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  1. #1
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    120
    Location
    Central Florida
    Tractor
    Kubota L3130F-HST

    Default PTO Stump Grinder

    What experience is out there on PTO stump grinders? The land I'm clearing has very dense tree growth and I've been renting a grinder that will drive me to the poor house if I keep growing in that direction ($750/week). A BH is probably not the right approach as disposal of the hundreds to stumps would be a major issue (can't legally [img]/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif[/img] burn where I'm at). Any help would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    954
    Location
    Farwell, Michigan
    Tractor
    JD 2010

    Default Re: PTO Stump Grinder

    What are you going to use the cleared land for? In my area of Michigan we can haul our stumps to the landfill and dump them for free because of the no stump burning law.
    At $750 a week, depending on how many weeks you are going to rent the grinder, you may be able to purchase a BH and also have the stumps hauled away for less $$.
    Farwell

  3. #3
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    509
    Location
    South Carolina
    Tractor
    JD 5105

    Default Re: PTO Stump Grinder

    in three years you should be able to kick them over. I am dealing with 60 acres of clearcut and I finally listened to my old fashioned neighbors, just let them rot. In2 years your plow should rip right throuth them.

  4. #4
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Posts
    928
    Location
    Theresa, NY
    Tractor
    NH2120 RTV500 Bobcat S250

    Default Re: PTO Stump Grinder

    Nobody has actually answered your question yet, and I won't either. But I will respond. I considered this a couple years ago and even started or resurrected a thread just like this. I don't think anyone has ever bought one. At least that hangs out here. I decided against it, went the backhoe route. If I were to buy one I think, and I believe it was the consensus here, that it would be better to get a used dedicated one than a tractor attachment.

  5. #5
    Super Member Highbeam's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    5,037
    Location
    South Puget Sound, WA
    Tractor
    Kioti CK30HST

    Default Re: PTO Stump Grinder

    The ones I have investigated took more power than your machine makes and were very expensive. When you're done, you have a bunch of underground organic pockets that will settle and cause your smooth ground to become cratered.

    This is much like the PTO trencher threads. Nobody that has looked into it ever gets one. Price, limited use, and less than ideal results. Plus the fact that a backhoe is an alternative help me steer you away.

  6. #6
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    1,924
    Location
    NH seacoast & Coos County
    Tractor
    Kioti DK45S

    Default Re: PTO Stump Grinder

    Over the course of the summer my neighbor had 30 acres of clearcut hardwood land ground up with a hottop reclaiming machine. Like a giant rototiller that ate the stumps (4"-30") and left a seed bed behind. They worked 3-5 acre plots when they had no other work. Ground the stumps to chips & worked them into the soil. They went down 8". Horse pasture, nicer than my lawn.

  7. #7
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    120
    Location
    Central Florida
    Tractor
    Kubota L3130F-HST

    Default Re: PTO Stump Grinder

    Thank you for the replies. In the end the land will become a christmas tree farm so it will see regular clearing and leveling. As to taking the stumps to the landfill, our landfill charges $35/ton for tree and yard refuse. It doesn't take too long to get to a ton of stumps.

  8. #8
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    121

    Default Re: PTO Stump Grinder

    I used a Stumpbuster SC-50 from Shaver mfg. on my 4400 to grind some stumps. The grinder is actually my dads. First of all, have plenty of PTO HP. I realize that a 4400 is not rated for a SC-50, but I ground some pretty large stumps with my tractor. The older the stump, the easier to grind. He ended up buying a 5510 JD. I have not used it but my brother says that it works like a champ. I am not sure if I answered your question, but my opinion is that speed of grinding is directly proportional to the amount of horsepower that you have.

  9. #9
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    120
    Location
    Central Florida
    Tractor
    Kubota L3130F-HST

    Default Re: PTO Stump Grinder

    Thanks for the reply. I looked that unit up on the web and it is rated for 35 - 100 HP tractors. It does have a little brother (SC-25) for 15 - 35 HP tractors. One iten of concern is that the blade only cuts in one direction. This is where your experience would help me, how much depth can you take in a pass? The Vermeer I'm currently renting is an SC252 (25 horsepower Kohler engine) but it's limited severely by the teeth it uses that will only cut about a 1/4" per pass. It will cut in both directions which is good for this unit as the sweep is regulated to about 3" per second. I'd suspect that the return sweep is a lot faster with the Stumpbuster.

  10. #10
    Member
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Posts
    46
    Location
    Western NC Mountains
    Tractor
    Kubota B1700 HST Bi-Speed Turn

    Default Re: PTO Stump Grinder

    Chuck

    Some thoughts from my experiences raising Christmas Trees:

    I thought about going with the three point type as well, but ultimately backed off because of the high cost ($5,000), and the bulky set up.

    Look down the road when you begin harvesting or cutting trees. With your 4 acres, you will probably want to re-plant in the middle of the rows you have harvested. This means of course, that the stumps will now be in the middle of your tree rows, either wrecking havoc with your mowing equipment, or tripping over them if you are backpack spraying. Your size kubota is not going to fit down the standard 60" tree row spacing,

    For these reasons, I went with a Steiner tractor and stump grinder set up. It does a fabulous job on any size stump, is self propelled, and is small enough to get down the tree rows.
    Ventrac makes similar units. Both units are very pricey new, but they have the same basic design for 30 years, and there are great deals on used units from private owners. Stay away from the commercial golf course and goverment units, as they tend to be abused. Search "Steiner" under "Home & Garden" on e-bay right now for a great deal on a like new stump grinder for $800. Good tractors go for as little as $1,500-$3,000.

    I am in the process right now of clearing next years planting area, and grinding Christmas tree stumps in the middle of the tree rows from our choose n' cut sales this year. PM if you want for some pictures of the equipment in action.

    Check out the following links for some nice equipment. Look at the tree farm mowers as well. Very sweet set ups!

    Steiner Home Page
    Ventrac Home Page

    Thanks
    Bill

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