Poor mans incubator..., it works!

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Ruditchka, Mar 30, 2009.

  1. Ruditchka

    Ruditchka Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 28, 2009
    I just posted this on another topic, but if you want to hatch eggs and haven't the money to invest in an incubator, here is about as good a way as any to be on your way to hatching eggs with little or no money down!

    If I had no other means, I'd get a decent size cardboard box(18"wx18"hx30"l +/-) and line it w/aluminum foil. put a decent size pan w/water on the bottom and whatever you have to use as a screen for now(cooking rack/oven rack...., anything for now) to place the eggs on. Hang a light or even squeeze a small lamp with a 40 watt bulb in the box(just don't cause fire hazard). Hang a thermometer at top egg level. Make a top for the box a little larger than the box so you can just rest it on top, covering box. Make top with large piece of cardboard and wrap/tape with aluminum foil. The inside of the box will now be completely reflective for more even heat distribution and temp adjustments can be stabilized up or down(a lot), by using higher or lower wattage bulbs, and fine adjusting by poking air holes in the sides of box for fresh air, and by sliding the top slightly opened or closed to release/increase heat capture. Anyway, that's how I pretty much incubate my eggs.

    Or if you just use box for holding the chicks, the set-up is that much simpler. As far as putting a light in the box, by using cardboard, it gives you more options as to where you want to run the electric cord through(poke a hole and go!), or just run cord over the top under the lid. If you need to see your eggs(of course you do!), cut out a square in the lid and tape a plastic window there or even just wrap that section of the top with saran wrap!

    Just get your temp right, don't worry so much on the humidity(as long as your water is in the pan), I never increased last 3 days and believe all those wet chicks coming out will raise the humidity sufficiently in itself!

    Sounds crude, but it will work, and it is about as cheap an incubating system that money can buy..... So for those who want to hatch and can't afford an incubator, here's your chance to hatch, and it feels good knowing you've done everything yourself and with everyday household items!
     
  2. wendy

    wendy On the Hill

    Jun 14, 2007
    central louisiana
    that sounds pretty cool [​IMG]
     
  3. chickens4me

    chickens4me Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 1, 2008
    South Carolina
    Pics Please! [​IMG]
     
  4. Ruditchka

    Ruditchka Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 28, 2009
    [​IMG]

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    I used a box I made with 2 closet shelves and an old stereo rack cabinet w/glass door. I nailed the shelves from the component racks to the closet shelves to make the sides of box and used a side of the stereo cabinet nailed as the base. Put a divider in box since it was too big but since I have two hatches a week apart, I will use the cooler half for chicks after they dry good. I just rest glass on top, hang a 60w light(an old grow light with hole in plastic housing to a screw on one short side of box and a thermometer hanging on a screw in the other wall. A decent size pan of water w/perlite in it(easy to see if water is drying up if it turns bright white. This is first time I'm trying the perlite). And a screen I stapled on to a home made strip-wood square frame is wedged between divider strip of wood on inside edge box and the short side of box itself just a few inches above water pan. I think last time I hatched 6 of 9 eggs in it for a first time a few years back. I know that a cardboard box will work just as well. Its all a matter of stabilizing temps, which mine does well at about 101.5-102. Where there's a will, there's a way! My set-up cost me nothing and if I didn't use the materials I did, I just would have looked around my house and substituted them with other freebies!!
     

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