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Need some ideas!

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by mirandaleecon, Nov 24, 2015.

  1. mirandaleecon

    mirandaleecon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am working on making a turner for my mini-fridge incubator and I'm kind of stuck. I plan on incubating and hatching all in the same incubator but the turner that I'm building will not be chick-safe as is.

    There will be three shelves that pivot side to side and I'm just going to use egg cartons to hold the eggs. Pretty simple, but the issue is that there are gaps on the side and front that chicks could easily fall down or get stuck.
    I was thinking of using baskets but they are way more expensive than I imagined, I would end up paying $60 just for enough baskets. Anyone have any source of cheap baskets (less than 4.5 in tall, 14 in square) for fairly cheap?

    Or I could possibly just construct some kind of wall? I have some bird netting that I think might work on the sides but it's black so if I use it on the front, I won't be able to see anything. Would they get stuck in the bird netting?
    Any idea of how tall of a wall would they be able to climb over? I was thinking 3 inches would be good...

    Seems like such a simple problem but I just can't think of how to keep them where I want them.

    I'll try to post some pictures of the turner tonight...
     
  2. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Chicken Obsessed

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    I think you'd have a problem using bird netting. A young man on an other thread has had issue with his hatchlings getting their hocks stuck in 1/4" HW cloth, and breaking them. So... bird netting would provide even more opportunity for chicklets to get injured. Basically, they pop out of the egg, looking for the fastest and surest way to commit suicide. You have to be one step ahead of them all the time, baby proofing their entire environment. But... I'm sure you know that. IMO, 3" would not be high enough. I've had a chick pop out of the egg, and immediately scramble over a 4" tupperware wall to get to her hatch mates... and that was IMMEDIATELY after hatch. I think when I do my build, that I'll try several shelves with a horizontal roller, so the eggs stay laying down. Then, the bottom shelf will be the tilter, like you envision. That could easily be removed... if planned right, then the eggs could be laid in any type of basket for the hatch. Have you checked the $ stores in your area? Also, they sell plastic egg trays that are not very expensive. They'd be sturdier than the egg cartons, not as likely to break in your tilt frame. I'm following your build with interest. [​IMG] As I plan on doing one, hopefully, this winter.
     
  3. JetCat

    JetCat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    you could make your own baskets out of 1/4" hardware cloth and J clips. line the bottom with the anti slip shelving stuff and no problems with their feet.
     
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2015
  4. mirandaleecon

    mirandaleecon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yea, I figured as much about the bird netting. Just wishful thinking since I have rolls of the stuff laying around. Haven't been able to find a good use for it yet...
    Now that I think of it, I might actually have some window screen. Just trying to think of something flexible that I can attach to the sides so I don't have to worry about chick-proofing at lockdown. I might actually have some plexiglass that I could cut to fit and just slide in at lockdown. I've gotta do some inventory of the junk I have laying around and see what I can use...

    Haven't checked the stores, I try to make a point of avoiding shopping this time of year. I can't stand the crowds and pushiness.

    I have looked at the plastic egg trays. Planned on getting some eventually but every time I look it seems like the shipping costs more than the trays themselves. Was holding out, in case I build a bigger incubator so I could just buy a bunch at once...do you have a good source for them?
     
  5. mirandaleecon

    mirandaleecon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That's not a bad idea, I do have some hardware cloth I could use...
     
  6. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Chicken Obsessed

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    No, but may look into that option when I get around to my build. I'm your basic cheap skate. Pinch my pennies till they bleed, but if something seems like it will fit the bill after exploring all of my "junk" options, I'll buy it. Can you find them on Amazon? Free shipping if over $35 ordered. We usually keep a wish list, then order what ever it takes to get the total up to $35.
     
  7. mirandaleecon

    mirandaleecon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yea, I'm the same way! I did find them on amazon but they were way more expensive than other websites. Amazon is usually my 'go to' option. I'm super impatient and I buy a lot of stuff on amazon so we have prime and get everything within two days. Let me know if you find anything!
     
  8. JetCat

    JetCat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    you can get the 30 egg trays on eBay for right at $4 each shipped, they are 'Rite Farm Products' sold by coopsnmore, they are a little more flimsy then the GQF ones but they work just as good.
     
  9. mirandaleecon

    mirandaleecon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Awesome, thanks! I always forget about ebay because I can't get to it from work...
     
  10. gpop1

    gpop1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    For hatching I used 2 x dollar tree trays. They are about 8 by 5 I think (they come in all different sizes). I put one on top of the other then tie wrap one side to act like a hinge. I hatch quail and they will jump out of a tray and splatter if they are not contained.

    You also really need to consider proper egg trays for the incubator or spend a lot of time cutting holes in the paper trays to allow air to circulate. Blocking air flow will cause hot spots that have to be dealt with by adding more fans so its better to avoid that especially with a home made turner that will change the airflow as the trays turn.
    I built my incubator turner (2 tray) so it could be removed from the incubator then my wife started to add eggs every day so I ended up having to build a hatcher. On the hatcher I covered the floor with draw liner then built a fence using the same material to stop the chicks getting on the slope before the door (use to open the door and chicks fell out). The draw liner is a must as the floor is smooth plastic and that will lead to slipped tendons.
     

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