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Here I wish to explain my MK4 wormery.  The main chamber of which is the insulated cabinet.  I was looking for a deep freezer cabinet, a fridge would have had fittings for milk bottles!.  The one I found was approx. a 2ft cube...The back was cut out by using a Stanley pad saw from inside the cabinet. (It was a Necht N1 that had been dumped minus the compressor).  That done I made a wooden frame to take the rods, the cabinet now sits on the frame which is 1 1/4in wide all round. The door now being a lid has a fly-proof ventilator, plastic, fitted.

The frame being sized to allow removal of the cabinet vertically. 

I settled on gaps between the 1/2in O.D stainless steel tubing, of 3in.  I had settled on using 7 rods but found that the end rods were in line with the cabinet walls.  Being modular I made a new frame with 6 rods and the gap between the end rods is now approx.1/2 a gap. A good improvement.

Around  the frame of rods is a 'skirt' of 3/4in sheet wood on 3 sides, these being the walls which are 1in higher than the frame have supports inside each take the weight. 

The whole which is 44 in tall including a platform having wheels and is housed in the garage and can be moved when needs arise. 

I have fitted a scraper bar  whose action is to move along the length of the rods, this is untested as yet as there has to be enough contents before I can attempt the harvesting. Time will tell.

As I say this is the MK4 and the contents of Mk2 (the gaps were too narrow) have been used.

Mks 1,2,and 3 were based on having to lift heavy trays which I found to be a bit of a head ache , if you know what I mean.  These having slanting sides made emptying them a chore! as the contents would not slide downward to facilitate ease of harvesting. 

Note: The 3in gaps between rods meant that news paper laid on them was in danger of discharging the contents and I cured this with strips of corrugated cardboard laid across the rods having spaces of approx. 2in, the normal use of news paper was then OK. The strips to be accessed and removed from below in time. 

I added approx. 2in of wetted news paper strips as bedding,then the contents of the MK2, (for the second time), and a little of garbage food on top.  The whole was covered with hessian sacking which had been soaking and wrung out, our American friends call this burlap I believe.

The worms themselves 'tell me' when more 'food' is needed as they migrate upwards.  The trusty magnetic seal on what is now the lid does not allow them to freedom outside the cabinet.  Putting the food in and a little later all is well as they can sense the food some how!   

A final flourish is that having had MK2 and MK3 habituated by mice I have fitted a removable door which has 1/2in welded square mesh.  Removing this gives access to collecting trays, I used  trough type planters.  A note of caution the internet informs me that a determined mouse can go through this, we shall have to see, they recommend 1/4in mesh (hardware cloth).  Now then...what is the next project?

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Comment by Daniel J Kline on August 24, 2015 at 4:27am

Pictures would be nice, my dear man... Your verbal pictures are almost enough though your syntax is not quite American! Thanks for the descriptive language!

I wonder if the 2 inches of paper shreds on your rods will be a problem if it mats up and dries. My flow through set up allows the bottom of the bin to dry out so the paper does not go away. I have used just three sheets of unshredded newspaper with cured compost as bedding and have had to cut and tear paper out before any harvest would come. This is not a chore with three sheets, but your two inches of paper could become more difficult if it gets dry. Lets hope your worms chew it up.

I have my 4x6 flow through on two fixed casters of 4 inch steel. The other end, when I move it, is jacked up and set on a 4 swivel caster base designed for moving pianos. With it I can move a fully loaded bin wherever on my concrete pad. I move it to shade in summer and to sun in winter.

Another trick I have found necessary to get the bed to settle after harvest: I use a knife with a 12 inch blade to slice between the wall and the contents. This works very nicely to get contents to move down. Seems worm castings are like glue on the contact with my bin walls.

I like the way you are creative in solving problem to improve your process.


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