser now. This is wood that I sell so you can see where I throw the punky or ant covered pieces as I split them. IMG_20180605_205631.jpg
 
Sandhill Crane

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Not trying to discourage you but we used to run a 3 man crew on a top of the line cord king and if we managed 10 cords a day without a major break down, it was a good day. This included a log truck to load the live deck and a front end loader to remove debris. The build quality on a cord king is marginal at best. I think your 8 cord a day goal is very optimistic.
How many cord per hour?
Advertising two or three cord per hour, but how many men does it take to run a processor to hit those numbers.
The above quote leads on to believe 1.25 cord/hour. 10 cord/8 hours.
A more realistic comparison would be man hours per cord, or as the math shows, cord per man hour.
Ten cord, three men, assuming eight hours.
10/3=3.33 cord/man
3.33/8 hours = 0.41 cord per man hours.

And this is why I have not taken a loan to purchase a processor.
It takes me four hours to do a cord.
0.25 cord per man hours using a SuperSplit wood splitter.

Percent of increased production using a processor vs SuperSplit
.25/.41 = x/100 = % increase
cross multiply
.41x = 25.00
x = 25.00/41
x = 60.97 %

Say I do 100 cord with the SuperSplit (I don't but for easy numbers)
Then in the same number of hours, a processor could do 160 cord.
Suppose there is $100. profit per cord.
60 cord x $100. = $6,000 increased income using those numbers.
Which means you would probably have to increase cords produced by 2x or 3x to make a processor a financially solid purchase.

There are other factors. Using a processor may be less hands on labor intensive, making it possible to put in more hours.
However, as volume increases the labor and hours may increase more than a simply proportional, or linear 45° angle graph.
Assume you produce ten cord in ten hours, or one cord per hour, you may not be able to do one hundred cord in 100 hours, because every eight to ten cord the machine will need to be moved from the split pile.

I have found from personal experience that smaller logs take longer, and also, large logs take more effort to physically handle. Often the largest logs I get are punky butt logs, of which I cull out before it goes up the conveyor. I still cut and split into stove size pieces and toss in a separate bin for personal stove use, which is good it gets used, but doing so takes longer to do a cord if the firewood is going in a junk pile, and not up the conveyor into the customer pile.

In short, I can't make the numbers work to finance a processor, and if I did, it would most likely create a cash flow problem to keep it fed with purchased logs.
 
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Case1030

Case1030

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Case 1030, see if you can find a grain elevator instead of a hay elevator. I have both and the grain one is the best. I also convert mine to gas engines. I direct belt drive them and just adjust the idle for the speed and power that I want. I also keep the belt just loose enough so that when a piece jams it just slips the belt. Saves time eating break downs. This is the grain one, closer and smaller paddles. I also keep a pair of used motor oil to lube things up. Chains and the center where the paddles rub. This one is a gasser now. This is wood that I sell so you can see where I throw the punky or ant covered pieces as I split them. View attachment 780475
If I can find a grain elevator that would work much better. These hay elevators are alot easier to find, I'll hold off for a bit to see what comes up.

What did you do to the hay elevator to get it to work? And would it work good enough to get the job done?
 
Case1030

Case1030

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How many cord per hour?
Advertising two or three cord per hour, but how many men does it take to run a processor to hit those numbers.
The above quote leads on to believe 1.25 cord/hour. 10 cord/8 hours.
A more realistic comparison would be man hours per cord, or as the math shows, cord per man hour.
Ten cord, three men, assuming eight hours.
10/3=3.33 cord/man
3.33/8 hours = 0.41 cord per man hours.

And this is why I have not taken a loan to purchase a processor.
It takes me four hours to do a cord.
0.25 cord per man hours using a SuperSplit wood splitter.

Percent of increased production using a processor vs SuperSplit
.25/.41 = x/100 = % increase
cross multiply
.41x = 25.00
x = 25.00/41
x = 60.97 %

Say I do 100 cord with the SuperSplit (I don't but for easy numbers)
Then in the same number of hours, a processor could do 160 cord.
Suppose there is $100. profit per cord.
60 cord x $100. = $6,000 increased income using those numbers.
Which means you would probably have to increase cords produced by 2x or 3x to make a processor a financially solid purchase.

There are other factors. Using a processor may be less hands on labor intensive, making it possible to put in more hours.
However, as volume increases the labor and hours may increase more than a simply proportional, or linear 45° angle graph.
Assume you produce ten cord in ten hours, or one cord per hour, you may not be able to do one hundred cord in 100 hours, because every eight to ten cord the machine will need to be moved from the split pile.

I have found from personal experience that smaller logs take longer, and also, large logs take more effort to physically handle. Often the largest logs I get are punky butt logs, of which I cull out before it goes up the conveyor. I still cut and split into stove size pieces and toss in a separate bin for personal stove use, which is good it gets used, but doing so takes longer to do a cord if the firewood is going in a junk pile, and not up the conveyor into the customer pile.

In short, I can't make the numbers work to finance a processor, and if I did, it would most likely create a cash flow problem to keep it fed with purchased logs.
That's understandable. I'v talked to many people about that same topic. Everyone I talked to with first hand experience says 1- cord per hour with a one guy operation (no down time). Skidsteer loading live feed table when empty. Now if there was 2 guys working at it... he could make sure the live table is always fed, dump the truck when full, and grab logs from the bush when needed if not enough to keep going for the day. Obviously production should raise at least an extra .5 cord reasonably.

I'll have the logs all stacked beside the processor. The live feed table will be able to hold about half a cord onto the live feed deck (also under estimated). (6 feet deep, 10 foot long logs, and 16 inch diameter). There will be a conveyor dumping into a 3 cord (loose 180cf) tandem grain truck. Wood will be brought 1/2 mile away into yard.

So yes emptying the truck will take time, but now I won't need to move my processor when the pile gets full.

I'm more so worried about having the conveyor working flawless than anything. The wood needs to get to the yard somehow. :laugh:

At the end of the day I won't be burnt out, and the idea is to reduce the amount of labor.

So if a single guy (without a processor) can do .25 cords per hour... your using a power saw and handling each 16 inch log individually seems reasonable. Guess it comes down to how long can a guy keep that up for?

Has anyone compared a hydraulic driven harvest bar, to a decent gas power saw? The hydraulic is about twice as fast if not more. Every thing adds up! :chainsaw:
 
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