Help me choose a incubator please

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Compensation, Nov 12, 2014.

  1. Compensation

    Compensation Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 21, 2014
    I been looking off and on for one and choosing one isn't as easy for me. Plus I never done this before.

    My ideal needs:
    25-40 chicks afterwards.
    automatic Turner and humidity control.
    Average to easy clean up afterwards.
    Reliable and accurate.
    I would say there is no budget but definitely no $2000 unit. I will start off with a $300 budget but if its worth it $1200 would be my high side.

    If you do not have any advice on the incubator, feel free to post info about do's and don'ts since I have no idea what I am doing.

    Thanks for your time :)
     
  2. MeepBeep

    MeepBeep Chillin' With My Peeps

    For only 25-40 eggs you can get A LOT of incubator for well under $1000, even well under $500...

    May I suggest you keep your incubator itself budget lower and spend more money on housing and care of the growing birds initially... I hatched out almost 100 eggs this year with a 90% plus hatch rate this season using a cheap $35 foam incubator I did a few mods to (lots of mod ideas all over the web) and a 2nd home built incubator that I built from stuff I found laying around the house and an $8 water heater thermostat... My investment with thermometers and misc other stuff was under $100 and I had great hatching success because I devoted the time monitoring the incubators... Of course if you want more of a hands off, you will need to spend more to automate the process...

    Look at Brinsea's offerings if you want the Cadillac of hobbyist and commercial small to medium incubators...

    www.brinsea.com
     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2014
  3. Sustained

    Sustained Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 17, 2014
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    Based on what you want in an incubator, I agree with the previous poster, you probably want a brinsea octagon. A little spendy but from everything I've read from others (I don't have one, but boy do I wish I did!) they're a 'set it and forget it' incubator. Very reliable and easy to use.
     
  4. Compensation

    Compensation Out Of The Brooder

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    OK, I'm interested in the octagon 40 advance ex. Anything I should know about with this unit?

    As for chicken care I have a 6' long horse trough I used for my last batch that I bought from rural king. I have 4 heat lamp bulbs with one lamp. The coop is a 6x8 with 6 nesting boxes and only one of those boxes gets used with 6 hens. If I have 30-50 chickens I will feel alot better letting them free range while I am gone. They have a 18' square run right now. See any problems there?
    Thanks for the responses.
     
  5. Sustained

    Sustained Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oregon
    do you mean the run is 18 sq ft? Or each side of the square is 18ft?
     
  6. Sustained

    Sustained Chillin' With My Peeps

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    also, how many roosts do you have in your coop? And how long are they?
     
  7. MeepBeep

    MeepBeep Chillin' With My Peeps

    The coop size is pushing it for the number of chickens you have unless it's just for night use... As the poster above asked, do you have 50+ linear feet of roost perches in that coop? Because you will need at minimum a foot of roost per bird in the coop to avoid trouble... Probably better to have upwards of 2 feet so they have some elbow room because fact is not all birds get along once the pecking order comes into play...

    To give you an idea, the roost in my coop has 48 linear feet of perch, and takes up a 5x8 foot footprint on it's own...
     
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2014
  8. Compensation

    Compensation Out Of The Brooder

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    Run is 324sqft plus 48sqft under the coop. Perch space now is only one 2x4 since I only have 7 birds. I will take that one out when I add more perches. I have enough space for 10-6' perches if height isn't and issue and 10 more nest boxes under the 6 I already have. Now I plan on eating 20-30 birds a year. So once they hit full size I will leave only my favorites.
     
  9. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    With your criteria, especially the humidity control, the Brinsea is the way to go for you with the standard incubators. I’d add something to your criteria but that will still point you toward Brinsea. You need one where you can easily tweak the temperature. Brinsea is a good one but don’t trust any thermometer that comes with any incubator. Verify that it is actually reading correctly.

    I don’t know the make and model she had but a recent poster had two incubators with built in thermometers. People assume the ones with built in thermometers are accurate but she had a 6 degree difference in them when she checked. One was dead on, the other 6 degrees too low.

    You might follow the link in my signature for some of my thoughts on space. I don’t give any hard and fast numbers. There are way too many variables in the way we keep them for any one number to cover us all. The intent is to give you things to consider when trying to decide how much space you need. Space does not necessarily mean coop space, it means how much space they have when they need it.

    Some of those things will apply to roost space too. Some people are quite happy with 8” per chicken on the roost. Some want and need a lot more. The more chickens you have the less roost space per chicken you need. Once they settle down they don’t take up a lot of space but they need room to get on the roosts and sort out where they are sleeping. They may need room to move away from a bully, especially if you integrate chickens regularly. If you don’t integrate chickens or have age discrepancies you don’t need as much space as if you do. Variables, lots of variables.

    Nothing is firm and fixed with chickens. You need to be a little flexible.
     
  10. MeepBeep

    MeepBeep Chillin' With My Peeps


    Remember as a rule of thumb so birds are not pooping on each, and heavier birds can hop from perch to perch the perches should be space 12" apart in both vertical an horizontal directions, and the first perch should be give or take 2 feet off the ground... I can't see how you will get 10 perches in a 6x8 coop based on those numbers.. Of course the 12" is just a guideline but I find it pretty much a necessity horizontal wise if you want to avoid them pooping on each other...

    Look the pictures below to see what I mean, this is a 1 foot grid showing the 8 foot side of your coop, assuming the coop is 8 feet tall... I can't see you getting more then 7 perches in there ideally... Of course as I said these are just guidelines the rules can be bent, and you can be creative with poop trays to help falling poop from above, but I just can't see how you are going to get 10 perches in there and all the nesting boxes as well without it looking like a sardine can...

    [​IMG]
     

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