Cutting, moving, measuring,
and piling firewood tips.

Making Kindling

Tips to make splitting wood.

Making Kindling

To make kindling you need a
small hatchet, gloves, safety
glasses and a solid piece of
wood to chop on.

Short pieces of wood, 4 to
6 inches in length split
the easiest.

Short pieces of kindling are great
for starting a fire, and you
end up with more kindling
from the wood supply.

Place your chopping block of
wood on solid ground.

The solidness beneath the
wood, sends shock waves
back into the wood

when splitting, this helps split
the wood.

Soft ground absorbs the blow
of the axe reducing its

The axe should not be too sharp,
only sharp enough to act
as a wedge.

You are not cutting the wood,
only prying it apart.

The axe blade only need be
sharp enough to wedge into
the wood a short distance,
with light force.

One would call this a dull axe.

Once the head is into the wood,
the outward prying splits the

Choose your wood to be split,
dry with no knots.

A good straight grain wood
will split easiest.

Pine and cedar splits very nicely.

A short piece of dry dimension
lumber, about four to six inches
long makes good kindling.

Gloves and safety glasses on,
for a right handed person,
hold the wood to be split with
your left hand, about two
inches down from the top
edge of the left side of the

Grip the hatchet, on the handle,
with your right hand, where
the axe feels balanced and

Place the wood to be split on
the solid chopping block,
balance it with your left

Lift the hatchet just high enough
to produce enough force on the
downward stroke to simply enter
the wood, just enough so the
wood sticks to the axe blade.

Release your left hand from
the wood and place both
hands on the handle of the axe.

Next raise the axe with the
embedded wood together as
a unit.

Bang the wood down onto the
chopping block, with the axe
still embedded in the wood
to split, repeat this action
until the wood splits apart.

The weight of the axe does
the job, not hard swings of
the axe.

A hatchet of about one to
two pounds, is about right.

If the axe is too light, you
have to swing harder, too
heavy is clumsy and over kill,
and will tire you out quickly.

Repeat the procedure until
the wood is reduced to kindling.

The Woodpile

Build your wood pile with the
big picture in mind, this will save
you time and frustration later.

Place the long burning wood to
one end of the pile, such as birch,
this will be used for nighttime and long

Towards the other end of the pile
place all the wood with rot,
light wood, knotty, unshapely,
very short, and very long pieces

These pieces will be burnt in
the day, when only a few pieces
are burnt at a time.

The very long pieces may have
to go into the stove sideways to
make it fit, nighttime time is
not the time to find out it will
not fit, while one end is
in the stove and on fire.

One stick of wood will give
about half an hour of heat.

A cord of wood is 128 cu ft.

Examples of One Cord

4 ft. x 4 ft. x 8 ft.

4 ft. x 2 ft. x 16 ft.

Wood 16 inches in length,
row 6 ft. high, 16 ft. long.

Cord of Wood

History of the Axe

The first axes were made of stone
over 10,000 years ago.

The stone axe progressed to copper,
then bronze, iron and steel.

The iron axe originated in Europe,
but was later manufactured in
North America.

The axe designed and built in
North America was more
designed to fell large trees.
The handle was long and
had a double bitted iron head.

The axe usually had one sharp
blade and the other dulled.
The sharp side was for cutting
deeply into wood, the dull blade
was for splitting wood, and
chopping tree roots in
the ground.


Save birch bark for starting fires.

Safety Equipment

Hard hat.

Safety glasses.

Hearing protection.

Leather gloves.

Good solid leather boots
to promote footing stability,
and protection.

Safety chainsaw chaps.

Work with a partner.

Build a firewood
hauling cart

Look for a small inexpensive
cart and add a couple of front
bars to hold the wood.

Add a wood strip down the
back center, to keep short
pieces of wood from falling

Home Hardware and Canadian
Tire sell these small carts.

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at findnchoose.

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