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Hammock_man

Full Member
May 15, 2008
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kent
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Not great photo maybe but here is a little jig I made.
Bought an axe head and needed to find a job for it. Carved a bit of hardwood to fit into the head, cut another to rest it on and a 3rd bit of softwood as a spacer. Drilled 2 holes on each to hold it together and job done.

Place wood on axe blade, give a tap or two and the result is some size tiny fire starters. Saves all that messing about picking up bits that fly off when batoning with a knife. Will split a hand sized lump or a finger sized bit of kindling. Tent pegs for bench or ground, nails for a wood round or stump.
 

g4ghb

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Sep 21, 2005
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A cracking idea mate, just the kind of thing that would be useful next to the woodburner at home too
 

Nomad64

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Nov 21, 2015
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UK
Neater version of what use which is just an axe head bolted between two bits of 4” x 2”, can process large quantities of kindling very easily and quickly. :)


Edit: utube link added
 
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Broch

Full Member
Jan 18, 2009
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Mid Wales
Having just spent most of the day splitting logs and preparing kindling - I must make one of these :)
 

Dave Budd

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Jan 8, 2006
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cheers mate, but to be fair it is what I do for a living, plus I have a welder and a forge! :D

The thing I've found from using the cutter in my anvil is that as long as the wood is longer than the height of the cutter+your hand width, then you are safe from hurting yourself if you hit too hard. If the wood is too short (or you hold it too low down) then there is a chance that you can drive you hand onto the cutter. Which is also why I make mine dull so they don't cut you unless you were to give it some proper welly! I normally use a Thor rawhide faced mallet coz it's not going to hurt my hand and has some weight to it, so I don't have to use any force myself

I like to hold a piece of wood near the top, and hover just above the cutter (keeping my arm braced there against the force of the blow). Then I can move the wood around on the cutter between blows as though it were on a rubber block. The result is a fist full of kindling and no picking bits up ;) Of course that only works if there are no knots!
 

demographic

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Apr 15, 2005
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Unless I'm missing something here, how is that faster than just using an axe on kindling anyway?

Whoever was using it on Youtube was a huge amount slower than just using an axe, hatchet or even a maul gripped up by the head.

To be honest I generally prefer using a maul gripped in one hand right by the head than a hatchet as you don't have to go crazy with the speed. Seems safer to me.
 

Broch

Full Member
Jan 18, 2009
3,436
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Mid Wales
Unless I'm missing something here, how is that faster than just using an axe on kindling anyway?

Whoever was using it on Youtube was a huge amount slower than just using an axe, hatchet or even a maul gripped up by the head.

To be honest I generally prefer using a maul gripped in one hand right by the head than a hatchet as you don't have to go crazy with the speed. Seems safer to me.
Forget the YouTube video - that wasn't very slick operation. The real answer is it probably isn't any faster but it is infinitely safer if you do as Dave says and make sure your wood is longer than the splitter - no chance of a heavy sharp thing coming down on your hand and no chance of your hand being driven down onto the blade (well, very little chance). The other advantage is you can be more accurate in the thickness you are cutting so get thinner 'morning sticks' if that's what you're after.
 

Hammock_man

Full Member
May 15, 2008
1,237
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kent
If you intend to use a maul on a bit of wood, then this is no replacement at all!! If you are going to use a a big axe then maybe. If it is a job for a small axe or knife then this will make it safer and quicker. For me it is the fact I don't have to keep bending down to pick up bits makes it all worthwhile.
I tend to work on the idea of "split half" . Cut a log in two, cut one half in two and then one of those into 2. Work my way down to something that birch bark will lit. The little stick will light the bigger one which in turn provides the heat to get big guys going.
 
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Hammock_man

Full Member
May 15, 2008
1,237
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kent
The tapper in the photo is an old poundshop hammer. It did have a small soft rubber head and a hard plastic head but they broke ages ago. It is a an ideal weight for turning sticks into small kindling.
 

demographic

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Apr 15, 2005
4,229
234
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If you intend to use a maul on a bit of wood, then this is no replacement at all!! If you are going to use a a big axe then maybe. If it is a job for a small axe or knife then this will make it safer and quicker. For me it is the fact I don't have to keep bending down to pick up bits makes it all worthwhile.
I tend to work on the idea of "split half" . Cut a log in two, cut one half in two and then one of those into 2. Work my way down to something that birch bark will lit. The little stick will light the bigger one which in turn provides the heat to get big guys going.
I totally get the part about not bending down to collect the bits you split off, thats the one part about splitting big rounds thats hardest work in my opinion.
When I say maul people assume I'm kind of going crazy with it but as its a large heavy object with a wide wedge shape its easy to choke my grip right up by the head and chop quarter inch strips with it if I want.
Even my wife who's 5'2" and no powerhouse cuts kindling the same way with ease.
Mind, a lot of the time its cut from cladding boards or skirting offcuts from my work. Still, its easy enough to cut a big round up small enough to do it with that also.
Sometimes its easier to hold the kindling against the blade and move both the axe and kindling towards the chopping block as you're less likely to lop a finger that way.

Years ago I got a 7 Lb maul off a co-worker after someone had used it to break into his office then they left the maul.
Think I gave him a fiver for it. Since then I've been surprised at how versatile it is, from demolishing block walls at work, breaking concrete floor slabs, splitting decent sized sycamore and oak tree rounds through to gently splitting kindling.
Id go as far as to say I'll pick that for kindling over my Husqvarna hatchet any day. The hatchet needs a lot more speed and proper sharpness, I can do with that but unless I have to carry it a long way Id rather not.

Wouldn't fit in a daypack though eh?

I understand that when people hear the word maul they assume its full on two handed radgeness, its not, just the maul raising and dropping maybe six inches or so.
We all find the ways we find fastest/safest/most comfortable.
You found you way, nice one.
 
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