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VermBin24 Flow-Through Vermicomposting Bin

Back in May I received some emails from a customer named Joe Denial (who had ordered 10 lb of Red Worms a short time before) telling me about his new vermicomposting projects and, oddly enough, asking for some advice on building a larger flow-through bed. Now before everyone (who knows about my DIY skills) keels over laughing, I should explain that Joe was very new to RWC and had mistakenly assumed that my big wooden backyard worm bin had a flow-through grate in it.

Once I’d sent Joe my reply, explaining the low-tech nature of my wooden bin, I basically forgot about the whole thing (no offence Joe! haha) and got back to whatever wide assortment of “stuff” I was focusing on at the time.

And then, the plot thickened…

About two weeks later, Joe sent me an email with a small PDF document showing me his new creation. I was TOTALLY floored by what I saw. Not only was Joe’s new bin the coolest DIY flow-through bed I’d ever seen, but he even included some amazing diagrams illustrating the various key components of the design.

On a whim, I decided to ask Joe if he might be interested in designing, and creating plans for various composting bins etc. Thankfully, he said yes – and a short time later the “VermBin24″ (VB24) bin (pictured top right) was born.

As much as I love Joe’s bigger bin, I knew most people either wouldn’t want something that big, or would be utterly intimidated by the idea of actually trying to build it – so I suggested we try something more compact (but still employing a similar design). The VB24 was definitely created with the average home vermicomposter in mind. Being the DIY dummy that I am, I would class it as an “intermediate” level building project – but still something I’m confident I could actually put together (and intend to do so sometime this fall).

What’s great about a VB24 vermicomposting system is that it allows home owners to enjoy – on a small scale – the perks of using a much larger professional grade flow-through bed. It provides greatly increased aeration (while still offering good moisture retention), which results in faster processing and a better quality end product – not to mention a much more forgiving system. Like any decent flow-through bin, the VB24 will also make it a lot easier to harvest vermicompost.

Joe’s larger version has been performing incredibly well for him – certainly helping to provide him with a much more care-free and enjoyable vermicomposting experience than most others just getting into the hobby (yep, it’s literally only been a few months since Joe started vermicomposting – pretty cool!).

Tomorrow, I will be posting about some other developments here at RWC – some great, some not so great, but all of it important news regardless. I’ll also provide some more details about securing a copy of the VB24 blueprints (and how-to guide), for those who are interested.

Stay tuned!
8)

Written by Bentley on August 18th, 2011 with 35 comments.
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35 comments

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Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com mugenbao
#1. August 18th, 2011, at 9:02 PM.

Wow, that does indeed look like a fantastic job, kudos to Joe!

I’ll also provide some more details about securing a copy of the VB24 blueprints (and how-to guide), for those who are interested.

I am extremely interested!

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Hannah Rubenstahl
#2. August 18th, 2011, at 9:23 PM.

I am also extremely interested! :-)

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Sarah (Denial) Amin
#3. August 19th, 2011, at 12:47 PM.

Can’t wait to start vermicomposting!

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Cassandra
#4. August 19th, 2011, at 3:51 PM.

Love it! Can’t wait to see the plans.

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Nirav “The former brown worm dude” Amin
#5. August 19th, 2011, at 8:52 PM.

Can’t wait to see it at the house! Looks so convenient and an awesome design.

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com jay
#6. August 20th, 2011, at 11:57 AM.

Very interested.

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Laura
#7. August 20th, 2011, at 3:37 PM.

Hi just discovered your site a week ago, and have been reading and learning solidly for 8 days now. Thought the Worm Inn was nifty … now I’m really green with envy this VB-24 looks like heaven and beyond. Any chance of any of your products ever reaching South African shores?

Thanks for a fabulous, fun and educational site. Have signed up for newsletters and will be back here often. Wish I knew about you 2 years ago when I started with a plastic worm tower.

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Bentley
#8. August 20th, 2011, at 4:00 PM.

Hi Laura,
Joe and I have been talking about the possibility of selling the VB24 as an actual physical product (kit people can put together), but for now we are just selling the plans – an e-resource (PDF file). So it doesn’t matter where you are located. I see you’ve found my other recent post as well – so I’ll add more over there.
8)

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Laura
#9. August 20th, 2011, at 6:46 PM.

Hi Bentley

PDF File great …. Kit would be even better for those of us without a.n.other to do the DYI bit from scratch. What materials are used, is it totally wood for instance?

Congratulations to Joe too, please ask him to contact me should he feel like a holiday in SA any time soon (wink wink).

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Michele Parker
#10. August 21st, 2011, at 8:56 PM.

I have wanted worms for my composting for some time. Now if I can only get my husband to start working on our VB24!

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Cindy
#11. August 23rd, 2011, at 1:07 AM.

Really looking forward to seeing the plans! I am so tired of the plastic worm tower…nothing really easy about vermicomposting with my current set up. Joel, you must be part genius! Thanks for sharing!

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com christian kimber
#12. August 23rd, 2011, at 7:14 PM.

interested in seeing how well this works and if it can be scalled up.

Keep us posted!

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Joe
#13. August 23rd, 2011, at 10:24 PM.

Oh yea!
No limit to the size!
Working great for me!!

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Allison
#14. August 24th, 2011, at 3:12 AM.

This looks awesome, and very possible for my husband to build…what are the estimated cost for the end project? I can sway my husband to build this for me if the cost is better than a “can o worms” or “worm factory”
Thank you,
Allison

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Bentley
#15. August 24th, 2011, at 3:28 PM.

Hi Allison,
I think Joe came up with an estimated cost of around $70 USD (pretty sure it’s mentioned in the guide) – an absolute steal when you consider what some other bins costs, and how effective a single-compartment flow-through bed can be!

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Neil
#16. August 25th, 2011, at 2:35 PM.

How do we get the pdf?

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Bentley
#17. August 25th, 2011, at 2:41 PM.

Hi Neil,
When you placed the order for the “Complete Guide” pre-launch package you should have received some important emails (assuming the email address associated with the order is current).
One of these emails asked you to complete your registration for the member’s area. The PDF can be downloaded inside the member’s area.
Please email me directly if you need further assistance.
Thanks

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com blaise
#18. August 27th, 2011, at 12:46 AM.

Thanks for being kind to share your knowledge and experience.
Your web site is truly a blessing.
Keep your good work
I am very much interested in Joe Danel’s bin. Kindly send me the details.
God bless you.

Thanks

blaise

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Jeff
#19. August 29th, 2011, at 2:20 AM.

What are the dimensions of the VB24? I’m interested in the smaller (square?) sized and also the larger rectangular shaped flow-through bins.

Thanks….looks like a winner!

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Brian
#20. September 2nd, 2011, at 3:35 PM.

Will we be able to buy “The Complete Guide” again in the future or the plans as a stand alone product soon?

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Bentley
#21. September 2nd, 2011, at 4:40 PM.

The Complete Guide will be released once it is finished (will be the “official” launch) – hopefully towards end of month. It won’t include the VB24 plans though.
VB24 plans and VB Series plans will hopefully be released sometime in next week or two.
I think you may have signed up for notification list (if not, click banner for VB Series than follow link at bottom of page) – that’s a great way to stay in loop
8)

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Sue
#22. September 2nd, 2011, at 6:59 PM.

Bentley & Joe:
Oh yes, I’m very intersted in the plan of the VB.
That’ll be the next project for my husband and/or son.
Thanks for sharing.

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Bentley
#23. September 2nd, 2011, at 8:03 PM.

Great, Sue!
Will be sharing some pics and info from one of our “Complete Guide” pre-launch customers who has already built his VB24 (he works FAST! lol) fairly soon!

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Weezee
#24. September 6th, 2011, at 10:50 PM.

This is the coolest worm composting setup I have seen! I want one!

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Dorothy
#25. September 7th, 2011, at 6:44 PM.

Intriguing. These look to be built from plywood. I wonder, is plywood known to be safe for worms? Or do the bins get lined with something? I know they are sensitive creatures and plywood is manufactured with stuff that’s not so good for lungs if you breathe in the sawdust, for example.

Also, I’m surprised at the number of ladies here waiting for their husbands to build the bins. It might be done sooner and better if you do it yourselves! =) (Insert Rosie the Riveter “We Can Do It” here.)

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Bentley
#26. September 7th, 2011, at 8:12 PM.

Weezee – thanks for your interest! I certainly can’t wait to build mine!
—————
Dorothy – I don’t think untreated lumber will pose any problems for the worms (wouldn’t suggest using pressure-treated, but even that wouldn’t likely kill them). They are sensitive in some ways, but at the same time, it’s amazing what these little guys will tolerate. The breakdown of the wood would (wood wood? lol) be fairly slow so I don’t imagine it would be quite the same as inhaling a bunch of dust all at once.
Just my hunch anyway!
Thanks for sharing your thoughts (and the rallying cry for the ladies – hehe! I totally agree!)

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Bill
#27. December 5th, 2011, at 11:24 PM.

Looking forward to the plans.

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Don Huston
#28. January 2nd, 2012, at 10:19 PM.

Was wandering how your been is going have had myne up and running for some time would love to comare notes Do at http://www.customwoodbutcher.com

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Bentley
#29. January 3rd, 2012, at 9:33 AM.

BILL – the plans are available (have actually been for several months). Will soon be including additional info for those who would like to build the larger systems as well.
———–
DON – I haven’t asked Joe how his big system is doing recently (perhaps he’ll pop by and chime in at some point). I myself have not yet built my own VB24. The fall kinda got away from me there and I simply had too much on my plate. Have definite plans for building one (may even go with a VB48) sometime closer to spring. My friend John Duffy will be sharing updates from his own VB24 experience on the blog (I posted the first installment not too long ago), though, so you might want to keep your eyes peeled for those.
8)

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Scott
#30. December 26th, 2012, at 1:03 PM.

How do I get a set of plans for the VB24 and VB48. I am fairly handy and wanting to do some worm composting. Looks like this is one of the best designs I have seen on the web.

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Bentley
#31. December 26th, 2012, at 9:28 PM.

Hi Scott,
The order page for the VB Series plans can be found here:
http://www.redwormcomposting.com/vermbin-series-plans/

Thanks for your interest!

Bentley

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Greg Garriss
#32. July 10th, 2013, at 8:23 PM.

Aloha Bentley,
I’ve been reading through your blog and ran across this section on the VB24. How would this compare ( consumptionwise ) with the Worm Inn that you over stuffed?
Mahalo,
Greg

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Allen
#33. September 21st, 2013, at 9:17 PM.

Im very excited on building one to see it in action. Looking forward to have some plans.
Thank.

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Bentley
#34. September 23rd, 2013, at 10:54 AM.

GREG – sorry for delay! The VB24 would definitely have more capacity for processing than Worm Inn. Considerably larger volume inside. I’ve never done a direct comparison though, so tough to offer any estimates.
———
ALLEN – that’s great! Don’t hesitate to drop me an email if you have any questions re: getting involved etc

Get your own gravatar by visiting gravatar.com Yeti
#35. November 1st, 2013, at 4:16 PM.

So, I built something similar I believe to the VB48 without the plans, but from my own inventive intuition, but I have a few questions. My bin uses 1/2″ EMT inside of 3/4″ pvc spaced parallel at 3″ apart from each other at the bottom for castings to fall through.

My question is based in whether or not your bin requires you to tease the castings through the bottom or if eventually they fall through on their own?

My bin has been going for about a month and a half, and the worms are really doing work, and have populated it very well. We have red wrigglers and Euro night crawlers as well as random worms we find around the yard. Do I need to wait longer.

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