Compost Making. Utterly Confused!!

I took on an allotment plot earlier this year, and quickly cleared half of it to grow at least some crops this season whilst I intensively double-dig and clear the other half. All of that is going well.
So, now I want to make a compost bin. Eventually I plan to have 3.
I have scavenged 4 pallets each of which is 3ft x 4ft which I intend to use to build a box that is 3ft square and 4 ft high. One of the sides will be loosely (but securely) tied in so that it is removable for access.
But what to do next? I have read so much here and on google that I am utterly confused.
Firstly, should I line the box with something like lino or old carpet in order to keep the heat in or leave it as it is to allow for aeration?
Secondly, do I have to stick to a strict regime as to how I build up the layers? I was just thinking of simply piling in layers of stuff as and when I harvested crops throughout the season , maybe throw in some grass cuttings from home, maybe throw in paper from the shredding machine, maybe throw in some straw if it available.
Do I have to add accelerators? Do I have to add lime? Do I have to turn it? Do I add worms? Do I have to pee on it LOL!!
Making compost seems to have become such a scientific skill that I am now quite wary of even starting to do so, lest I end up with some smelly sickly sludge that it no good for anything.
Ed
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Just dump it in a pile and keep it damp. Does not matter whether you layer it or otherwise.
It's really not rocket science. <g>
I personally use construction grade giant trash bags. Fill them and leave them open at the top. I let them sit for a year or so.
Makes great compost.
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I use leaves and leave it in the rain gutters for a couple of years. :-) Also makes great compost.
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Composting is a verb... you compost to make humus.
http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/humus
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In article

How do you build your compost/humus heaps Shel' baby?
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He talks into it.
David
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Yes, and compost is a noun. http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/compost Main Entry: com·post Function: noun Etymology: Anglo-French, from Medieval Latin compostum, from Latin, neuter of compositus, compostus, past participle of componere Date: 1587 1 : a mixture that consists largely of decayed organic matter and is used for fertilizing and conditioning land 2 : mixture, compound
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I would not use anything except chicken wire to line the boxes. You do need some air circulation.
Other than that- you don't need to do anything except start adding compostable material. The beauty of compost is that it works all on its own. Sure, if it gets really dry you can hose it down a little. You can add stuff in distinct layers (kitchen scraps/grass/soil for example) and you might speed things up a bit. But none of that is necessary. Um, you mentioned pallets- are they solid on the bottom? Will it be impossible for worms to migrate into the compost? If so, you might want to put some soil with worms on the bottom to start.
Chris
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On Fri, 01 Aug 2008 11:08:51 -0700, Sheldon wrote:

Look up "compost" in your merriam-webster and you will see...
Main Entry: com·post Function: noun
1 : a mixture that consists largely of decayed organic matter and is used for fertilizing and conditioning land 2 : mixture, compound
... as the first definition. Second definition is the verb form.
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Sheldon wrote: snip...

And you mash chickpeas to make hummus...
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John McGaw
[Knoxville, TN, USA]
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That's why his gyros taste so awfull. He's been using compost.
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Depends on temperature.

You can but it isn't absolutely essential
I was just thinking of simply piling in layers of stuff as and

Sounds OK to me

not unless you want it to go fast

it will degrade quite well without it, you may want to lime your garden as compost comes out slightly acidic but it depends on your soil and overall conditions how important this is

Only if you want it to work at maximum speed

no they will find there own way there

no but it is a useful thing to do with that resource

Calm down it is not such a big deal. You can try to be super scientific but if you are not it will still work but take longer.
David
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My Dad runs PVC pipe about his pile. The 6 or 8 inch diameter pipe has holes in it. Think pipe to defuse water but in this case it defuses oxygen. AKA less need to turn. Bill
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Garden in shade zone 5 S Jersey USA

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On 02/08/08 15:12, David Hare-Scott wrote:

you give good practical advice. I think I go with wot u say.
Thanks,, Ed xxx
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A simple alternative is to dig a small trench. Put your kitchen scrapes into it, and then cover it back over.
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