Some of the horses at my barn get soaked cubes, but only a scoop or two so that get soaked in two gallon buckets. I don't see why muck buckets wouldn't work. There used to be a horse who got his hay soaked in a muck bucket.
I have 2 horses to feed cubes to. After a few weeks of lugging heavy buckets around I decided to get a second large plastic heavy duty wheelbarrow and I just use that as a trough. I fill it with cubes, add water, let soak, then drain and just roll into the paddock and leave it there for them to eat out of. The other wheelbarrow comes out for the next feeding
I think the wheelbarrow is an excellent idea. Or maybe something like this?
When I used to work at the barn, we had a horse who could only eat soaked cubes. He got 2 5 gallon buckets twice a day, and that was enough to hold his weight--he was an easy keeper. We were able to set up the buckets in front of his stall, so we didn't have to haul any sort of distance, but it was still a bit of a weight to lug.
This is perfect for the chewing impaired horse. Very short fibers, shorter than alfalfa cubes and designed to swell and expand easily with water. It is a timothy, orchard grass, alfalfa blend and soaks up water really well.
I found that cubes and pellets are best soaked with hot water.
Mine are easy keepers but I feed them an alfalfa "soup" at night to get more water into them over the winter months. I make it by putting about 1 lb of dry cubes (barely cover the bottom of the 5 gallon bucket) and then filling it to the top with hot water. I ride and when done they get the still warm concoction as an evening snack.
If they were harder keepers and I was feeding this for calories as opposed to water intake, I would simply fill the bucket with as many pounds of alfalfa cubes as required and then top off with water. Let it stand for a 30 min or so and then feed it. No draining required.
The BM where my old gelding lived hung 2 buckets in my boy's stall - one for water, one with dry hay cubes. She would water the cubes down at the same time she was filling buckets with the hose prior to bringing everyone in.
By the time she brought everyone in (my gelding was usually the last one in) and my gelding ate his pelleted feed mash (which took him a little while), the cubes were soaked and he was able to eat them. And no lugging heavy buckets.
I use an old water trough so there's plenty of room for the horse to eat and keep the sloppy mess contained. It seems to me the worse the teeth are, the sloppier the whole process! I feed it outside because otherwise it makes the stall cleanup a mess and a fly problem in the summer.
I use alfalfa cubes and add hot water and let it soak at least 20 minutes. I've found filling the water to slightly above the cube line adds the correct moisture consistency so they will eat the soaked cubes. If too wet, sometimes they won't eat them. You can also add hay pellets to the mix after the cubes have soaked. In the summer, I add cold water and in the winter I add warm water. The horses seem to like a warm mash in the cold weather.
ETA: Since I feed the mash outside, I drilled small holes in the bottom of the trough to allow excess water to drain and also to allow to trough not to fill with water when it rains. It also makes it easier to rinse out to keep clean.
I have photographic directions on the pitchfork chronicles website below in the step by step section. You have to scroll down a bit to find it. I apologize but I wasn't able to cut and paste it to make finding it a bit easier.
I fill a 5 gallon bucket a little over halfway with cubes/pellets and add water (have been adding hot in winter and tap in summer). I usually fill water to an inch or so above. When ready, I dump into a 40 gallon 'trough'. That amount lasts her around 10-12 hrs. Yes, it is kinda heavy....I figure I'm getting my weight lifting exercise in at the same time.
I did try a muck bucket with her initially but it was so upright she turned it over a lot. This 40 gallon trough (from Tractor Supply) is wider and shorter. She can move it around but hasn't flipped it over. (yet)
Loves to ride - I also have to deal with freezing cube issues which is why I drain my cubes. I find that even in extremely cold temps (we were below -30 last week) the horses can eat the cubes most of the day if they are drained (I feed out two 5 gallon buckets in the wheelbarrow in the mornings). Otherwise they would he licking away at a hay soup ice cube all day while I'm at work....
The other reasons I drain (for those wondering) is that I find they "cook" faster with extra hot water and I also have a gelding very sensitive to fructans in hay so I figure this helps a bit, plus im sure some hay that is used is dusty and less than stellar quality, plus there is lime used as a binder (1% max) and I like to try for rinse it away.