Homemade incubator Questions!

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by TeePants, Aug 17, 2011.

  1. TeePants

    TeePants Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So, I got my homemade incubator up and running over the weekend. For the first few days it maintained temp & humidity really well, but today it spiked sometime I wasn't home to 104 degrees. Not sure how long it sat like that.

    I'm hoping it's because the room I had it put in has a big window and sometimes gets warm (I had it in the walk in closet hoping it would help [​IMG]) SOOOO I moved it into another room (the extra bathroom this time). I'm trying to avoid a room with a lot of A/C draft. I adjusted the hot water heater thermostat to a lower temp and am going to run it again tomorrow while I'm out and see if it can maintain a reasonable temp.

    We'll be ordering eggs for it soon and I don't want to fry them! It's also a still air incubator- so I know it's supposed to have higher temperatures than one with a fan, but... should I leave more vent holes open, or would that just really affect humidity? Our house is usually around 75 degrees, it was a little warmer yesterday because my fiance turned the A/C off without telling me.

    Should I be worried? Also, is my lightbulb going to burn out for me running it for so long in advance?

    Thanks in advance for any replies! We're very excited! [​IMG] This will be our first time so I want to try to avoid as many errors as possible as we'd like to have some chickens for our new yard come spring!
     
  2. Glenmar

    Glenmar Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mine has a fan, so I am not sure. Hopefully someone will coma along with help.
     
  3. BairleaFarm

    BairleaFarm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You shouldnt have any light bulb issues. i would how ever change it before each hatch. How big is your bator? Mine is a decent size and I have a fan.
     
  4. Arielle

    Arielle Chicken Obsessed

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    Quote:During my first hatching experience I read everything; thought I was prepared and had a few mishaps but overall resulted in 14/24 (4 clears) I did better than I was expecting. You can too with some diligence and a notebook! [​IMG]
     
  5. TeePants

    TeePants Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for the replies everyone!

    Mine is rather small- they only had the small size foam ice chests at the store I went to, but since I'm hatching a smaller number of, well, SMALL eggs I think it should work out ok. Otherwise I followed the guides on making a foam bator on this site(minus the fan). It could probably fit 10-12 normal size eggs.

    Yeah, it looks like it's maintaining a better temp in the bathroom - there are no windows and the bedroom it's adjacent to only has a small window so the temp doesn't really vary day/night. I did close the air vent- it's still cool, but it's no longer blowing in there so hopefully that will help even things out.

    I have a thermometer with a sensor so I can get inside/outside temp/RH, and then I have an extra reg. mercury thermometer so I can get more than one read- it seems like the digital tends to estimate a little lower than the mercury one, but it's averaging around 100-101 degrees now. Humidity is at 40-45%, outside the bator is a little higher (I'm in Southern Louisiana so that's to be expected, lol).

    I'm gonna try and do the 'dry humidity' method with my Sebright eggs that will be here Fri/Sat, and I think the guide said that for bantams ~40% humidity was ideal, and on day 18 get it up to ~65% and leave it? I also read somewhere it was best to turn them 3-5 times a day but to always do it an odd number of times?

    Ack, I hope I don't screw this up!
     
  6. TeePants

    TeePants Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Woo, ordered my first eggs. Going to get some local Black Copper Marans Sat. (6) and have some Silver Lace Sebrights being shipped, which should also arrive Sat. Adding another digital thermometer tommorow, and will hopefully set them Sat night/Sunday. [​IMG]
     
  7. Arielle

    Arielle Chicken Obsessed

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    How is the temp in your incubator? You can set babyfood size jars of water beside the eggs ( if you have room); the eggs also act as heat sinks and decrease the flusctuations in temps.

    Turn your eggs at least 3 times a day; if you can do more, the better the hatch rate (from reading other university sites). If there is a long stretch of time that you can't turn the eggs, you should alternate which side is up thru that long stretch. For some people it's over night, maybe for others it's during the day.

    In my first batch I rolled my eggs; dropped one and it takes a bit of time. Some days I rolled 2-3 times other days 5-6 times. This hatch I'm trying the 2 x4 method. Putting a large item under one side of the cooler then the other. Way easier and this seems to mimic the action of a turner IMO. I'm running a test batch this way.


    Good luck, have your eggs arrived?
     
  8. quintinp

    quintinp Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Well, I would suggest using a fan. And I would also like to know, what do you have controlling temperature. Many use a 5.00 dimmer switch for their homemade incubators. I use water heater thermostats.
     

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