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Log Splitter Table Grate: A Little Ingenuity Saves Lots of Money

Red Pine Mountain logoGrate or grater, what’s the difference? Ah, but I was soon to learn one had nothing to do with eating when Mountain Man announced one morning, “I really need a table grate.”

“Why?” I asked. “Our grater is working just fine.” Visions of parmesan cheese atop mounds of Mountain Man’s homemade spaghetti sauce started to float through my head. Yum, now I was hungry.

“No, not a grater. A grate. For the log splitter. It’s a platform for the logs, so I don’t have to keep on bending over and picking them up to run the big logs back through.”

“Oh.” Now that I knew I wasn’t going to experience a new gastronomic delight, my attention span immediately ran out.

“Well, never mind. They are too expensive.” Mountain Man sighed as he perused catalogs and web sites. And when I saw the prices of the graters I sure agreed they cost too much after just paying a king’s ransom for a new tractor tire. No way a table grater or grate or whatever-the-heck-it’s-called was in our budget.

But wood is fundamental to our existence here on Red Pine Mountain and firewood not only keeps us warm all winter, we also sell it, and it comprises an important part of our income. We had purchased a fantastic log splitter a couple of years ago, but we couldn’t afford the grate at the time, but Mountain Man, well, he’s not getting any younger (shh, don’t tell him I said that) and bending over and picking up huge logs was starting to wreak havoc with his back.

And I knew we’d get our grate because once Mountain Man gets an idea in his head, there is no stopping him. Two days later, he announced, “I know what I’ll do. I’ll just build my own.”

And so he did.

Out in his shop constructing the table grate from materials he already had on hand.

Mountain Man constructs Table Grate.

Preparing to weld the grate on to his wood splitter.

Mountain Man prepares to weld the table grate onto the log splitter.

On to welding.

Mountain Man welds the grate onto the splitter.

Positioning the wood splitter into place on our log landing with the help of our tractor. The black piece on the front is the grate Mountain Man built.

Mountain Man moves the log splitter into place with the tractor.

A head on view of the table grate Mountain Man built.

A head on view of the table grate made by Mountain Man.

Getting ready to test his table grate with big logs waiting to be split.

Logs waiting to be split.

Lilly, our German Shepherd, wonders “What’s the hold up?”

Mountain Man checks to see if splitter needs adjusting while Lilly watches.

But Mountain Man is a perfectionist and before he starts, he wants it balanced just so.

Mountain Man adjusts log splitter.

It’s working perfectly.

Mountain Man splits wood to test the new grate.

The table grate is working.

Mountain Man surveys his work and is pleased with the results.

Mountain Man is pleased with his table grate.

Now, thanks to his ingenuity, Mountain Man has his table grate for the price of his effort, and me, well, I’ve learned a table grate has nothing to do with cheese.

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