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3-Pt. Mounted "Vertical" Splitter Handles Big Logs
"It splits logs up to 45 inches long, and I never have to lift them off the ground," says Keith Switzer of Wright, Minn., about his home-built, 3-pt. mounted "vertical" log splitter.
  The splitter consists of a 6 by 8-in., 9-ft. long steel I-beam with a welded-on base made from 1-in. thick diamond steel plate. The splitting wedge is powered by a 32-in. long, 4-in. dia. hydraulic cylinder. The cylinder is operated by a remote lever that's connected by linkage to the tractor's hydraulic lever.
  "I've worked with log splitting equipment my entire life, and this is the slickest piece of equipment I've ever used," says Switzer. "I built it because I needed an easy way to make firewood 42 in. long, which is the ideal length for my Aqua-Therm outside wood-burning furnace. However, many of the trees I cut are up to 20 inches in diameter so they're heavy.
  "I use my Oliver 1650 tractor to operate it and made the splitter's mounting bracket to match the tractor's Cat. II 3-pt. hitch. One advantage of using a Cat. II hitch is that it does have a side plate so the hitch doesn't bang back and forth whenever I drive the tractor in the woods. When I'm on a sidehill I can crank one of the lower lift arms down in order to keep the splitter vertical. I welded a hook onto one end of the drawbar mounting bracket so I can use a ælogger's choker' to skid trees to a landing. I cut the logs up and then back the tractor up, splitting the logs as I go.
  "I bought the I-beam used for about $50. My total cost for materials was about $150. My father-in-law did the welding.
  "My vertical log splitter is very top heavy, so when I take it off the tractor I have to be careful that I don't hurt myself. I generally use a chain to hang the splitter from a truss inside my pole shed. I set it up so that the chain tightens up just as the splitter contacts the ground."
  The I-beam's mounting bracket is connected to the tractor's 3-pt. lower lift arms and also to the drawbar. Switzer used lengths of 3 by 1/2-in. angle iron to reinforce the mounting bracket. He used 1/2-in. by 3-in. angle iron and 1-in. thick steel to make the splitting wedge.
  Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Keith Switzer, 6802 Hwy. 210, Wright, Minn. 55798 (ph 218 357-2073; E-mail: kswitzer@meadows.net).

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2001 - Volume #25, Issue #3