Log Splitter Machines
Log splitting machines have been in use for decades. Standard log splitters typically include a stationary support frame that supports a hydraulic cylinder and a cooperating splitting wedge. Generally talking, splitting of wood occurs by inducing the splitting wedge to be forced through the wood, applying the force of the hydraulic cylinder. The splitting wedge is fixed to the supporting frame in a fixed wedge, and the log is pressed into the splitting wedge. In use, a log is put in the appropriate position and is forcibly driven against the stationary splitting wedge by force generated when the hydraulic cylinder is increased. This requires action or sliding of the log to create the desired split. This required movement inevitably requires that this type of splitter be placed in a horizontal manner to allow scope for the log to move past the wedge. In an alternative variant, the splitting wedge is connected to the hydraulic cylinder, which is typically connected to the support frame. In this kind of design, the log is secured in place by some type of stop, thus releasing the force of the hydraulic log splitter cylinder to force the splitting wedge into the log.
As those experienced in the art will appreciate, large amounts of hydraulic force cause splitting logs with a log splitter to be much easier. This is valid in both fixed and movable splitting wedge devices. However, as the amount of hydraulic force provided by the hydraulic cylinder increases, so does the necessary strength of the log splitter elements. Thus, large amounts of hydraulic force demand that the support frame, splitting wedge, and stop arm be constructed with sufficient strength to prevent the hydraulic force without breaking or otherwise becoming distorted.
Petrol log splitters may also be divided into two categories based on their bearings during operation: horizontal and vertical splitters. Generally talking, horizontal splitters require logs to be placed horizontal and roughly parallel to the exterior on which the log splitting machine is set. Horizontal splitters work well for more petite, lighter pieces of wood. However, horizontal splitters can be awkward to use when splitting large, heavy items of wood. Workers must lift heavy and different shaped logs to position them in horizontal splitters. This produces safety hazards to operators as well as wastefulness in the splitting process. All fixed wedge splitters must operate in the horizontal position to allow space for the log to exit past the wedge.
Popular horizontal-type log splitter designs are often large and bulky, making them hard to both transport and store when not in employment. The configuration of the tractor log splitters themselves has traditionally directed size requirements. In the fixed wedge and movable wedge models, a deliberate “splitting zone” is required to have a certain distance. Naturally, the cylinder must be placed to accommodate travel within the splitting zone. The length of the splitting zone and the portion of the cylinder, when added together, need the splitter to be quite long, thus being challenging to handle. In addition, post-manufacture shipment of those log splitters to retail areas and the like is awkward and expensive due to their size and shape. For example, most contemporary horizontal-type log splitters are too big to be shipped on a standard size pallet. Thus, compact log splitters that are sized to meet the size requirements of a standard pallet during transportation would be highly desirable.