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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    5,113

    Angry

    Hello all, this is Sol's girlfriend.

    We just installed the bees on saturday, and we checked up on all twenty hives today.

    The foundation has fallen out of the frames in most hives. Fourtunatly, we have extra foundation, but we still don't know why the foundation fell out.

    Is it the quality of the foundation? If not, what? I hate to see him like this, has anyone gone through the same thing? Any words of wisdom?

    Thank you for your input,

    *~*~Jenna Voetsch~*~*

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    oneonta al.
    Posts
    848

    Post

    Jenna:more info-Is the foundation wax-top hook's-or plastic cell? how about the frames he's using? wedge top split- ect,? maybe we can figure it out with a little more info,sure would like to help so all those bees can go to work, mark

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,341

    Post

    If the foundation gets hot it will sag and sometimes it falls out. I like to use the grooved top bars and the wax tube fastener to glue it in with hot wax, but still it falls out sometimes. The only secrets I know are don't put foundation in frames until just before you need it. Don't put it in the hive until just before the bees need it. Nail your cleat tight or glue it in with a wax tube fastener. I assume it was wax foundation and I assume there was a cleat for the top bar to hold the foundation? If it was just grooved you have to use the wax tube fastener or use plastic foundation.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    5,113

    Post

    Sol again.
    It was all brand new small cell foundation, all wax. Some grooved top some wedge top. I think the bees warmed it up and while there were so many of them sitting on it, it collapsed.
    THis is so depressing.
    Removed most of the frames and I will have to put the foundation back in. Will use hot wax to hold to the top bars this time.
    Made lots of mad bees, but no vicious stingers, just got them caught in my shirt so I went shirtless and only got one sting after that.
    Released all the queens.
    I was about that close to crying.
    Back to work.

    ------------------
    Sol Parker
    Southern Oregon Apiaries

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    4,950

    Post

    Wire your frames and embed into foundation. Never had any fall out.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    5,113

    Post

    Jenna again:

    odfrank,
    Some of the frames WERE Wired. We embedded them with a spur embedder, but even then some fell out. We are using different kinds of frames, but with each kind, foundation still fell out. Maybe it WAS the weather, maybe not. But it hasn't been hot over here. cold an rainy. Would that have somethign to do with it?

    I heard afterwards that you're supposed to heat the embedder. We didn't do that, so maybe that's why some fell out, but still, about the others....?

    I'm going to make more, and we're going to try again. this is depressing, but we're not going to give up.

    *~*~Jenna~*~*

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    5,113

    Post

    The frames that were'nt wired had pins.

    ------------------
    Sol Parker
    Southern Oregon Apiaries

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,341

    Post

    I don't think the wire or lack of it is why they fell out. The wire helps keep it from sagging but you have to have the top of the foundation anchored to the frame. The wedge had to be nailed from the face through the foundation into the face of the other side of the top bar. In other words nailing the wedge should press the wedge into the foundation and pinch the foundation between those two faces. Otherwise it will always fall out. It also need to be nailed reasonably tight, not just barely in. If you have wired foundation (that came that way) and it has vertical wired you bend those around that cleat to hold it too. Also I try to put the nails in the cleat where they are close to the wires.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    4,950

    Post

    I never use wedge top bars, only grooved and my foundaton never falls out. I used non-vertical wired 4.9 this year with wires embedded with an ELECTRICAL embedder, they didn't budge out when I put a swarm on them. You do not normally heat a spur embedder that I know of, or do people ? An electrical embedder actually sinks the wires into the foundation, a spur embedder only pushes them in slightly. With grooved top and bottom bars, proper height foundation, and electrically embedded wires, you will have no problem. Well clamped wedge top bars would help.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Location
    crown point, NY, USA
    Posts
    971

    Post

    Hi Sol,

    Sounds like a top anchoring problem. Maybe the heat played a part also along with weight of the bees. I was fortunate enough to have a father who kept bees (hobbyist)and was shown the ropes so I could avoid much of this. First I must say I use ONLY wedge top bars and never grooved top bars (just my preference). Not to say the later is bad but may not be the best in some climates without a wax bead. When I put the wedge in I place it in with much force and quite tightly. Another thing to make sure is that the wires a tight enough and not slack as not to droop down a bit (I use a wire crimper which put the wires under tention by spring loading them). Also are you certain you are embedding the wire deep enough in hot weather if not deep it can kinda unstick or buckle. Do you have a car battery charger? Once you go electric you'll never go back. And yes when you use a spur embedder you should heat it for best embedding.

    Clay

  11. #11

    Post

    Clay, how do you embed foundation with a battery charger?

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,341

    Post

    A search of this topic for "embedding" gives these results: http://www.beesource.com/ubb/Forum1/HTML/000290.html http://www.beesource.com/ubb/Forum1/HTML/000278.html http://www.beesource.com/ubb/Forum1/HTML/000117.html

    In one of those posts there is this reference: http://www.beesource.com/eob/wire_embedder/index.htm

    This is much information about wiring and embedding.

  13. #13
    BILLY BOB Guest

    Post

    I've been using a 12v battery that I got from wal-mart, a small one that you use for a lawn mower runs from $10 to $15. I run some cables/wires from the battery conections and touch each end of the frame foundation wires at the same time with them. About a second or so per foundation wire and it melts right into the foundation.

    Every so offten I recharge the battery. It works real good.

    Billy Bob

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    Jameson, MO USA
    Posts
    76

    Post

    Hi Sol
    Sounds to me like a lot of the above applies - wires not embedded properly ( I use a 12V battery charger just like Billy Bob uses a battery. I use the charger because I had it and don't have to buy a battery), but also I wonder if you are putting the wax sheets all on the same side of the wires? I weave mine through the wires, ending with 2 wires on one side and 2 on the other (alternating with each other), then embedding with heat via the 12 volts (careful - heat it too long and it will burn through).

    Another question is: How tight are the wires? They should bee tight enough to hum a little when plucked. Were not talking a harp here, just a little thrum. The most valuable tool I have found for this is the wire tightening tool sold by Brushy Mountain. Get one and you will bless the day it arrived. This tool also corrugates the wire in such a fashion to give it a much better grip on the foundation.

    One more thing I do to my frames is to paint the inside of the frames, all around, with melted beeswax (use a basting brush). This seems to improve the way the bees adhere the comb to the woodwork on the sides and bottom.

    You might also consider marking the frame with an arrow to show the side with the upside down Y in the cell bottom, and arrange them in the hive with the arrows all pointing to the middle. 5 on one side, and 5 on the other, according to the Housel theory of comb arrangement. Just might help the bees draw it out better.

    Best wishes, Joel

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    5,113

    Post

    I did use a wire crimper, my real problem is that I have all these old wedge top bars with no wedges. I have fixed the problem with a wire bead across the foundation and top bar.
    As for Housel Positioning, my website, www.allnaturalhoney.com will soon have pictures of my package installation escapade. The pictures show the way I use a Y or < to note foundation direction.
    The bees seem to be keying in on this and clustering in the middle rear of the hive bodies.


    ------------------
    Sol Parker
    Southern Oregon Apiaries

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