My son and me whipped together an inexpensive bucket feeder yesterday. We have maybe $6 worth of materials in it and 45 minutes of time. It was very simple and works for us. We will see in a few days if it works for the deer. I plan on getting a tripod feeder with timer and spreader, but I want to make a few others to help us locate deer and see their habits. I just can't afford to have 3 or 4 $150 feeders for that purpose.
One cheap bucket feeder ready to be hung. This started life as a laundry detergent bucket, plunger, 2 washers, and a piece of 3/8" rope. My son gets credit for the camouflage job. It holds about 35 pounds of corn.
Using rope thru the plunger handle to suspend it. This agitates the corn and makes it fall out the hole in the bottom.
The handle needs to be smaller than the hole so there is room for corn to fall out of. Not to small, not too big.
I used the same 3/8" rope as I used to hang the bucket. I used some washers to keep the rope from pulling thru and I'm sure it was over kill. I left a tad of rope so I could play with the height of the plunger if needed.
Here it is hanging in position. It doesn't look it in the picture but it is not near any other limbs where low slung critters can get at it. The plunger is used to make the corn spread out a little instead of falling straight down. The corn falls from the bucket and hits the plunger and bounces outward some.
We spread a little peanut butter around the plunger to attract the deer. We stuck a little corn to the peanut butter for the heck of it. The idea is once they start licking the peanut butter the handle will move allowing corn to fall out and then they will understand how it works. We also spread some corn around under the feeder to help them out.
I know that automatic feeders are better but I wanted to do something with my son. He is of the instant gratification generation and I hope that this will show him we can do some things ourselves. He wasn't big on the idea before we started it. In fact he didn't want to do it. However, now that we made it, found a spot for it, filled it and made sure it works it is a different story. You can tell he is pretty proud of it and actually thinks it will work. Even if we get no deer on the game cam it isn't a loss. We spent a little time together and had some fun. That is hard to do with teenagers these days!
Good job MLN, I like it. And at the savings it is worth it.
Great idea and very good execution MLN. Virtually no cost, and nothing to break down like the electronics in a store bought feeder. No battery to drain, nothing. Simplicity at it's best!
We wanted to place a feeder where there weren't appropriately sized trees where we needed them so we made our own.
Well we haven't had any luck getting the deer to use the feeder yet. Not that I can tell anyway. From the looks of some game cam pictures we had it too high. We lowered it a good bit and will try again. If that doesn't work we well put it right near the ground with a bait pile under the plunger so that when the try get the corn they will have to bump the plunger. Hopefully that will get them versed on its operation and then we can raise it up out of reach of squirrels and coons.
We made a couple more and I used small pieces of arrows to hold the plunger instead of supporting it with rope. The arrow shaft just sits on the very bottom of the bucket. I just wanted to see if there was any difference in operation. I think the rope might work a smidgen better but the other method is much quicker and easier.
We also made the opening for the stir stick bigger, I think we were too stingy the first time around. Now it will drop a good bit more corn. If it turns out to be too big then we can build the stick up with tape to slow it down.
Hey, I don't see an update. How did it work? I would like to make one. I just got permission to hunt on some private property, I would like to start drawing them in!