I've had a large section of a box elder tree trunk and a large linden tree branch in the wood shop for a while now that have needed to be split and cut into bowl blanks. So my youngest son Ollie, aka The Critter, and I decided to go down to the wood shop and split the logs and get going.
Here's some photos of the splitting:
Here is the linden tree branch and splitting this is easy to do. I always begin by driving an axe into the edge of on of the ends to the branch and open up a big crack. You'll wind up with either a crack across the face of the branch or along the length of the branch:
In this case, a crack opened up along the shaft of the branch. When it did we started hammering splitting wedges into the crack and opened it up:
And viola! It broke apart. It took us about 5 minutes of hammering away:
This is the box elder tree trunk. This had developed a crack along the long axis of the trunk and so we did the same thing-insert wedges into the crack and hammer away:
And BAM! it falls apart. The sections are now narrow enough to cut on a bandsaw or cut by hand with a carpenter's saw into blanks (see the next posting):
And this is the Critter. Axe in hand. Smile on face. The family that splits logs together stays together:
Ok, there's a reason for all this craziness and we'll talk about this in the next blog posting.