new feeder from tin ductwork

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by MTchick, Jun 10, 2007.

  1. MTchick

    MTchick Songster

    Feb 2, 2007
    Western Montana
    I've been displeased with my feeder lately. I feel like it is too prone to feeding other things (mice, starlings) and just a few days ago a whole flock of house sparrows descended upon it. I decided then that I wanted to make a new feeder.

    The idea with the new feeder was this; I wanted to have the hen's food access be inside the coop, but the food refilling be outside the coop. Simple, right? I thought about this for a while and decided that what I really needed was some kind of feeder tube that went through the wall. What is a tube that goes through walls? Duct work tubes! Where can I find duct work tubes? My favorite place! The used building supply place!

    So here are the steps to building a new feeder.
    1) Think up the design for the new feeder.
    2) Go to the used building supply place and spend $2 on four old ductwork fittings. The pieces I bought were; end cap (to cover the feed from the outside), double end "male" fitting (to allow the cap to fit on the next piece), 90 degree elbow (to tilt the tube through the wall), and rectangular register fitting (to dispense feed into the feed bowl).
    3) Distract hens with honeydew melon rinds. Mmmmmmmm... tasty.
    4) Assemble ductwork fittings on the lawn and take measurements.
    5) Cut a big hole in the wall of the coop with the reciprocating saw and a spade bit. Fun! Super duper deafeningly loud with the corrugated tin!
    6) Re-fit ductwork together inside (register/dispenser and food pan) and then attach the outside tubes from the outside (90 degree elbow, double end fitting).
    7) Fill with feed to test system
    8) Place cap on new feeder
    9) Watch as dominant hen, Biggie Rockette, immediately attacks new feed. Go Biggie! Good hen!

    Now all I need to do is fill the small gaps from the rough cut I made in the wall of the coop. It is hard to cut an 8" diameter hole in 1" of plywood and corrugated tin with a reciprocating saw. I'm thinking expandable insulating foam plus some kind of "cuff" to keep the hens from pecking at the foam. We'll see how that turns out. For now the weather is nice enough that those gaps are not a problem.

  2. mlheran

    mlheran Songster

    [​IMG] I was in the hardware store just the other day looking through the duct fittings thinking just the same thing! Good to know it works. Nice job!
  3. schmoo

    schmoo Songster

    May 7, 2007
    West MI.
    Excellent idea! For a "cuff" I bet you could use a part that holds a woodstove chimney into the roof. Its a cuff thing that comes in different sizes and its tin. [​IMG]
  4. WoodlandWoman

    WoodlandWoman Crowing

    May 8, 2007
    Nice work! What a great idea!
  5. mosier

    mosier Songster

    Apr 27, 2007
    Madison, Wisconsin
    Excellent idea!
  6. blue fire

    blue fire Songster

    May 2, 2007
    Murfreesboro, TN
    Good idea, but is it water proof on the top?
  7. Yonaton

    Yonaton Songster

    Jun 28, 2007
    West TN
    For the cap on the outside, go to an auto parts store and buy a tube of stuff to make a gasket with (it'll be blur or orange or black, maybe some other colors now, or even get form-a-gasket, I think that'd work just as well). Apply it as about a 1/4 inch thick bead around the part of the cap that sets the most, wait for the bead to harden slightly, put the cap on and put a brick or some kind of weight on the cap to help 'shape' the bead.

    As for the cutout hole, any good silicon sealant would work. It'll get hard enough (like a rubber ball almost) that it won't be easy for the chickens to get any of it (use your finger or something to smooth it out and to force it into nooks and crannies).

    That foam stuff is good, but it's tricky to work with and being a bright color, it might attract the chickens to peck at it, though I think it'll get hard enough also that they won't be able to get any of it off.

    Anyway, a fantastic idea you came up with there! Thanks for sharing it!
  8. mudhen

    mudhen confidently clueless

    Jan 15, 2007
    Shepherdstown, WV
    I'd been toying with a similar idea myself, but with PVC. Sort of like the grit and oyster shell ones I posted a while back, but bigger.
    I think your idea would be better.
    It's the inside part I don't quite get.
    Is that a floor register end that you are using?
  9. Buckguy20

    Buckguy20 OKIE MOSES

    Apr 13, 2007
    Choctaw Oklahoma

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