Wine Cooler Incubator Step-By-Step: COMPLETE!!!!

acy0029

Songster
8 Years
Apr 9, 2011
257
5
113
Tucson
I'm going to do this in probably three parts it's very in-depth and I don't have time to show it all at once I hope everyone understands. It will seem complicated but that is just because I'm going step-by-step.
Parts List:
1. 8 bottle wine cooler.(any size will work).
2. Bi-Metal thermostat (Incubator Warehouse $22.00 incl.shipping)
3. Peltier cooler (amazon.com $10.38 incl.shipping) If you cooler works you won't need this part.
4. Heatsink paste (amazon.com about $10.00) You will need this no matter what.
5. Old lamp cord or equivalent.
6. Assorted tools screwdrivers,drill,wire strippers etc,etc,
7. something to connect wires together heatshrink or wirenuts or even electrical tape.
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This is what I'm starting with:$25.00 from Wal-Mart several years ago.
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First: Remove interior and back cover.
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Drill hole where you want the control knob. I am using an old speaker wire box but, this is not necessary.
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Second: cut hole on inside of cooler large enough to accommodate thermostat:... sorry so blurry it's a hard place to get a good picture.
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Third: drill hole in back corner to pass thermostat wires through to the back... I am using an old lamp cord.
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Fourth: Remove cooling unit from the back two screws(interior piece will also be removed at this point). Large Aluminum piece that looks like a Heatsink.
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At this point we veer a bit depending on weather you are using a new cooler or the one that comes with it, if your cooler works you don't need to replace the Peltier cooler.
USING EXISTING PELTIER COOLER: Follow heat paste manufacturer instructions on cleaning and applying paste all you need to do is apply the new paste and flip the cooler so it's heating the inside instead of cooling it.
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USING A NEW PELTIER COOLER: Remove the old heater, I used female plugs from the old one so snip and strip the old wires and splice with wire nuts,heat shrink tube,whatever you want. Plug back in,plug in cooler and find out which side of cooler is the hot side this side faces in(obviously).Reassemble the cooling unit.

This is a wiring diagram I drew up to help make it easier to understand,

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Next I installed a computer fan the temp differance between the left and right side of the incubator was about three degrees. This may vary depending on the cabinet you use you may not need to install an extra fan. If you do install an extra fan make sure you have a gap behind it or it won't work properly. I just spliced mine into the other fan.
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I drilled two holes in the top and three holes in the side to help regulate humidity and fresh air. You will need to decide how you want to do this since everyone's will vary depending on where you live I live in Southern Arizona so my holes are small and will stay closed much of the time.
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Since I have never seen a hen that could balance an egg on end I will be hand turning my eggs so I won't be buying or making an egg turner. A regular egg turner is 15"x15" my cooler is only 14"x14" so an auto turner wouldn't work anyway. If you have any questions don't hesitate to PM me I'll help as much as I can.I have been holding temp and humidity for a few days now so it seems to be working great now I just need to find some SQ barred rock eggs and I'll be set.
GOOD LUCK AND HAVE FUN!!!
Aaron
 
Last edited:

Sphinx

Crowing
10 Years
May 10, 2010
3,224
78
271
Utah
Woot!!!

I have a 44 bottle incubator that I plan to convert to an incubator. I'll be watching this thread closely.

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quintinp

Songster
9 Years
Oct 22, 2010
2,067
26
171
Southern Oklahoma
I just bought this Bi-metal thermostat off of Ebay. I got the whole kit for it. I am using it in my old Brower Top Hatch incubator. It was one of the Earliest models out there also.
 

acy0029

Songster
8 Years
Apr 9, 2011
257
5
113
Tucson
I had some problems with my ISP so I will be updating this post either tonight or tomorrow sorry it took so long.
 

Stacykins

Crowing
9 Years
Jan 19, 2011
4,355
228
258
Escanaba, MI
Yes, I know I am reviving an ancient thread. Has anyone else done any wine cooler builds since this? Tomorrow I am picking up a lightly used 28 bottle wine cooler to become my new incubator. Hardest part won't be wiring for heating/air circulation, rather, figuring out a turning mechanism (I may just turn by hand for a while) that is simple yet effective.
 

cadesus78

Hatching
Feb 15, 2016
8
0
9
Hi, I know it has been a long while since post but I am trying to do same thing. I am not electrical in any way think u may could help in how to flip cooler
 

jake and pippa

Chirping
5 Years
Dec 13, 2015
87
19
84
Hudson valley NY
I would like to build an incubator/hatcher from a wine cooler. I was planning to pick up a broken one for free, toss the motor, and buy supplies from Incubator Warehouse. They sell incubator conversion kits with fans heaters and thermostats, they have a very cool turner that does not require any fancy motors or shelves. I will simply put their IncuTurns directly on the shelves, or on cookie sheets on the shelves, add a humidity pump, and that's it! Right now I have a working wine cooler that I use to store my eggs prior to incubation. The temperature is just right, and I have a sponge in there to increase humidity. Neither my husband or I want to use that one for eggs, I already have enough trouble fitting all the eggs in between the bottles.

The kit I need is very simple, the turners are a bit pricey, but real simple to install.
 

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