It’s getting warmer, and the pile of shredded bank statements etc is getting bigger (and has been since September) so it’s time to make paper logs again. I’ve been doing this for a few years, it doesn’t really produce enough fuel for more than a few fires in the winter but it does take care of the mountains of shredded paper we produce (we can’t put it in the recycling bin as most of it will end up blowing around the car-park).
First I dump the shredded paper into a large trug and add water from the rain barrel. Then I add a shredded (by hand) news paper (just one per bucket) to help the whole thing bind, another use for the London Metro! Then leave for a few days to get everything well soaked (I leave mine for 4 to 6 days, usually depended on free time rather than any process), as I use rain water I don’t leave
the bucket for more than a week (shorter in hot weather) as the mixture starts to smell.
Next I put the mulch into an Eko-Mania wet log maker (I swear I have nothing to do with the manufacturers, I just own two of their gadgets) and squeeze the water out of it. I find it helps once you have pushed the handles all the way down to tip the unit over (keeping pressure on the handles) to get the puddle of water out that always forms on top.
The logs should not be dripping once you have finished squeezing them, as can be seen in the picture to the left (do drips coming from them) they will be a bit furry (I use a diamond-cut shredder) so it’s best to wrap them in fresh sheets of newspaper. Just make them wet and they will stick to the logs and help stop little bits falling off when you move or store them.
So there you go, how I make paper logs from shredded paper. Any left overs and the paper filled water end up in the composter.