Step 5: Level the stump (or grind it away)

Brooks levels off the stump with his chain saw, cutting as close to the ground as possible. Swim's crew would normally use a stump grinder, a 50-horsepower machine with dozens of 2- to 3-inch angled carbide teeth, to chew away the remaining trunk and roots as far as 12 inches below ground. But the homeowners decided that a stump is a fitting accent to their 4.5 wooded acres and in so doing saved themselves $125, paying just $375 for the takedown. "This wood de­cays so slowly, the stump will be a part of the landscape for generations," says Swim.
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    Tools List

    • chain saw
      Chain saw
    • Wood chipper
    • stump grinder
      Stump grinder
    • table saw
      Band saw