Hello. As it seems that 2020 is the end of the world, it seems like the perfect time to start a composting toilet.
I have a few questions with this. I've read bits and pieces about the whole things, mostly from the humanure handbook, but I've not finished it yet and am eager to get started.
Can I use shredded carboard to add to the bucket, as well as to the compost pile ? Can stuff like paper bags be used too, at least directly in the bucket ? With all the quarantines and precautions everywhere, I probably won't be able to get much more than some dried leaves and shredded cardboard for a while, will it do the job ?
How can I keep the whole compost heap "stealthy" enough, as in no smell of s**t, no visible toilet paper ?
Lastly, is there a minimum distance I should put the heap from grow beds ?
The use of adding something is to dry it out, some ask yourself if shredded cardboard is enough to dry things out.
If the answer is no, then find something that will fill the roll.
If the answer is yes, then use that.
Remember that the urine diverters main purpose is to speed the drying of the feces. Anything you can do to make that process faster is good.
"Where will you drive your own picket stake? Where will you choose to make your stand? Give me a threshold, a specific point at which you will finally stop running, at which you will finally fight back." (Derrick Jensen)
It's been about two weeks, and so I am currently not mixing the urine with the feces, as I don't have access to enough drying material, and might probably have to go back to "traditional" toilets in a while, as even getting cardboard is complicated right now.
However it's an interesting experiment: it stinks only if there is urine left at the bottom, and covering properly the feces seem to deal the smell.
I am also covering the compost as much as possible, and so far there are no smell that wouldn't come of a "classic" compost heap.
Some of the other threads here suggest dirt and shredded newspaper as cover materials. I have collected from the saw stations at Lowes and Home Depot, but get the bulk of my sawdust from a small lumber mill nearby. Also, I bought up a load of those compressed sawdust bricks that are meant to burn in wood stoves. They were at a Habitat store very cheap. Where they were stashed, one or two toppled, the plastic split, and moisture entered, disintegrating the bricks back to loose sawdust. Very handy!
To be extra stealthy, you might use large trash bins for storage, depending on your location and usage. I have separate pee and poop buckets and I see, from today's reading, that I should be occasionally adding some pee to my storage container instead of pouring it out on my leaf mulch daily.
I've also found that starting a new poop bucket, you want to have some amount of carbon material already in the bottom of the bucket. Dried leaf material works very well here.
I would recommend listening to the author's videos online about materials for composting. That and MANY other questiins can be answered. There a handful of videos on the topic out there as well.
I'm currently reading the Humanure Handbook and the methodology is best explained towards the end of the book in the "Tao of Compost" chapter.
I have found the entire book interesting but if one were in a rush and wanted to understand the author's approach to composting humanure, reading the last chapter would probably cover everything. Read the whole book though!
It's been a year now. I have stopped composting poop a few weeks after this post, as getting enough dry material was difficult. However I was pleased, and also surprised a few weeks ago that when I obtained all the compost of the pile, absolutely nothing could tell that I used to compost poop there, even if it had been only a few buckets. Not even shredded cardboard was left.
However I am now always composting urine or using it somewhere in the garden; since I take a piss about 4-5 times a day, that's about 40-50 liter of water saved per day... Add a year of doing that, 14600 to 18250 liters of water saved. Not much in term of money, but quite a lot in term of natural resources, even if I am estimating 10-15L of water per flush.
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