i finally procured all the ingredients to the soil block maker recipe as recommended by eliot coleman and used by the fine people at path to freedom (where i purchased the block maker from). on a rare sunny day, i set about making some blocks...first i mixed up the recipe
push the block maker into the soil, give it a quarter turn and lift out. i also used my hands to manually pack it which worked equally well.
the soil is supposed to be wet enough that water runs out of it when the blocks are made. you can see it starting to do that around the edges
all done! you can see the amount of water left over on the sides. i finished this up by placing a layer of saran wrap over the top to retain moisture. in the future, i'll probably use saved wrap from mushroom and broccoli packages i sometimes purchase at aldi.
it's too soon to report on the durability/long term of these as i've just done this earlier this week. however, at this point, i am very pleased with the block maker and we are hoping to scavenge several more metal pans at garage sales this summer to use next year.