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Grain Thresher

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This article is taken from Five Gallon Ideas, which features over 100 uses for 5 gallon buckets with more being added all the time.

When wheat, barley, or other grains are harvested, the grain must be separated from the rest of the plant before it can be used to make flour. This separation is called threshing. In the agriculture of today, threshing is done with massive machines called combines.

As you probably have figured out by now, you can make your own ultra-cheap thresher with a 5 gallon bucket.

See the Bucket Thresher in Action!

In the following video, Brian Kerkvliet shows off his homemade thresher, made with a drill, a bit of chain, and a bucket. He also shows how he “winnows” the grain with a house fan.

Building the Bucket Grain Thresher

This is one design for a bucket grain thresher that will help you dehull your home grown wheat.


  • 5 gallon bucket, with lid
  • 1 length of all-thread rod that will fit in your drill
  • 3 washers that will fit on the all-thread rod
  • 2 nuts that will fit on your all-thread rod
  • Length of chain with links smaller than your washers


  • Drill


You need the drill twice for this project – first to bore in hole smack dab in the middle of your bucket lid. The hole needs to be larger than your length of all-thread.

If you glue one of your washers over the hole in your bucket lid, your lid will be protected from being torn up by the swiftly spinning threaded rod. Make sure your length of rod can slip easily through this reinforced hole you’ve created because during threshing, you’ll want to be able to move the drill up and down to get all the grains.

On the other end, you want to slip on the rest of your parts in this order: nut, washer, chain, washer, nut.

Threshing the Grain

Alright, now you’ve got your threshing tool, and your bucket full of unthreshed grain. Make sure your all-thread rod is fastened firmly in your drill before you pull the trigger.

These great pictures are from the Prairie Heritage Farm

For many more ways to use 5 gallon buckets for self sufficiency, visit Five Gallon Ideas. When citing this article, please link to


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