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Feeling hopelessly confused about incubator... Please help!

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Here is my problem: I don't know what Incubator to purchase. I have never incubated eggs before so I'm a total newbie.

My budget is small, so I've been looking at the Genesis 1588. My concern is that so many seem to discuss temperature spikes, or Genesis machines running lower than their digital readouts indicate, etc. I know that with any one of incubators, there are sure to be a few bad apples. However it seems that it's a somewhat common experience to have trouble with the Genesis incubators.

The reason that this matters to me so much, is that I have the opportunity to incubate some really good shipped eggs soon, and I'm worried about ruining them. We have a backyard flock which we have successfully kept for about a year. I want to upgrade my flock by buying purebred eggs, and I've read a lot about shipped eggs being even more fragile than backyard eggs.

My plan would be to incubate my first time with some of my own backyard "mutt" eggs and raise them for meat, and then get my special eggs shipped to me and do my second hatch with them. From what I read about the Genesis 1588, though, it can go south at any point. So, even if my first hatch goes great, there's no guarantee that the second one, with a special eggs, we go as well. Especially since they are shipped eggs!

I've looked at the Brinseas & I find them both expensive and small for my needs. If I succeed in incubating, I will probably want to do bigger batches than 20 chicks (minus the few that you lose in any hatch) since each hatch would be raised separately, requiring separate feeders, waters, living accommodations, etc. In terms of budget, the Brinsea 20 ECO is about what I could afford.

My husband is reasonably handy, and could probably create a coolerbator from all the great information given here on Backyard Chicken. His objection to that option is that his coolerbator would probably even be less reliable, especially because we are newbies, than the Genesis would be. My thought is that we could make sure to purchase quality components, and how hard can it be to get it right?

For me, the bottom line really is feeling confident enough to not freak out during the three weeks that we're hatching chicks. I don't have a great track record with just sitting back and believing that things will go well.

Please tell me what your advice is, especially if you know about the Genesis 1588, making your own coolerbator (IS it hard to get right?) and all of the other aspects that I've discussed above. I really could benefit some from some advice from experienced hatchers! Thanks so much in advance!
Edited by Storybook Farm - 2/4/16 at 7:26am

Marcia

 

The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. “The LORD is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.” The LORD is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him. It is good that one should wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD. Lamentations 3:22-26 (ESV)

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Marcia

 

The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. “The LORD is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.” The LORD is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him. It is good that one should wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD. Lamentations 3:22-26 (ESV)

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post #2 of 8

I have found the Genesis to be rock solid with regard to temp. The only thing I don't like about it is that it is hard to clean if you hatch in there. I now hatch in a coolerbator I made because it is very easy to clean. The drawback of a coolerbator is it is hard to get any sort of auto-turner in them, the dimensions are just wrong.

 

The autoturning is so helpful that I think a Genesis is better for first time users than making their own. I own 2 (soon to be 3) cabinet incubators with capacities of hundreds of eggs and digital temp controls, but I still hatch shipped eggs in my Genesis. I feel the slow turning is better for any with detached air cells or other shipping damage.

 

So, I think you should do both, get a Genesis to incubate and (later) build a coolerbator to hatch.

Raising lots of fun poultry: Cream Legbars, Welbars, Bielefelders, California Greys, and 6 colors / sizes of Ameraucanas

Also Turkeys, Guineas and Peafowl

 

I have eggs and chicks available for sale from some of these breeds, details at my website

How to make a hoop tractor

My Poultry Blog

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Raising lots of fun poultry: Cream Legbars, Welbars, Bielefelders, California Greys, and 6 colors / sizes of Ameraucanas

Also Turkeys, Guineas and Peafowl

 

I have eggs and chicks available for sale from some of these breeds, details at my website

How to make a hoop tractor

My Poultry Blog

Reply
post #3 of 8

I personally rather have a 1602 with the wafer thermostat and fan. I got some and they hatch good---IF "YOU" use it right. I hear people say styrofoam are hard to clean---I got many and they are all clean--I got one that I have used many times---since the 1980's and its about as clean as new---never had a plastic insert. Never had a problem cleaning it. I personally feel a good cabinet will increase your hatch %, but thats something you can pick up later. You can build a cabinet and use regular egg turners in it and it won't cost alot.

 

Edited to add-----I built this ""hatcher"" and it only cost me $60(minus the red racks/trays), I had the fans and the sheet of plywood which saved $40 for the fans and about $35 for the plywood. To make a incubator all would be needed was 2 or 3 of the turners. I have hatched over 5600 eggs in this in a little over a year. Cabinets do not have to cost alot if you can saw a board.


Edited by PD-Riverman - 2/4/16 at 8:32am
post #4 of 8
Thread Starter 
Do you have a build thread for the cabinet hatcher pictured?
Edited by Storybook Farm - 2/4/16 at 9:18am

Marcia

 

The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. “The LORD is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.” The LORD is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him. It is good that one should wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD. Lamentations 3:22-26 (ESV)

Reply

Marcia

 

The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. “The LORD is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.” The LORD is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him. It is good that one should wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD. Lamentations 3:22-26 (ESV)

Reply
post #5 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Storybook Farm View Post

Do you have a build thread for the cabinet hatcher pictured?

No, I did not take pics while I was Building it or the inubator---did not think about it at that time. I built this incubator about 2 weeks before the hatcher---It did not cost alot, But I built the turner out of free metal, free plywood, had the fans. Building the turner I Know Is a Little More advanced and required a metal brake, But again all the metal in the turner could be bought from Lowes---so a brake is not needed.


Edited by PD-Riverman - 2/4/16 at 9:38am
post #6 of 8

Here is a pic of one I bought for $40 at a Auction(with all 4 turners) that would not be hard to build. It works good as a incubator---never hatched in it myself. But it did come with trays for hatching---I got a deal on this---because it was filthy, dead chicks laying in the bottom, stunk---LOL!

 


Edited by PD-Riverman - 2/4/16 at 9:45am
post #7 of 8

As I said above "These"(pic below) Do Work and even though I have several Cabinet incubators, I still used these--some times I have 2 more on the table. Took over the Wife's Mud room---LOL.

 

post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the pictures and encouragement! I stumbled upon a solution! I purchased an IncuView from Incubator Warehouse. I've been reading through the extensive thread on this incubator, and there are a lot of good reviews for it. I'm getting really excited about using it now that I've made a decision. Thanks again for reading and for those who responded. It's so great to have a community to reach out to of people who care about what we care about, isn't it?

Marcia

 

The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. “The LORD is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.” The LORD is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him. It is good that one should wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD. Lamentations 3:22-26 (ESV)

Reply

Marcia

 

The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. “The LORD is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.” The LORD is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him. It is good that one should wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD. Lamentations 3:22-26 (ESV)

Reply
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