this site has a system that seems very well thought out and workable. Still involves hauling buckets, but I'm ok with that. I'd like to figure out a way to manually shred dry leaves as the cover material...
I have never heard of any commercial composting toilet that was used outdoors, so i am guessing that you took a leap of faith and just tried making it work outside? Or something else? Is there any other problem with using the CT outside?
Do you use only maple leaves because that is what you have?
Check out Joseph jenkins book: the Humanure Hand book - it's a free down load online! It gives you the full low down on thermophilic composting toilets- not to be confused with outhouses. It's a great book full of everything you could ever want to know about composting toilets!
Save your money and build your own! I think it's outrageous how much money Sunmar et al charge for their composting toilets seeing as the molds were made 20 years ago and have seen little to no changes in design since then.
I went through your instructions. Very good.
I have one question about this, but let me first explain my own views on publishing this or that
Seth Pogue wrote:
ADD MICROORGANISMS to your composting toilet!!!
Use a separate toilet for poop. Sprinkle essential microorganisms (e.g. EM-1) every couple of days. Once a month, remove the catchment container you're using and set it aside to cook/reduce with the EM, and it will decompose to sterile , rich, fertile black powder in a few months instead of 2 years.
Summer can present a fly problem when the balance is off from too much waste, so I add diatomaceous earth which works perfectly.
So I am working on building a long term composting toilet to get my change out down to every 20 years.. Then I can drag out the container and drop a new on in.
Regarding "bulking agents" (what to add to a humanure/compost toilet to minimize odor and create airspace for drying material) I've found wood stove ash and peat moss to be the most effective. Ash is usually free (if you have a wood stove) and a $9 bag of peat moss lasts me a whole year. The peat moss does an exceptionally good job of masking any odors.
I personally do not like using wood chips or sawdust at all as I find that they absorb the liquid and stay damp which leads to stronger odors--especially pine and cedar. Chips and sawdust also break down verrrrrry slowly in the compost bin, whereas ash and peat moss break down very quickly.
-Create three stantions each capable of holding the calculated cubic space and a urine collection basin/plumbing;
-locate the three stantions on an outside wall so that the composted material can be removed WITHOUT CARRYING IT THROUGH THE HOUSE via a shovel or front end loader;
Hi Paul, you're talking about Mountain Homestead?
I am interested in the pros/cons of using 5-gallon buckets vs 55-gallon barrels as collection receptacles. The barrel systems seem nice because it takes longer to fill them. But it also seems like you'd need to take care to install aeration systems in the barrels. Anyone have an experience-based comment?
paul wheaton wrote:
I seem to recall reading somewhere that adding ash or lime is not a good idea. It cuts the smell but also stops the microbes from working.
I think peat might not be a good idea either. Too acidic.
I think that some varieties of sawdust are going to work much better than others. I think cottonwood or poplar would work five times better than any conifer.