Ridiculous
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My Compost Tumbler I Made...

some of you may remember me asking about making a compost tumbler out of a grass seed mixer my dad has but no longer uses. well, i got it done...here's the pics...be sure to add your comments!

here's what i started with. it's a 30 gal drum with a hinged lid. he used to sell custom grass seed mixes but no longer does so this was just sittin in the weeds.
[img]https://i774.photobucket.com/albums/yy25/Ridiculous02/Garden%20Pics/IMG00249.jpg[/img]

and here's the after pic.
[img]https://i774.photobucket.com/albums/yy25/Ridiculous02/Garden%20Pics/IMG00260.jpg[/img]

another angle...
[img]https://i774.photobucket.com/albums/yy25/Ridiculous02/Garden%20Pics/IMG00261.jpg[/img]

the inside of it. kinda hard to see but i welded 1/2 inch rods 6 inches long inside of the drum to help stir the mix. you can see the holes i drilled pretty well too...
[img]https://i774.photobucket.com/albums/yy25/Ridiculous02/Garden%20Pics/IMG00262.jpg[/img]

what ya'll think...will she do the job?

Ridiculous
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nobody has anything to say? :cry:

Tater
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[img]https://i985.photobucket.com/albums/ae335/tatesfarm/farm020.jpg[/img]

Looks a little small. Nice work

rot
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..
Sorry. Not a tumbler guy.
..

Ridiculous
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oh well......i tried:(

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applestar
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You never know until you try it. I think you'd want to use smaller pieces in a tumber -- after putting through chipper/shredder maybe? Try it out after things warm up and let us know with an update. :wink:

Tater, is that yours? Now you're just showing off! :twisted:

Speaking of chipper/shredder -- if you (meaning me... :| )don't want to use a powered one, is there an alternative? Something like a monster meat grinder?

cynthia_h
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Don't know about a non-powered chipper/shredder...I just looked through Lehman's on-line catalogue and didn't see anything helpful under their Tools, Gardening, or Farming categories.

Cynthia H.
Sunset Zone 17, USDA Zone 9

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Sage Hermit
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Very impressive work. Makes me want to make one too. I do compost on a massive scale but for my own kitchen scraps this looks like a total gem.
You can solve all your problems in a garden/laboratory.

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Kisal
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I think it looks like it'll work. I do think you'll want to avoid long "stringy" sorts of ingredients, because they might hang up on the rods. All the tumblers I have seen have had something more like 'vanes' on the inside. It would be helpful if you ran stuff through a chipper before adding it to the tumbler, or you could just cut up any longer stuff with a hand clipper. I've done that before. That's my opinion, anyway. :)
"Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?" - Douglas Adams

Tater
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Applestar-no that is the truck that dumps the poo off. I flip it with a tractor.

vermontkingdom
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It looks great! Every journey begins with that first step and you are on your way. Over time you may discover the need to create more compost so the tumbler may not meet your requirements. However, in the beginning when you're learning a lot about the process, this should be useful.

Years ago, I used three tumblers to generate my compost. They just couldn't accommodate all the compostables I had available, so I changed to stationary piles.

Anything that works for a particular gardener is a benefit to both the person and society.
"Good gardeners do not have green thumbs. They have brown knees, soiled hands and big hearts."

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seagullplayer
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I could sure make use of it at my house!
Moved on.

Best of luck to all.

Ridiculous
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thanks for all the comments guys! I'm glad everyone seems to like it and thinks it'll work. ya'll said exactly what i had in mind, I'm just using this to learn about the process and put my kitchen scraps in and what not....


now I'm curious about shredders/chippers. what are you guys using out there??? i have no idea where to look or what to look for!

rot
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a little chipper

..

I finally found something on craigslist. I spent 40 bucks on an old beast and another hundred getting it serviced.

So far it works fine. About 5 hp and it's a mean violent machine. I like ear and eye protection when I use it. Eats sticks and dry leaves fine. I liked what it did with newspaper but as someone else pointed out elsewhere - don't try that on a windy day. It ate the trimmings off of a couple of christmas trees just fine.

I'm thinking I'd rather let things dry out before chipping instead of running green sticks. I also don't want to use anything stringy like palm fronds or those elephant ear like plants and their stalks unless they're really really dry and brittle. I end up with a brush pile on my drive way for a couple of months to let things dry out.

I keep the sticks small. Anything too big becomes kindling.

to sense worth

..

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Jbest
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Ridiculous wrote:now I'm curious about shredders/chippers. what are you guys using out there??? i have no idea where to look or what to look for!
rot wrote:I finally found something on craigslist. I spent 40 bucks on an old beast and another hundred getting it serviced.
Avoid all the current models being produced, they are junk. I got an old WW Grinder on Craigslist also. I paid $350 for it but it was like new. It weighs about 300# but it will shred anything dry or sloppy wet without clogging. John
[img]https://www.jbest123.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/11/pa2007631121.jpg[/img]
Life's Journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body,
but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting,
"Holy crap what a ride!!"

rot
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Bested

..

The more I see what John is doing the more I like what he's doing.

The configuration of the shredder looks like it feeds well. Check.

Bins on pavers. Check.

Sturdy steel bins not too big to water and then turn. Check & check.

A full finished bin with compost always on hand when you need it. Check.

It's laid out in a tight little configuration so there's always a place to put something. Check.

I feel kind of bested.

..

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Jbest
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Re: Bested

rot wrote:..

The more I see what John is doing the more I like what he's doing.

The configuration of the shredder looks like it feeds well. Check.

Bins on pavers. Check.

Sturdy steel bins not too big to water and then turn. Check & check.

A full finished bin with compost always on hand when you need it. Check.

It's laid out in a tight little configuration so there's always a place to put something. Check.

I feel kind of bested.

..
How in the heck do I respond to this other than saying thanks. After 50+ years, I should be doing something right. :wink: John
Life's Journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body,
but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting,
"Holy crap what a ride!!"

rot
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Oops

..

Jbest, I didn't mean to make you feel awkward.

I had seen your pictures before and was struck with a little envy when I saw one again and then I noticed the name attached and saw a little play on words.

Then I considered why it struck me so and when I followed that thinking I just felt compelled to say something to the effect of: well done.

If you read the post backwards, it actually tracks to my thinking while I was considering it all. I think a light bulb went off that put my ideas together into what I've been trying to do. Thank you for that.

Saying no more.

..

vermontkingdom
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I find my chipper/shredder to be a tremendous asset in composting. There always seems to be branches, apple tree prunnings, etc. that need chipping before entering the compost pile. In the fall, I shred dozens of bags of leaves and sturdy soft stemmed plants like old brassicas. As long as the material has firmness or is dry, I'm in business. If however I try to shred a lot of soft materials like wet leaves, it get clogged.

About 15 years ago my wife and I decided to buy joint anniversary presents for each other. Bless her heart, most of them have been things associated with the garden (compost tumblers, chipper, tiller, greenhouse, earthboxes, etc.) Even though over our 40 years together she has never been one to work in the garden, none the less, she has surely been her gardener's biggest asset.
"Good gardeners do not have green thumbs. They have brown knees, soiled hands and big hearts."

GardenGeek
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well well. i do not know anything what others are saying about your little invention :D but if you ask me, i would encourage and appreciate you.
You better know which size is the best suitable for you and i am pretty sure its going to work well ;)

Hard work never go in vain :)

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