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Tell us about your first incubator

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by TNBarnQueen, Jan 12, 2011.

  1. TNBarnQueen

    TNBarnQueen Songster

    Oct 28, 2010
    East Tennessee
    My first incubator was in 1973. I was really into 4H especially animal science. There was a county demonstration competition and I decided I wanted to do something on chickens. So...after a lot of searching my 4H agent found 12 eggs for me. My father built an incubator from instructions in one of the 4H manuals. Back then we did not measure humidity or have a fan. It was made of plywood. had a light bulb built in one end and a hole with wire in the other. There was a shelf in it where the eggs went and you put a pan of water underneath it. You put a 1 and a 2 on each side of the egg so you could turn it with the 1 up at mornings and the 2 in the evening. You closed the top and that was how we made them back then. My demonstration was to show how the chicks developed. My mom got my preservative, formaldehyded (don't know the spelling) for me and my aunt furnished me with baby food jars. Every 2 days I would carefully crack one egg draining the fluid and put it in a baby food jar with the preservative. I would label which day it had incubated to on the jar and had a poster that I would then draw detailed pictures of each stage with written details. This was such a neat thing to do. When the day of the demonstration came I had 2 eggs left and I had incubated them so that they where to hatch that day. We loaded up all my posters, jars and incubator. I was so excited cause when we got there and I plugged up my bator...I noticed one of the eggs looked funny. Believe it or not... my egg was hatching. Now you have to remember this is a 14 year old kid doing this with no help other than construction of my bator. I was determined to do it on my own. My time came and I gave my demonstration and proudly showed my little chick which was half way out of it's shell. My 4H agent was so proud and he told me he knew I had a very good chance on the ribbon. Well....it did not happen. I lost to a girl who demonstrated how to give a dog a bath. I guess there was a lot more work in doing what she showed compared to my month long experiment. Anyway.,.you know how politics go. But....even if I did not win...I learned sooooo much doing this. I would suggest any parent how has a child interested in things like this or science in general to give this a try...hey...it is fun for grown-ups too!!
    So.....now..who else has a first time story???

  2. debilorrah

    debilorrah The Great Guru of Yap Premium Member

    When I first wanted to start hatching, I looked the LG because it was cheap. My Ken encouraged me to come here and ask questions and BOY am I glad I did!!! Turns out the one I was looking at is unsteady at best, and has a horrible hatch rate. I wound up buying the Brinsea Octo Eco 20 that holds 24 eggs (yes less than I wanted) and discovered that it is a good way to keep me from having 1,365,987 chickens.
  3. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    I bought my first incubator in June, 2010. It is a Brinsea MiniAdvance, holds 7 eggs. I now also own two Brinsea MiniAdvance EX units and three Brinsea Octagon20 Advance EX units. *ahem* And picked up a Reptipro5000 to compare hatches.

    The success of my first two hatches in the MiniAdvance led me to buy the EX units for both models.

    I will probably end up with 1,365,987 chickens before too long.... [​IMG]
  4. chickenlady81

    chickenlady81 Songster

    Jun 10, 2008
    Weare, NH
    i have a genisis, i love that its preset and i dont have to mess with the temps. i set it and forget it..lol
  5. luvanimals2

    luvanimals2 Songster

    Sep 15, 2010
    I have loved animals ever since I was a child. I had a yard full of chickens and rabbits. My father would take me to the pet store and really feed the addiction. They would let me go with customers to farms and let me buy whatever I wanted which was MORE chickens.

    In elementary school, I think it was 3rd grade. The class hatched baby chicks and the experience just really grabbed and intrigued me.

    I asked for a incubator and my dad took me to Orange County where Marsh Farms had incubators for sale. He bought me a TX-6 w/ auto turner. That was my first of many and even crazier, I still have it and it still works. I am in my early 40's so this machine is OLD.

    Thanks for taking me down memory lane.

  6. Livinwright Farm

    Livinwright Farm Songster

    Jan 7, 2011
    Carroll County
    Our first incubator is a Little Giant 9200 series still air incubator with no egg turner and no fan kit... and it works GREAT!!! We just had, our first ever, chick hatch at 10:29pm!!
    [​IMG] I don't know why some people talk smack about LGs... this thing, IMO is FAN-stinkin' TASTIC!!!! We give it [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
  7. NicoleRM

    NicoleRM Songster

    Dec 2, 2007
    Williston, FL
    I'm not sure if this counts, but my first hatching experience was seriously low-tech LOL. When I was in middle school, my father and I had to got to my uncle's house in March while he was out of town to check his plumbing, because we'd had an unexpected hard freeze. His neighbors had a mixed flock of free ranging bantams and they apparently liked to lay their eggs in his pump house.

    I took home as many of those ice cold eggs as I could fit in my coat pockets and set them up in my "incubator." I lined a cardboard box with a towel, placed it on the floor in the bathroom, and hung a light over it. I put a thermometer in the box and adjusted the height of the light until it maintained ~100 degrees. I turned the eggs every time I went to the bathroom. Looking back on this now, it's a miracle any developed at all, but I woke up late one night to peeping. Only one hatched, a tiny duckwing OEG bantam. I named him Pecker [​IMG] and he was an awesome pet chicken.

  8. I have had and been around chickens most of my life. My wife had never had much experience with them because she was taught that they were nasty, dirty little creatures. So I talked her into two chickens that we bought as chicks. She was soon hooked. She started asking about how they hatched and what kind of incubator would be needed. I told her that you can hatch chicks just about any way as long as you have steady temp and you turn them. She didn't really believe me so I took a large pyrex bowl and placed a wire basket in it. Put a little water in the bottom of the bowl. Placed 4 eggs in the basket and placed it under a heat lamp. 22 days later we hatched out 2 chicks out of the 4 eggs. She was amazed and even more addicted to hatching. So now we use LG incubators and hatch over 600 chicks each year. So don't think that you need the fanciest or most expensive incubator to hatch eggs. A little inovation and percervierance will pay off.
  9. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    I got my first incubator around 1950.[​IMG] Like the OP I used it for a school science project : "The development of chick embryos." It was a round Sears metal incubator. Never worried about exact level of humidity but kept the water trays filled, added wet paper towels at hatch time and sprinkled duck eggs daily. It hatched like a champ. I hatched: chickens, guinea fowl, ring necks. goldens, peafowl, ducks, geese, ?. I was still using it in the late 60's to hatch white crested black Polish for a friend who had a highly inbred line of show birds. That was a true challenge. One rule that I learned as a kid was to disinfect after each hatch.
  10. sonjab314

    sonjab314 Constant State of Confusion

    May 15, 2010
    My first bator was a LG forced air that I picked up off of Craigslist for $25. I hatched my first clutch of eggs and I had absolutely NO problems with it at all other than with the humidity and I attribute that to my being a rookie. The next hatch I got it figured out and had another fantastic hatch. Then I bought a Hovabator 1588. I mainly wanted it because 1) I wanted a brand new bator, not a used one 2) I like the large window 3) It has more "head room" for the chicks. I still have both and I still use both. I do not regret getting my LG but if I bought another one, I'd get another Hovabator for the 3 simple reasons listed above.
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2011

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