This is my Epilog Laser Cutter entry so please Vote if you think the idea is unique and worth supporting.
Composting is the easiest thing one can do to help your community. With a wealth of good soil you, your neighbors, and everyone else is stuck with the predictament of what to grow. Imagine such a world.
The problem is that the standard composter doesn't turn itself, and the average human is too everwhelmed with life's callings to take the time to turn the composter once a week.
Hence the self turning composter, wind powered so no additional power is needed.
I just added a laundry basket to the inside to help churn the soil. It was turning a 3/4 full load with no problems at all. I had to empty it out to paint it black, but once the winds pick up I will post a video of it turning soil.
The gear drive supplies more torque than it would ever require, I used vise grips and tried to stop it turning but could not. I estimate that I applied about 150 lbs with a moment arm of 8 inches and still it didn't stop! The gear ratio is 1255:1.
You will need:
A drum, or other round item that will server such a purpose. Note that I did not have a drum but I did have a large bucket I bought for 3 bucks at walmart.
Plywood-depending on how big you want to go will determine how much scrap you need. I used about a half a sheet of 1/2 inch ply for the turbine but I think twice as many layers would be better.
2x4's or 2x6's-The frame and upright uses about 2-8ft lengths of one or the other.
Screws-get a box of 3in deck screws, they last forever and are very strong.
A junk gear motor with a high gear ratio is also needed.
Tools-I used a drill press, angle grinder, hammer, screw driver and jig saw. My advice, you can never have too many tools.
Time: It took about a day to make this. I actually did it over the weekend but actual time was about 12 hours.
Step 1: First Cut Out the Layers for the Turbine
Step 2: Cut Out the Many Layers of Plywood
Step 3: Drill the Shaft Hole
I used a 1/4 inch drill bit since I used 1/4 inch thread stock for the shaft. However, in retrospect I could have used a larger drill bit (1/2 inch or so) for the same shaft since the layers are compressed together with the end nuts. This would allow for easier re-alignment of the shaft had I poorly drilled my hole to begin with.
Step 4: Decide on Your Rough Shape
Step 5: Make Your Layers Smooth
By the way, this is my first attempt at hand grinding the shape and I think the final form turned out very well.
Step 6: Find a Good Gear Motor
Step 7: Hack the Gear Motor
First take the gear motor you found apart. Gut the electrical parts (the rectangular brushings, and remove the magnets with a hammer). You don't care about the motor being a motor and these components only cause friction. Be careful not no damage bearings as you need this running smoothly.
Step 8: Mark the Shaft for Drilling Out
Here you see me attempting to hold the center punch and camera at the same time. The center punch indents the metal when hit with a hammer. This dent will guide the drill bit so your shaft hole is about as perfect as can be made without a lathe.
Then drill the housing with a larger diameter hole so the shaft doesn't rub.
Step 9: Drill the Marked Shaft
If you do happen to miss align the center point mark, you can move your mark a little bit closer to center by angling the centerpunch in the direction you want to move the mark and hammering again. Once the mark is reset, give it a couple of taps of the hammer vertically to clean up the dents.
Now, to drill. I wanted to drill and tap the shaft in place but I didn't have the right tap. So, I drilled the hole to the size of the turbines shaft (1/4 inch) and used a wrap of friction tape to make the connection lock together. The hole I drilled was only about half of a inch deep, but you can pick whatever depth you need per your supplies.
Step 10: Drill the Cap
Step 11: Now Make the Composter Frame
Now make a frame with two tires attached to one end, and a upright on the other end that leads to the gear motor.
The composter rolls on these two tires.
Step 12: Assemble the Beast
Once the frame is prototyped, secure tacks with lags and give it a try. My final design sorta took a weird path of development but that is like my life. Depending on resources, your project may or may not look like mine, and that is a good thing. I would rather have it not look like mine since I truely value innovation over replication. But either way take a look at my result and try to do better!!\
I should note, the gear motor was attached to the barrel via a plate with a keyed hole in it. I failed to note that earlier.
Also, I made a video of the system in operation but I had the camera on it's side. I will post a less neck paining clip tomorrow as well to show it operation.