So - an update :)
I still use the Brinsea EcoGlows, both the 50 (I have two now) and the 20 (just one still, but going to get another one!).
I still LOVE them - yes, the bottom plate feels too hot in some spots and in the 50's it warps, but so far we haven't had any cooked chicks in the 3 years we have used them. I have used them with chicks, meat chicks, turkeys, and meat turkeys. I do get the occasional pastybutt, not sure why, could be stress, too much heat, etc, but I haven't lost a chick/poult from it and it typically clears up rather quickly.
I have had to replace 2 of the 50's transformers, they just burn out. Yes - they do get very warm! I make sure to place them where they are not likely to get over-hot or catch something on fire. The first one lasted about 2 years and the 2nd one less than 9 months, but Brinsea replaced that one. The 20 so far has had no issues with warping or any other problems, just the 50's.
I still believe that the Brinsea radiant heat is much better for baby poultry than a heat lamp and overall safer and more cost affective. However, with that said, they are not designed for a large number of fast-growing meat poultry! The meatie chicks quickly outgrow the Brinsea and can be subject to smothering and getting stuck in the middle with no way out.
I try to time getting them so that by the time they outgrow the Brinsea (within 2 weeks depending on how many you have!), it is warm enough they do not need supplemental heat, but this year we had a long cool streak and I ended up putting them under a heat lamp - which was a complete pain to try and keep the temperature just right! Next time I am just going to separate them into 2 batches so they can utilize the Brinsea 50 longer!
Meat chicks and poults.
Replacement laying chicks and keets.
Meat poultry moved to a bigger area.
Same with the replacement chicks and keets.
Meat chicks getting big - almost 3 weeks old. Getting too crowded
under the Brinsea.
Edited by debir1966 - 7/14/15 at 4:09pm