Monday, April 10, 2017

Just Stumping Around

Stumps can be contrary things

You can try to make artwork, or a statement piece out of them

but mostly they're just in the way.

When felling trees I usual make my cuts up around waist level because that's a natural position for old guys to be handling a 25 pound chainsaw, which makes one less thing I have to worry about during the dangerous business of felling trees.

Sometimes, if the stump is in a high traffic area, once the tree is down and taken care of I'll put an old ratty chain on the saw, strap on my knee-pads, pull the vegetation away, and cut the stump off at ground level,

but that's extra work and let's not forget that the incredibly tough end-grain of a waist-high oak stump makes a remarkably effective anvil, such as when I was closing up these two heavy steel hooks the other day. The one on the top has been done, the bottom not.

Unlike a steel anvil, if I need a different shape or edge to work the metal over, a few passes with the chainsaw and I'm all set. Sure, a few of those and my anvil starts getting a little short, but I have plenty of other stumps around to chose from.

As an added bonus for those of us already living with tinnitus and wishing we weren't, as well as those that are smart enough to not want to live with tinnitus in the first place, (Unfortunately I didn't get smart enough until too late. . .) oak stumps are surprisingly quiet anvils, thumping the energy of the hammer on down into the earth which swallows the blow as easy as it takes the weight of a footstep.

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