Author Topic: Thoughts about incubators on my budget  (Read 188 times)

Dustin Bonner

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Thoughts about incubators on my budget
« on: July 08, 2019, 11:32:29 AM »
I need to get a better incubator, however my budget is only around $200. In that range i found the Brinsea max 14 advanced and the Brinsea octagon 20 eco. Does anyone have any experience on these? Any warnings for me? Or any better ideas?
My current Farm innovator brand incubator from tsc is terrible. The temp would swing from 96 to 103 in an hour. I ran it for a day and when I thought I had it stabilized I put eggs in it. The temp swings came back after a while. 0% hatch rate. All were fertile eggs and died somewhere in the end of the first week to mid second week. After reading some reviews online it appears others have had the same problem as me with this model incubator.

Mike Gilbert

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Re: Thoughts about incubators on my budget
« Reply #1 on: July 08, 2019, 12:23:47 PM »
How many eggs do you want to set at one time?    The GQF Hovabator does a decent job for me, although I don't use it a lot.   Be sure you get one with a fan to circulate the air, and a plastic liner for the bottom as the Styrofoam bators stain very easily and are hard to clean without the liner. 
Mike Gilbert
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Dustin Bonner

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Re: Thoughts about incubators on my budget
« Reply #2 on: July 08, 2019, 05:30:47 PM »
Interesting. I was kind of avoiding that one because it looked similar to the one I have. The reviews for the HovaBator 1588 looked promising though.

Suki

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Re: Thoughts about incubators on my budget
« Reply #3 on: July 08, 2019, 05:34:07 PM »
I have the Brinsea Advanced 14.  I can fit about double that.  It's flawless, totally digital.  You just add water every other day in he little pipe on the side.  I tried to Styrofoam -- twice one from Harris and one from Miller (one was digital one was not) and had no luck.  I live in a humid area and found the Styrofoam holds too much water in.  A friend who has been lucky uses a syringe to water the side channels.   There is a  competitor to the Brinsea is from Harris at Tractor Supply for a hundred dollars less  that I've heard is good.  It holds also twice the size of Brinsea.  I'm thinking of getting that next.


Sue
« Last Edit: July 08, 2019, 05:39:52 PM by Suki »

John W Blehm

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Re: Thoughts about incubators on my budget
« Reply #4 on: July 09, 2019, 09:54:27 AM »
A good used GQF cabinet incubator should go for about $250.  I've seen them on Craig's List, in the past for around that price and sometimes less. 
Also, knowing you are in Michigan, you may want to go to the Michigan Bird and Game Breeders Association (MBGBA) swap meet in Clare on August 10th.  There may be some there for sale.

Dustin Bonner

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Re: Thoughts about incubators on my budget
« Reply #5 on: July 09, 2019, 09:52:32 PM »
I see this gqf 1202 on Facebook market place. He wonít go lower on price.  I take it these gqf cabinets are what the serious hatchers use. Is the 1202 a known good model? Just wondering if anyoneís used one.

John W Blehm

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Re: Thoughts about incubators on my budget
« Reply #6 on: July 10, 2019, 10:17:55 AM »
Looks like a good deal from what I see...$300 for both the setter and hatcher.  A separate hatcher is always the way to go if possible.
The GQF 1200 series has been around for decades and I've had several.  The 1500 series is their top of the line and a pair of new ones would be about $1,500.

Dustin Bonner

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Re: Thoughts about incubators on my budget
« Reply #7 on: July 10, 2019, 11:44:10 AM »
Oh, he wants $550 for both,$300 just for one. Is that still a good deal? Also Iíve seen lots of talk about using a separate setter and Hatcher? What is the reasoning as to why you would move them around to the other unit?

Dustin Bonner

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Re: Thoughts about incubators on my budget
« Reply #8 on: July 10, 2019, 11:50:02 AM »
Also, getting out of my budget, I saw a single used  gqf 1500 you mentioned for sale in the upper peninsula for $500. That doesnít seem like that great a deal for used, but I am driving by it this weekend.

Dustin Bonner

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Re: Thoughts about incubators on my budget
« Reply #9 on: July 10, 2019, 01:53:34 PM »
But than again a Dickey incubator isnít THAT much more...this got out of control.

John W Blehm

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Re: Thoughts about incubators on my budget
« Reply #10 on: July 11, 2019, 10:10:31 AM »
Oh, he wants $550 for both,$300 just for one. Is that still a good deal? Also Iíve seen lots of talk about using a separate setter and Hatcher? What is the reasoning as to why you would move them around to the other unit?

If all the trays are included and the incubators are in decent operating condition I would say $250 for the setter and $200 for the hatcher would be a good deal yet, but depending on age and condition they may be well worth more.
All commercial hatcheries use separate setter and hatcher incubators.  The temperature and humidity are generally set a bit different in the two.  Hatching creates a lot of dander/fuzz from the chicks.  Cleaning the hatcher after every hatch means the setter only needs cleaning once per hatch season and you don't have to open it any more than needed with continuous weekly settings. 

Russ Blair

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Re: Thoughts about incubators on my budget
« Reply #11 on: July 18, 2019, 10:10:54 PM »
Lol the struggles are real Dustin  ;D. My honest advice save your money on buying a smaller one and just get a cabinet incubator. Especially if you are looking to hatch numbers? With the smaller ones you are looking at 14-48 eggs every 21 days, which will take months to get a decent crop off. With a cabinet you can set 96 a week and have a hatch coming every week which helps shorten the hatching season and energy used
S.E. Michigan

Dustin Bonner

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Re: Thoughts about incubators on my budget
« Reply #12 on: July 19, 2019, 12:23:03 PM »
Russ, 96 per week? I have to ask, what do you do with all of them? I love the idea of hatching large numbers and picking the best but 96 a week could get over whelming fairly quickly.

Russ Blair

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Re: Thoughts about incubators on my budget
« Reply #13 on: July 21, 2019, 09:32:26 PM »
Out of 96 I figure 70 should hatch, I prefer to start and end my hatching season as quickly as I can. That way I don't have multiple pens of grow outs, meaning more than the 5 -6 I normally run lol. I always figure 1 out of 10 I hatch will be good birds, but it takes 100 to get an excellent one
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Dustin Bonner

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Re: Thoughts about incubators on my budget
« Reply #14 on: August 11, 2019, 11:06:53 PM »
Thanks to everyone who gave input on this thread. If anyone cares, i decided to take Russís advice and be patient and wait for a cabinet incubator. After refreshing fb marketplace and craigslist every few hours for weeks I was able to jump on this older  gqf 1202. It looks like itís in pretty good condition other than it needs a good cleaning. It even has the original paperwork. Best part is, it was only $75!
« Last Edit: August 11, 2019, 11:08:49 PM by Dustin Bonner »