Thursday, March 26, 2009

Rotating composter

The composter is finished. Next to it you can see my worm composter, which was my first attempt at composting kitchen waste. Someday i'll blog about it, too.

I had the door open downward so it'll stay open when you're loading in material.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Build your own rotating composter

I've managed to build my own rotating composter for about $50.
I've always wanted one, but they cost about $300 commercially.

The idea is that a rotating barrel is easier to aerate by simply rotating the drum.
Aerobic microbes are much more efficient at composting,
so you get finished compost much faster this way.

I found the plans for one from the Rodale Institute. Rodale does great work in the area of sustainable agriculture.

The plans can be found here in pdf format.

If you're following the plans, I would recommend replacing the 28 wood screws, #10 x 1.5", with #10 x 2", cuz the shorter ones won't go through two pieces of 2 x 4.

A photo of the cross brace support. A jigsaw does this job wonderfully.

A shot of the top corner. Be sure to put the top horizontal piece on the outside of the legs.

The 0.5 inch notch in the top horizontal piece.

Cut a door in the side and attach a latch and hinges.

Close up of the latch that I used.

I made the bearings out of square pieces of wood. The larger bearing will be bolted to the barrel, and the smaller bearing is glued to it. The small side goes against the frame, i think to limit friction and so that the bolts don't catch against the frame.

Glue the little bearing to the bigger bearing.
You can see the piece of rebar that will go through the barrel and hold it in place on the frame.

The whole is drilled in the "exact" center of the barrel, so that the rebar can fit through and rest on the frame. I got the barrel from a friend for free.

The project should be finished in a day or two, once the glue dries. I'll post photos of the finished product.

Friday, March 20, 2009

New Kawasaki 500 Vulcan

Ok, it's not soil related, but here's a photo of my beautiful wife on my beautiful new bike. It's a 1996 Kawasaki 500 Vulcan. In the background you can see my 1980 Kawasaki 750 LTD, which my brother gave me a couple years ago. All three of them are beautiful in their own way.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Snow in Alabama!

We had an amazing snowfall in Alabama!
The onions didn't mind the snow...

And neither did the garlic...

And the peas seemed to love it! They're just germinating...