Lee Valley Tools    Gardening Newsletter
   Vol. 6, Issue 3
    June 2011
 
   What Is It?
 


What Is It?

If you have to split stone, feathers and irons certainly simplify the process. For many centuries, this was the only non-explosive method of quarrying rock until hydraulic systems were developed.

The splitting is fairly simple. Start by drilling holes along your split line, which can be straight or curved. The holes should be as deep as your wedges are long. The spacing between them will vary depending on the type of stone. Place the feathers and irons into the holes, ensuring that the feathers' ears face the direction you want the stone to split. Firmly, but without forcing, strike the wedges in sequence; repeat this process until the stone splits.

By drilling several holes in a row and judiciously tapping the irons to develop a fairly even pressure line, you can split rocks quite accurately. With only a single hole, the result is less predictable.

 
     
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