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How to make a worm bin

01_suppliesThis is a very simple and easy worm bin to build. All you need is 1 sheet of 1/2 inch exterior plywood, two 2x4s, two 2x2s, wood screws, two 3×2 hings and about 4 feet of 1/4 inch rope. It took me about 1/2 a day to get the supplies, cut all the pieces and then assemble it.
02_cut_plywood_in_halfI start by cutting the plywood in half so you end up with two sections that are about 48″ x 48″. When you cut the sheet in half you want to center the saw blade down the middle of your line. This way you end up with two even pieces. They will each be a little shorter then 48″ by about 1/8″.
03_cut_in_thirdsThen I take one of the halves and cut it into 3 equal pieces. These will form the front, back and two sides of the bin.
04_cut_sidesFrom one of the three section, I then cut one in half to form the two sides.
05_cut_top-lidFinally I cut the other half sheet not quite in the center to make the bottom of the bin and the lid.
06_cut_2x2Next, I cut the 2x2s in to sections for the base and front side supports.
07_cut_2x4Then the 2x4s are cut for the lid and back side supports.
08_base_assemble1With that all the wood is cut, I start the assemble with the base of the bin. First I layout the 2x2s to from the base. To add a little support I nail the pieces together.
09_base_assemble2Then I take the bottom plywood piece and lay it on top and secure it with wood screws.
10_base_assemble3The last thing to do is to drill 3/8″ holes into the plywood bottom to allow water to drain. Now the bottom is complete.
11_frontNext I start to build the sides of the bin. It starts with attaching the 2×2 front side supports to the front plywood piece. I line up the top of the 2×2 with on edge of the plywood front.
12_backI do the same thing with the back plywood piece, attaching the 2×4 side supports in the same way as the 2×2, lining up the top edge of the plywood with the 2×4 support.
13_sidesWith the front and back ready, I then attach the side pieces. The side pieces will overlap the front and back plywood. Also when placed on the bottom, you’ll notice that the bottom frame is visable and the sides do not touch the ground. This is correct as you don’t want the sides to be in concact with the ground. With the sides connected and on the bottom, I secure the sides to the bottom frame with wood screws.
14_lid_assemble1The basic bin is now complete and I start on the lid by laying out the 2×4 lid frame pieces. The 2x4s are not attached together, so I use some long clamps to hold them together. The lid plywood piece will go on top and that will hold the frame together.
15_lid_assemble2Now I lay the lid plywood piece over the lid frame and center the piece. It won’t go to the edges and there is about an inch overlap on the sides and 1/4″ on the back and front. With the lid piece centered, I attach it with wood screws.
16_hingesAll the parts of the bin are now done. To finish the bin, I attach the lid to the bin with 2 3″x2″ square hinges. First I center the hinges on the 2×4 support on the back side of the bin. Then put the lid on and center it on the bin. There is about an inch or so over lap on the sides and front. With the lid in place I attach the hinges to the 2×4 frame of the lid.
17_ropeThe last thing I do is attach a piece of rope to the bin side and lid. This will keep the lid from opening to far and breaking off the hinges and also lets you open the lid without having to hold it. I first dril a hole about 4″ from the front and 3″ from the top of the side piece. Then I mark the lid at the same location and drill a hole. The hole in the lid should go through the 2×4 and not the plywood top. Then I tie a knot on one end of the rope, thread it from the inside through the hold in the side and up through the hole in the lid. I open the lid, just past vertical and tipping back slightly and then tie another knot at the right length. Finally I cut off any excess length The bin is now done. Just fill with some bedding material and add worms and worm food:
18_final-open 18_final-closed If you are in the Seattle, WA area and would like your own bin but maybe don’t have the time or the tools to make one, I’d be happy to make one for you. I charge for time and materials and delivery is extra. Contact Garden Mentors and request one. Once you have a bin, you just need some worms. You can get these from someone that already has a worm bin or get some online. Also check your local garden associations or even city utilities, they may be able to provide worms and help for free or low cost. Other handy worm bin accessories:

6 Comments

  • AndrewBoldman on Jun 04, 2009

    Great post! Just wanted to let you know you have a new subscriber- me!

  • balbert on Feb 05, 2009

    The width is 51″, depth is 25 1/2″ and height is 18 1/2″

  • Jenni P on Feb 05, 2009

    What are the finished dimensions? Thanks!

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