Saturday, February 06, 2010
Oh, for the sunny south (not that it is so sunny right now). I had taken the precaution of packing the Chief in a crate and shipping him south by air earlier this week, and he indignantly reports that it is very wet - too wet to golf. So he is not gettin' any of anything, if you know what I mean. Well, it is his own fault, because he was making noises about splitting firewood. I had to hide the firewood splitting thingie. And I needed firewood.
Yesterday I unearthed the firewood splitting thingie and split a good deal just in case the power went out. There are few things that make you feel better than splitting firewood, so yesterday between the employment report and the firewood I was in a good mood. Which has since waned, given the weather and the fact that it is supposed to snow next week again and then again next weekend, which will be Valentine's Day, which I will spend alone save with a grumpy, forlorn bulldog.
After considering the totality of the circumstances (deep snow, no man, grumpy bulldog) clearly there is only one thing to do:
We burn around 8 to 10 cords of wood in each firing lasting roughly a cord per day. This is a community style firing so each artist does a certain amount of work including finding fallen tree's, cutting out suitable rounds and many hours spent on the log splitter thingie as you call it. I could note imagine doing this process without the log splitter thingie!!!!!
But 8 cords of wood is a lot of wood!! You need the hydraulic splitter for that type of production. Or a very, very strong back.
I swear you feel almost as good afterwards as if you had had sex.
An overland relief expedition from a local station (Christmas cookies and I've done a few favors) arrived and did the worst of it.
I'm still tired and cold. I'm getting a bit old for this.
The thing is, its handle is shorter than most splitting tools, so the first few times you swing it, you need to measure the swing carefully. I didn't, and have an interesting scar on my shin thereby.
You're right about the feeling after splitting a pile of wood. It's just not the same with a hydraulic splitter.
I also think a nice crackling wood fire is a mood elevator. My wife reports she feels better when there's a fire going.
Hmm. Gordon, it looks a mite dangerous. I kind of like the longer handles.
Yes, it's forged carbon steel with a fiber-reinforced plastic handle that won't break no matter how bad you abuse it. Mine is the 2400 Power Axe; there's a 7854 that has a head that's one pound heavier. It comes with a plastic guard that snaps around the head for storage.
Most handles seem to run about 32", and this one is 28", so, as I wrote before, you need to measure your swing carefully the first few times.
The heads have a teflon coating so they don't stick to the wood. I've never sharpened mine (hasn't needed it) but some folks like to do that, and Fiskars sells a sharpener that does a fast and good job.
All I can say is that this thing puts all your power into the head at the right moment to explode the wood. I've split 16" diameter (green) red oak with it. Unlike bare steel heads, this one doesn't get stuck if you don't go all the way through on the first strike. And if you misstrike, your hands won't hurt the way they do with a hickory handle.
You will split more wood with MUCH less effort than anything I've used before. I've had guys sneer at it because it's so light, but once they've swung it a couple of times and felt the way it transfers the power into the log, they get hooked and I get to sit back and watch them do it.
None of us are getting any younger, and I'm not too proud to park the old hickory-handled maul in favor of this little baby. You won't be sorry.
You certainly know you've split wood once you've used it, let me tell you. Gordon's Fiskar's-thingy is tempting.
The 28" handle on the Fiskars works well for me because I have a peculiar condition that causes loss of accurate control on the downswing. The doctors call it clumsiness.