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FetchMeAPepsi
October 29th, 2013, 04:39 AM
I'm using the next two weekends to get my woodsplitter put together so I thought I'd let you guys know what I was doing in case any of you guys wanna put a splitter together. Or wanna learn how to NOT put a splitter together. I'm an idiot, remember?

So I bought a length of 2x2 square tubing to start the frame. It comes in 24 foot lengths so I had mine torch cut at the place in thirds. At home I needed to cut two lengths at 33 inches.

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A few weeks ago I fell into this neat little bottle of Oxygen and Acetylene that I was going to cut this with. Not having used a torch before I had no idea what I was doing, but hey, they were $10.00 each. I couldn't pass it up.

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So I turned on the tanks to blow the hoses out. No problem. Then I attach the torch head and adjust my pressure to 20 lbs oxygen and 5 lbs of acetylene.

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The instruction manual said light the acetylene now and look for the flame. Then adjust the oxygen till it was blue.

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Did you miss a step? I did.

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I couldn't see for 5 full minutes. :poke:

that'll make you pucker up, lemme tell ya.
So I rested my eyes, goggled up, and fired it up again. I got a blue flame started and put it to the steel. It was hot, but it wasn't cutting.
So I monkeyed with the oxygen again till the flame was OK looking when I pulled the trigger. It still wasn't very hot, but if I held it in one place long enough it would melt the steel slowly. Like a wild, out of control snail I melted
the steel around the pipe one side at a time. The cut looked horrible but hey, it was cut!

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Then the real trouble started. I pulled up another 33 inches of pipe for the second cut and started heating the metal. As it turned red my flame sputtered, popped, and started acting funny. I looked at my mighty mite of an acetylene tank. It was empty.

What the heck? Now I see why these tanks were $10.00. They did cost me $60 to fill though so I was pretty angry about that.


I put the torch away, grumbled at it a few times, and decided that was an expensive lesson. I put my gloves back on and went to my trusty backup Dewalt angle grinder for the other cuts. Sparks flew, muscles ached, and bits of black dust covered the ground (and my nose hairs).

Two 33 inch pipes, three 20 inch pipes.

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Pipes ready, I put a plug on the welder. I borrowed this welder, it's not mine. Thought I wish it was. It's a Miller Multimatic 200 worth two freaking thousand dollars :ahhhh:

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I'm stick welding with it because that's what I practiced on so I could somehow try to find a cheap cracker-box welder from a farmer or something soon. If you guys know of one around $100 (ac) please let me know :)

My practice was on 1/4 inch plate steel. This 1/8 inch stuff was like butter. I melted through real bad.

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I turned the amperage down to 140 but it happened again, and again...

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Finally I figured out if I move REAL fast, like writing with a pencil it would add metal instead of just melting it. I still made holes, but I was able to rebuild them. They were ugly, but they grinded off great.

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When I figured out the speed it was a piece of cake from there. I'm not ready for the pipe fields yet, but I can stick two pieces of metal together. For this newbie that's pretty good I think. This is the result of a full day's work (before grinding the welds again). I did mess up the center post and had to grind it off and re-weld it. It was crooked.

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Oh, and I wore my sneakers to do it. I won't make that mistake again.

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Burned straight through my shoes, my socks, and into my toe. My foot looked like a teenage boy on prom night. Sweaty, pockmarked, and covered in zits. Dats naaasty!

FetchMeAPepsi
October 31st, 2013, 03:50 PM
I snuck off yesterday and did the rest of the bottom of the frame. My center piece is crooked. I'll be grinding it off and rewelding it.

I put three 9 inch long pieces of the 2x2 pipe going up from the square I made in the last post. Those 9 inch pieces got topped with a 2x4 rectangle pipe, like the 2x2 it has an 1/8 inch wall, 33 inches long

I only got the one pic because it was a weekday and I didnt have any time. Just trying to get some progress on it. No grinding done today. No time.

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FetchMeAPepsi
November 2nd, 2013, 06:36 PM
Another quick day. I got out the 4 1/2 inch grinder and cut that wonky pipe that was all crooked

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Then I ground down about half of the welds I need to grind before I ran out of time. Grinding can take forever.

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My cutting wheel kinda took the worst of the work. Guess I'll need more than one, eh?

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And that was it for the day. The Daily Grind I guess you could say. :morecoffee:

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FetchMeAPepsi
November 4th, 2013, 03:07 AM
I had to buy some more grinding disks at the Tractor Supply place. 9.00 for a pack of 5 type 27 disks. Sounds almost like I know what Im doing right? Type 27 is the kind of disk that came with my grinder. I just bought the same thing. It says "metal" on it.

I got it home and ground some more.

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Then came a bunch of discoveries. I found a lot of spots that I hadnt welded very well, they had black stuff from the rods in them and little rivers of metal. I ground those out and rewelded them. Again, and again. This also made new holes. I went through the whole day rewelding spots, blowing holes out accidentally, welding up the holes, and grinding them down again. ALL DANG DAY. I loved welding yesterday. Today it was work. I should have worn earplugs too because I can't really hear well anymore either. :lolflag:

Anyway...As I was grinding the Powder Puff wandered up and asked a bunch of welding questions. What's a dad to do? Let her try it out of course!

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Just kidding! I let her dress up and take a picture while I explained how it worked in words a 9 year old could understand. Lightning and lava!

As the day ended I finished up the remaining rewelds and grinds. Then I wire wheeled it well on the top portions, which really are going to be the bottom portions, but right now that doesn't matter.

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Then I had the boy shake up a can of Rustoleum Bed Liner for me. I sprayed it over all of the spots that I just wire wheeled. it turned out pretty good. Some of the spots will need to be cleaned off for more welding, but this will stop the rust and give me an idea of what it'll turn out like.

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And that was it for the day. Sore back, dead ears, and an axle brace thingy ground and welded. Tada!

FetchMeAPepsi
November 7th, 2013, 03:05 PM
My lovely wife came home early yesterday to watch our gang of wild children and give me some "man time" playing with the welder. She's awesome sometimes!

I started with a 15 inch piece of pipe. I laid it caddy-corner on the axle part to measure it (see next pic) and marked it. Then I cut it with my oxy torch.

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Then I welded it on. it was a ragged cut but I filled in the extra bits with weld rod. I've been watching Youtube videos on oxy cutting to get better. So far I'm able to cut, just not very well.

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Next I pulled out my 8 foot beam. I marked it 22 inches from the end (doesnt matter which).

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Then I sat the axle bits on top.

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I measured all the sides to make sure it was kinda centered. I wasn't good at fitting it together on the 2x4 beam so I might have to correct for my mistakes on the actual axle stubs.

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I dont remember if I said so, but when you weld with a stick you get lots of spatter flying around. Oh yeah, i showed my socks earlier. Well I made this quick little spatter shield for my feet. I just took a bit of leftover pipe and welded it with two quick tacks to a piece of thin metal I got from the junkyard. it works!

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Anyway back on target I welded the axle bits to the beam.

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I made several passes too because this is the part that keeps the wheels tied to the splitter. It HAS to stay stuck on. I put about four passes on it to build it up real well.

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And that was it for yesterday. it's coming along! And my welding is getting much better. I'm almost dimes!

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FetchMeAPepsi
November 7th, 2013, 03:09 PM
I got a PM a couple of days ago about the sticks I'm using (why are you reading this?!?! :poke:)

for all of the 2x2 stuff I'm using 3/32" diameter 7018 sticks at about 85 amps. For the beam stuff I'm using 5/32" diameter 6011 sticks at 140 amps, washing up on the 2x2 stuff but mainly staying on the beam. All my sticks are Hobart brand, not for any type of loyalty but just because thats what the local place had to sell.

I was using the 6011 stuff on the 2x2s but I was blowing holes in it so often that I had to call in an expert to advise me on it.

And to the other guy, yes my welding table is a filing cabinet. It was in good shape before I started this project. It could probably use a paint job now :D

FetchMeAPepsi
November 8th, 2013, 05:18 AM
Another busy day :thumbsup:

On the other side of my beam I marked 12 inches from the end. This is where the trailer tongue will be.

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Then I marked my last 2x2 pipe at 36 inches and cut it with my trust angle grinder. Loud, rough, but does the job.

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I moved the 36 inch pipe to my beam's 12 inch mark. Then I measured it for straightness in four places to make sure it was good and straight.

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I clamped it down with a big old 1960's model c clamp I inherited from my dad.

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Then I welded it with the 6011 rods (5/32" around). I have learned to weld the beam mostly, then you just kind of flick it up onto the 2x2 as you go along to tie it in, but the beam takes most of the heat.

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moving back to the axle area I put my stubs on with clamps. With the tongue welded on I could better guess how the tires should point. I tried adjusting them with my compass (tongue points at 16 degrees north, so should the axles) but the compass wouldn't work next to the project. I guess the metal was magnetized or something with the welding going on. So I had to eyeball it.

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After welding the stubs on with the 6011 again, I got my hubs out. Here's what they looked like. They come in what looks like a CD case.

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The install went easy once the stubs cooled down from welding. Those babies get HOT. Just slip the hubs on, put the bearing in if it fell out (one of mine did, the other didnt), put the washer and castle nut on, torque them down to 40 pounds, then just slap the cotter pin in. Finish it up with the included end cap (not shown)

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From there just put the wheels on. I flipped it over as soon as it had wheels. It weighs alot so if you do this be careful. I was so excited to have it mobile I took it outside to wheel it around some by hand. It worked! I had the powder puff snap a pic.

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It's been a long learning experience, but I'm gettin there! The bad news is old man Winter is gettin here too :ahhhh:

BarryGMC
November 10th, 2013, 04:40 AM
Ok Pepsi don't take this the wrong way. My kids call me an equal opportunity abuser. And they still love me. At least they say they do. And I get a kick out of your enthusiasm, but your welding is UGLY. First thing don't flame cut your stuff. Use a saws all or a band saw or an abrasive blade in a skilsaw. You will have better fit up and results. Second stick with 6011 or 6013 rod and keep it dry. I keep my rod in an old oven. I heat if up to 200 a couple of hours before I use it to get it really devoid of moisture. Third use less heat and more speed on the thin box. You will have less blowout. Fourth use more heat and less speed on the heavy stuff really feed the rod into the pieces as you stitch Back and forth. You should feel the rod penetrate. Finally let the 9 year old play with the welder. When I was her age I burnt 200 lbs of 3/16 hard face rod at grandpas rock quarry over two weeks.. The first few days the old Norwegian really abused me and told me to watch out for the birds that had s.!!'t on his loader buckets. Keep it up and keep trying, and watch out for the birds. Barry

FetchMeAPepsi
November 11th, 2013, 02:28 AM
Ok Pepsi don't take this the wrong way. My kids call me an equal opportunity abuser. And they still love me. At least they say they do. And I get a kick out of your enthusiasm, but your welding is UGLY.


I can always trust you to tell me the truth Barry. Thanks for the critique! I know my welding isn't too pretty, but it's getting better every time I try. And I'm still trying :thumbsup: I've got several "dimes" put on in the last few days, but I always end up getting cocky and blowing through again.


First thing don't flame cut your stuff. Use a saws all or a band saw or an abrasive blade in a skilsaw. You will have better fit up and results.


I don't have any of those unfortunately. My options were grinding wheel or torch. I just got a 40cf set so I'm going to try again on thicker stuff (1/4 inch plate) to see if I can learn it. Some guys can cut with a torch and it looks sooo clean that you'd swear it was poured that way. That's where I'd like to be. I do have a chop saw lined up though. If it doesn't fall through I'll own one by Christmas for freeEEEEE! :cheers:



Second stick with 6011 or 6013 rod and keep it dry. I keep my rod in an old oven. I heat if up to 200 a couple of hours before I use it to get it really devoid of moisture. Third use less heat and more speed on the thin box. You will have less blowout. Fourth use more heat and less speed on the heavy stuff really feed the rod into the pieces as you stitch Back and forth. You should feel the rod penetrate.


I got told that I should only use 7018 on the axles and trailer hitch assembly at minimum because it's stronger (70,000 psi vs 60,000 psi) and if I used 6011 on it they'd break off going down the road. I didn't know I could use the 6011's on it. I could have saved another 20 bucks!

Finally let the 9 year old play with the welder. When I was her age I burnt 200 lbs of 3/16 hard face rod at grandpas rock quarry over two weeks.. The first few days the old Norwegian really abused me and told me to watch out for the birds that had poop on his loader buckets. Keep it up and keep trying, and watch out for the birds. Barry

She's deathly afraid of the sparks, but I think she's interested. We'll see how she reacts when I tell her to strike an arc. I'll let ya know!

Thanks for all the tips etc. You're definitely the jack of all trades, Barry!

FetchMeAPepsi
November 11th, 2013, 03:03 AM
Today me and The Boy got out early for some splitter work. I pulled out our rusty cylinder and we wire wheeled it. Then we primed it.

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While it dried we pulled the fenders out for some paint. They got roughed up a bit with a wire wheel then painted by The Boy himself using Rustoleum bedliner since they'll get rock chipped alot and it's easy to touch up without showing the before/after marks. We only painted the underside right now.

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I stuck one of the leftover 2x2 pieces about 3 inches long on the tire as a spacer for the fenders.

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Then I blew through this side welding it on. Grr. It looked nice before that. I welded up the hole and ground it down flush.

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We finished off the cylinder in The Boy's favorite color, electric blue!

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Then back to the fenders, we painted the tops. This makes all of the bottom half of the splitter complete I think. It's all painted in Rustoleum bedliner.

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From there we flipped the entire thing over on top of my fancy filing cabinet welding table. There I welded on the trailer coupling with 7018 stuff. I didn't blow through either. Then we painted it with bedliner too on the underside. The top side will stay chrome.

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We still have alot of welding to do on the beam but we couldn't get any cutting done because the new acetylene tanks I have need a different adapter to hook up. So we decided to stay with the painting theme. We can always scrape it off of the four places we still have to weld, right? :thumbsup:

The inside of the beam shown had a little rust so we wire wheeled it and ospho'ed it.

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The other side was clean and purdy so we primed it and the top!

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Then we painted it. Yep, that's right, it's GMC Engine red!

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That's what she looks like right now. Wednesday my tank adapter should be in, then I'll cut up my plate to weld on, mount the engine, mount the tank and cylinder, and the wedge for cutting. That's it! :egyptian:

FetchMeAPepsi
November 17th, 2013, 02:41 AM
Hello my fellow GMC nuts!

Today was soooo nice outside. I celebrated by bagging up 12 bags of leaves for the first 4 hours :ahhhh:

But then I got busy with my splitter. I painted the ospho'd side and hooked it onto the trailer hitch.

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It's sitting next to this beautiful truck now so I can pull in the garage again when it turns cold. I'll tow it back around to the front as I need to weld on it more.

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Then I took my acetylene torch and cut some angle plate steel. I also cut a few holes in my fancy file cabinet table. :(

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Then I welded the cut pieces together into a steel plate. Tada! Homemade steel plate! This will be my engine mount. it's about 10 1/2 inches by 14 inches.

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After that I had some more yard maintenance stuff to do, but the sun didn't cooperate. It went down and left me hangin. :pullinghairout:
I did manage to find four bolts that fit this old kohler 14 engine that I'll be using so that's something. They're a little long though. Not sure how I'll fix that yet.

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BarryGMC
November 17th, 2013, 02:51 AM
Pepsi keep it up. Barry

Rockdriller
November 18th, 2013, 02:19 AM
Okay, Pepsi..
Here is my tip fer the day...:

When you're cutting freehand with a torch, you can clamp or lay another piece of iron about a 1/4 inch from your mark and use it as a guide to steady the torch (kinda like a ruler and pencil).
Just rest the side of the tip right up against the guide and let her rip.

We will stay tuned.

FetchMeAPepsi
November 21st, 2013, 06:02 AM
Pepsi keep it up. Barry

Thanks! I got more done on Sunday but came down with a nasty belly bug for the last three stinkin days. I've been laying around wasting the good weather and kicking myself in the butt. :pullinghairout:


Okay, Pepsi..
Here is my tip fer the day...:

When you're cutting freehand with a torch, you can clamp or lay another piece of iron about a 1/4 inch from your mark and use it as a guide to steady the torch (kinda like a ruler and pencil).
Just rest the side of the tip right up against the guide and let her rip.

We will stay tuned.

That is GENIUS! I have been using the roll-yer-knuckles method and it does get flippy sometimes, but I have surprised myself with how straight and purdy the cuts are getting. I'll try that next time. Hopefully tomorrow fingers crossed.

FetchMeAPepsi
November 21st, 2013, 06:38 AM
Like I said, I got some more cutting done on Sunday. These are all pieces of those three bits of angle iron that I got from the scrap yard for $3.00. They're pitted pretty badly but they're thick and strong.

I took one piece that ran about 3 inches wide and marked a spot at about 10 inches. That gave me two pieces 10" x 3".

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Then I cut up the larger ones too. The pieces will get welded together to make larger plates. They will be 8" x 10" after welding. Notice the old rough cuts on the inside and the nicer smooth cuts on the bottoms. I R Improvin!


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The Powder Puff had a welding helmet on to watch this. She wanted me to cut up a little 2 inch piece of 2x2 box pipe (see it on the pics above) so she could use it for playing in the dirt. I added it to my honey do list and finished up by cutting these small pieces up into 8" strips. All of the strips will be used to hold the pusher onto the beam to keep it from flying up and hitting me in the face when I'm splitting logs.

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After all the cutting I had to run around raking up leaves again. TOO MANY LEAVES!!!!! I filled four more bags of the things so I didn't light the house on fire. Then I fired up the welder and welded my plates together.
After welding I got the grinder out and that's how the rest of my day went. I ground from around 1pm until 5pm just trying to get through the biggest part of those pits.

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When all the grindin was done and I was about ready to sneeze a car out of my nose (from all the metal fragments) this is what it looked like. This one will be the motor mount plate.

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After the grinding the Powder Puff wanted to use the Ospho so I let her spray them all down. I meant for them to sit overnight before getting to them but it's been 3 days now. Oops!

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Earlier I turned the old motor Im going to use over and put a piece of paper over the mounting plate on the bottom of the motor. Really it's the side because it's a sideways motor. Then I poked some holes in the mount hole spots so I could figure out where to knock holes out of my homemade mounting plate.

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By the end of the day the Powder Puff Mechanic had built a bunch of great looking dirt and acorn cookies with her piece of 2x2 pipe so we settled down for a crumble-in-your-lap feast.

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Maybe the acorns did me in, but wow. Shortly after this I got hit with the green apple quickstep and got real dizzy. I spent the next three days groaning and starving because nothing would stay down. Tonight I shoved a piece of pizza in my gullet. So far it's queasy but it's staying down. Maybe tomorrow I'll be back in the saddle.

FetchMeAPepsi
November 28th, 2013, 02:43 AM
Today I got back on the wagon, er...the trailer...the splitter! :thumbsup:


All the babies are home so the Redhead watched the little ones and I went and unwound my welder cables again. I only have about 5-6 things left to do and I can start splitting!

It was 30 degrees this morning so I was motivated to get finished. My lovely wife left with my only vehicle with a tow ball on it so I had to string my welder through the garage. I also had to do something unsafe - I welded on the ground. To make it a little less dangerous (and give me some great winter firewood smells) I laid down a piece of plywood under my work area so the grass and leaves all around didn't catch on fire. Satisfied, I put my wedge on in the middle of my splitter, about a half inch from the end of the beam, about 2 1/4 from each side, and got to sparkin!

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Remember I already painted the beam so I took the welding rod and scratched some of the paint off. It felt kinda dirty doing this to such a nice paint job, but it had to be done.

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Then I welded all around the wedge. All three edges.



I stepped back and looked at it. Not too shabby...then I thought about water. It would run toward my wedge. It would run UNDER my wedge...It would attack my fearsome woodsplitter from the inside. I welded up the edge of the wedge.

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I hope it sharpens pretty easy even though it's welded at the bottom.
Next came the engine mount. Remember making those? That was fun, wasn't it? Oh, you still can't hear because you blew your ears out?
Me too.

I put a piece of that 11ish by 3ish steel I cut on the beam and clamped it down.

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Then I put my homemade plate steel for the engine mount up next to the beam and clamped it to the 11x3.

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I made sure the engine mount plate was pretty close to even and got to tacking. See these two welding beads that go side by side? Thats what happens when the sun rises above you and behind your welding helmet. It lights up your face and you cant see where you're welding! :poke:
I had to go back and fix it. This is all 7018 rod, btw. That's all I used today.

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Here it is all stuck along the top.

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Its times like these that I wish I had a rotisserie (sp) or a hoist or something to flip heavy things around. Super powers would do in a pinch :egyptian:

I flipped the whole thing over, forgetting about the newly installed wedge. Guess the weld was good though because it held the whole way over. Yay me!

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FetchMeAPepsi
November 28th, 2013, 02:59 AM
After I spun it over I welded the bottom of the plate to make sure it was good and snug.

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Then I grabbed two of those 3 x 11's again.

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These got propped in the crook of the beam and against the engine mount plate to add support while I'm going down the road with the splitter.

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Heres a better view so you can see how it goes flush with the outside of the beam and engine mount. Then I welded it. This close to the ground it really started my plywood dropcloth to smelling....like fire...:ahhhh:

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I put another 3x11 chunk on the other side and held it with my magnet while I welded it on.

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Then I flipped the whole thing on its side (bent the fender again, doh!) and leaned it on a bucket so I could weld the other side of the supports. I dont weld very well upside down.

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That was it for the engine mount and supports. I moved to the cylinder.

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I laid the cylinder backstop (I forget what its called. Anchor maybe?) on the rail and the cylinder with it. I needed to get a good measurement. This blue cylinder is only 24 inches long but my wood can be up to 36 inches long so I'll upgrade the cylinder eventually. I have a small house and a BIG fireplace. It makes the heating bill alot less expensive.


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FetchMeAPepsi
November 28th, 2013, 03:11 AM
I measured off 36 inches from the wedge tip toward the cylinder.

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Then I put my pusher plate on that mark to include it in the measurements.
Eventually this will be welded to another plate and tied to the cylinder to push the logs.

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I stuck one of my steel pieces that will get a hole put in it up there next to see how far it would push my cylinder back.

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I marked it at about the center hole of the cylinder. Then I took all the plating away and put the cylinder there.

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That told me where the front of the cylinder should be. So that also told me where the back should be. I tied the anchor thingy to the cylinder and popped the pin in. With the front lined up I then lined up the anchor and centered it. Clamped it down too.

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I scraped the paint away next to it just like with the wedge. It still felt wrong.

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Then I welded it and took a picture of my hand because that's helpful. You're welcome! As an added bonus the paint caught fire and I had to snuff it out with my glove.

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FetchMeAPepsi
November 28th, 2013, 03:23 AM
Now it was time to build the pusher. I took two of my 8x 11 pieces and decided which one looked better for pushing. I chose the one that was a little bent in the middle hoping itll keep the wood from flying around willy nilly.

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Then I got two of these pieces. They're 6 1/4 ish by 5 ish. Remember this is all that scrap angle steel I got for 3.00 at the scrap yard and cut up with a torch.

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Thinking I was going to be clever (I wasn't) I clamped them together tightly and drew a 1 inch circle smack dab in the middle of them.

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Then i got my torch out and cut a hole straight through the both of them at once. It kinda worked. I got mostly through before hot metal from the top plate started splashing around and just about got me. IMPORTANT NOTE: I don't realize it yet, but I just cut a hole in the wrong place. The cylinder "fingers" arent long enough to reach the middle of the plates. Dont do this at home! In fact, dont do this at all! Any of it! What are ya, stupid?

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These plates were still rusty so I grinded them down for a while.

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I was so proud of myself when the cylinder pin fit in the hole. (Still dont know it's in the wrong spot at this point)

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Then I weld it in to the pusher plates. Wow, that looks so cool, doesnt it? Guess what I finally notice when i try to put this on the cylinder?

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DOH! :pullinghairout::ahhhh::poke::lolsmack:


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I'll fix it tomorrow. It's nap time :D

HAPPY THANKSGIVING EVER'BODY!

David R Leifheit
November 28th, 2013, 08:44 PM
What the heck? Now I see why these tanks were $10.00. They did cost me $60 to fill though so I was pretty angry about that.

Interesting. About $10 a piece is what I pay for full tanks of that size. I have a set, in their own little carrying package. Cutting with them though, you will go through the Acetylene -very- quickly.


I'm stick welding with it because that's what I practiced on so I could somehow try to find a cheap cracker-box welder from a farmer or something soon. If you guys know of one around $100 (ac) please let me know :)


Harbor Freight. I bought an 80 Amp stick welder from them (never used wire feed so I didn't get that one). It is also a 110 (or 120) volt unit I can plug into a "normal" outlet. Bearing in mind -all- my outlets are 20 Amp (house was seriously overbuilt) and can handle a lot. I think it draws only 15 amps when running, which would max out a normal home circuit. Even at 80 amps I was blowing holes in my work, had to drop it to 60 to do the welds on my trailer.

I *think* normal retail is somewhere around $100, but I never buy anything unless it is on sale (I am a cheap son of a gun). Also picked up an auto darkening welding helmet for around $35 from them as well. Saves your eyes (and you thought they Oxy/Acet was bright!) plus allows you to see what you are doing without taking the helmet off since it goes clear when the arc isn't struck. Probably senses the UV from the arc...

FetchMeAPepsi
November 29th, 2013, 02:38 AM
Ya'll ready to close this thing out? Me too! I got a lot done today. Only a few little things left and itll be done! :clap::clap::clap:


this morning I dug the used hydraulic tank out of the plastic bag it has been hibernating in. It looks rough but it holds. It's sitting on my paint and work-it-over tree stump so something is about to happen.

WHACK! 4 lbs of sledge manliness laid against it's head. BOOM!

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I hammered for about 15 minutes, an eternity for a weenie armed pecker neck like me. My muscles ached but I got the little frame on the bottom straightened out pretty good.

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And as I went to upload the next picture I accidentally copied all my pictures for today to a subfolder in my working folder. No problem i thought. I'll just delete the folder. FAIL!!!! :pullinghairout: :pullinghairout: :pullinghairout: :pullinghairout:


All of my pictures for today were deleted! Gone forever. GREAT! thanks computer!

I'll try to blab my way though it though. Bear with me....

So I banged out the little brackets on the tank flat. Then I took it over to the splitter and laid it on the side spot over the wheel. I moved it around so I had room to get a wrench on the drain nut and semi-centered it. Then I marked it with a soapstone pencil. I had to cut about 4 inches off one side and about 2 off the other.
Pictures would really be nice here.


Then while I had the torch out I set the grass on fire. Actually I was aiming at my pusher bracket but metal flew everywhere. I put the fire out (had pictures of that too) and put a big bucket of water under my work area. It worked to keep the fires out.

So that was my tank and my pusher cut. The pusher fit my cylinder now that I had a notch cut out of it, and my tank fit with just a little over hang to weld on.

I also put my paper with the four engine holes on it over my mounting plate and marked the holes in spots where the bolts wouldn't hit the support brackets below. I torch cut those too. They turned out pretty good.

Again, no picture so here's a guy cutting from the internet..

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Lame huh? I'm sorry :(

Well after all my cutting and fitting I went ahead and painted my tank with bedliner stuff so it would be easy to touch-up after being abused on the road. I knew I'd have to scrape some off to weld but it was easier to paint before I welded it on. I also painted the pusher with bedliner.

And the engine mount.

Then I welded the tank to the frame above the left side (facing forward). Next I attached the pusher and saw that it was good.

then I dragged out the old motor I have (14 hp Kohler) with a pump on it. It used to pump concrete somewhere in another life. I redid the carb and fuel pump and now it runs great! Again no pic, but here's something similar to mine, except mine is crusty with concrete and old age.

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I had four bolts that were too long for bolting the engine down so I put nuts on them, then washers, then bolted them through the mount into the engine. they held well. The engine on the back like this really makes the whole thing balanced. Pick up on the front just a little and it'll wanna lay down backwards. Maybe i should put a skidplate under the back?





That covered the engine, pump (also painted black), engine mount, hydraulic tank, and pusher. And that's where I left it. I still need to fill the hydraulic tank with fluid and run hoses around and about. But here's how it looks right now.

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I have zero idea how to hook up the switch that makes it pressurize the cylinder or whatever the other piece is that's left. i'm waiting on info from my father-in-law now to see where everything is supposed to go. With luck I should be able to try it out in a couple of days!


Edit: Again I'm sorry for the pics! I could just shoot myself.

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I got a picture recovery program off the internet so I'm trying it now. Wish me luck.

GMCDAC
November 29th, 2013, 02:56 AM
Hello Pepsi,
I follow your threads and really like how none of this stuff intimidates you. You jump right in there and get it done along with all of your dedicated helpers! About the only suggestion I have is when welding on a painted surface grinding all the paint off where you want to weld can improve the quality of the weld by not having to burn paint and then impurities from the burnt paint can lodge in the weld too.

The problem of the sun reflecting on the inside of the helmet and lense also happens indoors with shop lighting. I took an old hard hat liner and attached it to my helmet and it makes a huge difference in visibility. I just used double sided foam tape on the top and I had a couple of brass banner grommets I installed where the adjusting knobs are but just holes punched would be fine. This helmet is a "Cummings tools" auto darkening that cost $39.95 7 or 8 years ago.

It's was last spring I filled my torch bottles that I think are the same size as yours. Both bottles cost less than 30 bucks to fill. I bought my bottles from the welding supply shop that fills them. They just exchange instead of making the customer wait to fill the ones they brought in.

Keep it coming---DAC

FetchMeAPepsi
November 29th, 2013, 06:14 AM
Interesting. About $10 a piece is what I pay for full tanks of that size. I have a set, in their own little carrying package. Cutting with them though, you will go through the Acetylene -very- quickly.


I trade mine in at Tractor supply. It's about 64.00 for the two little tanks filled. wish I could find a place for $10.00!



Harbor Freight. I bought an 80 Amp stick welder from them (never used wire feed so I didn't get that one). It is also a 110 (or 120) volt unit I can plug into a "normal" outlet. Bearing in mind -all- my outlets are 20 Amp (house was seriously overbuilt) and can handle a lot. I think it draws only 15 amps when running, which would max out a normal home circuit. Even at 80 amps I was blowing holes in my work, had to drop it to 60 to do the welds on my trailer.

I *think* normal retail is somewhere around $100, but I never buy anything unless it is on sale (I am a cheap son of a gun). Also picked up an auto darkening welding helmet for around $35 from them as well. Saves your eyes (and you thought they Oxy/Acet was bright!) plus allows you to see what you are doing without taking the helmet off since it goes clear when the arc isn't struck. Probably senses the UV from the arc...

nice! I just fell into a Lincoln Tombstone welder, but it takes 50 amp lines. The miller only needs 15 amps so I don't know how that works. Newer technology I guess. The Lincoln blows my breakers. The miller with all the same power on 220 v line doesn't even run enough to kill the oven with them both going. But for $2000 it'll only ever be a borrowed machine for me.

I might try to upgrade my breaker to 50 amps in the future.

Hello Pepsi,
I follow your threads and really like how none of this stuff intimidates you. You jump right in there and get it done along with all of your dedicated helpers! About the only suggestion I have is when welding on a painted surface grinding all the paint off where you want to weld can improve the quality of the weld by not having to burn paint and then impurities from the burnt paint can lodge in the weld too.


:poke: I wouldn't say none of it intimidates me. All of it does, but I like to learn new stuff. Working on Cecilia has made me a little more confident too. I thought I needed to get more welding practice in and this looked like a project I could fiddle with and even if I messed it all up I wouldn't be out anything but time. I could always tear the broken parts out and try again.

A friend of mine used to say something like, "Its just metal. redo it if you dont like it." That stuck with me. If I bugger it up I always think "I'll just fix it. It's just metal".
sometimes I have to say that two or three times before it looks good enough but I learn every time. :clap:


The problem of the sun reflecting on the inside of the helmet and lense also happens indoors with shop lighting. I took an old hard hat liner and attached it to my helmet and it makes a huge difference in visibility. I just used double sided foam tape on the top and I had a couple of brass banner grommets I installed where the adjusting knobs are but just holes punched would be fine. This helmet is a "Cummings tools" auto darkening that cost $39.95 7 or 8 years ago.

My tombstone welder that I can't use yet came with an auto dark helmet too. I have two of those now. They're the bee's knees for sure. I put one on the other day and put the other on the Powder puff so she could watch the welding. She thought that was a very grown up thing to do. She might actually try to weld a little in spring.


It's was last spring I filled my torch bottles that I think are the same size as yours. Both bottles cost less than 30 bucks to fill. I bought my bottles from the welding supply shop that fills them. They just exchange instead of making the customer wait to fill the ones they brought in.

Keep it coming---DAC

That's two people with better prices than I'm gettin now. I might just make the trip into town. It'll cost me $10.00 in gas but if I'm saving $30 it'll be worth it. Guess I'll call around when I change these two out!







Thanks for reading my mess guys. I'm really sorry about the pics for the last session. I ran that recovery thing for 30 mins and it didnt find anything so I guess they're gone. I did find this one though because I sent it to someone for help with the hose rigging.

These are the parts I'm left with and I dont have any idea how to plug them into the system. One is the handle that activates the cylinder. the other? No clue.

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FetchMeAPepsi
December 2nd, 2013, 06:38 PM
With everything put together nearest I can tell I started routing hoses. The headaches soon followed. My pump is metric, my cylinder is JIC threaded, which I didnt know existed until this, and the hydraulic hoses I got from tractor supply are "PIPE" threaded. WHAT?:headscratch:


The hoses took me three days to figure out and Im still waiting on adapters from online. The short version (long version in a minute) is I got a 60 inch long 3/4" hose that runs from the tank to the pump intake. I had to use a 1 1/4 inch to 3/4 inch pipe reducer (Lowes) to get the hose tied to the tank's oversized hole. I put pipe tape on every connection to hopefully keep them from leaking. I hear pipe dope is better but I dont have any and I never used it before so I dont know that I can get it back apart in case (when!) I make mistakes.

The Redhead is holding this. Those are not my purple boots :lolsmack:

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Then I got a 24 inch long 1/2" hose to run from the lever to the top cylinder connection, and a 36 inch long 1/2" hose for the bottom cylinder connection.

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Then I made The Redhead who was my helper for one of the days hold her fingers in the pump and switch intake to keep them from leaking.

Just kidding! She's showing the next hose routing. It's 1/2 inch hose that has a 22mm connector on one side and a 1/2 inch JIC connector on the other side. I had to custom make it at NAPA. If anyone is building this for their house hopefully you can get matching parts!

This was a 36" long hose, btw. Going from the output on the pump to the intake on the switch.

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This is a 3/4 inch hose 36" long going from the output on the switch to the tank. This is the return line. I had to use a pipe reducer on it too.

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And that's as far as I got with it. I'm waiting on adapters for 1/2" JIC to 1/2" Pipe and 3/4" JIC to 3/4" PIPE. They should be here Thursday.

And now the long version.......:ohgeesh:

FetchMeAPepsi
December 2nd, 2013, 06:59 PM
Ugh.

I measured my holes and connections from the tank to the pump to the switch to the cylinder to the tank again. Measured with a tape measure. Almost everything was close to standard or so I thought. :ahhhh:

I bought my hoses from Tractor Supply. $159.00 for one 3/4" x 60" hose, one 3/4" x 36" hose, one 24" x 1/2" hose, and two 36" x 1/2 hoses. Way more than I planned on spending. If it could have taken the pressure I'd have used garden hose and clamps.

I got my hoses back and I think OK here goes! I'll be splitting these logs in minutes! WRONG.

None of the hoses would fit my JIC fittings. Whats a JIC fitting you ask? Well it seems to be those fittings that have a tapered end to them without threads. Well they have threads, just not on the taper.

So I bought some adapters, another $35.00. And they didn't have all of them so I had to order some online.

Then I couldnt find anything that would fit the pump or the cylinder. It turned out the pump hole was METRIC! :pullinghairout:

So I had to go to NAPA and have them build me a $45.00 one foot long hose that I used as an adapter from my cylinder and pump. Four hoses, $199.00 with tax.

:faint::poopsign::spinsick::soapbox::machinegun::p oop:


I got the pieces back and three of the adapter hoses didnt work. Thankfully NAPA is awesome so they just redid my hoses for free. I got them back and they're all JIC hoses so my pipe hoses dont fit. Now I'm waiting on an adapter from the tank to the pump, from the pump and cylinder to the switch, and...well i think thats it. But still it's annoying. I'm so close I can taste it. I was very frustrated.

I didnt even feel like grinding down my welds on the tank or freshening up the paint from the engine mount welding. And I enjoy painting.

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The lesson learned from all this is beware getting free parts. I could have bought a new cylinder AND engine for all the $$ I spent on this hose crap. And my hoses would fit!

GMCDAC
December 3rd, 2013, 03:52 AM
Dang, I have been buried with some issues and intended to take pics of the hydraulic system on one of my garden tractors that works the same way but just couldn't get to it. I don't think it would have helped anyway since your parts are a wide variety.

You will get through it as always!

DAC

FetchMeAPepsi
December 3rd, 2013, 06:01 PM
Thanks Dac! Im holding out hope that it'll come together with the ordered parts. If not I'm going to take the $200 worth of stupid hoses back to NAPA and go to the local Mahindra (spelling) tractor store because I found out all their stuff is metric and I can probably get them to run hoses all around for me.

I'll keep you guys updated :thumbsup:

Rick
December 4th, 2013, 01:42 AM
Question: How long are you going to continue with this a"wood splitter" project??? If this is going to continue, "PLEASE DELETE ME" from this website. I have had enough. I am not at all interested in "wood splitters".

Rick Rusconi

FetchMeAPepsi
December 4th, 2013, 02:07 AM
Question: How long are you going to continue with this a"wood splitter" project??? If this is going to continue, "PLEASE DELETE ME" from this website. I have had enough. I am not at all interested in "wood splitters".

Rick Rusconi

:ahhhh: Well, I guess I'll keep going with this until it's finished or I freeze to death. I hate quitting stuff when Im learning so much that transfers over to trucks so easily.

I'm sorry you got upset about it but it is in the Other Rides And Projects section. And I'm posting because so many people asked me what I was doing that took me away from Cecilia.

Sorry you arent liking it. I'll try to jazz it up a little and make it more interesting. :(

GMCDAC
December 4th, 2013, 03:29 AM
Wow! Someone needs to stay away from the "Other Rides and Projects" page then, as there will be stuff like this on it! I wonder who forced him to click "my woodsplitter project" and then forced him to read it? Maybe he should be deleted as he wished with that attitude.

DAC

BarryGMC
December 4th, 2013, 04:01 AM
Chill Rick.

Jeannie
December 4th, 2013, 03:10 PM
Question: How long are you going to continue with this a"wood splitter" project??? If this is going to continue, "PLEASE DELETE ME" from this website. I have had enough. I am not at all interested in "wood splitters".

Rick Rusconi

PM Sent.


Pepsi, good luck with your project. Your topics are highly rated, entertaining and informative. Please continue to keep us updated.


-Jeannie
6066 GMC Club

FetchMeAPepsi
December 18th, 2013, 12:03 AM
My last two fittings came in today.

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I put them on with more teflon tape. And I found out one of the fittings NAPA put on was bigger than the others so I had to add more tape, but just a bit.

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Then I started pouring my 5 gallon bucket of cheap-o hydraulic fluid from Tractor Supply into the tank. Even the cheap stuff is like 35.00 for 5 gallons. Ouch!

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Then I closed up the tank and poured fluid in through a funnel. Finally i gassed her up, started the motor and gave it a second to pump some oil in.

Then I tried the switch and Sqqqquirrrtt!!! One of my hose connections had a blowout.



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So I re-taped it and tightened it up. Then I tried it again and the motor spun down like it was really tryin, but the cylinder didn't move. I thought Hmm, maybe I hooked it up backwards. So I opened the hoses from the cylinder. One was bone dry.

The other one was pressurized all up and leaked as I took it apart. I moved it over the tank so I wouldn't lose this expensive oil.

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Then the stupid thing popped loose out of the blue.

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I wasn't too happy, but with a little batter and onion I guess I was ready for the fryer.

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The hose that had oil went to the top of the cylinder so i figured it was on the wrong place. I swapped it.

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And still no movement from the cylinder. IDK what's wrong now. Maybe the cylinder is frozen? It is used so I guess I'll work on figuring out how to test it.

GMCDAC
December 18th, 2013, 02:40 AM
I doubt this will be a help since my setup uses an old power steering pump and the valve is different than yours, but this would work exactly the way you are trying to get that one to work. It is pressurized both directions.

I don't do online photo hosting so I can't caption each picture.

Pic1 Valve and pump. Push foreward on the lever to extend the ram, pull the lever back and that retracts the ram. The line closest goes to the pressure side of the pump. The return line (low pressure) is on the opposite side of the valve.

Pic2 Bottom of the control valve. Both of these hoses coming out of the bottom go to the cylinder. The "A" hose goes to the stationary end of the cylinder and the "B" hose goes to the ram end of the cylinder. If you can't read the letters, A is on the left, B on the right. Ignore the pump pressure hose on the far left for the moment.

Pic3 The hydraulic cylinder.

Sorry it is so filthy but even though this is a vintage and kind of a rare garden tractor, it's a workhorse.

DAC

GMCDAC
December 18th, 2013, 04:18 AM
I'm gonna go out on a limb and shoot a guess for your hose routing after looking at your valve pictures again.

"In" on the valve should be the pressure side of your pump. "Out" on the valve should return to your oil tank. The other two sticking straight up in your last pic would be the ones going to the cylinder and could probably be reversed depending on which way you want the lever to move with the ram. The suction side of your pump should come from a fitting on your tank that is always submerged in oil. I'm wondering if that fitting that blew apart is proper sizes. You shouldn't have to build up the threads with teflon tape to make it tighter.

DAC

Rockdriller
December 18th, 2013, 11:44 PM
Keep workin' on it.....you're getting close...

FetchMeAPepsi
December 20th, 2013, 09:47 PM
Dac, you were right on. The hose that blew off is one that NAPA put together for me and instead of doing 1/2 inch they did 5/8 inch. so I had to get this:

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I taped it up and put it on the new hose:

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Then I fired it up and pressed the plunger. The hoses held great! Then the motor died. The cylinder didn't move a bit. I started the motor up again and slowly pressed the lever so it put gentle pressure on the cyl from the inside then I banged the crap out of it with a sledge hammer. I worked my way up to "hard as you can hit" power. It moved 1/8 inch. I think it might be frozen.

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GMCDAC
December 21st, 2013, 02:02 AM
Dac, you were right on. The hose that blew off is one that NAPA put together for me and instead of doing 1/2 inch they did 5/8 inch. so I had to get this:

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I taped it up and put it on the new hose:

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Then I fired it up and pressed the plunger. The hoses held great! Then the motor died. The cylinder didn't move a bit. I started the motor up again and slowly pressed the lever so it put gentle pressure on the cyl from the inside then I banged the crap out of it with a sledge hammer. I worked my way up to "hard as you can hit" power. It moved 1/8 inch. I think it might be frozen.

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Glad you got the fitting situation sorted out. Is that a rebuildable cylinder? maybe it could be taken apart and freed up?

DAC

FetchMeAPepsi
December 22nd, 2013, 10:49 PM
Glad you got the fitting situation sorted out. Is that a rebuildable cylinder? maybe it could be taken apart and freed up?

DAC

I don't know. I don't see any screws or anything on it to take it apart. Have you done one before?



I ran down to Tractor supply today and picked up another cylinder to see if that was the problem.

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It was. The new cylinder is 36" stroke (that means it can push out 36") and it's 2" around on the pusher part. The brand is Grizzly. It seems perfect for my splitter. I also found out that I wasn't mashing the switch far enough in either direction. My logic said that if you want the plunger to move slowly then mash the switch slowly. I didn't want it to slam out of there and break something (like me!) so I mashed on it slowly. That's not how hydraulics work apparently. You have to slam them all the way on or off. Not in between. I didn't know that.


At this point I was pretty excited. I ran over and grabbed a log, put it on the splitter, and mashed it to ON. It expanded perfectly until it hit the log against the blade, then it blew upwards and off to the side like a dog stretching. The pusher needs wings tying it to the beam. Oops.

I took a soapstone and marked the bottom of the pusher where the beam runs under it.

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I only have a few scraps of plate left to use for anything, but it should be enough. I plan to use one piece as a spacer and one piece as a "grabber" to grab on to the beam and guide the pusher down to the blade.

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I thought about welding them but then I'd never get them off :lolflag:

so i drilled three holes on each side and I'll run bolts through them.


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FetchMeAPepsi
December 22nd, 2013, 11:24 PM
For my reference here's the elbows I put on the cylinder to go from 3/8 holes in the cylinder to 1/2 hoses I had. That got rid of two different NAPA hoses. I'm takin those suckers back!

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I did three holes in each side. The holes are 5/16" around and through all three steel plate pieces. Drilling time took about 3 minutes per plate and one drill battery was used up for every 2 holes. I have several batteries though, but if you dont and you try this you might use a corded drill for sanity.

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Holes go through three plates.

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Measured for the bolts. See how it says about 2 inches?

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By the time I got to tractor supply (where they sell bolts by the pound) I thought it was 3 inches so I got bolts too big. But luckily I got the bolt, two washers, and a lock washer. They all took up enough space that the bolts tied down nice and tight. I got grade 8 bolts for strength, apparently they're the toughest.

Then I tied it down to the beam. It fit perfectly.

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All that was left was to fire it up and mash the handle. Guess what happened?

This:

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And summa this:

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And for fun I did somma this!

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Within 15 minutes I had somma this:

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It cut oak, catupla (very dense) and some huge idunnowhat logs. I couldn't find anything it couldn't cut! Guess who's havin a warm fire tonight? Oh yeah! :bananadance:

This is probably my last update on the wood splitter. I have really enjoyed this project aside from the mistakes I made (and money spent) getting it right and working. I plan to do some touch-up painting to get things right and I need to grind up and paint the pusher plate's "wings" to get it look better. I also need to put some bolts on the tank to hold the switch in one place because right now it's just dangling around.

I tell you one thing though, putting metal together and creating something from it makes you feel more in touch with your roots of manhood than anything. I now feel confident that I can pull parts off of my truck and weld them together. I can probably cut out bad spots and weld new ones on, then clean up the welds. Heck, I can probably even build new metal pieces in some cases if I need to. All it takes is time. I'm glad I jumped into this with both feet. I'd do it again without a second thought. Thanks for reading :)

Cayoterun
December 23rd, 2013, 12:56 AM
Great job, Pepsi, Seee, YOU CAN DO IT, AND YOU DID IT!!!!

GMCDAC
December 23rd, 2013, 04:08 AM
Congrats! Your persistance is paying off now, thanks for taking us along in this adventure.

DAC

Foley
December 23rd, 2013, 06:10 AM
Great project Mr. Fetch. Thanks for taking us along with you and sharing your feelings. I built a fire in the fireplace tonight and we all danced around the living room singing the Wood Splitter Song in your very honor. And so I'll be leaving here on the 26th with a trailer load of oak wood what needs splittin'. I should be there by the 29th!

Rockdriller
December 24th, 2013, 05:34 PM
The thrill of success......