Bear Proof Deer Feeder Setup by WhiteRook85

In places like Pennsylvania and other area where bears are prominent setting up your normal deer feeder is just not an option. As I’m sure you know a bear can and will just about destroy your corn feeder if in reach. There are about a half dozen bears on the mountain that already thwarted my attempts at hanging a feeder up.

I saw something on the internet that pointed me in this direction. I found two trees about 10 to 13 feet apart, strung a 20 foot chain between them about 16 feet off the ground and connected the chain using quick links to hold it in place.  A pulley in the center of the chain helps hoist the barrel. To do that I used a 1200lb boat winch, you don’t need that much pulling power, but that’s just what I ended up using.

bear feeder PIC 1

Started with a 30 gallon barrel, drilled a hole a couple inches down from the top…

bear feeder PIC 2

…to insert a threaded rod.

bear feeder PIC 3

Threaded rod in place, secured with washers and nuts. Also have a 3 foot chain and anchor shackles to hoist the barrel.

bear feeder PIC 4

Drilled out a 2 inch hole for the corn to flow out, attached a Moultrie feeder funnel over the hole. Also attach the feeder spinner and timer housing.

PIC 16

Added the Feeder Funnel. Used some caulk (still white since it didn’t dry yet) to keep water out.

PIC 17

Bolted on the spinner brackets, will add the timer and spinner unit when I’m about finished.

bear feeder PIC 5

Attached the boat winch to a 2×10 and attached the board to a tree with 3 ½ lag bolts.

bear feeder PIC 6

Attached a pulley to the center of the 20 foot chain with a quick link.

bear feeder PIC 7

Used a ladder and attached the chain to the trees with more quick links.

bear feeder PIC 8

Attach chain to both trees and center your pulley.

bear feeder PIC 9

Attach the end of the winch wire to the chain to lift the barrel.

bear feeder PIC 10

Fill with corn.

bear feeder PIC 11

Secure the lid.

bear feeder PIC 12

Lift with the winch.

bear feeder PIC 13

Attach spinner and timer housing, setup your timer.

bear feeder PIC 14

Finish lifting, test height.

bear feeder PIC 15

Sorry bear, you’re not getting this one!

The parts I used totaled about $147 – yeah, a bit high. Depending on where you get the parts, if you have them on hand already, using different, but equivalent parts may save you some money. For instance my three highest priced items were the 30gal. drum at $36, the chain $25, and the winch at $35. You’re almost at a hundred there, so some careful searching may save you a lot. For instance a buddy has a barrel laying around and gives it to you for free, you cut down to an 800lb winch, or you have an old chain in the garage, major savings.

One thing to consider, I looked at some already completed feeders online, they cost about $180, the quality isn’t as good, and you still have to pay for shipping and buy the winch. You’re approaching $250 by the time you finish getting everything you need. So this does save you some money, you can have the pride is saying you built it. I did save some money by already having the spinner and timer.


Parts list for Bear Proof Deer Feeder

Bear Proof Deer Feeder Parts Quantity Total Price   Price per Unit   Purchased From   Notes:
30gal Drum – 1 $36.00 $36.00 1st State Drum 27.5″ x 18.25″    – 33lbs
Cable Winch 1 $34.99 $34.99 Amazon TEKTON 5552
1200-lb. Hand Winch Cable
3/16 Chain 1 $24.29 $24.29 Amazon Koch A01161 3/16 by 20-Feet
Grade 30 Proof Coil Chain , Zinc Plated
Wildgame Innovations
Spinner and Timer
1 $0.00 $0.00 Already had one available.
1/4 Quick Links 3 $2.91 $0.97 Wal-Mart Peerless  Stainless Steel
800lb working load limit
5/16 Quick link 1 $2.62 $2.62 Lowes Blue Hawk #0348549
Zinc Plated 1760 working load limit
Anchor Shackles 2 $6.94 $3.47 Lowes Blue Hawk #0348297
Stainless Steel 800lb working load limit
Single Pulley Round Eye 1 $5.98 $5.98 Lowes Blue Hawk  #0348597
Zinc Plated 420lb working load limit
Threaded Rod 1 $3.21 $3.21 Lowes Hillman 1/2  – 13 – 2 feet
1/2Washers 10 $2.00 $0.20 Lowes 1/2 inch zinc flat
1/2 Nuts 12 $2.40 $0.20 Lowes 1/2 inch zinc hex head
Lag bolts 4 $2.92 $0.73 Lowes 3/8 inch x 3 -1/2 inch
Washers for lag bolts 4 $0.72 $0.18 Lowes 3/8 inch x 1-1/2 inch
3 foot chain 1 $4.71 $1.57 Lowes 3/16 Inch proof, 880lb working load limit
Tarp 1 $1.00 $1.00 Dollar Store 4 x 6 feet
Plastic Pot 1 $1.00 $1.00 Dollar Store
Moultrie Feeder Funnel 1 $0.99 $0.99 Academy Sports
3/8 Hex Head Bolts 3 $1.94 $0.97 Wal-Mart Bulldog -B52 3/8 x 2 inch Zinc Plated, includes bolt and nut, 2 per pack
(anchoring winch to 2×10)
3/8 Flat Washers 1 $0.97 $0.97 Wal-Mart Bulldog 3/8 inch flat washers
(for anchoring winch)
3/8 Fender Washers 3 $0.97 $0.97 Wal-Mart Bulldog 3/8 inch fender washers
(for anchoring winch)
Alligator Clips 2 $1.50 $0.75 RadioShack 2 inch fully insulated
Battery Holder 1 $2.99 $2.99 RadioShack 4 “D” battery holder
Batteries 4 $6.00 $1.50 Sam’s Club Duracell Quantum Batteries
Total $147.05