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  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    44
    Location
    Ithaca, NY (upstate)
    Tractor
    1989 John Deere 855

    Default Removing ~50 Hardwood Stumps

    I've perused several stump removing threads here and have come to some concensus, but I wanted to check and get any last recommendations. I have at least 50 stumps to pull, most of which are hardwoods (mostly oak/maple), of varying diameter from 6" to 24". Most are at least 12". They are all cut close to the ground.

    I also need to cut some more trees down, so for those I have the option of cutting higher (or just pushing over, if the equipment will do it, and if you think that's a good idea).

    The concensus from the threads seems to be that the best bet is digging them out with a backhoe. I had contemplated using a dozer, and of course grinding. I don't want to grind because I would like to regrade the areas for a nice lawn, and from the threads it seems using a dozer is not a good choice.

    The local rental place that has anything close to being able to handle this job has a JD 310 backhoe, so that is my choice for now. So, a few questions:

    (1) Will the 310 be able to do this job?
    (2) How long do you think it will take me, engine and clock time? I am not an experienced backhoe operator. Rental is per day (8 hours engine, 24 hours clock).
    (3) I wish I could get something with a "thumb", but I don't think it's available, so, will my JD 855 front loader be able to move these stumps around if necessary (since I won't be able to put all 50 on the burn pile at once)?
    (4) How big of a hole will remain? Will I need substantial dirt brought in or will some minor re-grading fill it in?

    Thanks!!
    1989 JD 855, 4WD hydro, 28hp, FEL, 60" rear finish mower

  2. #2

    Default Re: Removing ~50 Hardwood Stumps

    (1) Will the 310 be able to do this job?
    You should be able to dig them out with a 310, I have used a 310G the smaller backhoe that united rentals has, and can definitely dig out some good sized stumps in New England.

    (2) How long do you think it will take me, engine and clock time? I am not an experienced backhoe operator. Rental is per day (8 hours engine, 24 hours clock).

    It will take some time to get coordinated to the backhoe controls, and everyone gets the hang of it with different amounts of time, I have maybe 70 - 80 hours of backhoe time, and would use a ball park of 5-10 minutes per stump depending on the size and soil conditions.

    (3) I wish I could get something with a "thumb", but I don't think it's available, so, will my JD 855 front loader be able to move these stumps around if necessary (since I won't be able to put all 50 on the burn pile at once)?

    Thumbs are great, I have a Ford 1910 Tractor and wouldn't think of trying to lift a 28-24 inch stump. Sometimes you can use backhoe teeth to split the stump in half, but probably not if they are green.

    (4) How big of a hole will remain? Will I need substantial dirt brought in or will some minor re-grading fill it in?

    Big stumps leave pretty big holes, unless you have random hills / mounds of dirt you can grade into the holes you are going to be stuck with low spots, if you don't have fill brought in.

    Hope that helps.

  3. #3
    Silver Member rickster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Posts
    216
    Location
    West Michigan
    Tractor
    kubota B7800 fel

    Default Re: Removing ~50 Hardwood Stumps

    I just had a bunch of pine stumps push out 50-60. The guy was fast! He had a case 850 loader and was done in 3 hrs. By the time you rent a back hoe or what ever and pay for fuel its going to cost quite a bit. Just my opinion, find a good dozer operator to do the job.
    Rick

    B7800/Fel , Woods GT60 tiller, RB72 back blade, GB60 Box blade and 18" car hauler

  4. #4
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    196
    Location
    Birch Run, MI
    Tractor
    Case 580C

    Default Re: Removing ~50 Hardwood Stumps

    The small stumps will take about five minutes once you get the hang of it, the large ones can take up to half hour if they are oaks. You have a few days of work at least, it will take a day just to get used to how far you have to dig around the stump, getting it out of the hole, etc. Having the stumps cut close to the ground makes the job tougher, unless they are really old stumps.

    I have done a couple hundred stumps as I have been clearing my property with my 580 Case, and trust me this will take longer than you think.

    Get a weekly rental rate, it is usually cheaper than a daily rate. Then you can use the deere to do all the work and save the wear and tear on your machine. Get your money's worth out of that rental.

  5. #5
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    131
    Location
    Mid Hudson Valley, NY
    Tractor
    MF 1531

    Default Re: Removing ~50 Hardwood Stumps

    Personally, short of hiring a bulldozer, I'd look into a compact excavator to do this job. A lot less jockying around to get in the right spot, especially if the stumps are all relatively close together. Since you're renting something anyway, see if you can find an excavator. They're also often available with thumbs.
    MF1531
    See my album.

  6. #6
    Elite Member RonMar's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    2,693
    Location
    Port Angeles WA
    Tractor
    Jinma 284 delivered 06/28/05

    Default Re: Removing ~50 Hardwood Stumps

    Even a small backhoe can do a good job on a stump if used correctly. Unfortunately with a backhoe there is going to be a considerable ammount of repositioning time between stumps(retract the hoe, lift the legs, get into the tractor seat or rotate the seat to drive the tractor around whatever trees and obstacles are in and around the stumps, reset the hoe, ect). In my opinion a track-hoe would be a better choice for a tool if renting as it should do the job faster as moveing and digging is all done from the same seat and can be done simultaneously. A thumb would also be very valuable for pulling the stump out and getting it out of the way for a little bit of smoothing after the dig.

    I am in a similar situation with a LOT of stumps to remove, some as large as 30" and a lot of associated obstacles. The rental on a track-hoe large enough to remove them at a reasonable rate is pretty expensive at around $600 per 8/24 day including delivery and tax in my area. Even at that, I don't forsee being able to pull more than 2-3 per hour once I figure in the time to transit and reposition between removals and the initial time to learn the machine. That is several days work and lots of rental dollars and fuel. My wife suggested that I might be better off putting that money into purchasing a backhoe for my tractor and removing them on MY schedule(God I love that woman ) instead of playing "beat the rental clock". 1-2 per evening and I could probably be mostly done by summers end and at least have a backhoe(might come in handy when we build the new house) to show for all my troubles.
    Ron

  7. #7
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    44
    Location
    Ithaca, NY (upstate)
    Tractor
    1989 John Deere 855

    Default Re: Removing ~50 Hardwood Stumps

    Thanks all ...

    I'm looking now for an excavator/track-hoe that I might be able to rent (preferably with a thumb!), but no luck yet. Also looking for someone I could hire out to do the work if it can be potentially faster and cheaper ... again, no luck yet!
    1989 JD 855, 4WD hydro, 28hp, FEL, 60" rear finish mower

  8. #8
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    260
    Location
    Central IL
    Tractor
    Kubota BX2230, JD 400, AC 190XT

    Default Re: Removing ~50 Hardwood Stumps

    I will say, at least here in central IL, you could hire that done cheaper than you could rent the equipment and do it yourself. Of course, that wouldn't be nearly as much fun.

  9. #9
    Veteran Member Slamfire's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
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    1,494
    Location
    Coker Creek, TN
    Tractor
    Mitsubishi D 1800

    Default Re: Removing ~50 Hardwood Stumps

    My method probably won't work with short stumps. I run a sub soiler around the stump, then hook a short chain, with a log dog, to the stump. The other end of the chain hooks onto a pole of some type, wood, channel, I beam, or square tube, I attach another short chain to the opposite end of the pole, and the drawbar, then twist the stump out of the ground, by driving around it.
    '76 Mitsu D1800. '77 Wheel Horse A-100.
    Bold talk from a one eyed fat man



  10. #10
    Elite Member hazmat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
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    4,015
    Location
    West Newbury, MA & Harrison, ME
    Tractor
    Kubota B3030 loaded!

    Default Re: Removing ~50 Hardwood Stumps

    You can't get rental equipment in the booming metropolis of Ithaca, NY? (CU class of '97 here). You might have to expand your search radius - Elmira, Cortland, Binghamton, or Syracuse. Try calling your local tractor dealers - they should at least be able to refer you to the closest bigger rental yard.

    I guess I'm spoiled - Last year they opened a Volvo Rents about 5 miles from my house. There are a couple of rental yards on the New Hampshire seacoast as well as a Taylor Rental & Home Depot (for the smaller stuff). The local tractor dealers seem to rent their stuff too.

    You may want to reconsider the stump grinder. They are way faster than smaller backhoes at removing stumps. You can grind a few inches to a foot below the surface depending on the model. Around here the push models are about $130 a day, the drive models (bigger and automatically wag the cutter) $200. I'm not sure how much you want to regrade the area. I've rented the push model & it only took a few minutes per stump to bring a 10" ash 4" below ground. The stumps were "aged" a year or 2. Smaller, older stumps ground up as fast as I could move the machine.
    Hazmat

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