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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Bismarck, ND USA
    Posts
    512

    Post

    I'm curious to hear from other sideliner/small commercial honey producers (more than 100 hives)what type of extracting setup you have. What type of equipment, pros & cons of your setup, and how much honey you can go through in an 8 hour day (# of supers, pounds or barrels of honey).

    Since I asked, I'll go first (although I am contemplating undergoing a major expansion to my honey house and totally revamping my extracting system into bigger capacity, which is why I'm asking in the first place [img]smile.gif[/img] ): I have a 100 model Dakota Gunness uncapper (small one, feed 1 frame through at a time), can probably uncap a super in about 1 - 2 minutes; 2 33 frame Kelley extractors; the cappings go into a Dadant electromelt (with slum rake); the honey goes from the extractors in a Maxant 60 inch clarifier, and from there to the honey pump to 1 of 2 holding tanks, both about 250 gallons.

    In an average day I go through about 100 medium supers, which, depending on how full they are, will yield anywhere from 2,500 - 3,500 pounds of honey (or about 3.5 - 5 barrels).

    Pros: relatively fast??? (although I'd like to go faster)
    Cons: had a problem with melter darkening the honey coming from it last year (1st year I had it); get a lot of wax in the holding tanks, which need to be skimmed on a daily basis (a real pain)

    Thanks.
    Gregg Stewart

  2. #2

    Post

    You have PM (off topic)
    Bryn<br />bryn@ald.net<br /><br />\"I want to be oncommon\" -Pip, Great Expectations

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    6,214

    Post

    Hey Gregg

    Nothing real fancy here, everything second hand

    I have a SS dual real Cowan extractor with Jumbo uncapper. Works like a charm, but it must be at least 30 or so years old, and quite outdated. No holding racks, the uncapper pushes the frames right into the extractor. Fill one, slide the uncapper over to the other. I am going to do a few modifications to ease the use of it, but really, it works well.
    The fellow I bought it from claimed to do 200 supers in a day, but I have only gotten around 120 or so in a good day. But I have been drawing a pile of foundation out, and fresh comb really holds back the uncapper. Perhaps when I begin running 9-8 frames, things will go much quicker.
    My wax falls into a long auger, the span of both extractors, and pushes the wax/honey through a 4 inch tubing to fall into my wax spinner. Real old bugger of a thing, but drys my wax well. Honey drains straight into my honey sump so my old 1 1/2 inch viking pump severs both. Got an old milk tank modified on stands to fill barrels, and the rest is $$$$

    Spent under 3000-4000$ for my set up. Probably need something bigger over 400 hives.
    Fellow I bought this unit from has a modern updated modle, withall the bells and whistle for 30000$ or so!!! He runs over 800 hives
    Chow
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    6,214

    Post

    Hey Gregg

    Nothing real fancy here, everything second hand

    I have a SS dual real Cowan extractor with Jumbo uncapper. Works like a charm, but it must be at least 30 or so years old, and quite outdated. No holding racks, the uncapper pushes the frames right into the extractor. Fill one, slide the uncapper over to the other. I am going to do a few modifications to ease the use of it, but really, it works well.
    The fellow I bought it from claimed to do 200 supers in a day, but I have only gotten around 120 or so in a good day. But I have been drawing a pile of foundation out, and fresh comb really holds back the uncapper. Perhaps when I begin running 9-8 frames, things will go much quicker.
    My wax falls into a long auger, the span of both extractors, and pushes the wax/honey through a 4 inch tubing to fall into my wax spinner. Real old bugger of a thing, but drys my wax well. Honey drains straight into my honey sump so my old 1 1/2 inch viking pump severs both. Got an old milk tank modified on stands to fill barrels, and the rest is $$$$

    Spent under 3000-4000$ for my set up. Probably need something bigger over 400 hives.

    Chow
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    waco, tx
    Posts
    528

    Post

    Ian writes: "But I have been drawing a pile of foundation out, and fresh comb really holds back the uncapper."

    I just acquired an uncapper; curious about this statement. Have no instructions yet; supposed to be "in the mail" from Cowen.

    Lew

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    6,214

    Post

    The problem with freshly drawn foundations is that it is so very delicate. Those knives have to be hot, and sharp to do the job. Otherwise what happens is the knives just tare the fresh wax clean off the foundation!
    Also, usually beekeeper draw out foundation 10 or 9 / super to ensure proper bee space. This allow for good straight comb, but you will end up with a capped comb that doesnt bulge out from the frames. This makes it real hard to uncapp through a stationary blade sed up.
    I think the best thing to do with fresh wax comb is to just scrape them by hand, and then run them into the extractor through the uncapper, and save all the bother.
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    6,214

    Post

    I believe the biggest factor in extracting speed is running an 8 frame setup.
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

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