1202 Disaster! Need advice!

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by msmeower, Mar 25, 2012.

  1. msmeower

    msmeower Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 25, 2012
    Flat Creek, TN
    I bought a used GQF 1202 cabinet incubator several weeks ago. It looks like it is in very good condition. The man I bought it from replaced both wafer thermostats (the regular and the safety set on 102) before I bought it because he says he does it every few years on all of his incubators. He said he ran it for a few days before I picked it up and it held perfect temperature. When I brought it home, I set it up and let it run a day to make sure everything was good, then loaded it up with one tray, plus part of another, full of eggs. Everything went great until day 18 (yesterday). Temp and humidity were perfect with very little adjustment on my part the first 18 days. I candled the eggs with an ovascope yesterday and was delighted that only 10 or so out of the whole batch were no good. When I candled, I would take 6 eggs out of the tray at a time, close the door, candle them, then open the door and quickly put them in the hatching tray and take 6 more eggs out. The door was never open for very long. An hour or two after I did this, I had to leave the house for several hours. When I returned and checked on the bator, the temperature on the thermometer sticking out of the unit was off the chart. I opened the door and black smoke puffed out, and it was extremely hot inside. I'm talking oven-hot. I unplugged it. The inside thermometer glass (one of those cardboard peices with a glass tube with red liquid inside) was broken from the heat and the eggs were literally cooked. Not only were we emotionally devastated from the loss of the chicks, we were terrified that this could have been a much worse situation if we had not checked on it when we did.
    I called the man I bought it from tonight and he says he's never had that happen in 20 years of hatching out eggs. He thinks that a microswitch must need to be replaced since both thermostat wafers were brand new. Frankly I'm afraid to ever run this incubator again. Any ideas, suggestions, etc. are greatly appreciated!
  2. corvidae

    corvidae Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 27, 2011
    I'd contact GQF for some possible troubleshooting. I'm so sorry that happened to you. [​IMG] Sounds like it could have started a fire!
  3. dbcooper02

    dbcooper02 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2007
    SW Washington
    That's really unusual as it would require failure of both microswitches or for both wafers to collapse for that to happen. In the 1202 the second thermostat is set to open the circuit if the first should fail and begin to overheat. Usually the first is set at 99.5 and the second at 102. Possibly some cheap foreign made wafers that just plain failed???
    It is possible that some sort of short circuit occured bypassing both thermostats and just let the temperature run wild.
    I would find someone with a thorough knowledge of electrical circuits and have them take a good look at the wiring. Then go to GQF and get 2 new wafer and microswitch thermostats and have them installed. This is a good reliable incubator. I have had mine running virtually continuously for five years with no concerns at all.
    Here's a link to the wiring of the thermostats as used in the 1202 incubator. Disregard the right hand side of the drawing, that's for the turner.
    https://www.gqfmfg.com/pdf/1202 Wiring Diagram.pdf
  4. msmeower

    msmeower Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 25, 2012
    Flat Creek, TN
    Thanks for that link. I talked to a tech. from GQF yesterday and he also said what happened to mine was extremely unusual. He recommended replacing the wafers with the digital thermostat and having an electrician look over everything and install the new thermostat. He felt like that would take care of the problem. Your link will help. As heartbreaking as that was to me, I am thinking of just going with running tabletops (I've had great luck with the new digital hovabator) weekly. If anyone is interested in buying this 1202 as is and refitting it themselves, I would sell it for $350. The digital thermostat is about $100. I am in middle TN and don't want to deal with shipping it. I can have it in the Raleigh NC or Wilmington NC area next week. It has all the trays, one hatching tray lid, the water tray (but no wick system), thermometer and egg holders.

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