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#114036 - 03/14/15 11:05 PM Re: Waterbator [Re: Foehn]
Uno Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 08/26/05
Posts: 1280
Loc: Canada
That's my plan, make a million!

Watch out for electricians who sell by the foot but charge by the arm and leg!

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#114240 - 04/19/15 05:38 AM Re: Waterbator [Re: Foehn]
Robbie Offline
Flock Leader

Registered: 01/19/15
Posts: 258
Loc: Ontario Canada
Uno, I hve been following your water/mojobator/unobator idea for a while with interest, and I think I know what the problem might be. I built my own incubator and added two large hot water bottles to serve (I thought) as a way to moderate temperature swings when I opened the incubator. What I did find was that although the air temperature was 99.5 degrees, the water temperature was only 94.8 and the bottles were acting as cooling pads rather than heating pads. It was too cold for the eggs to incubate properly. I did put water hotter than the incubator in at the start, thinking equilibrium would be reached at 99.5 oF. I think that because the incubator's insulation wasn't perfect, heat was being conducted out of the incubator via the water bottles, cooling them. The water cannot evaporate from the closed bottles so that must be the reason the water was cooler than air temperature. My thoughts are that the water itself must be heated if it is to be used in an incubator, but it might be too tricky to heat the water to a consistently proper temperature. I am curious, Did you take the temperature of the water or was it the temperature of the air just above the water? In my incubator the air temperature was different than the water temperature. If the water temperature was indeed 99.5 oF in your incubator, then perhaps the eggs need to be turned more often and that would solve the problem.

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#114260 - 04/22/15 12:07 AM Re: Waterbator [Re: Robbie]
Uno Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 08/26/05
Posts: 1280
Loc: Canada
Robbie, thanks for your interest.

As I think I've already said (been a while since I was here) my temp probe was taped to the surface of the water bag, and it was reading 99.5.

I still think the problem was that the egg, where it contacts the water bag, was 99.5. But the embryo, floating at the top of the egg, was not warm enough. A hen sits on the TOP of the eggs, applying her body heat at the top, where the embryo sits. I was doing it in reverse, heating from the bottom, and it just didn't work.

I have now moved on to a new design, the Noodlebator, which is a pool noodle and an antique bread pan with a light bulb and digital controller. Hatched out my chicks and ducklings in it so far this year. And I don't add any water for humidity.

If there was a way to get the water bag on TOP of the eggs, it might work, but I cant's imagine chicks trying to hatch with a massive bag of water on top of them. Water is heavy!

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#114265 - 04/24/15 06:15 AM Re: Waterbator [Re: Uno]
Robbie Offline
Flock Leader

Registered: 01/19/15
Posts: 258
Loc: Ontario Canada
So, perhaps the answer is to turn the eggs very often if they are on the water? that could do it.
I have re started my incubator with a fresh clutch of eggs, and without the water bags and evertyhing seems to be running smoothly.
I can't for the life of me picture the noodlebator..... can we see some photos? I'd be very interested in them.

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#114273 - 04/24/15 08:27 PM Re: Waterbator [Re: Robbie]
Uno Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 08/26/05
Posts: 1280
Loc: Canada
I'm trying to remember how to post pictures here ...

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#114275 - 04/24/15 08:41 PM Re: Waterbator [Re: Uno]
Uno Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 08/26/05
Posts: 1280
Loc: Canada

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#114276 - 04/24/15 08:43 PM Re: Waterbator [Re: Uno]
Uno Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 08/26/05
Posts: 1280
Loc: Canada

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#114277 - 04/24/15 08:48 PM Re: Waterbator [Re: Uno]
Uno Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 08/26/05
Posts: 1280
Loc: Canada


A pool noodle curled into a big O shape.
A light bulb and digital temperature controller.
Bulb surrounded by foil cone to direct heat and light upwards, do not want glare on eggs, which causes hot spots.
Antique bread pan with a gasket of waterline insulation taped to the rim, is the top of the Noodlebator.
I cover the whole thing with a towel.
I dry hatch, no humidity added.
Last year and this I have hatched in the Noodlebator.
I think the dome shape and heat holding ability of the bowl is key.
Clean up is a snap! Throw the bottom towel in the laundry, and wipe everything down with a bleachy cloth. Done!




Edited by Uno (04/24/15 08:49 PM)

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#114285 - 04/26/15 06:36 PM Re: Waterbator [Re: Uno]
Robbie Offline
Flock Leader

Registered: 01/19/15
Posts: 258
Loc: Ontario Canada
That is very interesting indeed..... how does air get in there so the eggs don't suffocate? I take it you lift the top off to turn the eggs? How long does it take to get back up to correct temperature? And you don't add water to increase the humidity at lockdown?

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#114286 - 04/26/15 08:44 PM Re: Waterbator [Re: Robbie]
Uno Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 08/26/05
Posts: 1280
Loc: Canada
I do not add water. Not even for duck eggs.

I candle every day so that lets air in. Plus the extension cords running here and there make small air gaps. Plus there might be the odd rust hole in the old bread bowl.

The bread bowl is enamel and holds some heat for a while, a very short term heat sink. But it comes back up to temp quite quickly, I'd say in about 5 minutes. 40 watt bulb. 60 is too hot.

I do not worry too much about the eggs cooling off for a bit while I candle them. I figure the hen gets off her nest to eat and go to the bathroom, so eggs must be designed to have a little bit of no heat.

I made some modifications since this pic. There is not a lot of room in there, so I carved off the inside inch of the pool noodle all the way around to give me a bit more room.

The other problem is that when chicks hatch and wobble around, they bang into the light bulb and burn themselves and knock the tinfoil wrapping off kilter. I have devised cages to set hatching eggs into, but they get out of the cages pretty quick. Am going to have to come up with a better chick containment plan.

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