email: cavebear2118 AT verizon DOT com

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Compost Bin Onsite

I got the site leveled.  Well, almost; the yard slopes, so nothing is ever perfectly level even when trying.  But it was as close as I could get it without making terraces.
I got the parts stacked outside.  I had added some diagonal braces for strength with some leftover ballisters from the deck.  There is a reason I keep leftovers around.  Always some use for them eventually.  

The braces were fun to make.  I actually got them cut to have points fitted into the corners.  Took some geometry.  If the frames were squares, it would have been easy (45 degree cuts).  But they are rectangles.  I eventually figured out that they had to be 55 degrees cuts on one side and 35 degrees on the other (55 and 35 equals 90 degrees).  My 11th grade geometry teacher would be proud of me!  Who says that stuff is useless?

That's part of the fun of building stuff myself; solving problems like that. Building it for the long-term, I both glued and screwed the braces.  Screwing the braces into the frames was some work, but I won't bore you with the details.

BTW, the picture below looks like there are X braces, but that is just 2 of them stacked together.  Each frame has one brace.  That is sufficient.
The mower and cart were good for hauling the parts.  Here it all is onsite.
Then I stuck the posts in the holes I had dug.  It gave me a visual on the size. 
The first requirement was to establish a corner.  It was harder than I expected.  I had measured carefully, but nothing goes according to plan.  I forgot the posts were on the INSIDE of the frame, so I had the holes 4" too far apart.  I had drawn it all on graph paper, but the scale was too small for me to notice the difference of 4".

I'm used to adjustments.  "Design in concept, build in reality".  So I made the post holes larger in the direction of the error.
With my trusty 4' level and some bricks for spacers, I got the first post level, and then attached a back and a side with countersunk screws.  Seriously, if I'm going through all this effort, I might as well do it right.  Pilot holes and countersunk holes for the screw heads prevents splitting the wood.  5 minutes of extra work means years of more solid posts.
I filled the holes around the posts with the clay soil, soaked it, and tamped the clay down around the posts.  When that dries, it will be as good as concrete.

The important part was to get the first corner post and 2 frames attached level and squared in all directions.  From that, all the other posts will be easier.  That board on top is temporarily screwed on to hold the posts and sides in place while the clay dries.

It may rain tomorrow, so I don't know if I can do much there tomorrow.  That's OK, I have other work to do.  My "To Do" list is way too long...

1 comment:

Megan said...

Lookin' good Mark.

Sydney, Australia