Wedges and AR-400
Timberwolf Firewood Processing Equipment builds machine that are designed to survive in the abusive world of firewood splitting. One of the key factors to our machine’s longevity is our selection of steel for our wedges. Wedges have three commons failure points:
- abrasion leading to deformation of the blade
- brittleness leading to weld failure
- bending leading to deformation of the wedge wings
In order to provide a wedge that is resilient to all of these factors we utilize a special alloy steel called AR-400. The name stands for “Abrasion Resistance – Brinell Hardness 400”.
This steel combines many characteristics that make it ideal for the manufacturing of a wedge.
It has a high tensile strength making it very resistant to bending. This allow the wedge to resist the force of the hardest of wood as it splits through knots and offset grain with no permanent deformation.
AR-400 is also incredibly hard, a simple test you can preform on your machine to visualize this property is to strike the wedge with a wrench. You will notice that there is not the slightest amount of deformation. If you then strike a piece of common steel with a wrench you will witness a large dent at the site of impact. Try this at home but make sure you where safety glasses as it is possible to shatter your wrench on the AR-400! This hardness allows it to resist years of wood passing over it with minimal wear.
Finally a steel’s weld-ability is a critical factor in determining its suitability for a wedge. When done correctly AR-400 accepts great penetration leaving one with a strong fused seam with minimal brittleness allowing for a wede which in some cases will last a lifetime.