|> Splitting logs by hand is very hard work. If the OP has
|> tons then this is just not an option.
Not usually, it isn't, though it can be. With a suitable wood
(e.g. holly) that is fairly free of major knots, one stroke of
an axe is all that is needed. You don't have to do it all at
once, and it doesn't take long to do a hundredweight.
Some woods and ones with major knots are a different matter,
but I have heard that they are beyond an el cheapo mechanical
splitter, too. Surprise, surprise ....
|> We heat our house
|> with a log burning stove and the logs arrive pre-split from
|> the farmer. He has some sort of hydraulic splitter
|> attachment for the back of his tractor.
Those work, on almost all woods. But I doubt the OP is likely
to hire one.
|> I'm not sure what type of wood it is (possibly oak) ...
Oak is one of the harder ones to split. Not as bad as yew,