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which thermometer to trust? HELP!

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by technodoll, Dec 30, 2010.

  1. technodoll

    technodoll Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 25, 2009
    Quebec, Canada
    My silkie eggs went in the 'bator earlier this evening and I'm facing a dilemma:

    There are two thermometers sitting on top of the eggs, one is digital and the other mercury.

    Digital shows 98F and mercury shows 102F [​IMG]

    Which one should I trust?

    Help! [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2010
  2. gitlost80

    gitlost80 Trigger Pullet

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    Reno/Sparks
    Same thing happened to me with 4 thermometers. They all read different. 3 digital and one mercury. They are all within a few inches of each other too! I took two out and now one reads 98 and the other 102. I figure as long as I dont go over or under those numbers I will be ok. My incubator is a still air. I think they have pockets of different temperature air. My most accurate Thermometer/hygrometer is the most expensive one I bought form an indoor gardening store for $25.
     
  3. technodoll

    technodoll Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quebec, Canada
    Quote:ok thanks... i have a forced-air hovabator and this is my 4th hatch with it but it's the first time there are 4 degrees difference between the thermometers.

    why can't everyone get along! [​IMG]

    this hatch is very important to me (emotional ties) so I really, really don't want to mess up [​IMG]
     
  4. gitlost80

    gitlost80 Trigger Pullet

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    Reno/Sparks
    Well Im just a Rookie, so Im not sure if my opinion is the best one to go off. Hopefully someone more knowledgeable will comment. It is day 8 in my still air incubator and I just candled,my little peepers are swishing around in their eggs.[​IMG]

    Maybe get one more and pick best 2 outta 3? Happy Hatching and I hope all turns out well!
    P.S. Make sure your Thermometers are calibrated(everyone on here will tell you to do that first before anything else).
     
  5. KopyKat

    KopyKat Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 25, 2010
    Round Rock, Texas
    Digital shows 98F and mercury shows 102F

    First of all you probably do not have a mercury thermometer. Most people mistake the "lab" thermometers or thermometers with the red dye in them as mercury thermometers. Those are notoriously inaccurate. A true mercury thermometer is typically purchased from a laboratory supply house and will cost many times as much other types. True mercury thermometers have mercury in the glass piping and it is a shiny metallic silver color. Those are very accurate. I have used one for many years in another hobby that required exact temperature control. I purchased it from a lab wholesale house for $22.00 many years ago. I would imagine they are a good bit higher now.

    The workaround to having a truly accurate thermometer is calibration of a mediocre thermometer to the temperature range you want. That would require borrowing or stealing (temporarily) an accurate thermometer to check yours against.

    BTW, most cheap digital thermometers are inaccurate as well. The best I have found in digital for a reasonable price is https://www.vwrsp.com/catalog/product/index.cgi?product_id=4563035.

    BTW
    again. I calibrate other thermometers against the mercury thermometer.​
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2010
  6. technodoll

    technodoll Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quebec, Canada
    I didn't know that about the mercury themometers... yikes! I am using the little one with the red dye that came with the Hovabator [​IMG]

    So should I just go buy an expensive digital one (with integrated hygrometer)?

    Is it better to err on a little warmer incubation than a little colder?
     

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