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What Size Hydraulic Pump Do I Need for Log Splitting?

Vickers pump parts

Hydraulic pumps are impressive machines that can provide consistent and efficient power in a variety of applications. Tools that require continuous pressure against significant resistance, such as presses, tend to be very well suited for hydraulic pumps. Log splitting is a great example of a situation in which hydraulic excel, but only if the right pump is used.

Hydrualic Pump Size for a Log Splitter

Calculating the right pump size for a log splitter depends significantly on the specifics of the use case. Some smaller splitters only need a relatively low flow rate and pump size. However, for industrial applications or those with a particularly strong type of wood, it may be necessary to use a larger pump. 

The size of the cylinder is the main determining factor in the splitting force and speed. The pump will impact the speed of the machine alone. However, since the cylinder size dictates the pumping requirements, these two factors are linked. A larger cylinder means more force, but it will require more fluid. Thus, to maintain the same speed, the pump needs to increase in size also.

To determine what size hydraulic pump for log splitter applications, you will need to know which size cylinder you need. Modest log splitters may use 3.5-by-24-inch cylinders. Larger splitters may use 5-by-24-inch cylinders. You can calculate the volume of the cylinder using the formula pi * radius^2 * stroke (radius is half of the bore size). 

Then, you can divide the volume in gallons by the gallons-per-minute rating of the pump to determine the speed. With this in mind, along with your speed requirements, you can determine what size pump will work for your needs. For basic applications, expect to use a pump between 10 and 15 gallons per minute. More advanced applications may call for 30 or more gallons per minute.

What Does a Hydraulic Pump Do?

Panagon Systems offers a selection of hydraulic pumps equivalent to the Eaton/Vickers line as well as Rexroth A10V units and Caterpillar PVH-CAT. These are capable of four to 90 gallons per minute of flow. Therefore, you can easily find the right pump for your application in our catalog. Typically, log splitters use a pump between around 10 and 30 gallons per minute.

Power of Hydraulic Pump

Hydraulic pumps are perfect for log splitters thanks to their highly efficient conversion of mechanical power into compressive force. They are also very predictable in terms of performance. While there is a little math required, if you know the amount of force you need and the number of splits per minute, you can easily determine the right hydraulics for your needs.

Furthermore, hydraulic pumps tend to require much less maintenance compared to alternative mechanisms. They are inherently self-cooling and resistant to contamination. Unlike a pneumatic system, the hydraulic fluid cannot be easily compressed. Therefore, the pump is better protected against running dry and from the resistive force of the log.

Hydraulic pumps also use less energy to operate than comparable pneumatic systems. Overall, hydraulic pumps provide ample power, high energy efficiency and reduced operational costs. They are perfectly suited for this application.

The Panagon Difference

Panagon Systems provides better pumps at better prices for a better experience. You can find products in our catalog for log splitting and many other applications. They are available at the cost of remanufactured pumps but with the quality of OEM.

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