Introduction: Bird Seed Carrier

About: Steward to about 20,000 trees on 40 acres.

Keeping several bird feeders full can sometimes take a couple of trips, especially if there are various feeds in different containers.  A carrier with a convenient handle can help.  I use the plastic containers I saved from the shortening I use to make bird cakes.  See  These containers are 5-1/4" in diameter and 6" high.  The carrier is sized to carry 3 of these containers and one plastic gallon milk jug of thistle seed.  To duplicate mine you will need:

1 pc: 12-1/2" x 12-1/2" x 1/4" plywood, paneling or hardboard
2 pc : 11" x 2-3/4" x 3/4" pine 
2 pc : 12-1/2" x 2-3/4" x 3/4" pine
2 pc : 12-1/2" x 3/4" x 3/4" pine
4 pc :  5" x 3/4" x 3/4" pine
8 pc.:  1-1/2" #6 screw
14 pc: 1-1/2" nails
4 pc: 1" wire nails
1 pc: bail from a 5 gal. bucket (this is the wire handle)

Drive bit for drill or screwdriver

2 pc:  12" x 2-1/2" x 3/4" pine
1 pc: 14" x 3/4" dowel
8 pc: 1-1/4" screws
2 pc: 1-1/4" nails
 3/4" spade drill bit

Step 1: Box Assembly

Assemble the four 2-3/4" boards (referred to later as sides) using two screws per butt joint.  Drill pilot holes, with countersink, for each screw.  The resulting open box should be 12-1/2" x 12-1/2".  

Align the 12-1/2" x 12-1/2" x 1/4" bottom and secure it to the 12-1/2" x 12-1/2" open box with wire nails.  

Drill three evenly spaced pilot holes in each 12-1/2" x 3/4" x 3/4" bottom strips.  Drill a pilot hole near the end of each 5" x 3/4" x 3/4" strip.  With the bottom of the box up, nail the two 12-1/2" pieces along opposite sides, through the bottom into the sides.  Nail the 5" x 3/4" x 3/4" strips along the edges of the remaining sides.  Be sure to leave a gap in the center.  The gap is where the wire handle will go. 

Step 2: Handle Assembly

Remove the bail from the bucket.  Use the hacksaw to cut off the bent ends that had held the bail to the bucket.

Drill a hole vertically for the bail in the middle of each end of the box so the holes align with the gaps in the bottom 3/4" x 3/4" strips. Bend the ends of the bail slightly outward and then, about 4" from the ends, downward so they go through the holes.  With the bail extended through the holes, bend about 1/2" of each one 90o.   The bends will prevent the bail from slipping out of the box.

Step 3: Alternate Handle

Center a 12" x 2-1/2" x 3/4" piece (to be known as an upright)  perpendicular at one end.  Mark the locations for four screws to secure it to the box.  Drill and countersink for the screws.   Drill a 3/4" hole centered about 1-1/2" from the other end of the upright.* Reposition the upright to the box and secure it with screws.  Drill the screw and handle holes for the second upright but do not attach it yet.

Fit the dowel (handle) into the upright attached to the box.  Sand to fit if needed.  Fit the second upright to the handle and secure it to the box with screws. Drill pilot holes in the top of each upright and just into the handle.  Secure the handle in the uprights with small nails.  Wood glue is an option but you need to apply it as the handle is fitted to the holes. 

* This can split your wood so I recommend that the wood be placed in a vise or be clamped so the piece is held firmly on each side of the drill site.

Step 4: Finished

Give your carrier a coat of paint or varnish and you are ready to use it to feed bird or pets.  Make another to carry your chainsaw support equipment or whatever you have that needs carrying more easily.  Sign and date your project.  Make one for a friend.