The Forestry Forum

General Forestry => Firewood and Wood Heating => Topic started by: Cruiser_79 on February 15, 2021, 08:37:14 AM

Title: Skidsteer splitter
Post by: Cruiser_79 on February 15, 2021, 08:37:14 AM
I split most of my firewood with a Wematik kinetic splitter. That works quite fast, I am satisfied with that little machine. But when I have large diameter logs that are too short or too bad for my mill, I don't like to lift them on my splitter. So I was thinking of building a basic skidsteer splitter. But in my case not a skidsteer, but telehandler/frontloader/wheelloader or forklift splitter since I dont have a skidsteer  :D 

I was thinking of making an Eastonmade style splitter, with the (adjustable) wedge on the end. In this way I can change between a single wedge and a 4,6 or 8 way wedge. And if I make multiple attachment couplers I can use it on the wheelloader or excavator for example.
Are there people who built such a splitter their self? If yes, what size I beams and thickness of wedges should I take approximately? Was thinking of an HEB beam of 10'' high and wide, and flanges of 9/16''.  Wedges I would make from 9/16 as well. Too thin or way too heavy?

I hope I can saw 3 15'' blocks, pick them up and split them in one stroke above a trailer or box. That would be quite efficiŽnt. 
Title: Re: Skidsteer splitter
Post by: stavebuyer on February 15, 2021, 10:55:32 AM
I have one I bought for reducing big blocks. I had a cheapo horizontal/vertical splitter but you still had to wrangle the big blocks up to it. I managed to throw out a shoulder on 40" oak block trying to hold it up tight with one arm and work the valve with the other so I bought a SS mounted attachment with a 30" stroke . The one I bought has single and 4 way wedges. I only used the 4-way one time. The big blocks I needed the unit for were not going to be quartered evenly as the bottom  of the wedge would be more like a radius rather than the diameter. Not all the split pieces would clear the 4-way and you couldn't adjust it very handily.

Using the single wedge worked as expected but its still slow and awkward compared to other alternatives once you have the blocks down to a size you can manage with a conventional production splitter.  Much faster than noodling with a chainsaw or back surgery from wrestling them to a vertical splitter. I think splitting into a trailer would be a disaster.

I used mine on the SS, small articulated loader, and bought a 3pt ss adapter plate to use it on the back of my compact tractor. Works fine on all 3 machines. Well worth buying to reduce large blocks to manageable size. For a regular production on blocks you whittle away on your kinetic not so much.

Title: Re: Skidsteer splitter
Post by: Cruiser_79 on February 15, 2021, 03:18:10 PM
I have one I bought for reducing big blocks. I had a cheapo horizontal/vertical splitter but you still had to wrangle the big blocks up to it. I managed to throw out a shoulder on 40" oak block trying to hold it up tight with one arm and work the valve with the other so I bought a SS mounted attachment with a 30" stroke . The one I bought has single and 4 way wedges. I only used the 4-way one time. The big blocks I needed the unit for were not going to be quartered evenly as the bottom  of the wedge would be more like a radius rather than the diameter. Not all the split pieces would clear the 4-way and you couldn't adjust it very handily.
For me it would be for the big blocks only. Smaller stuff I split with my kinetic splitter quite fast. And I don't like to get big blocks on the splitter with a forklift or loader. My splitter is too light duty for those blocks. And why don't split with the loader instead of lifting blocks on the splitter was what I thought. I think I will hang the wedge 'loose' at the end of the splitter. Than I can adjust the wedge by lowering the beam towards the ground, the wedge will touch the ground and adjust in that way. 
Title: Re: Skidsteer splitter
Post by: Ivan49 on February 15, 2021, 07:17:53 PM
I have never built one but know of some that have. Make every thing at least 2 times heaver than yo think you need. Saves a lot  of repairs that way. The one guy as splitting red oak 21/2 to 3 foot dia and it made a twisted mess out  of his first try
Title: Re: Skidsteer splitter
Post by: BrushSaw on March 01, 2021, 09:44:44 PM
I didnt build one... but I did take a tractor 3 point splitter, and converted it to skid steer quick attach. Took the unnecessary 3 pt stuff off, turned it upside down and welded it to a plate. It's not as beefy or fancy as the high end commercial skid splitters, but I'm into it for $300.


(https://forestryforum.com/gallery/albums/userpics/58671/Snapchat-1078788508.jpg?easyrotate_cache=1614653058)


Ps. The pic was the initial test run as none of that wood really needed splitting for my owb. I only made it so I could split big hogs for the boiler without handling them. So far no cracks or repairs necessary.
Title: Re: Skidsteer splitter
Post by: Upstatewoodchuc on March 17, 2021, 06:13:10 AM
The skidsteer or tractor mount ones can be had pretty cheap brand new, like 1900-3200 range, but if you're like me and like building stuff the one piece of advice I have is ask any of your friends in tree service for old discarded chipper knives when thwy change them. The knives happen to be the perfect material and thing to make 4 or 6 way wedges from, you just miter them where they will be welded to the main wedge and boom, done. Just be sure to put the angled edge so it forces pieces away from the I beam instead of into lol.
Title: Re: Skidsteer splitter
Post by: GRANITEstateMP on March 20, 2021, 06:48:18 PM
just as stavebuyer said, we bought ours to help reduce the oversized rounds.  We use the BlueDiamond to break the big rounds down to manageable size then finish them off on the regular splitter
(https://forestryforum.com/gallery/albums/userpics/18262/IMG_20200531_083835.jpg?easyrotate_cache=1590969057)
I want to say this unit was almost double the weight of the comparable Wallenstein unit.  That w
as a selling point for me


(https://forestryforum.com/gallery/albums/userpics/18262/IMG_20200531_094743.jpg?easyrotate_cache=1590969055)
 piling up some bigger split rounds to finish them on the regular splitter
(https://forestryforum.com/gallery/albums/userpics/18262/IMG_20200531_094723.jpg?easyrotate_cache=1590969057)
 you can see we've tried to improve work flow as best as possible. Buck the big stuff in one area, leave enough room for the skid steer to do it's thing, then transport while splitting the bigger rounds. Finish splitting in the shade, cause it was wayyyy to hot to work in full sun!
Title: Re: Skidsteer splitter
Post by: mike_belben on March 21, 2021, 10:18:42 AM
Looks like you could really benefit from some hoppers for skid steer forks.  Toss the pieces in and not need to pick them again later.  


IBC tote baskets could easily be cut and modified into a good tip hopper with some fence wire inside and chains to hold it to the rack.  I ought to look for a few.
Title: Re: Skidsteer splitter
Post by: GRANITEstateMP on March 21, 2021, 10:35:55 AM
Mike, most of it needs to be resplit off the skidsteer, unless we're doing boiler wood. We make a big pile near and onto the brow, and then it goes across the small splitter. Usually right into a dump trailer. This load was mine so we just split it into a pile to be stacked later... when it wasn't so hot (last summer)