Seperate heat chamber? Pros and Cons?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by Young Heritage, Mar 28, 2011.

  1. Young Heritage

    Young Heritage Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 4, 2010
    Monterey TN
    I am building a cabinet incubator and have the option to build a separate heat chamber. What are the Pros and Cons of a heat chamber? Thanks for any advise.
     
  2. tigercreek

    tigercreek Chillin' With My Peeps

    I have one, and I am not srue if it a real advantage. Mine houses 2 light bulbs and 2 fans that blow the heated air down false sides. The bigest advantage is that you don't have to open the egg chamber to change bulbs or fan. Not sure that is a biggie, but if you are doing the building, and have the room, (you only need a little more), why not? I also feel that it helps circulation and helps keep temps even. My ducts are under sized for the fans I am using, so the upper heat chamber stays hotter, which actually helps stabalize the bottom. I don't get as big of temp swings. Kind of like having that room as a heat sink? Built mine out of a free, 3/4 inch plywood shipping box, so the size was predetermined. Don't know if I would build one this big if I had it to do over. It is a little clumsy to move. ...........stan
     
  3. Young Heritage

    Young Heritage Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 4, 2010
    Monterey TN
    Thanks for the info. I am using a Metal UPS cabinet that has a divider built in so the extra chamber is already there. I just have to setup the fans and ducting. The cabinet is 2x3x5. The heat chamber is about 2x1x5 and the incubation chamber is 2x2x5. I plan on fitting the unit with 4 autoturner racks. I am planning one using a wafer thermo or a repti 500. How many lights or heat lamps should I use?
     
  4. tigercreek

    tigercreek Chillin' With My Peeps

    Depends!! How well is it going to be insulated? What will be the temp of the area it is located in? Do you have a draft to contend with? Mine is 3 X 2 X 2, and holds temp with 2, 100watt bulbs. Has a high insulation value, and the ambient air where it is located in my shop never gets below 70 degs. It's made of 3/4 inch plywood and all openings have weather stripping. I would suggest 2 , 100 watt bulbs as a good starting place. Run a trial to see what happens. It is easy to increase or decrease wattage, espically if you have a separate heat chamber. ........stan
     
  5. Young Heritage

    Young Heritage Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 4, 2010
    Monterey TN
    It is insulated with foam board glued to the insulated metal walls. Draft free. Ambient temp should never drop below 60. Thanks again for the info. I will set it up for 3 or 4 lights but will start with 2 100W and see what happens. Do you have any "Thermal Mass" added to your bator or heat chamber?
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2011
  6. tigercreek

    tigercreek Chillin' With My Peeps

    No, I did not add any thermal mass, but considered it un til I started mine up. With the 2 - 100 watt bulbs, it recovers pretty fast after opening the door to candle or move eggs around. I think the 3/4 inch plywood is a kind of thermal mass in itself. i have plenty of room to add it in the form of jars of water or rocks, but don't seem to need it, so I haven't. Cycle time is not too fast, and recover time seems good too. Haven't mentioned it, but be sure to provide a way to add water without opening the door. .....stan
     
  7. Young Heritage

    Young Heritage Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 4, 2010
    Monterey TN
    More wonderful info. I will have to post some pics when done. Very eggcited to get this built. [​IMG]

    How many have you incubated ans what is the success rate? I know a lot of it depends on the eggs them self and if they were shipped and whatnot. Just more for my curiosity than anything. Thanks
     
  8. tigercreek

    tigercreek Chillin' With My Peeps

    This is going to ruin my creditability!! I have only done a single test hatch. I had a friend give me some of their backyard flock eggs, and I only hatched 11 out of 36! Not a good rate, but there were a lot of things that caused the lack of susccess. All of the eggs were incredibly dirty - covered in poop, dirt and who knows what else. I had to wash them. I tried to be as carefull as possible and used oxine to rinse them in, but think I still had some bacteria problems. A lot of them never started to develope. I don't know if it was from the washing, or lack of fertility, but probably a dozen were discarded because they never developed. I cracked them open and was not able to find a bullseye in any of them. I mixed one up when candeling and ended up cracking it open with a 1/2 way developed chick inside. I put 16 into lock down. 2 piped but did not get out, dry membranes, and 3 never pipped. I really don't think it was because of the bator. I did have some humidity problems early on, but after day 3 or so, it ran a constant 45 % and up to 65% at lock down. Temps never flucuated more than a degree, except for the few times I opened it to candel. I have been running it without eggs, checking for temp diff in diff areas, and do not have much differance side to side. temps are even all across, and even top to bottom. I have very accurite temp measurements and have calibrated the temp probes and the hygrometer. I am an insturment tech. I have eggs ordered and will pick up a couple dozen on my vacatioin next wek and am looking for much better results with no meaningful changes to the design or operation. Hope some of this helps. glad to do anything I can, even with my limited experence. ...stan
     
  9. Young Heritage

    Young Heritage Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 4, 2010
    Monterey TN
    I plan on having the air circulating at all times and then a separate fan for when the lights come on to move the heated air to the incubation chamber. I have seen several designs like this and all have read to be a good working design.

    I have never built a bator before and I guess I am going all out on this one. [​IMG] I guess I need it so if I decide to hatch out 150 eggs at a time I am covered. hehehe Really, my plan is to be able to produce up to 25 chicks a week if needed. Doubt I will ever need to do so but like the option.

    Being a very technical, picky, and OCD person, I understand what you mean. Thanks
     

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