How to Split Wood with A Hatchet (Step By Step Guide)

Published on: March 26, 2022
Written by Eric Devin / Fact-checked by David Rowan

Do you have an idea of how to split wood with a hatchet? If you are new, it is normal to have no experience on this site. When I started working on new wood, I couldn’t cut wood properly with the hatchet.

Then I continue to practice with the experts, watch on the internet and watch videos of various experts on YouTube. In time I also learned. In this article, I will describe to you how to split wood properly with a hatchet. Let’s start. 

how to split wood with a hatchet


The hatchet is used for cutting wood; it’s a chopping instrument. It’s a very popular tool for wood projects. According to Wikipedia, “the hatchet is a single-handed striking tool with a sharp blade on one side used to cut and split wood, and a hammerhead on the other side.” Hatchets may also be used for hewing when making flattened surfaces on logs; when the hatchet head is optimized for this purpose it is called a hewing hatchet. 

Remember hatchet and an ax are not the same things, they are two different things. The hatchet is a relatively light and small tool. Although a hatchet is not as strong and heavy as an ax, it is used to make a variety of wooden projectors.

How to Split Wood with A Hatchet

Any work should be learned consistently. This makes learning any job much easier. So I will now talk about cutting wood with a hatchet according to the steps. A total of four steps, one after the other, are described below so that you can easily understand the work.

First Step: Ready the Surface

Before splitting the wood with the hatchet you need to create a service where you want to get the job done. It is the first step in this matter. 

It is better to avoid flat and plain surfaces for split wood when you work with a hatchet. Take an attempt to take a bigger square made of a strong material like hardwood, solid, stone, and so on. This square should not be excessively huge or excessively little. In any event, ensure that the wooden piece that you are going to part in fits serenely. 

While choosing the surface, additionally guarantee that it gives you a legitimate stature to cut the logs with a hatchet. For my work most of the time I chose tree trunks, I think it is the best instance of surfaces that you can benefit from.  After fixing the surface, check to see if it is OK for work. 

Second Step: Pieces the Wood

It is a good idea to create your wood into short pieces because a hatchet is not a heavy tool for parting wood.  In this way, prior to taking your ax up in your grasp, ensure that the wooden piece can be part. For that, guarantee that it had been cut into appropriate pieces.  Try to piece the wood timber around 1 feet to 3 feet in size. 

This way makes it simple to store whenever you are finished with parting. Something else, the bigger the logs will be, the harder it is to part with the help of a hatchet. It also saves work time. 

Third Steps: Start Split

Before starting work, determine where you will stand and work. Don’t go too close and try to cut wood. Try to stay at least two and a half feet away. Start working after seeing how sharp the hatchet is. You can run the hatchet on top of another wood to check before the final cut.

Take the ax in your solid hand to work, and keep the other hand as a partner. Together, guarantee that a firm power is being applied the correct way. Ensure that your arm is holding the hatchet at its base piece.

Furthermore, look that you and your hatchet are not wet. This will prompt horrendous mishaps. If everything goes well, start cutting from the middle of the wood and first point out where to start cutting.

Final Step: Follow the Point  and Force 

When you start split wood it makes sure you cut exactly according to the points. While you are giving striking power to the log, ensure that you are guiding it in the correct way. A portion of the logs should be cut longwise, some of them are intended to be cut widthwise. 

When running the hatchet, notice if it is working as you want. Consider whether the wood is being cut according to your type of work and type of work.

If you have to split the wood properly with the hatchet, follow the same procedure again and finish the whole work. 

What is the Best Way to Sharpen a Hatchet for Optimal Splitting?

The best way to sharpen a hatchet for optimal splitting is to first use a file or a sharpening stone to get a good edge on the blade. Make sure to start at the top of the blade and move down the edge in a sweeping motion. Make sure to do both sides of the blade evenly. After the edge is sharpened, use a honing steel or a sharpening stone to refine the edge. Finally, use a honing oil or honing paste to help protect the blade and keep it sharp for longer periods of time.

Some Important Tips

Now you have a good idea about the hatchet. Here are some tips for your work. It is a bonus tip for your work project just go to the below.

  1. Always maintain safety when you work with the hatchet. So that no untoward incident occurs. 
  2. Wear safety glass, gloves, and other safety equipment at work time.
  3. Work at a safe distance. Any danger can come from getting too close.
  4. Continuously ensure that you are using a sharp hatchet to parting the wood. 
  5. If it hurts to hold the handle of the hatchet, work using rubber groups or rubber gloves. 
  6. Once your work is done, clean the hatchet well and keep it in a safe place.
  7. Keep the hatchet out of reach of children. 


After reading this article, I hope you have a clear idea about each step to split wood with a hatchet.  When working, make sure you follow each step correctly. It may not bring good results at first, but don’t be discouraged.

Continue practicing until good results are coming. Gradually you too will become an expert in cutting wood with a hatchet.

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About This Writer

author eric devin

Hi, I am Eric Devin and I am a professional interior architect. Since childhood, I've always enjoyed DIY projects! And, I have loved to solve simple household problems using essential tools and equipment. I have also acquired a lot of information about basic household tools settings by working with contractors.

Hi, I am Eric Devin and I am a professional interior architect. Since childhood, I've always enjoyed DIY projects! And, I have loved to solve simple household problems using essential tools and equipment. I have also acquired a lot of information about basic household tools settings by working with contractors.

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