EZ Plucker 131 works GREAT!

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by backintime, Jun 22, 2012.

  1. backintime

    backintime Chillin' With My Peeps

    212
    2
    131
    Apr 7, 2008
    Northern Wisconsin
    I finally took the plunge and bought a tub-style chicken plucker.

    I decided on the EZ Plucker Model 131 from CCOnly.com because it had the same 1 HP motor and 119 rubber fingers as the Featherman Pro which cost about twice as much.

    I ordered the EZ Plucker over the phone on a Monday, since I was in a hurry to get it by the weekend. The fellow on the phone was VERY helpful and gave me a lot of information about cleaning the unit, renting it, how often the fingers would need to be replaced, what size birds it could handle, proper scalding, and other matters.

    The unit arrived right on time the following Friday. The packaging was intact, so I signed for it and unwrapped it later in the day. The rim of the tub was dented, so I sent an email to that effect and got no reply that day (or ever!)

    The unit worked unbelievably well. I put in 2 chickens at a time, and in 13 to 15 seconds, they were absolutely clean - no more than a few tail feathers left. There was no need for secondary "cleaning up" at the sink -- did not need to singe either. It saved me so much time, I kept whooping and hollering like a lunatic every time I shut the thing off and saw the birds. They were absolute perfection. Out of 24 birds, none had any broken wings or legs. One had torn skin, which I assume was due to slight over scalding. Luckily, the dent had no effect on the performance of the unit.

    I subsequently emailed CCOnly to let them know how well the unit worked - I was 100% happy with it and did not expect any "refund" or action on their part because of the dent -- and still got no reply.

    The unit cost $530 and shipping was another $120. I'm totally in love with it. My best advice is that these things are well built and work flawlessly, just be absolutely sure there is no damage before signing for it from the shipper.
     
  2. bj taylor

    bj taylor Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,131
    37
    168
    Oct 28, 2011
    North Central Texas
    i haven't done meat birds yet. i'm seriously thinking i will i the fall. i'm just wondering if $550 is worth it for two times a year of 20-30 birds.
     
  3. Oregon Blues

    Oregon Blues Overrun With Chickens

    5,531
    195
    273
    Apr 14, 2011
    Central Oregon
    I knew that shipping wasn't guaranteed when I got mine, so I made the shipping company unpack it so I could inspect it before I signed for it. The shipper was perfectly agreeable to do so.

    The unit was in perfect condition or I would have refused delivery and sent it back.

    Mine will pay for itself quick. The closest poultry processor charges $12 for a duck; not to mention the gas to get back and forth. I've done 35 ducks and 18 more to do in the fall, plus 2 turkeys and a goose in the fall. 50 chickens this summer and 50 more in the fall.

    A plucker is absolutely the only way to get 50 chickens done in a day, unless you have a dozen cousins who will come and help you pluck chickens.
     
  4. PotterWatch

    PotterWatch My Patronus is a Chicken

    5,470
    26
    288
    Apr 22, 2008
    Virginia
    We have the 151 and have done well over a thousand birds in it. We have lost a couple fingers but only very recently and they were easy to replace. We've been happy with it though we have done a couple modifications. The switch being attached to the unit and always getting wet, it shorted out after the first 150 birds or so. My husband rewired it so that the switch is mounted to a nearby post (our processing area is set up as a permanent thing as we use it every week). He also replaced the hose that flushes the feathers out because the one it came with was always pulling away from the hose to which it was attached. Other than that, we don't have any complaints and those were pretty easy fixes.

    The 151 does say that it can do small turkeys, but I wouldn't use it for turkeys again. We did a couple of our smallest hens (dressed weight of about 8 or 9lbs), and it did pluck them fine. The problem was that turkey feathers have a much larger shaft and they couldn't easily pass through the space between the moving plate and the side wall of the plucker. The next time we did a batch of chickens, the plate jammed and we discovered several turkey feathers wedged in there.
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2012
    1 person likes this.
  5. Buster52

    Buster52 Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,635
    34
    228
    Jan 28, 2009
    Geronimo Oklahoma
    Is it worth buying a riding mower to mow several acres?
     
  6. Just reebok

    Just reebok Chillin' With My Peeps

    We have lost a couple fingers but only very recently and they were easy to replace. 

     
    [/quote]

    Oh! Hahahaha.. My heart dropped when I first read you had lost a couple of fingers! I thought OMG how can you lose a finger and be so nonchalant?? Then I realized what you were talking about and promptly felt like a huge chicken newbie. Hahahah
     
    2 people like this.
  7. Yukonchick

    Yukonchick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Ya it is expensive. I've only got 32 meat birds so i managed to find a guy in the area who will lend or rent me his. I haven't talked to him yet so I'm not sure what kind it is. But anything is better than plucking by hand. Not many birds but would seem like a pain if you gotta do them all yourself by hand.
     
  8. Yukonchick

    Yukonchick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Tooooo funny.
     
  9. backintime

    backintime Chillin' With My Peeps

    212
    2
    131
    Apr 7, 2008
    Northern Wisconsin
    I agree, it's a horrendous amount of money. But it used to take me about 30 minutes per bird between plucking them sort of clean before eviscerating, then standing at the sink cleaning up the rest of the way. With the plucker it took 15 seconds to do 2 birds (OMG, just 7.5 seconds per bird), and they were truly "freezer ready." Time is money! We used to take 2 whole LONG days to do 24 birds. This year with the plucker we started at 9:00 a.m. and did 24 birds to the point of "freezer ready" and were sittng on the deck with all equipment cleaned and stowed at 3:00 p.m. Not that any of that pays for the unit! But I'll be doing chickens every summer for probably the next 20 years, so $550/20 isn't so bad assuming the plucker operates for 20 years. I have been thinking about renting the unit to recoup some of the cost. Scary from the standpoint that the unit could get wrecked or damaged. Maybe charge more and go WITH the unit to operate it? Wouldn't take too many rentals to recover the cost. Does anybody else rent their plucker out? Good/bad experiences?
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2012
  10. Just reebok

    Just reebok Chillin' With My Peeps

    I have no horse in this race, but what if you had people bring the birds to you for processing? Or let them use the unit while you run it? Is that possible? I don't really have a clue how the machines work, other than not losing a human finger... But if there is a concern about renting it out, could you rent it out on your property? Just a thought... Feel free to tell me I am an idiot. ;)
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by