DIY Incubator

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by StrivingForBetter, Jul 11, 2017.

  1. StrivingForBetter

    StrivingForBetter Chirping

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    20170705_200508.jpg I just started my first batch of incubating on the 7th (a dozen lavender Orpington eggs and a dozen blue laced red wyandotte eggs) in some homemade forced air styrofoam incubators. So far the temps are stabilizing really well (one at around 100 and the other at 99.5) But my humidity is low (I plan on running to the store for some sponges later). Any advice/help would be greatly appreciated because I would eventually like to do this for a living.

    I also want to covert an old refrigerator that we have into a big incubator. Tips?

    What thermometers, hygrometers, thermostats, etc. do you recommend? What do you use for a heat source? Is there a reason why I see more light bulbs being used vs heat tape?

    What has led to your best hatch rates?

    I want to get a setup of two really good diy incubators for inside, and maybe another for just lockdown. This is my general plan for incubating the next couple months:
    20170711_170357.jpg
     
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  2. PD-Riverman

    PD-Riverman Crowing

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    Humidity is controlled by water surface----sponges are a quick fix but unless you check on them every little while they will dry out and humidity drops, wet them and humidity goes real highs. Best to get the water surface you need for the % you want.

    Homemade fridge incubator-----just gotta build it where the temp stays steady and even through out----no hot/cold spots. Good Air circulation and vented proper.
     
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  3. PD-Riverman

    PD-Riverman Crowing

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    Steady temp, even temp, humidity right, vented proper, properly turned hatch rate 95 to 100% of good/fertile eggs with 10,000 hatched.
     
  4. StrivingForBetter

    StrivingForBetter Chirping

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    How do you fix the humidity properly then?
     
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  5. PD-Riverman

    PD-Riverman Crowing

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    Water surface! The amount of water surface----square inches of water surface you have in the incubator, example say you have a 4"x4" pan of water and your humidity is 35%, if you want it higher----put in a bigger pan or more of the smaller pans, if you want it lower put in a smaller pan---depth has nothing to do with it except the deeper the pan you use----the less you have to fill it back up.
     
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  6. PD-Riverman

    PD-Riverman Crowing

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    Factory pans do have slots to stand up sponges which gives more water surface. You can hear of people putting/laying sponges in their pan of water----that does not help at all unless the sponge floats above the water some creating a little more water surface.
     
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2017
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  7. PD-Riverman

    PD-Riverman Crowing

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    Missed this----Light bulbs are Cheap heat source that most know how to work with them----and they work. Personally I would not use light bulbs as my heat source because they burn out. If I go to the trouble to build a home-made incubator---I will Use a GOOD heat source.
     
  8. StrivingForBetter

    StrivingForBetter Chirping

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    So are there certain pans that I need to get or can I use anything as long as it holds water? Would it be unwise to just put water in the bottom of the Styrofoam incubator?
     
  9. StrivingForBetter

    StrivingForBetter Chirping

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    What would you consider a good heat source?
     
  10. PD-Riverman

    PD-Riverman Crowing

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    Coils, heat rods, just according to how many watts of heat you need to keep your incubator heat up. The two home-made in my aviator----one uses a 250 watt coil the other uses 2 125 watt heat rods---why I chose 2 different sources-------experimenting. The one on the right is the hatcher----it has hatched around 10,000 chicks in the last 3 years. The one on the left incubated a lot of those as well as several more incubators.
     
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