Plucking a chicken by hand can be time consuming, especially when cleaning several birds. However, a number of homemade devices have been invented to speed up the process. While "tub" style pluckers made from plastic barrels and even washing machines are the most efficient, even these thrifty alternatives can cost hundreds of dollars to build. The cheapest and easiest model, which uses a hand drill to provide the spinning action, can be made from materials found at any hardware store.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Hand drill
- 3/8 inch threaded rod
- 2 nuts and washers
- PVC cap
- 6 bungee cords with S-hooks
Drill one 3/8 inch hole into the centre of the PVC cap. Then drill or cut twelve evenly spaced holes (equal to the thickness of the bungee cord) around the length of the cap.
Remove the S-hooks from the bungee cords. Trim each cord, leaving at least 3 inches from the loops at both ends. These strips of cord will act as the "fingers" that pluck the feathers from the bird.
Note: You can also buy pre-made rubber "plucker fingers" from several online retailers, but the bungee cord method is considerably cheaper.
Thread one cord through each of the twelve holes on the length of the PVC cap, from the inside out. The cords should fit snugly in the holes, and the loops should hold each cord in place.
Insert the threaded rod through the 3/8 inch hole in the centre of the PVC cap. Fasten the rod on both sides with the nuts and washers.
Attach the opposite end of the threaded rod to the drill.
Tips and warnings
- To use your chicken plucker, lay the drill on its side on the edge of a table. Secure the drill to the table with additional bungee cords, duct tape, or rope. Set the drill to medium speed and dangle the bird against the spinning fingers for about one minute. A few feathers may remain, which can be quickly plucked by hand.
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