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Log splitter hydraulic filter/fluid change #4532647
10/03/17 05:58 AM
10/03/17 05:58 AM
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 6
Illinois
RubiDia Offline OP
RubiDia  Offline OP
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 6
Illinois
This log splitter gets about 15 hours of use every fall and spring and hadn't had any maintenance since August of 2012. We're looking at a lot of dead trees right now (Emerald Ash Borer).

I bought a 2 gallon container of ISO 46 hydraulic oil at Rural King and a NAPA filter at the dealer for about $30.00. Specs are for a Speeco Splitmaster 15 ton. You can read the manual here: http://www.speeco.com/whitepapers/LS401105LOGSPLITTER%20MANUAL2010.pdf

This has been a good splitter and never eaten any hands. It doesn't use a lot of gas and handles every kind of firewood. I also changed the spark plug ($3.00) and the engine oil (Mobil 1 10w30) which were both very burned out/dirty. The listed capacity for this engine is only 0.6 quarts. Swapping these made a noticeable difference and it starts in one pull now.

The oil had obviously sheared (?) quite a bit and had a dark tint, but there wasn't anything alarming in it.


I split the filter open (all damage to the media is mine) and didn't find anything in there either. It obviously wasn't in bypass, but I was concerned about deterioration.


I flushed the breather out and ran the cylinder unloaded a couple times; 2 gallons was about right. I didn't notice any air in the system, but I suppose there could have been.

Re: Log splitter hydraulic filter/fluid change [Re: RubiDia] #4532746
10/03/17 07:49 AM
10/03/17 07:49 AM
Joined: Sep 2005
Posts: 3,953
Massachusetts
Zaedock Offline
Zaedock  Offline
Joined: Sep 2005
Posts: 3,953
Massachusetts
I'm about to service my 22 ton Huskee/Speeco. Picked up some clearance Fram 1653A's for $3.79 at Tractor Supply.
My application has no bypass in the filter.

I typically split all year in my spare time. Central/Western Mass was decimated by the Asian Longhorn about 10 years ago.


2016 KIA Optima SXL 2.0L Turbo/2012 F150 Ex-cab 5.0L
1992 YJ "The Heep"/2015 Chrysler 200 Limited
1975 Ford Bronco/1959 Willys CJ5/20XX Custom rock crawler
Re: Log splitter hydraulic filter/fluid change [Re: RubiDia] #4532777
10/03/17 08:09 AM
10/03/17 08:09 AM
Joined: Dec 2016
Posts: 7,132
Waco, TX
Linctex Offline
Linctex  Offline
Joined: Dec 2016
Posts: 7,132
Waco, TX
Log splitter hyd fluid typically lasts forever unless it gets water contaminated. My log splitter oil is getting close to 30 years old.


"The evidence demands a verdict".
(Re:VOA)"it's nearly impossible to actually know the particular additives that are in there at what concentrations."
Re: Log splitter hydraulic filter/fluid change [Re: Zaedock] #4532780
10/03/17 08:10 AM
10/03/17 08:10 AM
Joined: Dec 2016
Posts: 7,132
Waco, TX
Linctex Offline
Linctex  Offline
Joined: Dec 2016
Posts: 7,132
Waco, TX
Originally Posted By: Zaedock

My application has no bypass in the filter.


It's probably built into the filter head.


"The evidence demands a verdict".
(Re:VOA)"it's nearly impossible to actually know the particular additives that are in there at what concentrations."
Re: Log splitter hydraulic filter/fluid change [Re: RubiDia] #4532831
10/03/17 08:46 AM
10/03/17 08:46 AM
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 2,472
Malaysia
zeng Offline
zeng  Offline
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 2,472
Malaysia
Quote:
The oil had obviously sheared (?) quite a bit and had a dark tint, but there wasn't anything alarming in it.

How was it ascertain that this hydraulic oil is sheared ?

Re: Log splitter hydraulic filter/fluid change [Re: zeng] #4532965
10/03/17 11:33 AM
10/03/17 11:33 AM
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 6
Illinois
RubiDia Offline OP
RubiDia  Offline OP
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 6
Illinois
Watery. Thehydraulics move a little slower with the change.

Re: Log splitter hydraulic filter/fluid change [Re: Zaedock] #4550280
10/21/17 02:55 PM
10/21/17 02:55 PM
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 6
Illinois
RubiDia Offline OP
RubiDia  Offline OP
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 6
Illinois
Originally Posted By: Zaedock
I'm about to service my 22 ton Huskee/Speeco. Picked up some clearance Fram 1653A's for $3.79 at Tractor Supply.
My application has no bypass in the filter.
That's cheap! I'm sure it works fine. There's another "serviceable part" I found behind the auto return valve. Directly opposite the handle there's a 1 oz cup stamped "Speeco" with two hex bolts that I had to drain after some problems with air in the lines (replaced 1/2" pressure hose and couldn't get the cylinder to return).

The oil inside was extra dirty and had obviously not been affected by the previous change. Air in the lines gone + the handle is much snappier and smoother. I had to fill up the cup and then squish it back on before it drained out; I'm not aware of any other way this part has oil going to it. It looks like a little ball bearing sitting inside a block with a couple rings over the cylinder.

Re: Log splitter hydraulic filter/fluid change [Re: RubiDia] #4551319
10/22/17 05:51 PM
10/22/17 05:51 PM
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 6
Illinois
RubiDia Offline OP
RubiDia  Offline OP
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 6
Illinois
...so that's obviously why the handle is working again.

Re: Log splitter hydraulic filter/fluid change [Re: RubiDia] #4551817
10/23/17 09:26 AM
10/23/17 09:26 AM
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 6
Illinois
RubiDia Offline OP
RubiDia  Offline OP
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 6
Illinois
Side note: the two number 5 hex bolts still had factory paint and came off pretty easy. After a few guesses, the total amount of fluid not displaced was something like a 1/2 oz. It will just bubble out until it reaches the "correct" fill otherwise (still don't want it doing that when someone else is running it).

Re: Log splitter hydraulic filter/fluid change [Re: Zaedock] #4899771
10/18/18 06:53 PM
10/18/18 06:53 PM
Joined: Feb 2018
Posts: 179
Illinois
onetwoothreee Offline
onetwoothreee  Offline
Joined: Feb 2018
Posts: 179
Illinois
Originally Posted by Zaedock
I'm about to service my 22 ton Huskee/Speeco. Picked up some clearance Fram 1653A's for $3.79 at Tractor Supply.
My application has no bypass in the filter.

I typically split all year in my spare time. Central/Western Mass was decimated by the Asian Longhorn about 10 years ago.
If you ever decide you want to swear like a sailor for an hour or two... take the handle apart and you'll find four 7/32 ball bearings holding a spring-loaded 7/16 ball bearing in place. Two small washers behind the spring. The handle will be so much better. So smooth. Rotate the bearing housing counter-clockwise and it also unscrews. You'll see an o-ring behind it which is probably pretty chewed up.

Google "22 ton speeco splitmaster" and you might see you can buy the valve + handle for $150.

Re: Log splitter hydraulic filter/fluid change [Re: RubiDia] #4900614
10/19/18 06:57 PM
10/19/18 06:57 PM
Joined: Oct 2018
Posts: 11
Southside Virginia
Fredward Offline
Fredward  Offline
Joined: Oct 2018
Posts: 11
Southside Virginia
So, I'm thinking of picking up a 27 ton Champion log splitter from Home Depot for $999. It seems like a pretty good deal for a H/V splitter that size. I found the manual and was skimming through it to see what kind of hydraulic oil it takes. AW-32, Automatic Transmission Fluid (Dexron-III or similar), or Universal Hydraulic Oil.

It says to use ATF if operating in temperatures below freezing. But isn't ATF slightly more viscous than AW-32? Does "Universal Hydraulic Oil" even describe a specific viscosity? Do they mean something like Kubota SUDT2?

What do you guys think of Champion splitters and what kind of hydraulic fluid would you use?

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Champion-Power-Equipment-27-Ton-224cc-Log-Splitter-100424/302367049

Last edited by Fredward; 10/19/18 06:58 PM.
Re: Log splitter hydraulic filter/fluid change [Re: RubiDia] #4901293
10/20/18 03:26 PM
10/20/18 03:26 PM
Joined: Feb 2018
Posts: 179
Illinois
onetwoothreee Offline
onetwoothreee  Offline
Joined: Feb 2018
Posts: 179
Illinois
The most important thing for you to remember is that your hands should never go where the log is. It will. literally. cut your fingers off. They call it a log splitter though.

Re: Log splitter hydraulic filter/fluid change [Re: RubiDia] #4902421
10/21/18 07:48 PM
10/21/18 07:48 PM
Joined: Feb 2018
Posts: 179
Illinois
onetwoothreee Offline
onetwoothreee  Offline
Joined: Feb 2018
Posts: 179
Illinois
The o-ring has an OD of 1in and an ID of 3/4in if anyone is interested

Re: Log splitter hydraulic filter/fluid change [Re: RubiDia] #4903151
10/22/18 02:42 PM
10/22/18 02:42 PM
Joined: Feb 2018
Posts: 179
Illinois
onetwoothreee Offline
onetwoothreee  Offline
Joined: Feb 2018
Posts: 179
Illinois
So I got some pictures of the inside of the handle. If you can't tell, there's a piston that pushes against the largest bearing being held in place by the friction of the smaller bearings around it sitting in a grooved collar. The movement of the piston forces the bearings to pop out of their socket and move into the next one (there are two). This allows the handle to lock in place while the cylinder is moving. You can see how the handle is supposed to work in the short video I made.

The next picture shows the area behind it which is accessed by turning the housing counter-clockwise. You'll hear a slight gurgling noise as you remove the disc and break the seal on the hydraulic system. The o-ring sits on the edge of the cylinder and seals against the brass disc. The side visible in the picture doesn't look worn because I just flipped it around. If you want to replace it, the OD is 1in and the ID is 3/4in.

I'm assuming, because there are no markings, that the two cutouts on the brass disc are supposed to be on the left and right rather than top and bottom. My reasoning is that the cutouts are mostly just to remove the ring and not to create a better or worse seal. OTOH, more fluid should be allowed to pass through if the cutouts were on the top and bottom because the hydraulic fluid would pool in that area.

I've had this part of the handle seep a small amount of hydraulic fluid before, and it turned out I assembled something wrong. Two main things to note: 1) the collar should be put on with the smaller groove going in first, and 2) the o-ring should sit against the brass disc, although it obviously travels back into the block as well. That, along with the brass cutouts on the side (if only for good luck perhaps) results in no bubbling seepage, although I doubt it's damaging anything when it does.

I'm correct in concluding there's almost no lubrication for this part at all. After hundreds of hours, the handle had started to stick when the cylinder was traveling and not lock properly. The bearings were coated with a chalky metal residue which was probably not allowing them to slide. This isn't listed as a maintenance item in the owner's manual, but it definitely needs to be done and makes a huge difference. I suspect because of the degree of difficulty, along with any hazards from assembling something incorrectly. One of the iterations resulted in the handle locking in the wrong direction. Not even sure how I got it to do that. I split wood with it for an hour though and then changed it back, which I don't recommend. Didn't leak a drop.

The last picture is a close-up of the bearings with everything ready to go except the cup that sits over the top. You might have to tap on the grooved collar with a rubber mallet to seat it where it should be. The hard part, of course, is getting the collar over the bearing cluster without everything flying all over the place or rolling off on the ground. I used the flat end of a magnetic screwdriver to push against the 7/16" bearing while I twisted the collar over the top of the four smaller ones. You have to use enough pressure that you'll likely move the log splitter, so chocking the wheels is not a bad idea.

I also spraypainted over the cup after everything was tested because it creates a nice seal and looks better. My one trick for getting air out of the system - for this and only this machine - is to extend the hydraulic ram fully, leave the cup off and then operate the splitter normally. This will, of course, send hydraulic fluid spewing everywhere like a blender without the lid on. The hydraulic ram will retract though (if you couldn't get it to before) and it will force air out of the system in that area. Mostly likely though, if air is trapped in the system or it's seeping fluid, it's because something was assembled incorrectly.


IMG_20181022_113527803 resize.jpgIMG_20181022_131122334 resize.jpgIMG_20181022_131843029_HDR resize.jpgIMG_20181022_131829241 resize.jpg
Re: Log splitter hydraulic filter/fluid change [Re: Fredward] #4903223
10/22/18 04:06 PM
10/22/18 04:06 PM
Joined: Feb 2018
Posts: 179
Illinois
onetwoothreee Offline
onetwoothreee  Offline
Joined: Feb 2018
Posts: 179
Illinois
Originally Posted by Fredward
So, I'm thinking of picking up a 27 ton Champion log splitter from Home Depot for $999. It seems like a pretty good deal for a H/V splitter that size. I found the manual and was skimming through it to see what kind of hydraulic oil it takes. AW-32, Automatic Transmission Fluid (Dexron-III or similar), or Universal Hydraulic Oil.

It says to use ATF if operating in temperatures below freezing. But isn't ATF slightly more viscous than AW-32? Does "Universal Hydraulic Oil" even describe a specific viscosity? Do they mean something like Kubota SUDT2?

What do you guys think of Champion splitters and what kind of hydraulic fluid would you use?

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Champion-Power-Equipment-27-Ton-224cc-Log-Splitter-100424/302367049

They're not hard to find. You mean is that a good deal? IDK

My advice is to find something you like and then hope it's easy to maintain. Doesn't always work out that way though.

It would have to be REALLY cold before I'd dump 5 gallons of unused hydraulic fluid just to buy some time before everything warmed up.

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