How to test humidity without specialized equipment

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by hillbillygreen, Feb 9, 2009.

  1. hillbillygreen

    hillbillygreen Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 22, 2008
    Central Illinois
    Hi,

    I'm trying for my second hatch. I don't think I did anything special last time. My mom just advised spritzing them with water every turn (which was only 2 times daily). I still need to hand turn this time, but I'm increasing to 3 times daily and want to know if my humidity will be something I can control or not.

    Right now I have an open (and bent) 1 liter bottle inside to provide more humidity. I was just reading on filling the wells, but I'm sure I only did that on day 18 last time. Any thoughts?
     
  2. twigg

    twigg Cooped up

    Mar 2, 2008
    Tulsa
    Quote:Specialized equipment can be as little as $6 in Walmart.

    One set of wells should normally be filled from day one, with both filled from day 18. This is an approximation, and a humidity meter is a good investment. Anything else is guessing.
     
  3. shelleyd2008

    shelleyd2008 the bird is the word

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    Sep 14, 2008
    Adair Co., KY
    You can use the size of the air cell to determine whether or not the humidity is high enough. However, you really should consider getting a hygrometer. There are some at walmart that are less than $6. What are you using for the temp? If it is the thermo that came with the bator, that could be part of your problem. You probably should have at least one of the wells filled in the bottom, then fill them all for the hatch. If your weather is anything like it is here, you'll probably have to add some wet sponges/paper towels as well as the filled wells.

    But I can not stress enough how much you need to have a hygrometer. The one at walmart is made by springfield. I have 2, and they work very well.
     
  4. tiki244

    tiki244 Flock Mistress

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    Jan 1, 2008
    WestCentralWisconsin
    Well it sounds like you have a styrofoam incubator? Am I correct? What do the instructions say? If You dont want to get a hygrometer I would put some water in the wells when after they go dry, open a few vent plugs, and if the windows or any part of the inside of the bator has 'dew'on it then the humidity is tooo high. I wouldnt recommend spritzing the eggs though. Just make sure there is some humidity in it. raise a bit after day 18 but still not to the point of dew on the inside. You can use the vent plugs to control it, but the eggs need some ventilation all the time. Also, if you put a humidifier in the room with the bator that would help you maintain it.
     
  5. twigg

    twigg Cooped up

    Mar 2, 2008
    Tulsa
    Quote:A good starting point. But it's still guessing.

    How odd it would be for us to suggest that someone should guess the temperature .... so why treat humidity differently?

    The manufacturers of cheap incubators are culpable here ....

    They know full well that humidity matters, yet they offer sketchy and misleading info with their products. This saves them having to provide a humidity meter, and keeps down the cost.

    If they were upfont about humidity, customers might begin to wonder why they sell product that is demonstrably unsuitable for it's purpose without additional equipment.
     
  6. scbatz33

    scbatz33 No Vacancy, Belfry Full

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    Jan 23, 2009
    South GA
    I was wondering about the "cheap" incubators myself. I was given a Styrofoam one when I started my little chicken experiment a few months ago. NOw of course it's not so little and I wonder what if any effect the quality - or lack there of - of my incubator had on my first hatch.

    Just so you know, I have the one you can get at Southern States or Tractor Supply for about 45 bucks. It was given to me with no instructions, no pan, and missing one of the vent plugs.

    The most frustrating thing is I can't get the temp to maintain. I am going to replace thermometer and get a hygrometer.

    But I thinking of also just buying the hovabator 1588 that I have heard alot of folks in here rave about. It would be my incubator and convert my styrofoam one to my hatcher.

    suggestions, ideas, comments?
     
  7. twigg

    twigg Cooped up

    Mar 2, 2008
    Tulsa
    Quote:The LGs are a little tricky to set up, but they do work.

    If yours appears not to work correctly, or has missing parts, then return it.

    Correctly set up the LG perfoms the same as the Hova, the Hova being easier to use, esp. the higher (pricier) models.
     
  8. hillbillygreen

    hillbillygreen Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 22, 2008
    Central Illinois
    Quote:A good starting point. But it's still guessing.

    How odd it would be for us to suggest that someone should guess the temperature .... so why treat humidity differently?

    The manufacturers of cheap incubators are culpable here ....

    Thanks everyone for your responses... You guys are awesome!

    ...and yes it is a cheap foam one from Big R. It was the only one they had and one my son had purchased for his snakes (another story). He let me use it when my dad showed up after a rabbit show raffle with fertilized eggs--all on a whim!

    So, cheap, available, and this year no booklet, we are charging forward and going by my faulty memory. And yes, it is a booger to maintain the temp... so frankly, I'm a little worried about getting the humidity right.

    I wish I would have seen some of your homemade incubators before starting this one... I LOVE outsmarting the system! and what a great way to counter the crappy cheap manufacturers like this one! I wonder what it cost them to manufacture this anyway!

    My thermometer is a digital meat thermometer with alarm and long wire probe. It's been my saving grace. I set it horizontally on the prop they give you for theirs so it's at the right height.

    I think I will look for the hygrometer at Walmart... what department would that be in?
     
  9. twigg

    twigg Cooped up

    Mar 2, 2008
    Tulsa
    Quote:A good starting point. But it's still guessing.

    How odd it would be for us to suggest that someone should guess the temperature .... so why treat humidity differently?

    The manufacturers of cheap incubators are culpable here ....

    Thanks everyone for your responses... You guys are awesome!

    ...and yes it is a cheap foam one from Big R. It was the only one they had and one my son had purchased for his snakes (another story). He let me use it when my dad showed up after a rabbit show raffle with fertilized eggs--all on a whim!

    So, cheap, available, and this year no booklet, we are charging forward and going by my faulty memory. And yes, it is a booger to maintain the temp... so frankly, I'm a little worried about getting the humidity right.

    I wish I would have seen some of your homemade incubators before starting this one... I LOVE outsmarting the system! and what a great way to counter the crappy cheap manufacturers like this one! I wonder what it cost them to manufacture this anyway!

    My thermometer is a digital meat thermometer with alarm and long wire probe. It's been my saving grace. I set it horizontally on the prop they give you for theirs so it's at the right height.

    I think I will look for the hygrometer at Walmart... what department would that be in?

    Go look down where the weather stuff is, somewhere by the lighting and electrical.

    There are several models. The Springfield is usually the cheapest, and works well, they also often have Accurite and others.

    Try to avoid the Hair Hygrometers .... they are much less reliable, but will work at a pinch, when new.
     
  10. tiki244

    tiki244 Flock Mistress

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    Jan 1, 2008
    WestCentralWisconsin
    I am glad to see that you have decided to get a hygrometer [​IMG] I guess I had taken your question too litterally and assumed you did not want to get a hygrometer. I apologize. I should have suggested it anyway. Next time I will try to be more attentive.
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2009

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