Bin Sidewall Failure!

The International Compost Sanitation Forum and Message Board: Humanure Composting Around the World: Bin Sidewall Failure!
Author: Alan J Marshall (Ecointerest)
Monday, November 10, 2008 - 2:26 pm
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Herb, my immediate thought on this is that if you used wood for the walls, and that wood rotted down in, say 3-4 years like the plastic does, then at least the wood returns to the soil in a natural way. All you have done is make use of it from nature for a short time, then the soil eventually benefits.
Even if the nails you use rust away, the iron goes back into the soil as well.
But hey, thanks for sharing what has NOT worked. This sort of information is in some ways more useful than stories of success.

Author: Herb Stamser (Herb)
Sunday, November 09, 2008 - 12:58 pm
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When I built my 3 compartment bin using the design in "Humanure Handbook," I made a couple of modifications.

Wanting bins that would last a long time outside, I used steel fenceposts to outline the bins (every 2.5 feet) and then cable-tied plastic orange fencing to the posts to make the retaining side-walls. That way there would be no wood to go rotten, etc. and I expected the plastic to last 500 years!

Well, 3-4 years later I find the plastic fencing is ripping at the cable ties and can't take the weight in the middle bin where I pile up green material, garden refuse, rakings, etc.

So much for perpetually lasting plastic!

What to do now?

I figure I'll go around the entire fenced part of the unit with either galvanized steel chicken wire or welded steel fencing to strengthen the now failing plastic fencing, which as it turned out, was not the best choice for bin side-wall construction material.

Live and learn. While the plastic fencing was a failure, the crap-composting process itself has been a great success. I still haven't filled up the first bin yet!

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