Homestead

Hand Pumped Hydraulic Log Splitter

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Easy firewood

This log splitter ($115) was an impulse purchase at Harbor Freight, but has reliably split my knotty, gnarly oak firewood for 5 years now. Even large trunk rounds split easily with a bit of strategizing. I don’t go through a huge amount of firewood in a season — maybe 1/2 a cord or so. One thing that isn’t obvious: The left handle produces twice the piston movement as the right one. So you use the left one to advance the log into the bit, then once it tightens up you use the right one to power through it. Much safer than swinging a maul, and you still get a bit of a workout!

-- Jim Perry 01/4/19