Orpingtons are fantastic chickens. They are winter hardy, docile and they lay well. Additionally, they do brood well and make excellent mothers. Hopefully, our hens will go broody this Spring and hatch out their own eggs. We had a few "girls" go broody a number of weeks ago, but as we were still in the depths of winter (-25C) with 5 feet of snow AND we were going on holidays, we decided to continue collecting the eggs and not let them incubate. Poor girls.... I feel so badly doing that but as the hens were in their toasty warm coop, they didn't really know that it was still winter outside!
Our incubator is a Brinsea Octogon Eco 20. It's economical and easy to use but more importantly for us, it's quieter than other incubators. This model can hold 24 chicken eggs depending on the size of the eggs. I have 22 in here but there is room for 2 more eggs. Eggs can rest laying down or upright as long as the large end of the egg is up (not the pointy end). Angled sitting is fine, too. As you can see, the black rails come out and can be inserted where needed to support the eggs and keep them from rolling around. The eggs rest on the mesh basket ~ the weight of the egg is not actually supported by the rails.