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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    White River Jct., Vermont
    Posts
    41

    Post

    Hi, I was wondering if anyone had any advice on harvesting a small amount of honey. This is my first year raising bees and it looks like I am only going to get about maybe 3 or 4 deep frames of honey between my two hives, for me. I was planing to buy and extractor this year, but don't think I will till next year now. Is there a way of uncaping and maybe letting it just drip out, with maybe a light bulb close by or something. I really had planed to have more honey than this, I started with two 5-frame nucs and the bees are always busy... maybe too much rain this summer... Thanks for any ideas you might have.
    J.P. Rich

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    6,467

    Post

    squeeze the honey out with your hands, comb is distroyed, but really your only option without an extractor, unless you eat it as comb honey...

    Ian

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,553

    Post

    >Hi, I was wondering if anyone had any advice on harvesting a small amount of honey. This is my first year raising bees and it looks like I am only going to get about maybe 3 or 4 deep frames of honey between my two hives, for me.

    With wires or not?

    >I was planing to buy and extractor this year, but don't think I will till next year now.

    I waited about thirty years and didn't get one until I had about eight hives.

    >Is there a way of uncaping and maybe letting it just drip out, with maybe a light bulb close by or something.

    Not really. It won't drain very much. There is a lot of surface tension. If you have an observation hive and watch them, you can see the bees use the surface tension to fill them to the brim There will be honey uphill from the mouth of the cell and it won't run out.

    >I really had planed to have more honey than this, I started with two 5-frame nucs and the bees are always busy... maybe too much rain this summer... Thanks for any ideas you might have.

    I always just crushed the comb and drained it through a screen or a strainer. Believe it or not it's as quick or quicker than extracting. I have a 18 frame radial and I'd say it's a wash. But if I had a 2 frame non-reversable I'd say it much faster to crush and drain. Of course I also like comb honey and have more of a market for it, so I make a lot of cut comb.

    If what you're trying to get is honey, all this works fine. If what you're trying to get is drawn comb, then uncap it and put it above the inner cover and let the bees clean it out for you and you'll have some clean drawn comb. But then you'll have to take some more frames and crush the combs to get some honey.

  4. #4

    Cool

    Actually J.P., it sounds like you've done a good job if you got both nucs to survive. Just make sure you leave enough honey in the hive for them to over-winter. (I assume you've checked with someone in the VT area to see how much honey they will need to survive the winter).
    And if you're sure you can still afford to take a few combs of honey from them, I agree, probably just cutting some of the comb away is your best bet. It will be kind of messy but put it in a strainer, over a collection pan and the honey will dip out (perhaps, place it in the oven with just the pilot light or oven light on, overnight - don't heat it). You will get enough to treat your family and they will be able to enjoy your great tasting honey!
    Then prepare for next next year!! Make sure you have enough honey supers built because it sounds like you're going to have lots of honey next year!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    White River Jct., Vermont
    Posts
    41

    Post

    The deep frames that I want the honey from, do have wire. I would like to keep the drawn comb if at all possible, this is the reason that I think that production was down, starting without drawn out comb. I would like to give them every chance I can for nest summers crop. Thank you all!
    J.P. Rich

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    Neodesha, Ks
    Posts
    623

    Post

    Check around your area for another beekeeper that may have an extractor, maybe he would extract them for you or maybe a club in your area has an extractor for their members. Always good to talk to another BeeKeeper. Since you are just getting started you may find someone that would be of help answering
    questions about your local area such as winter stores. Good Luck

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    napoleon ohio
    Posts
    769

    Post

    Hope you can find a local beekeeper for the extracting.If you are going to buy an extractor,think of how many hive you w3aqnt to expand to.I soon found out the the 3 fram cranking realy sucks.This year i got the 9/18 electric model from manlake. I love it so far.I do know if anyone ever asks me i will be more than glad to help spin out there honey.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,553

    Post

    >Hope you can find a local beekeeper for the extracting.If you are going to buy an extractor,think of how many hive you w3aqnt to expand to.I soon found out the the 3 fram cranking realy sucks.This year i got the 9/18 electric model from manlake. I love it so far.

    I held out until I could buy the 9/18 from Mann Lake. I have not regretted waiting.

    >I do know if anyone ever asks me i will be more than glad to help spin out there honey.

    I have done this. It's a lot of work but it's nice to meet other beekeepers and share ideas. I charged $50 because it ruins my day to do it, but I gave away a lot of old equipment that I didn't need and a lot of ideas so I think he was happy with the end results.

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