Composter FAQ

Mantis Composters FAQ

Here you will find a list of frequently asked questions about the Mantis line of composters.

Which Mantis ComposTumbler is right for me?

The Original model is for those that regularly accumulate 5 or 6 trash bags (up to 168 gallons) of material every couple of weeks.
For customers that generate 2-3 trash bags of material regularly (up to 88 gallons), then the Compact model is right for you.
The ComposT-Twin is for those who generate 2-3 bags of materials each week, and want a continuous supply of compost.
If you accumulate less, or prefer to add small amounts daily, then you should consider our Back Porch model.
In other words, select the largest size that you can regularly fill. You can compare Mantis composters here.

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How long will my ComposTumbler last?

All Mantis composter models have been designed to provide you with many years of compost. Our metal drums are non-toxic, powder-coated galvannealed steel that prevents rust and the frames are tubular steel for strength and support. Galvanneal is widely used in many outdoor commercial applications but as an unfortunate fact of nature nothing is absolutely rust-proof. Mantis uses the best possible material and double coating processes (paint over galvanneal) for our elements-facing outdoor products. For those customers  looking for additional protection, we do offer a heavy-duty, weatherproof, vinyl cover for the Original, Compact and ComposT-Twin models. All plastic parts are made of high-density  polyethylene. As with any piece of outdoor equipment, periodic care helps to get the maximum value from your purchase. With your ComposTumbler you will receive easy instructions for keeping your unit in tip-top shape.

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Why are you using galvanneal and not galvanized sheet metal?

Galvannealed sheet metal is coated with zinc on both sides using a continuous “hot dip” process. The zinc coating is harder than a regular galvanized coating and is more resistant to scratching and other damage. There is also an excellent bond formed between the paint and the surface of the coating since the paint can “mechanically lock” with the zinc-iron crystals on the surface, in addition to any chemical bonding. Compared to galvanize, galvanneal generally exhibits less undercutting corrosion beneath paint at exposed edges, scratches, or other breeches in the paint.

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Why does the Back Porch model take 4-6 weeks?

An important factor in making compost in 14 days is the amount of materials being used. Volume helps retain the high
temperatures generated by the materials in your ComposTumbler. The high temperatures are what help to rapidly decompose your
materials. The Back Porch model is not large enough to hold those high temperatures. It was designed for customers that want
the benefits of quick composting (instead of the slow pile method), but only have small amounts of material to use.

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How is the ComposT-Twin shipped?

The Mantis ComposT-Twin is shipped via UPS; it will arrive in 3 cartons.

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What is the overall size of the Mantis ComposT-Twin?

The approximate assembled size is 65 wide, by 66 high, by 41 deep. It sits a convenient 32 high for easy loading, unloading, and turning the crank.

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How much material does the Mantis ComposT-Twin hold?

It holds almost 25 cubic feet of raw material thats 10 bushels in each chamber. Its the largest, most convenient composter on the market.

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What is the advantage of two composting chambers for the ComposT-Twin?

You can allow one chamber to “cook” while you continue to add material to the other chamber. With the Mantis ComposT-Twin youll always have plenty of finished compost on hand, as well as a place to put compostable materials.

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Why should I make compost?

Compost is an efficient way to recycle yard and garden “wastes” into the perfect slow-release fertilizer for your vegetable garden, flower garden and lawn. Compost improves your soil structure; it aerates clay soil for better drainage, and gives body to sandy soil to hold moisture and encourage strong root systems. Follow natures example by returning and recycling as much organic matter as possible to the soil.

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What is the best temperature for composting?

Your compost should be between 120 Fahrenheit and 150 Fahrenheit, which will make for speedy composting. If the temperature is lower, the pile will still decay but more slowly. If the temperature is too high, it may kill the beneficial microorganisms that help break down your compost (compost rarely gets too hot). The Compost Thermometer, available via our on-line shopping, will help you monitor the temperature in your compost chambers.

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Can I use finished compost all year long?

Well-finished compost can be used at any time, in any season, and in any amount. There is no such thing as too much compost.

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Is it OK to have pests in your compost pile?

No, you don’t want to have pests in your compost pile. Traditional piles can invite all sorts of unwanted pests. Food scraps, especially meat and fish, can attract rodents. Fruit will often attract bees and wasps. And, some materials will attract birds, especially during nesting times. One of the many advantages of the ComposT-Twin is that it’s totally enclosed, virtually eliminating rodents, bees, and birds. So, you can compost more materials without the problems associated with “open” compost piles.

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