Deer are creatures of habit and keep coming back to a reliable food source to grab a bite once they’re hungry.
The good news is you don’t need to shell out your money on expensive deer feeders at the local store.
A DIY deer feeder is simple to make. Even for amateurs, you can use materials that have sat idle in your storage room or garage for a long time.
Here are 21 ideas on how to build a deer feeder from scratch without breaking your bank.
Table of Contents
- 1. DIY Wood Box Feeder With Removable Lid
- 2. Roofed Deer Feeder
- 3. PVC Pipe Deer Feeder
- 4. DIY Corn Trough Deer Feeder
- 5. DIY Trough-Style Deer Feeder
- 6. Tripod Barrel Homemade Deer Feeder
- 7. DIY 5-Gallon Bucket Deer Feeder
- 8. Homemade Deer Feeder Plans
- 9. Covered Wooden Deer Feeder
- 10. DIY 5-Gallon Deer Feeder
- 11. Cheap Deer Feeder With 5-Gallon Bucket And PVC Drain Pipe
- 12. DIY Feeder With 6-Inch PVC Wye
- 13. Tripod Deer Feeder With Metal Barrel
- 14. Free Choice Deer Feeder
- 15. 55-Gallon Feeder With 4 Feeding Slots
- 16. DIY 55-Gallon Feeder With 4-Inch PVC Tubes
- 17. PVC Gravity Deer Feeder
- 18. DIY Deer Feeder With A PVC Head
- 19. DIY V-Shaped Deer Feeder
- 20. 30-Gallon Barrel Deer Feeder
- 21. Covered Deer Feeder
1. DIY Wood Box Feeder With Removable Lid
This feeder box consists of several pieces of wood screwed or nailed together. It features a sloping front to create a triangular bin with a ¾-inch wide opening for the feed to spill out gradually.
The deer will access the food through the bottom tray, which has a lip that stops the feed from spilling off the ground. It is advisable to mount the feeder box at least 16 inches above the ground from the tray.
Once the treats are empty, you can quickly fill in the box after removing its lid.
Project details: feltmagnet.com
2. Roofed Deer Feeder
Roofed feeders preserve the treats from environmental factors and allow deer to observe the surroundings as they feed.
This construction contains a wooden table (47 by 22.5 inches) and a roof made from two ¾-inch plywood.
You should use quality lumber and waterproof glue for the joints to make the structure more durable against elements.
Project details: howtospecialist.com
3. PVC Pipe Deer Feeder
Easy to make and affordable – this project requires only a 2-inch diameter PVC pipe, two caps, and metal wire or string to hang it in place next to a tree or pole.
All you need to do is cut the pipe to the desired length and glue a cap on the bottom to hold the feed.
Then, create a small opening for treats to spill out by cutting a diagonal shape of 1 inch from the bottom. Another cap is to cover the top of the feeder through which you pour the feed or corn into the pipe.
Project details: instructables.com
4. DIY Corn Trough Deer Feeder
For a heavy-duty deer feeder that can weather the elements for years to come, consider a protein trough.
This plan used a 55-gallon plastic drum cut in half and elevated from the ground with corrugated metal roofing to keep the rainwater out.
A feeding trough is incredibly sturdy and can accommodate a large amount of feed, yet it requires some woodworking experience and power tools (miter saw, drill, etc.) to build.
5. DIY Trough-Style Deer Feeder
The trough in this project is 2 feet wide and 5 feet long and can accommodate up to 200 pounds of deer feed.
You can be flexible with the dimension and the material to suit your preferences. This particular feeder has its roof made from scrap metal roofing, so it’s more affordable.
There are also modifications you can make to the design to improve its mobility and transportability.
Project details: mossyoak.com
6. Tripod Barrel Homemade Deer Feeder
For this project, you can mount a barrel on top of a sturdy tripod, then attach a 3-head feeding tube to its bottom for the treats to flow out.
This tube can hold 350 pounds of feed at one time. It is also easy to mount with four bolts.
Notably, more than one deer can feed at once with the three separated ports connected to the feeding tube.
The tubing setup also has an adjustment sleeve inside, which you can adjust up and down to. Set it up higher for more corn to flow down or lower if you want less corn.
7. DIY 5-Gallon Bucket Deer Feeder
Let the deer feed themselves with this simple feeding mechanism. This cool, creative idea only calls for a bucket, some ropes, a can to the bottom, and a piece of wood.
The deer makes corn or grain fall through the hole of the bucket by nudging it. Hence, make sure the hole is big enough for the rod and grains to fall through.
Project details: diyjoy.com
8. Homemade Deer Feeder Plans
It looks like simple! This plan is another trough-style deer feeder with a wide tray (22 ½ by 47-inch long panel) for you to place corn or grains.
The roof consists of roofing slats overlapping each other that adds more visual appeal for the feeder. You’ll need ten pieces of 1×6 lumber that are 60 inches in length to build the roof.
You also should apply stain or paint to protect decay for components and increase the lookout for project.
Project details: myoutdoorplans.com
9. Covered Wooden Deer Feeder
If you have a miter saw and woodworking experience at hand, you can build this heavy-duty deer feeder.
You need to do a lot of cutting, drilling, and screwing, but you’ll get a functional and aesthetically pleasing feeder that lasts for years in the end.
Some essential parts include: 4×4 lumbers for the leg, 2×6 lumbers for the frame, several wood pieces for the feeding tray, and 60-inch slats for the roof.
10. DIY 5-Gallon Deer Feeder
While there are many creative ways to use a 5-gallon bucket to build deer feeders. But there is no simpler idea than utilizing just an old bucket and a 45-degree elbow.
You just use the bucket to hold the feed and create a wooden dowel inside. Whereas the 45-degree elbow helps store the little pile of corn for the deer to feed on.
Also, you may want to check the feeder once in a while since some small critters can get in and block the flow of the feed, but all in all, it’s very low-maintenance.
Project details: fivegallonideas.com
11. Cheap Deer Feeder With 5-Gallon Bucket And PVC Drain Pipe
A common style of DIY feeder involves using a 5-gallon bucket, and this project is another example. It’s very cheap!
The deer will feed through the large hole you cut on the body of the bucket. Grains or corn should gradually fall through from the PVC pipe.
You need to make a lip an inch and a half high to prevent the feed from spilling off the ground. The pipe used is 3-inch in diameter and 3 feet high.
Make another hole on top, and then feed the pipe into the buckle. One screw at the bottom is enough to secure the pipe to the bucket.
12. DIY Feeder With 6-Inch PVC Wye
A simple, easy-to-make feeding tube attached to the tree! There are no special tools needed for the project other than a drill and a hand saw
You will need to drill a few holes to secure your feeder to the tree via a rope or strap.
Although this feeding tube holds only 35 to 40 pounds of feed, you can rest assured that deer have easy access to their food via the Wye, and the feed is not exposed to the elements.
13. Tripod Deer Feeder With Metal Barrel
For those living far from the feeding spots or who don’t want to fill the feeder all the time, it makes sense to go for a giant 55-gallon barrel. The barrel will sit on top of a tripod, so it’s stable on virtually any surface.
The best thing about this design is a feeder kit at the bottom with automatic distributes of feed on schedule time.
14. Free Choice Deer Feeder
This wildlife feeder allows many deer to come and grab a bite freely. Technically, it is a 2 by 5 feet wooden box raised off the ground and shielded by a metal roof.
It is roomy enough to hold around 200 pounds of deer feed, so you won’t have to run back and forth to fill it very often.
However, beware that the deer feeder may appeal to creatures such as squirrels with this exposed design.
Project details: mossyoakgamekeeper.com
15. 55-Gallon Feeder With 4 Feeding Slots
Another variation of the 55-gallon application, but with more feeding spaces for the deer or other creatures.
It’s easy to mount four 12-inch drywall mud trays in four directions and drill holes on the barrel bottom to attach an elbow for each tray.
With this project, you will use straps to hold the drum in place instead of drilling holes.
16. DIY 55-Gallon Feeder With 4-Inch PVC Tubes
Here is another way to utilize a plastic barrel you can find just about anywhere. The highlight of this project is that the feed will neatly fall through a special tubing system due to the force of gravity.
The feed will come off from the Tee fittings to a 23-degree elbow, then a 4-inch PVC pipe, and finally end up in a 45-degree elbow to create a little pile for the deer to munch.
17. PVC Gravity Deer Feeder
We recommend this nice option to for those who don’t have access to a power saw and drilling tools. All you need is a trip to your local home improvement store to get PVC pipes, fittings, glue, caps, and straps.
With some cutting and gluing, you can finally ratchet your DIY feeder to a tree. As deer feed, the feeder will suspend more food onto the ground thanks to the gravity.
Project details: discover.hubpages.com
18. DIY Deer Feeder With A PVC Head
Simple in concept, easy to implement, and does not involve much woodworking skill. You just build the base of barrel feeder with 2 x 4 lumber piece
This DIY idea is for those searching for a fuss-free way to feed their deer. You can try to attach a 3-inch, 4-inch, or 5-inch PVC pipe to the barrel depending on your budget and feeding needs.
The pipe provides two spots at the bottom where two deer can eat from the drum simultaneously.
19. DIY V-Shaped Deer Feeder
22 pieces of long balusters in this plan form a V shape, making this feeder ideal for placing hay. It’s a symmetric design, so make sure you set the posts as accurately as possible.
Building the base is quite easy with this plan; you only need to attach one piece of 2×4 lumber to the post.
Roofing entails a bit more demanding work, including fitting the roof supports and attaching the rafters and slats.
As quite complicated as it seems, this project takes one or 2 days to complete.
Project details: myoutdoorplans.com
20. 30-Gallon Barrel Deer Feeder
Don’t require too many things. You only use half of a 30-gallon barrel that you can get for a few bucks. For the base, cut the barrel half and frame it with 4×4 lumber 22 inches long.
You may want to use pressure-treated lumber so the base can last a long time out in the open. The roof sits on top of 2×4 strips and requires only a few screws to hold in place.
This design holds 75 pounds of feed that can keep your deer satiated for around two weeks.
21. Covered Deer Feeder
You may want to have a deer feeder that can accommodate both small and large bucks. With this project, you will need some woodworking skills for cutting.
Moreover, this roof of the deer feeder has a maximum clearance of 22 inches which lowers the chance of a mature buck getting their antler stuck in the roof.
You can also adjust it as desired or remove it altogether when the deer are antlerless.
Project details: hurleybyrd.com
Whether you want a project that is simple or technically challenging, this list has got you covered.
You can choose from a simple-to-make PVC tubing feeder to a more labor-intensive trough-style wooden feeder. But most importantly, you won’t break your bank with these economical projects.
With due patience and commitment, you can build a DIY deer feeder that welcomes regular woodling visitors.
Pick your favorite project and enjoy all the fun of building it on your own.
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The sides of the roof should be 72 inches or more off the ground to keep any bucks in velvet from hitting their antlers. The sides of the trough should be around 24 inches off the ground to allow fawns to access the feeder. The dimensions of the trough pictured are about 2ft wide and 5ft long.How do you make a PVC pipe feeder? ›
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You can also use a straight piece of PVC without the elbow and have it a few inches off the ground so when they eat more drops. A friend of mine did that and it worked well.How do you make a deer feeder out of 6 inch PVC pipe? ›
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- Natural Food. If possible, it is best to feed natural food. ...
- Deer Pellets. Most farm feed outlets carry a specially formulated ration for deer or can tell you where it can be bought. ...
- Cereal Grains. ...
- Hay or Alfalfa. ...
- Fruit & Vegetables.
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The optimal height for most deer feeders is approximately 40 inches, but this can be limited due to a myriad of factors. For example, putting enough legs on the feeder to get it this high may make it difficult to fill the feeder. This height measures from the ground to the port of the gravity feeder.How high should a fence be around a deer feeder? ›
This study found that fences taller than 33 inches limited fawn access to feeding stations. This group also conducted a study on exclosures around protein feeders and suggested that fences be 80 by 80 feet or larger to prevent deer from crowding while feeding.How high is a boss Buck feeder? ›
Feeder ports are 34" From the ground. Our patented design features an internal Cone that dispenses the feed evenly to the three ports. The 3-way inner sleeve allows the user to control the feed flow of almost all feed shapes and sizes.How do you make a deer feeder with PVC pipe? ›
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Land managers who feed deer high-protein feeds with minerals in them help bucks reach antler potential and does get the nutrients they need to grow developing fawns and produce milk. You don't want to limit the amount of high-quality feed during the summer growing months, so your best option is a gravity-style feeder.How do you make a deer feeder tube? ›
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