IncuKit DIY incubator

Kapidolo Farms

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http://incubatorwarehouse.com/incukit-xl.html is the web page.

I bought the proportional thermostat and two fan/heater units. My thinking being if one heater/fan unit failed the other could be already in place and running.

In this thread https://tortoiseforum.org/threads/incubators.165150/ I have a few images of the way I mounted the controller/proportional thermostat and the top fan/heater. the bottom fan/heater is mounted to the underside of the bottom shelf aimed into a water pan. I shielded it so it would not get dripped on from condensation.

The first issue, following the set-up instructions lead to what I would characterize as an omission and that is covered in that other thread.

Now the biggy and why this is NOT an acceptable units for my application.

My Follow-up on the first questions and second question to customer service . . .
"
Hi Evan,

Thanks much for the clue on the exit. It worked, of course. Seems like it might be a good thing to include in the written instructions somewhere?

I am using a SensorPush logger/probe to monitor the inside of the cabinet where I will be putting eggs. Once deployed, both the fan/heat devices from your company and the SensorPush are within 0.1 degrees F of each other. I set the Thermosts to 87.5. When the SensorPush indicates 87.4 the sensor for the thermostat reports 87.5. Sometime before reaching the setpoint the heat units are reduced to 3% (and then 1%) and it keeps heating until the incubator (by both the SenosrPush and the thermostat) indicate 94.4 +/- 0.1F.

Why would it heat past it's set point?

This is more background...

I have consulted with friends who have similar incubator setups with other thermostats and heat generating devices and they suggest an all the time small fan is required.

I don't understand why that would be so, a fan might reduce different warm or cold zones and make the whole cabinet more uniform, but it does not explain why the Incukit heats past the set point.

The set up is this...

I have a commercial refrigerator body with two inches of foam insulation all around encased on the inside with some sort of fiberglass/plastic sheets and the outside skin is metal. The interior space is five feet vertical with a two foot by two foot foot-print. I have one 125 watt heater/fan unit mounted in the cabinet ceiling and one below the bottom shelf aimed into a large pan of water. The bottom unit is shielded from condensation drip just slightly bigger than it's own diameter. The SensorPush and thermostat probe are in a plastic show box to one side about 12 inches below the ceiling heater/fan unit.

I incubate tortoise eggs in plastic shoe boxes with vented lids. The eggs are buried in a perlite/water crystal/peat moss blend (a common media). I have used Reptibators (ZooMed) before with great success. However total egg production now exceeds the capacity of four Reptibators. I expect a few hundred eggs this year. The refrigerator cabinet will hold 18 plastic shoe boxes (all are in the incubator with the media) during the trial period to set the system up."

An their response (highlighted text done by me). . .
"Hi ,

Normally, with the type of incubator you are trying to build we the following issues. One is that the room temperature is close to the desired temperature of the incubator. This makes it so the incubator does not loose very much heat which in turn lowers the amount of wattage that is requited to heat the incubator. This then makes it possible for the two fans to overheat the incubator without the heating element. Each fan on this kit produces about 25 watts of heat constantly which in a well insulated container can cause it to overheat. If the heater percentage drops to zero but the incubator keeps heating this is the case. The only fix for this is to remove or unplug one of the heater/fan units to reduce the heat created by the fans.

Thanks,
Evan
IncubatorWarehouse Customer Service"
 

Kapidolo Farms

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I pushed forward with a few ideas on how to make this work.

I made two ports for air movement through the frig, one from the bottom where air off the floor is drawn in be convention from hot wet air going out a port in the top. Each port is 2 inches in diameter and can be shunted if they were too big. I ran one heat/fan unit near the bottom of the incubator (heat rises and all) and had the temp probe at the top. The warmest the air from the floor, (thanks again @Markw84 for the SensorPush narrative) got was 78F, and the incubator as a whole got to the low 90'F still. WTF???

In no way shape or form should the term "proportional" be applied to this unit's controller. It is always on at least using 25 watts. I have no way to imagine how cold the room must be and air leaky the incubator should be for this unit to not cook reptile eggs. Maybe birds are more tolerant and they do incubate at higher temps. Evan's last comment was that I should buy their reptile controller which is an on/off thermostat.

On a positive note the Temp/RH probe to simply see temp and RH in real time so far has not failed. That is getting to be a record going on two weeks now for anything other than the SensorPush.

So, what the to do. I have two large female Manouria with x-rays indicating over 100 eggs. Yeah, wow.

I used the top of a Reptibater incubator, put it just below the bottom shelf over water, and plugged it into a simple on/off thermostat set at 89F. The Reptibator is set for 87. I did not close the air ports, bang-perfectly held temps for at least 18 hours now.
 

Markw84

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@Will Do you have the thermostat inside the incubator? Or is it simply always supplying a min of 25 watts power to your heat source?

What is in the refridgerator that can draw current? Only fans and heating element - Correct?
 

Kapidolo Farms

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@Will Do you have the thermostat inside the incubator? Or is it simply always supplying a min of 25 watts power to your heat source?

What is in the refridgerator that can draw current? Only fans and heating element - Correct?


With the incukit the thermostat was mounted on top of the frig, with the reptibator, the actual whole reptibator top is inside the frig, but is plugged into another on/off thermostat out side the frig. I am running wires through the ports.
 

Markw84

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Did you try using the incukit with the fans disconnected? The fans are the only thing that could have been overheating your unit. If they draw 20 watts each - they certainly would do that. I can't imagine the thermostat is the issue.
 
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