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I want this composter

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I want this composter

Post  chocolatepop on 4/26/2010, 9:54 pm

http://www.samsclub.com/sams/shop/product.jsp?productId=prod460515&navAction=push

Guess what Dh called it...


Last edited by chocolatepop on 4/26/2010, 10:00 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: I want this composter

Post  boffer on 4/26/2010, 9:59 pm

um, a waste of money?


Last edited by boffer on 4/26/2010, 10:04 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: I want this composter

Post  chocolatepop on 4/26/2010, 10:01 pm

Don't be jealous! I think its neat... not gonna pay that price but certainly different than any other composter I've seen!

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Re: I want this composter

Post  boffer on 4/26/2010, 10:07 pm

Yes it is, but.....what did DH call it?

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Re: I want this composter

Post  chocolatepop on 4/26/2010, 10:11 pm

Oh come on Boff! Its the first thing I thought also...
"Looks like the deathstar.

I assure you, its fully operational princess."

Do you think it would actually work? Or would I be chasing a deathstar full of compost around the yard... imagine THAT on the 6o'clock news!

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I want this composter...

Post  trukrebew on 4/26/2010, 10:31 pm

LOL! "That's no moon. It's a composter!"

How long before one of my boys would put their little brother in for a spin?

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Re: I want this composter

Post  Shoda on 4/26/2010, 11:25 pm

Looks pretty cool. I wonder if I could train my ball crazy dog to roll it around the yard!

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Re: I want this composter

Post  Lavender Debs on 4/27/2010, 7:55 am

Between my garden and the bottom of the hill there is only a small picket fence.

What was the name of that mythical king who was cursed to roll the ball (stone?) back up the hill for the rest of eternity?

Deborah ....who thinks the death star looks like it might work.

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Re: I want this composter

Post  Lavender Debs on 4/27/2010, 7:56 am

By the way....

Did you just call Boffer "princess"?

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Re: I want this composter

Post  chocolatepop on 4/27/2010, 8:18 am

@Lavender Debs wrote:By the way....

Did you just call Boffer "princess"?

haahaa, no its a line from the movie

And you are thinking of Sisyphus, yes I am a geek in many many ways.

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Re: I want this composter

Post  Lavender Debs on 4/27/2010, 8:29 am

Hehe, I know the line, but the placement.... I'm gonna laugh every time he calls on the Obi-Wan as his only help.

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Re: I want this composter

Post  Odd Duck on 4/28/2010, 12:09 pm

I have been less than impressed with how both of my tumble composters work. They only make a small amount of compost no matter how much you turn them. You have to have the amount of "brown" and "green" perfect or it just goes nasty. You can fix it with more brown, but that starts the process all over again and your manure is already mostly spent.

They couldn't even keep up with what little "green" I get out of my kitchen (with just the 2 of us) and I don't cook at home as much as I should (part of why I started up gardening again, to fix that). And that's with 2 composters. I'm glad I got them both cheap - one on sale and the other a real bargain off Craig's List.

If you start with more "brown" than what is usually recommended, you don't have to add more and "restart", but I ended up with a pretty "dry" compost that way. There was a definite learning curve to the tumbler type composter (more than I expected).

I like the compost I get from the old-fashioned heap much better - better texture by far. It does takea lot longer, but the heap's a lot bigger. I've now got enough compost to share a bit with the neighbor and more than enough to carry me through to next season when the next heap will be ready.

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Re: I want this composter

Post  Lavender Debs on 4/28/2010, 12:36 pm

Do you have pics duck? I am happy with my tumblers and am not careful about green and brown. They are a little on the wet side if my husband puts fresh grass clippings into them, but otherwise they are fine for city life. I don't think I would have liked them in the country. Then I would have agreed that they were too small.

I am older with arthritis in my sternum. I just cannot fork a load of compost without planning for a lot of down time anymore. I turn these every three days in spring and summer, add worms to help the process (they must like it in there, I get many times more worms out of the bins then I put in) and enjoy the good, dark brown, neutral smelling compost that they make. When I am ready to use it I turn the bin sideways and roll it to the bed that I want to use them in.


That is them in the background. My biggest complaint is that potato skins do not die in them. Potatoes have almost become a pest in my first box. My minor complaint is that the box and compost are full of worms which seem like a good thing but as they continue to eat compost in the garden, the medium settles quite a bit. So far, being a bit shallow has not been a problem. My plan is to add more mel’s mix as I replant squares.

Deborah ….I wonder what it is about potatoes that worms don't like.

EDIT: Humm, now that I am looking at the pic (from February 2010) I see that I was stingy with the mix from the start, the worms didn't do that.


Last edited by Lavender Debs on 4/28/2010, 12:38 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : After thought)

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Re: I want this composter

Post  Odd Duck on 4/28/2010, 12:44 pm

This is one.

http://www.compostbins.com/compost-bins/compost-tumblers/achlacmp057cubicftcomposttumbler.cfm

It gets and stays too wet. I think it lets rain water in, because I've opened it after a rain and had standing water in it. If I keep the top turned down, it's better. I've forgotten and had to partially open the top (while the tumbler was upside down) to let it drain. The way the lid and legs are, you can't open it and then turn it upside down, the slide top catches on the legs. I was lucky and found this one for $100. Wish I hadn't paid that much.

This is the other link.

http://www.compostbins.com/compost-bins/compost-tumblers/tumbleweed8cubicftcomposttumbler.cfm

Mine is an older version of this, but when I was first searching tumble composters one exactly like mine was in the video (I didn't check if it was still the same video on their website). I like this one a lot better. It is less picky - it ventilates MUCH better and doesn't get soggy, doesn't take on more water than what I put in it. I got really lucky with this one, $50 off Craig's List and worth that much money, for sure, but not more.

Neither one will produce compost nearly as quickly as they say it will, even if you tumble it daily (believe me, I tried).

I think if you were handy and could get the right kind of barrels for the right price, you could make your own pretty effectively. Look for that brand of composter (the Tumbleweed one) and look over their website. It lays it out pretty well.


Last edited by Odd Duck on 4/28/2010, 12:56 pm; edited 5 times in total (Reason for editing : Add other link and thoughts.)

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Re: I want this composter

Post  Lavender Debs on 4/28/2010, 1:06 pm

Oh golly, that is too bad duck!

I get usable compost in just over a month....
--turning it once every three days...
--adding worms when I come across them...
--adding alfalfa meal (about a cup) when I turn them to heat things up.

Admittedly I am more willing to turn young compost into the ground (till it in) then to put it into a SFG. I like it to cook a little longer for the SFG.

Mine has vents that allow the liquid to drain and the base has a closed container that catches the "tea" for me to retrieve and after diluting 10 to 1, I am supposed to be able to use it for watering the garden. I have not tried that yet, I JUST found out that I could even do that.

Lately I have switched from alfalfa meal to an organic compost activator that includes killing ingredients (blood and bone meal) as well as kelp meal, alfalfa meal, rock phosphate and I forget what else, probably some kind of seed meal. It just seemed a little more well-rounded then the alfalfa meal and since I am no longer a vegan I am giving it a try.

I would not have got these except that the price was right. I was at the right place at the right time, someone who thought they were too small was going to throw them away if I did not take them.

Deborah .....wondering if you can cut drainage slits in your bin.

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Re: I want this composter

Post  Odd Duck on 4/28/2010, 3:15 pm

I wanted the closed tumblers primarily to limit odor, due to having fairly nearby neighbors in my urban setting. They certainly do contain the odor compared to how we did the heap when I was a kid. But I always bury my scraps at least 6-8 inches deep, now, and will do a fairly thick layer of no manure on top when I do a heap (now that I have FINALLY found a good, FRESH manure source). So the odor has been pretty limited in the heaps (and I hope the deep layer of cover will keep it that way, even with manure).

I have drilled extra holes to vent and drain, but it still isn't enough. I more than doubled the drainage/venting. The vertical compost bin is much better, has a central PVC pipe shaft that has many holes that lets it drain and vent also. If I left an open, flat bin underneath the compost stand, I could potentially have "tea" to save, but I think it would either dehydrate in our heat before I collected enough, or the open bin would fill with rainwater during our wetter seasons. I suppose I could rehydrate the dry or use the naturally diluted stuff straight.

The vertical tumbler's not really bad, just doesn't make compost as quick or in enough volume as I needed at first. I just throttled back on my impatience and did big, old-fashioned, "cold" heaps and the first one is now in it's prime. I have enough, now, that it's not a big deal about the tumblers and I turn them rather lackadaisically (is that a real word?) about 1-2 times weekly.

The compost just isn't as nice and crumbly and finished as the old-fashioned heap, though. It will have rolled-up balls of not quite finished stuff, egg shells take forever, twigs are still twigs (firm twigs, not soft, squishy twigs like the old fashioned heap), it still has enough "rotting" odor (no matter how long I leave it) that it bothers me to stick a bare hand in there (my "test" of when it's finished compost), and my bio-bags (that I collect my kitchen scraps in) are still much too intact. The heap will have bag "bits" show up, but not big chunks o' bag like the tumblers.

So, would I buy actual bins again, maybe the vertical at the price I got it for, the horizontal one, no way for any price (I still use it since I've got, of course). The old-fashioned, turn-it-till-your-back-breaks, wait for a year, heap gives me better product in the end, even if I don't do the turning part.

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I got one!

Post  Wyldflower on 5/8/2010, 9:50 pm

I got a deathstar composter!!! (I Love Craigslist!)

Yes, it looks like the one in the first post of this thread, except that the base is a steel pipe frame with casters that the ball sits on. One "door" is chewed up by the guy's dog, but it still turns and it still opens and closes properly. I think it was a worthwhile $30 spent! The guy I got it from is an older gent who is cutting back on gardening ... his garden plot is about 40' x 120'. I talked with him about SFG - he'd heard about the original SFG, and was interested in the new ... he said he'd get the book. This year he's just doing a small garden about 8'x 12' in his front yard, instead of the big plot across the street. I'll have to go back and see if he goes with SFG. I did promise him some veggies from my garden when I start to harvest.

So far, I've put in some kitchen green garbage, coffee grounds, stale crackers and some plants that didn't make it through the winter (soil and all... broke up the stems). Here's hoping that this does what I want it to!

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Re: I want this composter

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