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Egg Incubators item created by Super Admin, Jan 11, 2012
Pros - Simple to use, decent temperature regulation, reliable, good for beginners and experts
Cons - I agree with a previous review that it would be nice if their was an easier way to clean around the electronic parts
I love this incubator so much I bought a second one. I have the original version when they first came out around 2002. My second one is the "new old version" that I purchased around 2007. Both incubators are still working great! I am thinking of buying a third because I hatch a lot of eggs in a short amount of time, and I want one dedicated for hatching.
Pros - Nice digital readout of Set Temp, Incubation Temp, Humidity. Holds temp well. Great interior viewing.
Cons - Must calibrate humidity monitor; humidity trays need figuring out for correct percentage
Hi. My name is Peep_Show and I am a hatchaholic.....
Upon getting a Brinsea with all the bells and whistles, I started ordering eggs.. Lots of eggs. And, thanks to assorted variables, they all started arriving at staggered times instead of the well-orchestrated schedule I thought I had implemented. It became readily apparent that although the Brinsea could incubate, I was going to run into problems at lockdown with hatching on widely different days. That and the fact that the Brinsea doesn't have a lot of chick room created the decision to get a second incubator for hatching. The recommendation from other hatchaholics on BYC was the Hova-Bator 1588.
I purchased this unit from Fleming and it arrived in fairly short order. The first plus right out of the box was that the incubator lid and bottom stacks into itself for easy, compact storage. The interior of the incubator appears deep and cavernous thanks to its high top and rounded corners and almost makes you wish there was an interior light. The viewing window is quite large, encompassing nearly the whole top of the incubator. There's plenty of room for turners and thermometers. Just one vent hole in the top, red plug included. If you have an auto-turner, the cord fits snugly out of a corner without a big cord gap space to let in cold air.
Reading the instruction manual first (always a good idea), setup was easy. I put two Accu-Rite thermometer/hygrometer units inside and found the temp to be right spot on. The humidity gage, though, was off a good 5-6%. Following the directions, calibration was easy to do and the humidity now holds true within 1% of what the Accu-Rites read. The monitor is backlit and easy to read and gives the (pre)Set temperature (100.00), the interior temperature and the humidity. A light flashes when the incubator is close to the optimal temp.
The unit comes with a removable screen floor that fits over and clips onto a plastic tray which contains water channels to fill to provide humidity. I like the plastic insert as it helps keep the Styrofoam cleaner. Apparently you can order replacements, too. Cleaning of the Styrofoam bottom is easy because it is a smooth shell with no channels.
Figuring out the humidity is a trial-and-error guessing game at best. The four water channels allow for endless variations and combinations to provide the humidity you want, but you have to determine that on your own. Channel No. 1 holds the most water; Channel No. 4 holds the least. And, of course, there's no way to have a predetermination of "filling this plus this equals this humidity" because of location, climate, altitude variations throughout the world. For my particular situation I found filling Channel No. 1 plus a slight splash overflow into Channel No. 2 gave an ideal incubation humidity; No. 1 and No. 4 was ideal for hatching. The channels hold about 3 days of water (less days in higher dryer altitudes), so if you have an extended lockdown you need to have a straw or tube to wend in through the vent hole to refill the channels.
If for some reason you unplug the unit or the power goes out, I've found the humidity calibration needs to be set again.
Unlike the unwavering Brinsea, the Hova-Bator 1588 is sensitive to dipping cold room temperatures, but not seemingly as much as other Styrofoam incubators are. A towel wrapped around it helped keep the interior temperature steady.
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If this is your very first incubator, you'll be spoiled right off the bat and get to avoid the hand-wringing and double-checking that most styro-bators entail once you figure out what water channels work out best for the humidity you want to maintain. The only real work during the operation is knowing when to refill the channels. Thus far it has been a steady and reliable machine. It hatches well and the views are great. It's a little bit more pricey than your average Styrofoam incubator, but you understand why when you see it in action.
If you're a hatchaholic you'll find your addiction greatly enabled..... And that's a good thing!
Pros - easy to use, easy to clean, great for a beginner
Cons - wish the manufacturer would make the electronics removable for cleaning.
Great Little Incubator
My first time hatching was a breeze. It got me hooked to hatching.
It was so easy to use. I do recommend reading the directions, so you know were to put the water.
Essentially, you plug it in, add water and put the fertilized eggs in!
Cost for me was good as well.. You don't want to invest hundreds in an incubator only to find out you don't like it. (yeh, right!)
Clean-up is a breeze... all the bottom pieces go in the tub.... warm soapy water and a touch of bleach. I use a big scrub brush and scrub everything. The lid gets whipped with a cloth from the tub.
I do not think a turner is necessary for this unit because as a beginner you really want to DO something.
Turning makes you feel like you are helping and gives you the connection to the little babies.
Then as you get to hatching more, you realize that the Hova Bator is too small for you.
When you get the bigger unit, you can use the Hova Bator as a hatcher!! So the turner isn't really a good investment.
Cost: very good
Size: great for beginners and intermediary, can be used as a hatcher for pros.
Issues: Do not set the lid on it's side, it unbalances the fan!!
Put an old towel under the bator as there is some condensation under the unit during the hatching period.
Easy incubator, value purchase.
I got one, I hatched coturnix quail in it, I've hatched Chickens in it, and I've leant it out to a friend, where he hatched Turkeys in it. I love it, One of my best incubator yet.....
Pros - Takes the worry out of temp spikes
Cons - still have to watch temp with thermometers
I have 2 of these, I think they dry the pipped eggs to much even with 70% humidity. Wish I could turn off fan during hatching. Still recommend.
We ordered our first incubator, the Hova Bator in mid-March, along with 50 day old chicks of assorted breeds. I spent a week or so caring for my chicks before I had to leave for a two week vacation. As everyone knows, 50 chicks are a lot to handle, especially when you're not really set up for it! I was hoping that my family would keep up with the cleaning while I was gone.
Well, little did I know, but my dad had ran out of room in the refrigerator for all the eggs that our older hens were laying. He also was curious to find out if the brand new incubator would work properly. When I got back, I noticed that the incubator was FULL OF EGGS, and it was ON.
A few days later, little beaks began to pop out. Fifteen chicks hatched, nine more were fully developed but died inside the shell, and the rest of the eggs had no chicks inside. I'm sure we made so many mistakes (I know I'm guilty of handling the eggs too much), but watching the miracle of hatching chicks was certainly a priceless experience.
Needless to say, with 50 chicks to take care of, we certainly didn't need 15 more! But, they are so darn cute that it's unbearable. They are impossibly cute, each with their own unique personality. For the first week or so I could have sworn they all thought that I was "mommy". When they were old enough to hop out of their box, they would walk over to the incubator, get on top of it, and stare down through the window at the other eggs.
Conclusion: a) The incubator works. b) We don't need any more chicks. c) The incubator will be very useful in the future.. but it's definitely getting put away for now! LOL
Pros - Good Heat, Easy-to-Use, Great Hatch Rates, Plug-and-Go, Turns Eggs For You (with turner), Comes With Racks for Many Egg Sizes
Cons - Styrofoam, No Temp. Adjustment
We love this incubator. My family and I have hatched quail, ducks, and chickens in this thing. (all with the appropriate sized racks, as it comes with several) When it first arrived, my first impression was....styrofoam? Really? But as it turns out, its actually pretty tough. We got the egg turner with it.
The success rate with thing thing has been really good, except for the ducks. Only 3 of 16 hatched because one day we put to much water in it and the water was touching the eggs. 14 were growing when we candled them. There were only 3 water didn't touch and they hatched. So make sure you don't put in to much water in this thing.
One thing i've noticed is the temperature. You cannot adjust the temp. and it is pretty high. We average 102-103. This was in winter in a shop with very little insulation, so it was mabye 5-10 degrees warmer inside. Its the same temps, 102-103, inside the house, so it must have some kind of sensor inside. The only reason I mention this is because sometimes a lower temp can hatch out more females, but you can't do that with this incubator.
This incubator is very easy to use, just plug in, add eggs and water, and check on it every now and then. I wouldn't leave it alone for more than a few days, because of the water evaporating, but other people have.
Overall, I would reccomend this incubator to anyone who needs something that they can rely on and can't watch it 24/7. This is a great first incubator, and it will last. There are better incubators on the market, but not for this price! Its great for beginners and experts alike, and I might get more this year.
Pros - Humidity reading, temp control
Good quality, reliable, easy to use. Holds up to 42 eggs with turner (45 dollars more)
Pros - Inexpensive, don't have to regulate, has backup power plug for car, just plug in and incubate
Cons - none that I know of, would like one a bit larger...
I can't believe how easy this incubator is to use. Plug and go! I don't have to monitor it in any way. I use the turner and add water in lockdown. The hatching rate depends on eggs quality. I've had up to 90 percent plus on hatching....I'd like a couple of more of them.
Pros - Easy to use!!
Great! Easy to use! I recommend you get the egg turners as well!