This post is not really how to build your own plucker at home… there are plans for that out there everywhere. Just google “whiz-bang chicken plucker” and you’ll find all the info you need. This is just the story of how I built mine. The fact is, I didn’t use any plans other than finding the specifications for the feather-plate and handing it to a friend to build it. Once I had the feather-plate, it was just a matter of scrounging materials to build the rest of the machine around it.
As I mentioned, I had a friend make the feather-plate. This was the most challenging part, and one I wasn’t capable of doing myself. However, I have seen a number of other crafty solutions on the net where people had used wood, and even the bottom part of the tub after they had cut it out for the body of the plucker. My friend, crafted this for me over the winter and delivered it to me around Christmas. Now, after I got it, I identified a few issues that needed to be fixed. For that, I called my brother-in-law who runs a machine shop. He was able to make the tweaks I needed. From there, I bought the rubber fingers, the bearings, the pulleys and the other electrical components that I wanted to. I even plumbed it up for automatic water. When I go to use it, I just roll it out, plug it in and hook up the garden hose.
If you think about it, the machine is a simple idea… and minding some craftsmanship, it came together like a song. There’s a few minor adjustments we’ll make before using it again, but it worked great on its maiden trial on 23 chickens.
HOW far apart you put rubber fingers
Hi Geoffrey, you know, I really just guessed. It’ stored at a friends or I’d go and measure for you. I’ve seen pluckers on your tube that have many configurations… some with the fingers so far apart I didn’t think it would work… but it does. Since I had the fingers, I put them closer together. I’d guess mine were 3 inches apart going vertically… and more like 4-5 inches apart going around the tub. Notice I staggered some too… getting a finger or two in the 4-5 inch area here and there. Does this help?