How To Make a Compost Tumbler

What You'll Need
Plastic 25 liter food barrel
Two 2 by 4 pieces of lumber
Wooden planks
Electric drill
Large drill bit Electric saw
Dark paint
3/4 inch galvanized rod

A compost tumbler is an effective tool for creating aerated compost. Due to the fact that the tumbler operates on an axis point, it is able to mix green and brown waste together effectively without the need for manual turning. This results in a compost is nutritionally enriched and ideal for use in all aspects of gardening care.

Step 1 - Purchase barrel

Purchase a barrel for your compost tumbler. Clean the barrel completely to remove poisonous chemicals. Measure the center of the barrel and draw an X. Drill two 7/8 inch holes half way from the top and the bottom of the barrel. These holes should be big enough to insert the ¾ inch galvanized rod. Drill ½ inch holes evenly spaced around the barrel upper part of the barrel. This is for air circulation and to allow beneficial bugs to find their way in easily.

Step 2 - Build your frame

Prepare an ‘X’ shape fame using the 2x4 pieces of lumber and nail them together. Place them one and a half inches in height by three and a half inches wide at the bottom for sturdy support.

Step 3 - Build compost tumbler without a frame

Use wood, lumber or other material to cut a piece that will fasten to the barrel with a hinge. The opening will enable you to insert the compost into the tumbler.

Step 4 - Drill holes

Drill even 1 inch holes on the barrel for aeration and drainage. Position the barrel with the pipe in the frame.

Step 5 - Create a door and a handle

Drill a large rectangular hole to make the door. Take the hinges and attach the rectangle piece you cut and add it to the barrel. Include a clasp on the other side that will hold the door closed tightly. Make sure the lid is completely closed and doesn’t open easily.

Creating a handle will help to turn the compost through the tumbler. Drill a 1 inch hole the pipe. Take a metal rod and slide it through the holes. The rod can now be centred to create two handles which can be covered with pipe insulation to give an easier grip.

Step 6 – Make a Fin for the Barrel

Creating a fin for the inside of the barrel will help rotate the compost tumbler. Take a long piece of the rod and bend it into an L shape. Bolt the rod to the interior wall of the barrel. Inset the fin opposite the hatch. This will weigh the balance of the empty barrel. This step completes the assembly of your compost tumbler

Step 7- Turn the compost tumbler.

The barrel can now be filled with leaves, food scraps or other compostable material and should be rotated several times a every day. Try to place an equal amount of green and brown waste into your tumbler for optimal compost production.