new to hatching eggs

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by bravofarm, Feb 27, 2013.

  1. bravofarm

    bravofarm Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 12, 2012
    i need some advice to working my incubator. its a hova bator whit egg turner. if yall could please help me out
     
  2. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

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    Is it a still air or have a fan? If a still air incubate at 101-102F measured at top of eggs. Forced air is 99.5F.

    Humidity levels vary greatly with opinions. I personally have excellent results with 40% RH first 18 days then 55-60% last 3 days. Purchase a decent combo humidity/temp gauge. Perform a salt test on it to calibrate humidity.

    This is what I use, and again there are as many opinions as there are hygrometers. It only reads to full degree but is accurate. My first hatch with this model mostly was on time (night of day 20 to day 23) keeping it 99-100F. I plan to bump that up a degree based on first hatch experience, and that's my unit specific of course.

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/HygroSet-II...045?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item27cf9482b5

    To perform a salt test to calibrate your hygrometer you'll need:

    bottle cap
    salt
    ziplock bag
    drops of water
    hygrometer

    Fill bottle cap with salt, add drops of water until it's a paste, not a slurry. Place hygrometer and cap in zip lock bag, a little air for bubble. Seal bag and place on counter for 4 hours. The actual RH is exactly 75%, adjust your hygrometer amount it reads off after it settles back to stable room humidity.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2013
  3. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

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    To get your humidity right play with it before you set eggs. You'll want the unit running for a day or so to get your temperature set right. As your doing this try putting water in the small water well in bottom. See what the humidity is for you. Try only the large well and see what humidity is, try both. It may be too high or about right for last three days. It's dependent on your house humidity levels. If the wells don't work for you try varying sizes of containers that fit under the screen to get the humidity your after. Figure out before hatching what it take to get your incubating humidity your after and lock down (last three days) humidity your after.

    Basically play with your unit and be familiar with changing humidity levels and how much adjustments to thermostat change the temperature. No need to get anxious when eggs are in there so running your unit for a few days prior to work out all the kinks is all the confidence you need.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2013
  4. bravofarm

    bravofarm Out Of The Brooder

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    well i have set the incubator whit no eggs but the tempreture keeps on spiking to 109 and when i try lower it to a 100 it drops all the way down to 90. i don't know what im doing wrong
     
  5. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

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    That is odd for a hovabator. Usually turning a full 360 degrees of knob only changes it 2F. Are you using only 1 thermometer? Using several or more will get confusing if all reading different. And if a still air it will have hot and cold spots, not to mention at differing elevations so need to take temp in same place.

    Three things to note. If your home heating is being adjusted up and down it will effect your incubator. Set your house thermostat to a temperature and leave it. I put mine at 65F when incubating. Or if heating with wood find your most stable room temperature wise. Second thing is the eggs will provide a thermal mass to store the heat, keep wild temperature swings stable. Add a few bottles of water in lieu of eggs for now to hold steady heat. Lastly, check to see if the wafer itself is screwed on tightly, it may have come lose so getting wild readings as your adjusting the top dial it should be secure to.

    With those kind of drastic changes with small adjustments it really makes me think the wafer is lose.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2013
  6. bravofarm

    bravofarm Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 12, 2012
    okay well thank you i will check on it and see if anything is lose
     

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