Bucs Bator Build

Tags:
  1. dwdoc
    WELCOME MY INCUBATOR PAGE
    When I set out to have a backyard flock I wanted to do it a cheaply as possible. This meant using recycled materials for the coop where I could. I used the same concept when building an incubator.
    So, I started by doing a ton of reading here on BYC and other sites on the web. Once I understood the basic concept of incubating and the purpose of an incubator I set out searching the house and shed to see if I had the materials laying around.
    Here is what I was able to find:​
    • An old cooler ($0.00)​
    • Chicken wire ($0.00)​
    • An extra light fixure for a curio type cabinet ($0.00)​
    • A pie tin ($0.00)​
    • A fan from a broken power inverter ($0.00)​
    • A transformer from an old cell phone charger - 12V to power the fan ($0.00)​
    • A hygrometer from a small cigar humidor that I never used ($0.00)​
    • Glass panel from an old picture frame ($0.00)​
    • 60W Light bulb ($0.00)​
    • Digital Thermometer (Wal-Mart $6.50)​
    • Shelf liner (Dollar Store $1.50)​
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Once I built the bator I tested it out. It did not take long to learn I could not maintain the heat levels I wanted; so I turned to the folks here on BYC. BYCer “rickerra” (BTW: THANK YOU VERY MUCH!) suggested I add heat sinks and a thermostat which I did with great success.
    I added a Thermostat (Ebay $16.00)
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    I replaced the small fan with a larger computer fan (Radio Shack $9.00) for better air cirrculation (Note the river rocks in the pic. They were pulled from the yard, scrubbed and sanitized and serve as my heat sink)
    [​IMG]
    These eggs were my first ever hatch (They were shipped eggs, which really took a beating during shipping; I got one chick out of the bunch):
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    LESSONS LEARNED
    One of the first things I learned was that I did not like the way I had to open the bator to add water. This has been fixed but adding a tube which I can add water to the tray (Tubing $0.00 - shed).
    [​IMG]

    Second: The chicken wire floor was not very stable and if you look at the second image above you'll see I also had chicken wire to serve as a wall so the chicks would not fall into the light or fan. Well, soon after hatch the new chick placed it's head through a hole in the wire. It did not get hurt but left me with an uncomfortable feeling. So I replaced the entire floor with a disposable "Grill Topper" from the charcoal section of my grocery store (Publix $1.79). This gave me a sturdy floor and still allows air flow. This set up also allows me to get a bunch more eggs in the bator; there are 18 Blue Barred Plymouth Rock eggs in the bator as this is being written. In the below image I am using filled water bottles that serve as both my floor support but also as heat sinks.
    [​IMG]
    A word of warning about the grill topper; the edges are a little sharp; but at lockdown I'll insert the shelf liner on it which will provide a cushioned and grippable surface for the chicks.
    [​IMG]
    I'd love to build an auto turner but I don't have the know how and frankly it would be an added expense. To turn the eggs I simply place a small piece of lumber on either side of the bater; turning all eggs at once - this basically mimicks what an auto turner does.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Total cost to date (I know all the items cost money but for this total I am not including recycled items nor am I including items that were laying around the house):
    • Digital Thermometer (Wal-Mart $6.50)
    • Shelf liner (Dollar Store $1.50)​
    • T-Stat (Ebay $16.00)​
    • Fan (Radio Shack $9.00)​
    • Grill Topper (Publix $1.79)​
    TOTAL: $34.79

    Share This Article

Comments

To make a comment simply sign up and become a member!
  1. redneckrabbitry
    thats great idea. and a great team
  2. Katiesduckies
    I LOVE your idea can you help me make my own incubator the same way? I cant spend a lot of money to hatch my eggs but I'd really like to have an incubator what do you need for an incubator?
  3. krobin04
    awesome! I am going to have my son try this, he is dying to make his own. We have some of the square styrofoam incubators, purchased, but they don't have a fan, and it is hard to keep humidity levels where we need them. I also love the idea of the tube for adding water. Do you stopper it, or leave it open?

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by