You can remove a sycamore tree stump either mechanically or chemically with basic tools, but larger stumps may require specialized equipment. For smaller stumps, dig a trench around the stump with a heavy-duty shovel, and separate the connecting roots with a pick axe or landscaping bar.
Angle the shovel or bar beneath the stump, and use it as a lever to loosen the stump from the ground. Repeat this to various parts around the stump. If the stump is too large for one person to remove, have another person assist. If it is too large for hand removal, wrap the stump with a heavy chain, and attach the other end to a truck or tractor. Set the vehicle to its lowest gear, and slowly drive away from the stump to dislodge it.
Some stumps may be too large even for vehicular removal. For these stumps, hire or rent a mechanical stump grinder. First, trim the stump close to the ground using a chainsaw, and clear the area of rocks and debris. Then, engage the grinder, and slowly move it back and forth to grind down the stump until it is below the soil level. Remove the wood chips, and fill in the hole with topsoil.
For chemical removal, drill 1-inch holes into the stump’s surface around the edges and into the sides at a 45-degree angle. Pour the chemical remover into the holes, and then fill the holes with water. After approximately six weeks, chop up the softened wood with an axe.