I finally did it and it is ALL your fault. You have infected me with the "gotta hatch blues." My DH and I managed to get our homemade bator wired up and fired up. The eggs are in and now I feel like "I don't know nothing about hatchin' no chicks." I borrowed someone's idea of blowing out an egg and using it as a "water wiggler". I filled the egg with hair gel, inserted the temp probe and hot glued the holes shut. As I expected, the temp in the bator dropped a couple of degrees when I put in my eggs. It is now back up to 99.9 degrees and the fake egg internal temp is 99.0. Our bator has a fan, so I am assuming that the 99.9 (as close as I can get it to 99.5) is okay. Why is it that head knowledge doesn't seem to mean much when you get right down to it. I wish I were a broody hen and I wouldn't have to worry about any of this stuff. I would just know what to do and do it with out asking the consensus of 20,000+ BYCers. Imagine Henrietta Hen turning to Debbie Dominique, "Say Deb. Do you think my nest is okay? How long can I be off each day? What do I do if...." AAACK!! Somehow I will get through these next 21 days. And after all that I hope I have something to show for it. We (my kids and I) wanted to experience the miracle of hatching even though we live in the dreaded HOA and can't keep them. They will be going to 35 beautiful acres. My DH is very tolerant of my hair brained ideas but this one has him shaking his head.