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Worms!!! New worm guy here.

 
Mike Long
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Hello everyone. I am a Montana Master Gardener. I love raising Red Wigglers. This is my first post mostly just to say hello. Here are a few pics though.



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Mike Feddersen
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Welcome Mike!
 
Kittum Daniel
Posts: 40
Location: NE Oklahoma
toxin-ectomy
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Wow what a pile of worms!

Welcome!
 
Mike Long
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Hey thanks! Appreciate the welcome. I've been lurking here for a few years off and on.



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William Bronson
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Location: Cincinnati, Ohio,Price Hill 45205
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forest garden trees urban
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Looks like a flow through bin?
Where do you keep it ? In an out building, in the house, in a greenhouse?
 
Mike Long
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So I think you'll be able to see the bottom of my vertical flow through bin. This is where I harvest my castings from. I made the bin out of some old barnwood and a couple two bys. I had some tile around and tiled the inside. EMT conduit is used for the 'floor' of the bin. I believe this same basic idea came from Clive Edwards if I remember right. It works really well.
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Mike Long
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It's actually my T.V. stand! Except I don't watch T.V!

Yeah it's in my house. I have some horizontal bins as well. Both inside and outside. And some windrows. And a manure pile or two.

I'm kind of a worm nut.
 
Dave Dahlsrud
Posts: 491
Location: North-Central Idaho, 4100 ft elev., 24 in precip
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I like it! Seems simple enough, do you have any basic dimensions and spacing for the EMT conduit, etc.
 
Mike Long
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Dave Dahlsrud wrote:I like it! Seems simple enough, do you have any basic dimensions and spacing for the EMT conduit, etc.


The bin itself is 2'x2'x4'. I have a 2'' spacing on the EMT. I have a tiny worm business that I've started and I really just like worms! Started my own lil website... http://bigskywormcompany.com/ Check it out if you have time!
I would like to post more here as well if people are interested in this sort of thing. Hope it's OK that I posted that. The only rule was ''be nice'' so I think it's OK. Really I just want more folks to talk to about worms!

 
Rob Browne
Posts: 65
Location: Blue Mountains, NSW, Australia
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How do you handle the worm wee in a bin like that Mike?
 
Keith Odell
Posts: 60
Location: Indiana
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Nice flow-thru bin Mike. Way to use what you have instead of spending a lot of money on worm accommodations.

To Rob -- worm wee is a myth IMO. Moisture in a bin is either water from the food waste or condensation.

So if your bins are too wet for you -- worms breathe through their skin, so like moisture. Reduce food, add bedding or air.

Flow-thrus have air movement through the bin so microbes are happier and in theory the bottom stuff drys and drops.

Doesn't always happen but it isn't a unicorn -- I have seen it!

I've had very good results with flow-thru. I use them to finish off my compost from my totes.

It gets worked one more time and I don't have to separate worms.


 
Mike Long
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Hi Rob,

By worm wee are you speaking of the liquid that comes out of a worm bin? If so, this liquid should never even exist in a properly maintained bin. What's worse is people bottle and sell this anaerobic liquid as fertilizer! In my opinion this is akin to selling snake oil.

Keith,

I'm glad you like my bin. Where did you come up with the info to build yours? I have a friend who spent over 350 dollars on a bin similar in size to mine! Airflow, I believe, is the key to why the vertical flow through works so well. It concentrates the worms so well up top that I have a very good idea how many worms are in each 'handful'. This makes selling my worms by the count very easy. I also pack the actual material from the bin (full of cocoons) to my customers. This helps the worms to ship safely and allows them an easier time adjusting to a new environment. Similar to you I began using worms to process my backyard compost further. It seemed no matter how 'done' my compost looked it would still burn up small starter container plants. The worms completely solved this problem. Not having to separate the worms kinda makes it a no-brainer as far as worm bins go, not to mention how much material it can process. Have you found a good system for harvesting? I've noticed the material can get hung up well above the EMT at times making a shorter tool ineffective. I literally poke mine with a stick sometimes. Still easier than screening worms, stressing them out and slowing down production.

Anyhow....here's a pic of an outdoor horizontal bin I have. I use this one to replace worms and provide feedstock for my vertical flow through. The two work really well used together this way. One side of my horizontal doesn't usually contain worms but is used for hot composting.
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Arron Hendrix
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Location: Pacific Northwest
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I need a few more pictures please. I'm tired of sorting my worms from the castings...kills my back
 
Keith Odell
Posts: 60
Location: Indiana
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Arron,
There are lots of flow-thru designs out there. Be like Mike and use what you have (or find for cheap).

I don't have any pictures at my current computer but one design I use is a kitchen trash can with 3 or 4, 2" strips cut out of the bottom (front to back).
I use this for finishing compost from outdoor boxes (unfinished) or indoor totes (wet & wormy). You can either keep it on blocks or strap it to a wall.
The compost falls into a container placed underneath the trash can (worm bin).

Put a piece of cardboard inside the trash can, over the holes.
Add your compost/worm mix - I use 11-gallon cans.
Wait 2-3 months for the worms to really work it.
Remove the cardboard and it will start self-harvesting into your container.
Great compost, few worms, very easy.

Keith
 
Mike Long
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Arron Hendrix wrote:I need a few more pictures please. I'm tired of sorting my worms from the castings...kills my back


Hey Arron, Do a search using the term "OSCR worm bin" or "OSCR Jr.". Plenty of pics will pop up for you. Probably the most famous flow through design. That is if there is any fame associated w/ worms!
 
Mark Ferguson
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Mike Long wrote:Hello everyone. I am a Montana Master Gardener. I love raising Red Wigglers. This is my first post mostly just to say hello. Here are a few pics though.




Hello Just started myself. You may want to check out my new diy flow through worm bin design that is heated for outdoor use in the winter. http://kferg9804.wix.com/aharabbits#!worms/igit7 and the cardboard grinder I use to make feeding the worms easier http://kferg9804.wix.com/aharabbits#!nestbox-info/c21wr . At the bottom of the red worm page is a link to a video of the casting saw I made to harvest the castings from the bottom of the bin.
 
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