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Bulgarianlily

humanure

Not sure where to put this, gardening, or here?

Just spent a happy half an hour moving our compost heap from just outside the greenhouse into the now empty greenhouse where it can sit for the next five months.

We have three composting toilets here, used by between two and six people depending on who is staying. Our latest outdoor heap was four pallets, probably enclosing about a cubic meter, of which 80% was full. It was started six months ago. We have been using composting toilets since 1981, and have tried lots of different versions. We are happiest with the current models, a wooden 'throne' with a standard toilet seat on top, containing a 15 liter bucket that comes with a snap on lid. A similar bucket by the loo contains fresh sawdust from the local sawmills. This is used with a scoop made from a washing liquid bottle to cover over the results of a bathroom visit. The room smells only of the piney sawdust, which several people have commented on favourably. Kitchen composting waste ends up in the same bucket.

Several buckets are usually waiting for emptying, standing decretely by the heap with their lids on. We keep a good supply of empty buckets so we are not 'caught short'. We find the buckets need replacing now and then as micro scratches when cleaning them make it hard to keep them really clean. We keep some straw or old chicken bedding to hand to use for covering the heap. The buckets are washed out well and left in the sun to dry before having a couple of inches of sawdust in the bottom before being used.

Having just moved the heap and in the process turned it top to bottom I can report that:

There was very little sign of toilet paper, just the odd bit that was near the edge of the heap and had gone dry.
There was almost no sign of recognisable shit.
Apart from the most recent layer which had a sharp smell of ammonia, there was no smell.
Surprising there was no sign of vermin, and few insects, not one worm (Bulgaria seems very short of worms but has dozens of different types of ant).
The sawdust had gone a lovely orange tan brown reacting with the urine.
Apart from a couple of whole red peppers, there was little sign of vegetables.
The straw had not broken down much
I found one pair of scissors!

Over the course of the winter it will be used in planting holes for new fruit trees and bushes.

I know you have to be a sad individual to be that interested in your shit, but it could be useful to anyone thinking of doing this at some point.



bootyshake pottytrain5
RichardW

Was it the 6 month old heap you moved?

Do you know what the type of saw dust it is?

Do you separate the urine?

Our first heap is just over 3 years since we started it & 2 years since it was filled. It does not seem to be composting that well yet but thats just looking at the top. I guess I will have to turn it to see how the bottom is doing. When filling that one& the next we did not separate. This years we have been separating it so can compare how it affects it. I do feel that using Cedar saw dust was a bad move as it rots so slowly. Prob needs more kitchen green waste too but we dont get much.
Bulgarianlily

It is pine sawdust, and yes it was the six month one, but we have a very dry hot climate, with little summer rain. We don't seperate out the urine as I have had problems with it setting like a concrete gel in the pipes used to take it away.

Isn't cedar anti-baterial and resists fungus? Will it ever rot?
RichardW


Isn't cedar anti-baterial
and resists fungus?
Will it ever rot?



Yes
Yes
I hope so.........

In fact the first compost area was filled using a mix mainly of other softwoods. The latter ones are almost pure Cedar.

I guess its time to take a look.
Andrea

We have two loos, which we rotate. I need to dig one out about once a year, at which point it will have been standing for about a year. Our loos are 'dry' and should contain very little loo paper as we ask people to keep it separate as it fills the loo up very quickly otherwise. We use sawdust from whatever we've been working on or have scavenged.

When I dig it out it's unrecognisable and has no discernible smell. It looks like well rotted, dry compost which has contained sawdust. I normally dump it in a heap from where it's transferred to the base of fruit trees. So far, none of our volunteers have guessed what it is, despite using the compost loo.
dolmen

We have one bucket with lid type, for wet and dry, covered with sawdust. It has been working great, with no smell or flys, buckets are emptied into a composting container along with kitchen waste.

Takes a year to fill, then sits a year before being used on the fruit crops and deep beds. If mankind is to achieve better health, many more folks will have to move forward to using humanure and getting our mineral and trace element intake up.

Cheers

Smile
dpack

a sprinkle of wood ashes with the waste and sawdust improves the results a lot

if no sawdust use dried earth and ashes
Bulgarianlily

Wood shavings were the worst option we tried, too up too much room and didn't seal in the smell.

I love this site, where else could I discuss this?
RichardW

What was the best then?

We have found that Cedar is good for covering & smell but slow to compost.
Bulgarianlily

Fresh pine sawdust collected regulary from the saw mill. We use a lot of sawdust and also shavings in our cement stabilised earth walls, we are always picking up new bags.
dolmen

sawdust is my choice, clean to use, fresh pine smell. Ash would be dusty and stick to everything, peat or dried soil similar, shavings are too course.

Cheers

Smile
Kenworth

Outhouses over here used to have a container of loose lime in them to sprinkle ontop of solids.

Unfortunately, many places have outlawed privies. The law wants running water piped into a home, not a hand pump or a well. They also want "proper" plumbing going into a septic tank, or if in the city, be hooked up to water lines and sewage lines.

I think nowadays not too many Americans would understand how to or even have the inclination to properly care for an outside privy, or even an inside composting toilet.

I grew up with an outhouse, so it's no big deal to me. Once every few years dad would remove a back pannel of the privy and dig out the waste. We were under specific orders to NEVER place toilet paper down the hole ROF. The waste was then took to an obscure place and buried.

Oh yes, I remember freezing my a$$ off in the wintertime when the wind came whipping up the toilet seat hole.
dolmen

I guess it would all depend on the type of paper used, but my bucket system is treated just like a conventional plumbed toilet, wet, dry and paper, thats the beauty of it, and it works a dream.
Plus no digging out to be done, buckets are emptied into a composting pile, left to rot down into perfect crumbly compost for a year, sometimes two, then used in deepbeds and fruit growing.
All the nutrients go back into our system, in my research its one thing that is needed to greatly improve the health of mankind.

Improve the food fed to the animals and they produce much healthier food for us then keep it in the loop. I know our own health has greatly improved, I'm not great at eating enough greens, but the animals and poultry just love the nutrient rich greens on our holdng and we benefit from their conversion of it into wonderful nutrient rich eggs etc.

Cheers
cassy

Re: humanure

I know you have to be a sad individual to be that interested in your shit, but it could be useful to anyone thinking of doing this at some point.

It is very useful and thanks for posting all the details.

We're due to empty our first compost heap next summer (2 years from filling) and I'm sad to say that I'm looking forward to seeing the results!
Andrea

I guess it would all depend on the type of paper used ...

We ban paper from the loo simply because it fills it up faster than it would without, and therefore means it needs digging out more often. Those stray bits which make their way down there anyway rot down just fine and are ultimately unidentifiable.
JohnB

We ban paper from the loo simply because it fills it up faster than it would without, and therefore means it needs digging out more often. Those stray bits which make their way down there anyway rot down just fine and are ultimately unidentifiable.
What do you do with the paper?
Andrea


What do you do with the paper?


Burn it.
Bulgarianlily

That is why I like a bucket system, easy to deal with on a day to day basis rather than a big job Shocked once a year!

http://journeytoforever.org/farm_library/specialist.html

"It's a mighty sight better to have a little privy over a big hole than a big privy over a little hole. Another thing; when you dig her deep you've got 'er dug; and you ain't got that disconcertin' thought stealin' over you that sooner or later you'll have to dig again." Charles Sale
Mutton

We're keeping down the amount of paper we put down to the septic tank, and anything that was urine only goes into a sack. The paper goes into a mixed heap with floor cleanings from the goose hut (concrete base). Quite liquid and soaks into paper well.

Working towards a composting toilet because I don't want to lose the nutrients from the land.

Is it possible to take the contents out of a septic tank and turn it into a compost heap? Presumably mixing it with compost/soil/some other dry item for the liquid to soak into?

If we changed to a composting toilet and didn't put anything new into a septic tank, would the contents be usable straight out of the tank in a few years? Some of the contents are not our personal products - pre-date us. Not saying the pre-date people had anything nasty, but because its not something you can know, is there anything to worry about in human diseases lurking in it?

BTW - Cedar - Preferred wood for making beehives because it lasts so long.

One other question. We were running cat litter trays using "spent" compost - as in stuff that had tomatoes in it all summer so was quite used. Put the used by cats end results into plastic feed sacks for want of anywhere better.
Should this be heaved over to a heap and composted properly with air getting in? Or will it get there in the end left in the sacks?
Behemoth

We have about 3 million toilets, we separate the liquid from the sludge and mix the solids with green waste and it composts dead quick. Occasionally causes a localised fog on cold mornings. You can see it here:

http://g.co/maps/8em7d
Jamanda

We have about 3 million toilets, we separate the liquid from the sludge and mix the solids with green waste and it composts dead quick. Occasionally causes a localised fog on cold mornings. You can see it here:

http://g.co/maps/8em7d

Bloody marvellous things sewage works. We still have issues with the pipeage going from town and across our land to get there, but once the stuff arrives it's a great system.
Behemoth

This is my favourite bit, it's a hydroturbine that generates power from the sewage flow as it comes into the works.

http://g.co/maps/grc7f
12Bore

We have about 3 million toilets, we separate the liquid from the sludge and mix the solids with green waste and it composts dead quick. Occasionally causes a localised fog on cold mornings. You can see it here:

http://g.co/maps/8em7d
Did you supply the slurry that ITV got into trouble for spraying over the Emmerdale set to make it look older? Hope you didn't overcharge for delivery looking at that map! Laughing Laughing
Jamanda

Here's ours. Jamanda

We have about 3 million toilets, we separate the liquid from the sludge and mix the solids with green waste and it composts dead quick. Occasionally causes a localised fog on cold mornings. You can see it here:

http://g.co/maps/8em7d

Bloody marvellous things sewage works. We still have issues with the pipeage going from town and across our land to get there, but once the stuff arrives it's a great system. Behemoth

Not guilty your honour! Emmerdale left Esholt a few years back to a purpose built set on the Harewood estate.
http://g.co/maps/jpq56
12Bore

Aaah, just seemed so appropriate that they treated the set to a s4i7 spray, given the amount they send out. Laughing Behemoth

Here's ours.

Ahh bless. That central filter could do with a bit of a clean, unless the operators are growing tomatoes.
Treacodactyl

Personally, now I could do with some decent environmentally friendly fertiliser, it seems too much of a waste to keep flushing it away. Hopefully early in the new year I'll sort something simple out in the garage to start with - a lidded bucket, simple frame and seat, and cart it off to our woodland to compost. Kenworth

Personally, now I could do with some decent environmentally friendly fertiliser, it seems too much of a waste to keep flushing it away. Hopefully early in the new year I'll sort something simple out in the garage to start with - a lidded bucket, simple frame and seat, and cart it off to our woodland to compost.

http://www.rei.com/product/679029/reliance-luggable-loo
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