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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Devils Lake, North Dakota
    Posts
    9,183

    Post

    I see that Dadant has plastic small cell.

    Unfortunatly they spend a ton of time telling you only experienced beekeepers only.......

    They neglect to tell me what size the cell is.... Can one assume 4.9

    In the case of regressing wouldn't the plastic fountation be more practical?? My understanding is that the first draw will be close to 5.1 and then you have to cull out that and reintroduce 4.9 again.

    What are the drawback to plastic? I imagine you should dip the foundation in beeswax first (which sounds a bit labor intensive).

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    43,492

    Post

    >They neglect to tell me what size the cell is.... Can one assume 4.9

    Yes, it is 4.9.

    >In the case of regressing wouldn't the plastic fountation be more practical??

    I have tried it as have many others. The large cell bees will not accept it, will not draw it in any acceptable way whatsoever. They will build fins on it, they will build combs out away from it, they will build combs between it, but they will not draw it.

    >My understanding is that the first draw will be close to 5.1 and then you have to cull out that and reintroduce 4.9 again.

    On wax, yes. On foundationless, yes. But they won't draw the plastic when they are not already regressed. If you put small cell bees on it, then it's like any plastic, they will probably do fine, but occasionally won't like it.

    >What are the drawback to plastic?

    After you are regressed, I don't see any. I like plastic.

    >I imagine you should dip the foundation in beeswax first (which sounds a bit labor intensive).

    It's already coated with beeswax. That isn't the problem. The problem is that they can't draw it 4.9mm when they are large bees, and they can't easily rebuild it, so they ignore it instead.

    I'd recommend if you want plastic and you don't want to spend too much regressing, do 3/4" wide starter strips of the small cell wax for the first regression and plastic for the second regression.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Milford, MI
    Posts
    328

    Post

    SCF from Dadant is already wax coated. Acceptance is the main objection by most keepers, same objection as Plasticell. I personally prefer the plastic SCF during regression because I can cull out frames that are not drawn small enough and reclaim the foundation.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Devils Lake, North Dakota
    Posts
    9,183

    Post

    Michael... Thanks for the info. What is the spacing on starter strips? I am a newbee but the small cell seems to me the only way to go.

    Bruce

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    43,492

    Post

    You can just cut 3/4" wide strips and install them as if they are full sheets of foundation. Either nail the cleat to hold them in or wax them into the groove. Any method used for securing the top of a sheet of foundation.

    I'm not sure what you mean by spacing? I'd push all the frames together tightly in the middle of the box. If you want to maximize small cell in the long run you CAN cut the end bars down to 1 1/4" instead of the usual 1 3/8" but most people do not. I have on some and have had better results, but most of mine are the standard 1 3/8".

    I'm glad the plastic worked for someone for regressing, but everyone else I know of is just fighting the bees with it. I haven't had that problem with the wax or the starter strips or the foundationless frames.

    I have also used small cell starter strips, full sheets of wax 4.9mm, full sheets of plastic 4.9mm, foundationless frames and even plain empty frames between two drawn combs. All of these worked for regressing except the plastic. The plastic worked fine once they were regressed. Just like any plastic there are occasional rejections but mostly they take to it fine.

    I have pictures on my web site of foundationless frames, and some comb drawn on blank starter strips:

    http://incolor.inetnebr.com/bush/bush_bees.htm

    Click on the thumbnail for larger pictures.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

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