Flex Watt Or This? Please Any Tips Are Welcome

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by jm93030, Jan 26, 2011.

  1. jm93030

    jm93030 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 4, 2009
    I am trying to make an incubator out of a small fridge

    I ask to a friend about the flex watt and explain him my idea for the incubator

    tha he show me something called Flexible Silicone-Rubber Heat Strips

    is kind of small for the amount of heat it makes we use this strip to keep wax molten in a tank

    DC Voltage Flexible Silicone-Rubber Heat Strips

    DC voltage is ideal for mobile and laboratory applications running on battery power. They work on metal and plastic tanks and have adhesive backing for sticking to very clean surfaces. Watt density is 5 watts/sq. in. They have 1-ft. wire leads for hardwiring. Max. heat output is 300° F. Exposure temperature range is -40° to +300° F.
    Please specify 12 VDC or 24 VDC.
    Size, Amps @

    Lg. x Wd. Watts 12 VDC 24 VDC Each

    1" x 2" 10 0.8 0.4 7945T52 $13.57

    1" x 3" 15 1.3 0.6 7945T53 26.65

    1" x 5" 25 2.1 1.0 7945T54 27.22

    2" x 2" 20 1.7 0.8 7945T51 27.31

    2" x 5" 50 4.2 2.1 7945T55 26.25

    2" x 6" 60 5.0 2.5 7945T56 26.65


  2. gumbii

    gumbii Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 7, 2010
    bell gardens, ca
    i have the 4" flexwatt stuff, but i don't know how to use it... how were you thinking about using it to heat up the space in the fridge...? do you use a heat sink, or just tape it to the fridge wall..? i don't think that's efficient... maybe on a heat sink, or wound up on some PVC...? i dunno... how do people use them, that way i don't have to shield the light bulbs from the eggs and i'll be able to have MOAR EGGS!!!...

    anyways... those rubber ones are pretty good with reptiles and such... i've seen people use big ones for their tortoise's house in the cold season... but again, i wouldn't know how it would be able to heat up a fridge efficiently...
  3. MTopPA_18707

    MTopPA_18707 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Hmmm . . . not sure.

    Would recommend you visit the OEM's web site or send them an email explaining your application and getting their advice on it.

    A few thoughts/questions:

    - consider the wattage light bulb used in a home made incubator . . . probably need a heating pad of about the same wattage.

    - this makes be wonder about other incubators that use heating coils of some kind, what are the wattage rating on those coils ?

    - What is the hysteresis of these pad compared to a light bulb:

    + specifically after a bulb is turned off how long does it bleed heat ? When it is turned on how long does it take to come up to temp? Compared to the heating pad.


    Still I have a feeling you're on to something good here . . . if you attached one of those pad to a metal ballast . . . once it got up to temp it would probably be very stable.

    Please let us know how it works out.

  4. gumbii

    gumbii Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 7, 2010
    bell gardens, ca
    Quote:that's true... but a better question would be how to use all of the heat from the mat to heat up the bulb... a fan blows thru two 40W bulbs with ceramic bases and after the bulbs turn off, it still heats up the bator... i consider it very efficient...

    but if the pad is just on the floor or heating up a bowl of wax, how will that heat go from the pad, to the air inside the bator... most of it is just going to go to to the wall of the fridge and not the air in there... i'm thinking about using flexwatt folded like a zig zag inside a tube or something where the fan can blow thru it... kind of like hair dryer coils... or maybe an aluminum heat sink with fins and such...
  5. Baralak

    Baralak Chillin' With My Peeps

    Ok.. You can't relate the temp that the surface will get to, to BTUs. What you have to consider is how much that pad will radiate in air. I believe these were designed to sit under something, so they are most efficient transferring heat by contact, but how they will relate to transferring heat to air is the question. If you have someone that has one, I would test it by placing it in an ice chest with standoffs. 300 degrees will melt Styrofoam so the unit cannot come into contact with wood, Styrofoam, plastic.

    Lights in an incubator actually heat the air by the heat inside of the light bulb heating the glass enclosure. Since the glass enclosure has a large surface area in relation to the size of the Bator, it will heat the air somewhat well.

    Wattage only relates to the amount of power consumed, not heat given off. For example a CF bulb puts out as much light as a standard bulb, at a fraction of the wattage. Those heating pads will put out an amazing amount of heat for the power usage. You could attach one to an aluminum heat sink and allow that to radiate the heat into the air, but just the pad alone I don't believe will work very well.
  6. MTopPA_18707

    MTopPA_18707 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Good points . . . the OEM could answer many of these questions for sure.

    A metal heat sink with Fins might work well . . . have the pad affixed to the smooth side of the metal heat sink [face that side downward] the other side with the cooling fins facing upward . . . that might work.

    This is a neat idea in general . . . let us know how it works.

  7. ksf59

    ksf59 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 6, 2010
    north west iowa
    I have looked at these. If I were to use one, I would stick it to metal or alluminium plate slighty larger that the heater. then I could suspend it where my fan could blow over it. The plate would help transfer the heat and act as a thermal mass to hepl stabilize temps.
  8. MTopPA_18707

    MTopPA_18707 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Yes - the fan would definitely help.

    I hope the original poster builds this thing - it sounds great.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by