compost tumbler - using a metal garbage can

maryjackAugust 7, 2010

has anyone used a metal garbage can with holes punched in it as a tumbler compost bin? I'm thinking about trying it and would like some opinions from successful composters. Thanks for any input you can give me.

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Try the compost forum.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2010 at 10:41AM
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I made a tumbler out of a metal 55 gallon drum once. It seemed way too small to work well!

My brother's tumbler is about twice that size. He tried to give it to me . . .


    Bookmark   August 7, 2010 at 10:06PM
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I used a contractor's black plastic trash bag. Poked some holes. My intention was to be able to roll it around often. I let it sit for months in actuality. It did make compost, which I used in planting. I had mine in the shade -- the sun might have "cooked" things faster, but I don't have any inconspicuous space int he sun. I live in the moist midwest, I should have added a lot more brown.

I think that this method would work fine, for someone with patience. I am not convinced that the compost tumblers will really make compost in a matter of weeks. My methods seem to take at least a year, but you get the same great stuff in the end.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2010 at 12:59PM
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echoes_or(Zone 3)

I have read of people having success using a plastic can instead of a metal can... I think you would have sharp edges inside with metal but not with plastic... You could tie down the lid with bungee cords....

    Bookmark   August 15, 2010 at 1:39PM
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I may not have been using my home-made tumbler correctly.

It took drilling holes and putting some long bolts thru the walls so that everything would tumble rather than just slide, slide, slide.

Then, I'm thinking it should have been filled and refilled and refilled. As it was, after 95% or the volume was reduced thru composting, I ended up with about 2 gallons of product, sort of. Meanwhile, the compostables had built up nicely elsewhere. Elsewhere, became the compost bin and I don't know where the 2 gallons went.


    Bookmark   August 15, 2010 at 2:21PM
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