Which is the best tumbler composter?

HIWTHIApril 4, 2012

Can anyone recommend a tumbler composter and where it would be the least expensive place to buy from? My DH and I both have bad backs so the old conventional way of composting is a bit too much for us. So we want to make life easier with one of those tumbling models. Thanks for your help.

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Scroll to the bottom of the page, find the Search box, and type in "Tumbler". You will find plenty of reading!

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 2:14PM
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tropical_thought(San Francisco)

None are, I don't like tumblers. Get a bin.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 2:57PM
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Thanks, I'll do a search.

Tropical, if it requires any stooping to shovel, we can't do it. Not sure what kind of bin you're speaking of.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 3:18PM
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tropical_thought(San Francisco)

You should definitively read my post on how they try to sell tumblers to people who can't turn compost. It is called "the case against tumblers". It will outline the scam these companies are trying to pull, and all the reasons not to get a tumbler.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 3:24PM
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I did a search and came up with 192 forum threads on tumblers. I just read the comments in one and that was enough. Don't think I'll be getting one of those. We'll just do our composting on a smaller scale that's all.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 3:32PM
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tishtoshnm Zone 6/NM

The thing I like least about tumblers is the price tag. While I find soil ecology to be incredibly fascinating, I am not overly fond of turning compost piles (there are just not enough calm days to turn them and if the wind is calm, I would rather be doing other things), so, I just let my piles sit. Sometimes I poke holes in them with rebar to aerate but most of the time, they just sit and rot. Eventually, I do have compost, just not as fast as others on this board.

Another good option if you do not want to turn compost would be to look into a worm bin. Love that thing.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 3:38PM
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tropical_thought(San Francisco)

What about an indoor composting unit? I have never tried one, but they are small and they can heat and turn the pile for you. The piles does not have to be big, if are using one of those units. If you are doing it outside, it has be 3 by 3 by 3 foot square to create heat.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 4:31PM
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If you have garden beds that can handle it, you could consider trench or sheet composting, where you put the stuff right into (or onto) the ground and you never have to turn it or move it again.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 5:23PM
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nancyjane_gardener(Zone 8ish North of San Francisco in the "real" wine country)

I have a bullet type tumbler that I got at recycletown at the dump for $5.
I put my stuff in there with a bunch of leaves and UCGs, tip it every couple of days, keep it damp and after a month or so, it's ready to tip into the regular bin.
My stuff is about 1/2 ready at this point, but it seems to break down quicker in the bin now.
This is when I tip the tumbler into the bin and let it finish.
This might be when it gets iffy for you with the bad backs!
I can't help you after this point! Nancy

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 9:29PM
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