There is only one Medium soft close feeder. You will find an option on the Medium feeder page offering this same feeder that also lists options such as a duck step, turkey step, spare springs, or a feeder lip extension which ships with the feeder at no additional cost. We leave this product page up because of the reviews it has. You can order from either product page. On this medium soft close feeder the counterweight has been done away with and a dual
spring door closing system that is adjustable has made the feeder
even more dependable and more rat resistant.
This soft close
version works so much better with the added tension of the second
this video showing the excellent soft and gentle closing action
There are also multi packed feeders that can lower the shipping costs
down to as low as $15 to $25.00 each depending on how many and
We have a lot of
customer submitted videos too that show the feeders in use, most
from customers with feeders that are seven, even ten years old.
The U.S. made Medium Ratproof Soft Close chicken feeder hopper
holds 32 pounds of laying pellets or other feed and has a 100%
galvanized sheet metal feed tray and hopper so the feed flows easily
and sanitation is assured. Generally a laying hen eats around 4
ounces of feed per day, so one pound of feed should feed four birds
one day, 7 pounds per week per four birds, or a bit over 4 weeks for
a four hen flock. The feeder is designed and marketed for full size
birds but you can adjust the strength of the spring loaded door down
to about 1.5 pounds of operating pressure . If you have bantams or
other than full size birds please read our FAQ section on our main
website. There is a lot of info on that web site
This newly re designed feeder ships for
about 10% less thanks to internal design changes and a reduced box
size but it also holds about an extra gallon of feed. That took the
feed capacity from 26 pounds up to around 32 pounds if you stuff the
feeder to the gills.
The feeder also has a new adjustable
door that can be shifted up and down, back and forth, and even side
to side should it ever be needed or if you are an OCD type person.
That small adjustment also allows us to fit the doors a bit tighter
than the original feeders and it eliminated the wood door block and
uses a metal angle to hang the door. On the door fit, the addition of
the rolled edges on the side of the feeder opening does push the door
back, there is a lot of competition for space right in front of the
door axle so while there is some adjustment there will likely always
be a wedge shaped gap on either side but mice cannot get in, too
small, too high off the ground, and too slick for them to climb up.
The front edges of the feeder sides are
rolled or flanged instead of the original flat de-burred edges,
making them much safer for large comb roosters.
An improved method of welding up the
door axles resulted in a more precise door axle and that allowed us
to pre-fit the wire links so the treadle bottoms out when the door is
opened all the way if the feeder is on a level and flat surface.
There will sometimes be a small amount of play but a full sized
chicken ought to push the treadle bar all the way down. Feeders
sometime are a bit wonky and don't like sitting on a flat surface but
once the new metal cleat attaches the feeder to the wall it is stable
The door axle has a new hard tube
spacer that replaces the old soft tube split spacer which became
needed once we introduced the soft close feature and the axle crank
needed to stay solidly in place in a side to side manner.
It also has a new system of securing
the feeder to a wall. The original wood block has been replaced by a
sheet metal bracket that is fastened to the wall and the feeder
dropped down over the top of the bracket so it traps the wire lid
axle. This means you can remove the feeder buy just picking it up.
The metal bracket also helps block off the a gap in back of the
feeder that some customers worried about. Here is a video
showing the features of the new hanging bracket
and here is a video
showing how to install the new metal bracket. If these
video links do not show up hover over the words and the link will
And finally, the redesigned dual spring
door closing system allows fine adjusting of the operating pressure
needed to open the door and the spring is now out of the way up under
the front cover. If you choose this soft close feeder they work even
better now as there is more pressure to close the door which is
needed to close the door against the back pressure of the soft close
cylinder. The door can be set stiffer than before, up to five pounds
with the existing adjustment hole. There are four holes drilled in
each side of the upper front of the feed tray that the top of the
spring hooks into. You can go from 1.5# of pressure needed to open
the door to around 5# of pressure and since the spring now is
attached directly to the door there is even more pressure pre loading
the door to guard against a big rat or squirrel from just pushing the
door open. In the earlier models the counterweight could put back
pressure on the wire link connecting the door to the treadle.
With this model the wire link is always
under tension, not compression. Squirrels are going to have a hard
time pushing this door open.
Approximate assembled size is 18”
deep x 14” wide x 19” tall. The actual feeder hopper is about 10"
x 10" x 14" tall, partially rectangular, partially
triangular shape where the door has to swing back against the feed
hopper. Shipping weight is around 12 # with packaging for the medium
rat proof treadle chicken feeder. When you are ready to purchase add
the item to your cart and then scroll down to find the PayPal check
out icon to automatically insert your shipping information. You will
need to add your daytime phone number for FedEx Ground. For more
information about the feeders visit our
main chicken feeder web page.
The mechanism is a cabinet door soft close cylinder mounted on a steel bracket. It is adjustable, the cylinder can be replaced should it ever wear out or fail, and tweaking won't take five minutes once you have the tools gathered. There is listing for a retro fit soft close kit and it has a video showing how to install the soft close kit on an old feeder. Here is the link to the video
. To retrofit an existing feeder you will need a screwdriver with a Philip's bit, either corded or cordless, and you will need a crescent wrench to bend the door axle if it doesn't line up. When you order the new soft close feeder the soft close is already installed. The soft close cylinder has been tested down to 9 degrees F with little change in closing speed at low temperatures. Subzero weather might require backing the cylinder screw out completely until the temperature gets above 9 degrees.
A word about these soft close feeders. They take some tweaking to get right both when making them and again when the customer adds the treadle and installs them. They slow down the door a bit to prevent a hard slam. In the new design there is a lot of competition for space between the front of the door and the back side of the front flange on the feeder side. The front flange has been seamed so it is a lot thicker and sometimes we have to flatten them out when installing the soft close kit for the door to close. Then there is the front cover that comes down in that space, sometimes it needs bent on both sides to provide closing room. Right now the non soft close feeder is performing pretty good, adding the soft close mechanism is adding both complexity and additional pressure for the spring to close the door. We are still tweaking this soft close feature so at best, expect the door to not slam hard and loud like the regular feeder. If you are OCD, do not buy the soft close feeder, might not want to buy any of our feeders because they have always been a bit wonky and imperfect. But the chickens don't care and they keep the mice and rats and wild birds out if the instructions are followed.