Anyone use a manual hydraulic log splitter?

So far this summer I have scrounged somewhat over half a cord of free firewood, and the time has come to split it for seasoning. This is a bit more wood than I’d like to split by hand with a maul, but its not enough to justfy getting a gas, or even electric, powered hydraulic unit, which start at about $700. The third option is a manual hydraulic splitter, which uses muscle power to pressurize the hydraulics, and are much more reasonably priced. These seem to come in two different styles: foot-operated units such as the mini-splitter and hand-operated splitter like this one that operate like a cross-country skiing machine. Does anyone have any experience with either of these? Any advice or further information would be welcome.

If you live anywhere a Home Depot you might be able to rent a gas powered splitter for the day. That might be less money than buying even a manual one.

I’ve always been very happy with HD tool rental.

And oh by the way, Home Depot has an electric splitter for about $300.

No I don’t work for, or own stock in, Home Depot. Why am I schilling for them?

Probably not the answer you’re looking for, but we have a gas splitter and use it quite a lot. Both of those splitters you linked to look like a lot of work.
My husband (usually) puts the wood on the splitter and I pick up the split pieces and toss them on the wood pile. Then when the pile is big enough, we (and the kids) pick it up and stack it neatly in the yard. I can operate it, too, though, and I’m “just a girl.” :wink:

We go through a lot of wood - our woodstove is our primary heat source, so we’re more justified in using it. We have at least three cords stacked and ready for this winter.