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

Grate 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.

Preparing to weld the grate on to his wood splitter.

On to welding.

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.

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

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

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

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

It’s working perfectly.

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

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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  • Published on May 14, 2010
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