06-15-2007, 07:57 PM
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Let me tell you something about automatic feeders.
You get what you pay for, in most cases. I once bought a crappy one from Wal-mart for $20.00, and couldn't even figure out its dispensing schedule. No indicators, no settings, nothing. It just seemed to spin whenever it wanted to. :/
I returned it, picked up a different one they had for 30 bucks. That one also didn't have any settings but the instructions that came with it were slightly more thorough when it came to explaining how it worked. I had it running for two days, then it BROKE (obviously this would be a disaster when no one is there for 2 weeks). I returned it, furious, then I just went to my lfs, and paid $60.00 for a Nutrafin automatic feeder with time settings, LED lights, manual feeding options and several different quantity settings. The drum to hold the food was much larger and the slot which food dispensed out of was shaped to allow sticks to fall through as well (in this case, I added blood worms to my drum alongside flake foods and some crumbles).
Haven't looked back once. Also, the battery life lasts 1 whole year. Which is pretty good since this is pretty much a fire and forget device. Currently it is not in use because I am home, but if and when I go away for vacation, which is coming up soon, I have a trusty reliable feeder that I can depend on and know how to use. and listen to Mike H, try to get one a week or two in advance, so you can familiarize yourself with it, and decide whether or not it is adequate for you.
Good luck, hope it works out for you man.