Home generalBuild Composter - Instructions for a DIY compost pile

Build Composter - Instructions for a DIY compost pile

Build compost

  • Composter - Foreword
  • Trim the wood
  • Grinding the woods
  • Brushing the woods
  • Set the holes
  • The assembly
    • Prepare opening
  • Tips for successful composting
    • What's allowed on the compost "> What should not be in the compost?

Often one stands before the thought: where with the garden waste? In many areas there are biotonnes where you can dispose of your bio-waste. But there is also the possibility of a compost. In this one can get rid not only of his garden waste, but also the kitchen waste and get in return only a few months later, perfect, very nutrient-rich garden soil.

Many people do not like composters. Most of the opinions are behind it, a compost would not look nice, spoil the garden or stink, especially in the summer. In part, the opinions are correct. A compost can be a stain in the garden and it can also stink. However, it can be different. Most of the time this is due to cheap composters, which are extremely cheap, but look ugly, a veritable stain on the garden. On the other hand, it is simply because of the wrong way of composting and the fact that the compost "gets no air" and ferment the ingredients more than to decompose - this is also the stench. How to do it right explains this DIY guide.

Composter - Foreword

At the beginning of the composting instructions must be said: Cheap is not always good! Many composters are available for less than 20, 00 EUR. However, they usually do not look pretty, are a thorn in the eye of the beholder, do not work properly and, if you are lucky, survive the first composting, after which they are themselves compost. This DIY project shows the construction of a composter, which will do its loyal service in the garden for many years and visually fits into the garden picture.

The composter has the following dimensions, which are the basis for the calculation of the material:

Composter - size

Height: 1.05 m, width: 1.13 m, depth: 1.10 m

  • working material
    • circular saw
    • Folding rule, angle
    • Zimmermans pencil, thin pencil, alternatively depth hole marker
    • Cordless screwdriver including bit, 4 mm, 8 mm and 11 mm drills
    • brush
    • File, alternatively orbital sander
  • materials
    • good, durable exterior color (color as desired)
    • 2 square timbers 70 x 70 x 2400 mm
    • 14 wooden boards 18 x 120 x 2400 mm
    • 96 screws 6 x 60 mm
    • 8 hanger bolts M8 x 80 mm
    • 8 wing nuts M8
    • 8 washers M8
    • 750 ml of color
  • pricing
    • 2x square timbers 70 x 70 x 2400 mm - 19, 98 EUR
    • 14x wooden boards 18 x 120 x 2400 mm - 62, 72 EUR
    • 96x screws 6 x 60 mm - 8, 98 EUR
    • 8x hanger bolts M8 x 80 mm - 6, 88 EUR
    • fits 8x wing nuts M8 - 2, 40 EUR
    • 8x washers M8 - 1, 36 EUR
    • 1x 750 ml color - 11, 49 EUR
    • 111, 81 EUR

Trim the wood

circular saw

In the first step, the squared timbers are cut to length. The compost has a height of 1.05 m. From both ends of the square timbers is measured with a ruler 1.05 m. It remains in the middle a remainder of 30 cm. It is ever measured from the front, so there are no errors in chain dimensions and the blade thickness of the circular saw cut is included. If the mark is set, the mark is drawn over the entire width of the square timber at an angle. The same thing is repeated with the second squared timber.

If the second squared timber is also marked, the cuts are made with a circular saw. The cuts are never made on the stroke. The marking serves as a line for the edge of the saw blade, so it is always cut in the piece of waste.

Once all four cuts have been made, the square wood pieces are set aside.

Mark before cutting

In the next step, the 14 wooden boards are divided into two separate stacks, as the boards are needed in different lengths. Marking is done in the same way as for squared timbers, so that no chain dimensions are created that would lead to inaccuracies.

From the 7 wooden boards of the first stack, 14 boards with a length of 110 cm are created. These are, as mentioned above, measured and cut to length.

The 7 remaining boards are cut to length of 113.6 cm. The length is composed of a width of 110 cm plus twice the material thickness of the boards, since later the longer boards will cover the front side of the shorter boards. There are 14 boards with a length of 113.6 cm.

Thus the cutting work would be finished.

Grinding the woods

In order to give the composter a better appearance, it is recommended to slightly chamfer / edge the edges of the wood and round off the corners. The wood is clamped in the vise. To ensure that the vise leaves no marks in the wood, thin pieces of wood should be placed between the jaws of the vise and the wood.

Brushing the woods

In order to ensure a long life for the composter, painting is absolutely necessary. It is necessary to use exterior color, which shade is of course left to the taste. Care should be taken that the paint protects the wood from moisture and weather, a bonus is the protection against UV rays. To prolong the life of the wood, a second and third coat should be done.

wood stain

In our guide "Wood glazing, painting and oiling" you will find more tips for the pretreatment of the wood.

Set the holes

After the boards had enough time to dry, it is now time to pre-drill the 14 shorter boards, with the length of 110 cm. Pre-drilling, as wood can break when penetrating the screw. Use a folding rule to measure 3.5 cm from the left and right outer edges of the boards (observe chamfering). Thus, the row of screws is in alignment and in the middle of the squared timber, which will later sit in the corner.

Pre-drill boards

With an angle, the mark is drawn over the entire height. Press lightly to remove the marks later. From the top is now touched 3.0 cm, from below 4.0 cm are touched. Each board now has four markers. With a drill, a cordless screwdriver and a 4 mm drill, the holes are now set. This would have the first 14 boards ever 4 holes.

It is now taken from the slightly longer boards 10 and the same procedure as the boards before. The difference: This time, 4.0 cm are scratched from above and 3.0 cm from below. In addition, 5.3 cm are measured from the side. The offset of 3.0 and 4.0 cm is necessary so that the screws in the wood are out of the way when screwed in at the same height. It will be performed again per board 4 holes.

Prepare screws - note misalignment

The last 4 boards get a special function. Later, these boards are mounted on one side in the bottom part of the composter. If you want to get to the finished compost, just remove these four boards. The easiest way is with wing nuts . From the side is again measured 5.3 cm. The hole point is this time in the middle of the drawn line. An 8mm drill will drill two holes on each of the four boards.

Tip for perfectionists: The screws used are countersunk screws. So that the screw head is sunk in the wood and is not above the wood, the drill hole is slightly enlarged with a larger drill. The head diameter of a 6 x 60 mm countersunk screw is 11.6 mm. Thus, an 11 mm drill is used. The only slightly increased with its cutting edges of the hole so that the head of the screw fits. Attention, do not drill too deep!

The assembly

Thus the preliminary work would be finished and the assembly can begin. Two of the square timbers are placed side by side in parallel, eg on a workbench or a table. 7 of the short 110 cm boards are now needed. The first board is screwed exactly to the upper edge of the squared lumber, using 6 x 60 mm screws. Pay attention to a clean completion of the board on the square timber.

Assembly of the composter

At a distance of 3 cm to the upper board, another board follows below. Under the next board come again 3 cm distance. So you continue until seven boards are on top of each other. Between each board there is a gap of 3 cm. This gap is located around the composter. It is imperative to allow air to flow to the compost. This is absolutely necessary for the decomposition of garden and kitchen waste.

When one side is finished, the same is done with the remaining 7 short wooden boards and the two remaining squared timbers. There are thus "fences" emerged.

For the next step, one or two helping hands are an advantage. Both finished side panels are now placed upright and in a scale next to each other. 7 of the longer 113.6 cm are now used to connect both sides together. Procedure is explained as before. There is now a C.

Prepare opening

From the other side, the open area, the three remaining boards are fixed in the upper part of the open side. The composter can now be turned on its back, with the half-open side up. The first board, with the 8 mm hole is now placed under the last bolted board, distance again 3 cm. With a depth hole marker, the drilling point is now transferred to the lower square timber through both 8 mm drill holes.

Opening for the removal of the earth

The resulting marking on both sides is the drilling point for one hanger bolt each. Using a 6 mm drill bit, drill 4 cm deep into the square timber on each side. Then a hanger bolt is turned into both holes. The thread length which looks out corresponds to the thickness of the board plus the washer and the wing nut, ie 2.5 cm.

The first board can thus be fixed together with washers with the wing nuts.

This operation is repeated with the remaining three boards. Distance between them again 3 cm.

So the work on the composter would be finished. A lid is useless for the composter, because as already described the compost must get enough air, also water from the rain, so that the microorganisms can multiply well.

Tip: To further increase the durability of the composter, it is possible to screw angle anchors to the squared timbers on the inside and thus lift the squared timbers off the ground so that no water can penetrate the wood from below.

Tips for successful composting

  • the better the compost is mixed, the better it rots
  • Do not fill the composter immediately, but slowly fill with the daily waste
  • Wet materials should be mixed with dry materials, ie: from time to time add sawdust or shredded material
  • from time to time fill the compost with thin branches, especially for ventilating grass clippings and kitchen waste
  • Molehill can be added to the compost for nutrient delivery
  • the compost is ready, cover with grass
  • Cover the compost with foliage in late autumn, further filling is possible in winter
  • a good compost must never dry out

What's allowed on the compost "> What should not be in the compost?

  • fish
  • meat
  • sausage
  • cheese
  • ash
  • cheese rind
  • cigarettes
  • Dust bags
  • drugs
  • cat litter
  • nutshells
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