Grandpas Feeders

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When I first built our coop I wanted a near maintenance free feeder that I could fill and not have to worry about refilling for several days. I built a do-it-yourself PVC gravity feeder and at first it worked well. You could fill outside the coop; gravity would feed the tray and keep refilling the tray until the top tube was exhausted of feed. The system was free of exposure to the elements with a capped top and the feed tray underneath the coop roof.


Grandpas Feeders - Keith - old-feeder-9.jpg

Even with not being exposed to the elements, much of the bend in the tube got clogged up over time with feed residue and general moisture. Worse was the tray was made filthy from wear and tear of both the flock eating out of it as well as dust and feathers from the coop. I got to the point of not wanting to feed them in the coop anymore due to the feathers, dust and mud, but didn't have any good options as we have so many other animals around that would eat the chicken feed if left out.Then I came across Grandpa's Feeders and thought it was a clever product that would suit my needs perfectly. The sealed feed compartment would allow it to be out in the elements while the tread plate opening setup would allow the chickens to feed while keeping the critters out.

Grandpas Feeders - Keith - feeder-front-3.jpg
Grandpas Feeders - Keith - feeder-side-4.jpg

Grandpas Feeders - Keith - feeder-back-side-2.jpg

Installation of Grandpa's Feeders is quick and very simple; all you have to do is install four bolts for the tray lever, also called the tread plate.There is a learning period for the flock which requires two additional bolts to be installed. We went through the first stage, which involves installing one bolt on both sides of the feeder, allowing the lid's arms to rest on to keep the lid fully open. After 5 days of this, we removed the bolts which closed the lid fully and the chickens knew exactly what to do already. There are other stages you can go through to train them more slowly, such as gradually closing the trap through moving the bolts, however our flock did not require this.

Grandpas Feeders - Keith - lid-arm-bolt-7.jpg

Grandpa's Feeders are made out of solid metal except for the tread plate arms, which are made from thick gauge PVC. It's as basic as it comes in terms of function; you pour the food in the back of the feeder, the feeder has a curved backing which allows the feed to flow into the tray through gravity. We have yet to have any issues with the feed not flowing into the tray or the flock not being able to get to all of it.



Grandpas Feeders - Keith - filling-tank-6.jpg

Grandpas Feeders - Keith - feeding-coming-into-tray-5.jpg

While we plan to move the feeder under an awning for its permanent home, we left it out for testing in the middle of the yard to look for moisture penetration as well as observe other animals interacting with it. The unit experienced no noticeable water penetration, even through sprinklers and several rain storms. We have noticed interest from squirrels but they have been unsuccessful in getting it open. No other animals noticeably interacted with it and there were no signs that feed has been taken overnight.

Grandpas Feeders - Keith - chicken-walking-up-1.jpg

Grandpas Feeders - Keith - chicken-eating-8.jpg

Overall, Grandpa's Feeder has been a perfect product for us, allowing us to start feeding the flock outside the coop. Although in the coop it would work just as well due to its ability to keep feed dry while keeping debris and feathers out. The feed maintains perfect, even after being exposed to the direct elements. The flock was fast in learning how to use it and the food reserve tank allows us to only have to refill it once a week.



For more information and to order a Grandapas Feeder please visit their website at:http://www.grandpasfeeders.com/

Or visit them on Facebook at:
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Grandpas-Feeders/143950185641012.

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11 COMMENTS
Posted: 
February 11, 2013  •  02:43 PM
We have two of these feeders. we love the covered feed, the reduction of sparrows and mice eating the feed, and how well our chickens learned the process. We did do a modification which i think Grandpa needs to do on these. Some of our chickens wanted to reach in from the side while others were standing on the platform and the feeder was open. If the chicken(s) on the platform get off, the lid closes which could potentially decapitate the chicken reaching in from the side. So we fastened on boards on both sides which extend up higher to block any chicken putting his/her head in to eat from the side. We did not wait for this to happen before modifying...think it would have been a problem.
 
Posted: 
February 11, 2013  •  04:02 PM
@Eileen hi From the video it looks like the cover shuts fast? I think that could be a problem too? Do you have a pic on how you made the modification? Many Thanks capecodcoopgarden@yahoo.com
 
Posted: 
February 11, 2013  •  05:07 PM
I was wondering if the feeder comes with the grate/grill that is inside the feeder or did you make that? I watched a video on Grampa's website and I didn't see it. I have a chicken tender automatic feeder and there is so much waste from the chickens throwing feed out. I really like this feeder!
 
Posted: 
February 11, 2013  •  05:53 PM
Yes it does come with the grate.
 
Posted: 
February 11, 2013  •  06:00 PM
I run 2 of these feeders and love them great to keep the mice away and didnt take long at all for the young birds to learn to feed from them
 
Posted: 
February 11, 2013  •  08:15 PM
@Keith, thank you for replying. I am going to order one tonight.
 
Posted: 
February 11, 2013  •  09:12 PM
This looks interesting, but I'm not having any problems with the standard feeders that hang from the ceiling of the coop. I use chain to hang them up with S hooks, so I can adjust the height according to the size of birds I have in each coop. I don't have a vermin problem with a cat and three dogs in the yard. Very nicely written article and well laid out, though! :)
 
Posted: 
February 13, 2013  •  10:01 PM
I especially appreciated the pictures and video--excellent layout!
 
Posted: 
February 18, 2013  •  06:19 PM
wow well done looks amazing could really do with one of these
i also thought the 1st feeder was fab idea and really simple i might even make one myself :D
 
Posted: 
March 4, 2013  •  01:17 PM
Neat looking feeder and well written article. I could see a chicken possibly loosing a head if they tried to sneak in from the side when others on the platform leave suddenly. It would be interesting to adapt something to the door that would close it slower.
 
Posted: 
March 5, 2013  •  06:29 PM
I wish it was smaller in size.
 
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