The process of taking chicken from coop to freezer is really not all that complicated. It takes time and energy...and some planning...but, you can do it. You can have the knowledge that you provided the chicken with a good life... and that, in taking the chicken as nourishment for your family, your are gracing its end.
The first thing you want to do is separate the chicken(s) from food 24 hrs before killing. This helps ensure the intestines won't be full - it's pretty self-explanatory why this is a good idea. :)
The day of, you'll need boiling water for dipping the chicken to loosen the feathers for plucking. We kept our water boiling on a camp stove.
This is the back view... looks like a sunburst... I like it.... :)
We ended up hanging the chickens upside down from a board, same as last time, and plucking by hand.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C2sdqNaesfI&feature=related . This video helped tremendously when we were trying to figure out the best way to do it. Once you get a feel for it, you're pretty good to go.
I do want to show you something very cool that I found while gutting one of the chickens...