After using the good old axe to split logs for almost twenty two years, the back finally started to cringe last summer. After a few doctor visits, it was prophesized that I would never be able to manually split logs again.
Not that I didn’t try. But the pain, the opioids and the therapy were too much to bear to even attempt that stunt again.
Hence began the quest for an automated log splitter. And when it comes to buying new tools, I am worse than a forensic expert. I make it a point to dig down into the netherworld to come up with information that can make or break my purchase.
And after speaking to professional lumberjacks who have used a lot of these beasts over their lifetime and also to my neighbor who splits logs for his woodworking business, I narrowed down on the Ariens 34 ton log splitter.
This is a gas powered log splitter that boasts of features like a 211 cc Subaru engine, 34 ton log splitting force and easy operation.
Most of the guys that I spoke to said that this can sail through almost all types of wood. We usually deal with elm, white and red oak, ash, hard maple and occasionally, some box elder. And the Ariens splitter went through each one of them like a knife through butter.
But before I speak about the power of this log splitter, let me walk you through the features and how this works.
Built like a tank
Despite using a log splitter for the first time, I couldn’t help but be impressed by the build quality of the Ariens splitter. This is built like a tank. The parts are solid, all-metal and intuitively placed to ensure easy operation.
The primary parts that you’d want to know about are the cast iron wedge, the hydraulic pump and the integrated cradle that makes it effortless to split large sized logs without having to even move a finger.
Well, not literally. But it’s about as close to automatic as it can get.
Both the engine and the pump are perfectly placed away from the operator and are protected too from an accidental drop of a heavy log.
This leaves the operating area clear and makes it a breeze to work with.
There’s a two inch ball coupler on the front which lets you hook it up easily with most trucks and transport this to parts of your property where you usually split the logs. In my case, that’s my workshop about a mile away from home.
It is legal as long as you don’t exceed 45 mph while towing it.
The Subaru engine has all the important parts right where you can access it. So, you have got the throttle, the choke and the fuel on/off switch right on the front panel.
Using the Ariens 34 ton log splitter
I have already mentioned how easy it is to use. But when I first powered it on, I was literally cursing myself for not having bought this a decade ago. The back would have thanked me for sure. And to think of it, they used to call it character building. Jeez!
The Subaru engine powers on with a single pull every time I have used it.
Just add the log that you’d like to split and use the valve assembly to push the cylinder forward or in reverse. The controls being centrally located also allow you to split the logs from either side.
The Ariens splitter has a 12 second cycle which is amazing if you have a lot of wood. As a hobbyist and avid wood worker, there are days when I really appreciate the fast cycling time and the instant start of this machine.
Also, the cradle positioning allows you to use really large and heavy logs while splitting vertically and up to 25 inch ones while splitting horizontally.
From oak to elm, hickory and box elder, I put some really heavy logs with convoluted grains through the Ariens and it just glided through most of them. It slowed down on a couple of occasions when the wood was really tough. But even the lag was so minute that one would hardly notice it when splitting multiple logs.
Why I like it
- Really heavy duty construction with all-metal parts
- Perfect placement of the pump and the engine which clears the work area
- Integrated cradle lets you split horizontally and vertically
- Centralized control panel lets you split from either side of the machine
- Easy transportation
- 34 ton splitting force
- Easy operation
- Splits even the heaviest and toughest grained wood with ease
- Silent operation
If you are looking for a log splitter that can take a lot of abuse and work with all types of wood without breaking down, I highly recommend the Ariens 34 ton log splitter. This is perfect for home use as well as professional use.