The days are getting shorter.

As we head deeper in Autumn, all of those jobs that were put off during the monstrous heat of summer need to be done before it is too cold and miserable to face doing them in Winter.

Image by Hindrik Sijens, CC licence.

Image by Hindrik Sijens. Featured thanks to a Creative Commons licence.

There are also jobs that have to be done to prepare for the colder months – the seedlings have to go in the ground to make some solid growth to protect them from frosts, and the large piles of wood need to be split down for the fire.

But it is easy to procrastinate, and having missing or broken tools can easily derail the good intentions of a morning.

That massive pile of wood had accumulated because the block splitter, unfortunately, was broken. The handle had disintegrated under the strain of having been knocked against solid hardwood eucalyptus far too many times.

I’ve not had to replace an axe handle before. They are wedged into the axe head very tightly, and with very good reason, but this also means that getting the handle out to replace it is not an easy job.

So I turned to that sage store of wisdom, and that oracle of DIY lore; and therein I found the answers that I was seeking.

I asked YouTube.

And YouTube told me to set it on fire.

This technique was shown in the video embedded below, and with a few minor alterations (coffee instead of tea; fire on the back lawn instead of in a clearing; the lack of a gigantic Husky to warm my back) it worked perfectly.

A couple of quick taps and the handle came right out, ready for the new one.

new-handle-for-block-splitter

Winter may not be as severe here as in many other countries, and there are better methods of heating a home than a fireplace, but flicking a switch on an electric heater won’t give you the delts or lats of a Norse God.

Maybe chopping your own firewood won’t, either, but it does feel good to swing that blocksplitter.