Hand Split Wood
Our wood supplier hand-splits each log to follow the wood’s natural grain. This ensures a straight tangential grain, which strengthens the bat and almost entirely removes the chance of a tangential slope of grain failure, in all grades. The importance of straight tangential (face) grain is critical because the wood’s slope-of-grain has an overwhelming effect on the strength of the final baseball bat. Slope-of-grain is determined by how close to parallel a piece of wood is produced with respect to the longitudinal axis of wood cells in the tree. When a piece of wood is processed so that it is perfectly parallel to the grain direction of the tree, it will have the highest strength. When wood is cut at an angle to the grain direction of the tree, the strength quickly diminishes and a bat made with this wood is vulnerable to dangerous breaks or multiple piece fractures. Splitting is the only process that produces straight tangential grain with a near perfect success rate.
Hard Maple has become the bat of choice for the majority of MLB players today. The use of bats with poor slope of grain has caused many dangerous breaks but the use of properly processed bats made from split Maple billets can drastically reduce the risk of multiple piece fractures.
For over a century, Ash has been one of the most popular species for baseball bats. Originally introduced by bat makers due to its ease of workability, Ash has stood the test of time based on its comparatively lighter weight, flex characteristics and availability.
Recently, Birch has become much more popular among players at all levels of the game. Birch has proven to be a good alternative to Hard Maple and Ash with respect to performance. The supply of Yellow Birch logs suitable for baseball billets is more limited than Ash and Maple. The sap wood or live wood looks very similar to Maple and the heart wood has a brown color.