|The finished compost bins|
To make a three bin system you need 10 pallets and a way of fastening them together. I used 12 L-brackets, 6 strap hinges, and 3 eye hooks. If you don't want to purchase hardware, you could also fasten the bins together with twine, wire, bungee cords....anything really. Ours were held together with bungee cords until I had a chance to buy and install the hardware. Obviously, installing hardware becomes more difficult if a bin is filled, so you will want to keep that in mind as you proceed.
Basically, you take the pallets and form a U shape out of three of them. Along the back corners, the bins are held together with the L-brackets (or whatever fastener you've chosen). I used an L-bracket at the top and then halfway down the pallet. Three brackets would probably be stronger, but I'm cheap and two seem to be holding just fine.
|Here you get a closer look at how the bins are put together.|
|Here you can see how the bins open and close.|
So far, I like this method much better than either of the two composting methods I've used previously. Our first compost "bin" was simply an open pile heaped in an out of the way corner of the yard. This worked -- pretty well in fact! -- but it's a pretty slow method, the pile tends to sprawl out as it gets bigger, and if you are in a dense (sub)urban setting, it's probably not the most neighborly.
Our second method was one of those plastic commercial composters. While some people have good success with these, I was never happy with it. I found it expensive, difficult to turn, and too small to manage all of the kitchen, yard, and garden waste we produce.
If you're looking for a quick, easy, and cheap way to construct a compost bin, this is a good way to get started!