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compost screen - should have done this last year

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compost screen - should have done this last year

Post  landarch on 5/14/2013, 11:53 pm

finally broke down and made a compost screen this year (steel frame, 1/4" galv wire mesh, steel support rod down the middle) and ran a few tubs of material through just to test it out...worked awesome. It's amazing how many rocks, sticks, etc. can be removed to make some really nice material. I shred alot of bur oak leaves (about the size of a small violin) and they take several years to break down, especially the petioles.

I have about two pick-up loads of material to sift that should be ready soon...one can never have too much compost. My compost contains manures (horse, cow, rabbit, chicken), garden and kitchen scraps, shredded leaves, lawn clippings, and Starbucks coffee grounds).


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Re: compost screen - should have done this last year

Post  southern gardener on 5/15/2013, 2:36 am

looks like a nice screen. we also screened this time for the first time. WOW, is it nice to work with! My nephew and his friend did ours, they did it in no time, I was amazed at how quickly they did it. Almost a full cubic yard. We ended up making 3 cubic yards of MM with it, and it's working GREAT!! We will screen in the future as well. It really doesn't take that much time, and for us, is worth the effort. Thanks for the picture. We need to make an "official" screen

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Re: compost screen - should have done this last year

Post  landarch on 5/15/2013, 7:52 am

very nice...for mine half the fun was making the screen as the parts were all scavenged from a friend's pole shed. Rigid metal frame was from an old retail display case, wire mesh wsa scrap, and the support rod in the middle was from an old hard sign. Took about 10 minutes to assemble.

I screened material that had been composting for a couple years...it was something that looked fun enough for my three year old daughter to help with but some of the material was a bit too wet for her liking..."yucky dad".

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Re: compost screen - should have done this last year

Post  sanderson on 7/3/2013, 2:48 am

Landarch, Just re-noticed your 1/4" screen for compost. Mine is 2' x 2' square, made of 2" x 4", and very heavy for me. I think I will "borrow" your design.

I screened or chopped all the raw materials for my new compost cage and I dread using the "clunker" for screening the finished product.

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Re: compost screen - should have done this last year

Post  mrwes40 on 7/3/2013, 12:53 pm

@sanderson wrote:Landarch,  Just re-noticed your 1/4" screen for compost.  Mine is 2' x 2' square, made of 2" x 4", and very heavy for me.  I think I will "borrow" your design.

I screened or chopped all the raw materials for my new compost cage and I dread using the "clunker" for screening the finished product.

I made a screen a couple of years ago and here's the link to the design I used.

I works very well and sits on top of my wheel barrel.

Bill

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Re: compost screen - should have done this last year

Post  Amethyst42 on 7/3/2013, 10:03 pm

It's invaluable! I've been using the screen for our fire pit, and putting it into an old garbage can, and it fits just right. I might make a 'legitimate" one someday, but for now I am quite happy with this. So many sticks and rocks get in there. But thanks to the screen, just pure dirt comes out!

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Re: compost screen - should have done this last year

Post  llama momma on 7/4/2013, 6:32 am

For a quick low tech version, I've been using a piece of hardware cloth and bent up the four sides.   Fill er' up and shake.  It's small enough that I can relax and sit while sifting.

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Re: compost screen - should have done this last year

Post  jimmy cee on 7/4/2013, 9:12 am

I made this screen about 25 years ago, has a stainless steel mesh.
It has been a work horse for me, everyone should have a screen, can do many tasks.
Fits nicely on a wheelbarrow.

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Re: compost screen - should have done this last year

Post  sanderson on 7/4/2013, 3:14 pm

Jimmy Cee, Would you be so kind as to post more photos of your screen? Top, bottom, corner design, fasteners, etc. It looks like a winner and I would like to build something with 2" x 2" that would be lighter than my heavy 2" x 4", 2 foot square screener. Thanks

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Re: compost screen - should have done this last year

Post  southern gardener on 7/4/2013, 4:31 pm

@llama momma wrote:For a quick low tech version, I've been using a piece of hardware cloth and bent up the four sides.   Fill er' up and shake.  It's small enough that I can relax and sit while sifting.

That's what we use too LM. I have a rigid fence type thing I set over the trash barrel. I use the hardware cloth screen on top of the fencing and as we are screening, it's falling right into our storage barrels. My nephew and friend did 4 barrels in no time!!

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Re: compost screen - should have done this last year

Post  llama momma on 7/4/2013, 5:25 pm

Yeah! Simple is best in my book.

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Re: compost screen - should have done this last year

Post  jimmy cee on 7/4/2013, 11:27 pm

Sanderson, here are a couple more pics.
I used 2 x 2 treated lumber, cant recall if I purchased them or ripped them.
2 foot square is what it measures, that has worked for me in my wheel barrow
Screws were used and when they loosened up I used some wire ties I had laying around.
They worked, still holding so I'm not concerned about that.
The wire mesh, I know I acquired at work, It's light, heavy duty, and will certainly outlast me.
I usually use heavy gloves to rub across and sift, sometimes I'll just scrape with a trowel.
I also use a larger plastic milk crate to get the larger material out, that cuts down on some work.



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Re: compost screen - should have done this last year

Post  camprn on 7/4/2013, 11:37 pm

I like the sifters that some of the archaeologists use. The screen frame is on legs and can be shaken back and forth to allow stuff to sift through.

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Re: compost screen - should have done this last year

Post  sanderson on 7/5/2013, 12:01 am

Jimmy Cee, Thank you for taking the time to post the pictures. Sanderson

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Re: compost screen - should have done this last year

Post  Triciasgarden on 7/5/2013, 6:59 pm

@camprn wrote:I like the sifters that some of the archaeologists use. The screen frame is on legs and can be shaken back and forth to allow stuff to sift through.

Someone build me one, lol!

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Re: compost screen - should have done this last year

Post  bnoles on 7/5/2013, 7:32 pm

I find shaking my screen difficult due to my physical limitations. I just rake the compost back and forth over the screen with a trowel or small shovel until nothing more falls thru and then empty it out and put another round in.

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Re: compost screen - should have done this last year

Post  sanderson on 7/5/2013, 7:44 pm

Bnoles, Ditto. For me a trowel or gloves. Thinking about a size to fit over my cement skreet pan that I use for mixing MM or potting on top of the picnic table. Standing is easier on the back.

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Re: compost screen - should have done this last year

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