Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Operation advanced compost

  Composting is hard. Turning, watering and moving the finished compost.
That being said, I have come up with a design from mostly materials I have on hand for a tumbling composter.
The material list is as follows
2x4 lumber, various lengths (recycled)
wood screws (mostly salvaged)
1 55 gallon plastic barrel (free acquisition)
Casters (salvaged)
A hasp and latch ( salvaged)
Hinges ( salvaged)

The basic design is simple, a plastic barrel turned on its side, a way to roll the barrel and a place to put the compostable material in.

The basic frame is a box with one brace missing so that a wheel barrow can be put under for emptying the finished compost. As with most things I build it is over built (mostly free materials let's you max out the durability of a build).

The rolling system is made from 4 casters that I acquired with some steel shelving. Rather than spending a ton of time drilling a hole to bolt them in, I drilled a hole that was undersized and threaded the wood with the caster studs. This isn't the best method but it will work until it's time to upgrade the unit.
The hole was cut by drilling holes in a line until the blade on my reciprocating saw would fit then, cutting the hole to its finished size. 

The hinges were off of a standard household door, blocks of wood were screwed to the inside of the barrel to support the hinges and latch.

I live in a dry climate thus ventilation was made by drilling out the caps on the top of the barrel to 1/2 inch until I could determine if additional vents were needed.

The final steps are simple, once you finish building fill up the composter with a 25-1 blend of carbon  to nitrogen material. the definition of carbon material and nitrogen material will be covered in another post that I have Back logged for quite some time as my computer crashed and I lost the all inclusive compostable material list I had been working on whittling down.