The shop-bought feeder we have for the chickens is fine, but not perfect. It’s an attraction for rats, which come from next door (they climb through the chicken wire). We’ve hung the feeder and put a shroud around it to confound the rats, but they’re not particularly confounded. The feeder is also short-term, lasting 4 or 5 days before needing a refill.
There’s been a long-standing plan to make a higher-capacity feeder, but it was never really necessary so wasn’t on the priority list. We’re going on a holiday later in the year, though, so we thought we’d get it sorted out and make life easy on whoever ends up looking after the chickens.
It turned out to be unreasonably easy. We used a piece of 100mm PVC pipe as the main chamber, with a pop-on pop-off lid. The feeder part is just a 100mm PVC T-junction with the bottom half of the tee-bit sawn off. The screw-on cap on one end of the tee makes for a convenient emptying thingy if we need to empty it.
To stop the feed just pouring out the hole, another 50mm piece of PVC is set up inside, with the bottom just above the level of the bottom of the tee bit. It’s attached by putting a 100mm to 50mm reducer inside the tee piece and gluing a short length of 50mm tube to it. Then a coupling is used to connect the feeder bit to the main chamber. Two hanging strap clamps screwed to the side of the coop keep it in place.
Shopping trips aside, it only took an hour or so to make, with a bit of time spent getting the length of 50mm tube inside perfect so that the level of the feed inside was as high as it could be without any falling out.
Too easy! Should have done it ages ago!