How Does a Wood Chipper Work?

How Does a Wood Chipper Work?

How does a wood chipper work, and which is best suited for you? Different types of wood chippers are available on the market, depending on whether you’re a domestic user or a professional in the landscaping or forestry industry. For most people, a garden wood chipper has more than enough power.

How does a Wood Chipper work? Cutting Blades

All wood chippers use cutting blades to chip away at the wood it is fed. The blades rotate at high speed, chipping the wood and expelling it out the other end of the machine. One of the most significant differences between a drum and a disc chipper is the orientation of the cutting blades. In wood chippers, the blades are usually oriented in a spiral pattern. A drum chipper chips wood that’s pushed through the blades. The blades cut against the wood grain, breaking it into smaller pieces.

A Drum Wood Chipper Versus a Disc Wood Chipper

While all wood chippers use cutting blades to chip the wood, different processes can be used to drive the blades. A drum chipper has blades attached around the outside of a rotating drum that’s connected to the engine. This is a direct connection which requires great power. A flywheel chipper instead takes a large flywheel to drive a smaller disc which houses the rotating blades. This provides a mechanical advantage allowing for greater efficiency. What a disc chipper gains in efficiency, it loses in brute force, making it best suited for domestic and some landscaping rather than heavy-duty forestry work. For most work, a disc whipper is suitable. For example, the Cobra CHIP650LE wood chipper can cut branches up to 3 inches (7.5cm) in diameter.

A Trailing Drum Wood Chipper

For the most intensive work, a trailing drum wood chipper is used. This is hitched behind a large lorry with space for debris. Wood is fed to the rear chute, chipped in the machine and then ejected through the chute into the lorry. This setup is best for larger-scale work along forests, roadsides, etc., where there is a need for transporting debris elsewhere. It also allows for a mobile setup in situations where a large amount of debris is stretched along a distance of road.

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