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  1. #81
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Cole County, Missouri
    Posts
    170

    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    I have been trying foundationless.. I have found one problem but it could be due to my inexperience with honey extraction methods. I finally got honey, and some of the frames are foundationless. I took a hot knife and uncapped them. one kind of bent because the comb is a bit wavy. Well I put it in my extractor and all the comb just spun out. it even broke the fishing wire. so all my honey had little pieces of wax in it and I sadly had to pasteurize it to get the wax to the top. but it still taste good. I will continue to use foundationless.. Why because it is cheap I did have an over abundance of drones. But I will deal with that. any suggestions on harvesting honey on natural comb? minus the idea of putting comb in the jars?

  2. #82
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Sullivan, MO
    Posts
    901

    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    I get the feeling you extracted radially? I have had more luck extracting tangentially because of the cage supporting the comb. You need to start slow with the extracting, take half from one side and then the entire other side and then finish the first side. Sounds like it would take a long time, but it really doesn't. I count to 60 on the first side, flip, count to 100, flip and then count to 60 again. DONE You didn't have to "pasteurize" the honey to get the wax on top, if you had just left it for a couple days the wax and stuff would have floated to the top and you could have filled jars from the bottom.

  3. #83
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Santa Fe, NM, USA
    Posts
    119

    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Quote Originally Posted by xcugat View Post
    Can someone quantifiably show that foundation less is cheaper? By my calculation it is not-- you are losing honey production. If I buy foundation from Dadant, seven sheets equals one pound so for 2 deep boxes that is 20 sheets or 2.85 pounds of wax, which translates at 8 pounds of honey per pound of wax 23 pounds of honey. -So how is it cheaper again?
    There is an obvious flaw in this logic, that being the false assumption that the rib of foundationless comb is somehow equal in weight to purchased foundation. I have not seen any research into how much the rib weighs, but I would be surprised if the weight of the rib was even 10% of the weight of a sheet of foundation. Bees are not producing the rib for stability and strength to survive handling by machines and humans, for shipping through our fragile sensitive postal service or shipping companies, handling by the consumer, or for the forces exerted by extractors. I don't know that seven fully pulled foundationless combs of fresh wax would even equal a pound. Without this knowledge, you're comparing apples to oranges.

    In addition, the argument that the foundationless comb will eventually be contaminated with pesticides, etc. is not legitimate. Not all beeks, especially backyard hobbyists, are operating within close proximity (bee travel distance) of areas using pesticides, herbicides, etc. Whether or not toxins are brought into the hive over time, it is obviously more harmful for the bees to START with contaminated products in the hive. Even if you assume that the hives will accumulate toxins from the environment at the same rate, the dosage will always be much higher in a hive that starts with contaminated foundation. Also, most foundationless beeks will use the crush and strain method of honey harvesting and rotate out comb every 2 to 3 years.

    While foundationless is probably not financially viable for many commercial operations, in the same line of thinking, organic grass fed free range beef is not financially viable for McDonalds. But, I don't eat at McDonalds and I don't buy honey from large commercial operations. It's not just about money for everyone. Many new beeks are getting into beekeeping to help the dwindling bee populations and the environment in general, not their own pocketbooks.

  4. #84
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Stillwell, KS
    Posts
    648

    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Quoting WLC

    >>>I don't doubt that foundationless is drawn quickly and has has many other benefits.

    I agree with Rod (rweakley), I think foundationless is easily drawn out in half the time.

    Picture is of a 5 day old new swarm removal, it's incredible what bees can accomplish when we stay out of their way:

    >>>I am interested in seeing how bees on drawn natural cell (foundationless) will build on PF 120s. I'm also interested in seeing how bees on drawn PF 120s will build on foundationless frames.

    I do both, 2nd year beek with 50 or so hives on foundationless, they draw out PF 120's just fine as far as cell size, may be because the local ferals I get from removals and beetree swarms are already very small bees. I only bought 300 frames of PF 120's this spring thinking I would give each hive 1 box of PF 120's so I would have straighter combs for Pyramiding up my foundationless frames when adding boxes.

    Going the other way from PF 120 to foundationless is no problem also, My only regret is that I wish PF-120's came in 1 1/4" widths, which works WAY better for SC bees, if I buy any more I will be shaving them down.

    >>>I hope to see a reduction in cell size when PF 120 'bees' draw on foundationless.

    Once small bees they don't unregress unless you give them larger foundation.

    >>>I expect to see the bees 'balk' when they go from foundationless to PF 120s.

    They do, you just have to put the PF 120's where they want to work, or not give them any foundationless at the same time.

    >>>I also expect that the bees will confound any of my expectations.

    They do mine.

    >>>As for the festooning observation, I'm interested in seeing if having a comb guide on both the top and bottom of the frame speeds things up.

    I don't think it will, but you will get comb that is attached to the bottom bar better, and I think it will help you if you like to Nadir.

    >>>What I really want to do is observe how the bees festoon on the top and bottom vs the top only comb guide frames.

    Bees don't festoon up for shinola, you need to quit breathing that New York air :


    Don

  5. #85
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Johnson City, TN
    Posts
    380

    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    I think you explaned it yourself, Hipe. Not a bad thing but not all it's made out to be either.
    All beekeepers can agree on one thing, and that one thing is, that all beekeepers can't agree on one thing.

  6. #86
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Evansville, IN
    Posts
    2,540

    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Lumpy uneven comb is likely to blow out, wires or not, because the forces are uneven.

    You can just strain the honey through cheesecloth or fine nylon mesh bags (or stainless steel screems) to get the wax out, it's not necessary to heat it unless you are in a big hurry to filter it.

    My Grandpa always heated his, but he had #3 washtubs full and didn't have time for it to run slowly!

    Peter
    Last edited by psfred; 06-14-2012 at 03:56 PM.

  7. #87
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Cole County, Missouri
    Posts
    170

    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Quote Originally Posted by rweakley View Post
    I get the feeling you extracted radially? I have had more luck extracting tangentially because of the cage supporting the comb. You need to start slow with the extracting, take half from one side and then the entire other side and then finish the first side. Sounds like it would take a long time, but it really doesn't. I count to 60 on the first side, flip, count to 100, flip and then count to 60 again. DONE You didn't have to "pasteurize" the honey to get the wax on top, if you had just left it for a couple days the wax and stuff would have floated to the top and you could have filled jars from the bottom.
    Rod good call. Because 2 days ago I spun some small frames that had foundation on them, I spun the guts out of them too. oopsie. So thank you for the post and good call. It was not the foundationless. It was me going too fast.

  8. #88
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Cole County, Missouri
    Posts
    170

    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Quote Originally Posted by SantaFeBeek View Post
    There is an obvious flaw in this logic, that being the false assumption that the rib of foundationless comb is somehow equal in weight to purchased foundation. I have not seen any research into how much the rib weighs, but I would be surprised if the weight of the rib was even 10% of the weight of a sheet of foundation. Bees are not producing the rib for stability and strength to survive handling by machines and humans, for shipping through our fragile sensitive postal service or shipping companies, handling by the consumer, or for the forces exerted by extractors. .
    Well for me it is cheap. Being that I am a new beekeeper, and selling honey is not an option at this time. The cost of foundation is an added expense. If I got into bees with thousands of dollars, and failed . I would not keep wasting my money, and trying. Now getting in cheap, and losing here and there is no biggie. I am not effecting my families comfort over my hobby so I will fail, and keep coming back. Now if I were a commercial beekeeper your logic may be correct. But at this time I am not. I am just begining, and trying to keep the cost of my learning curve to a minmum.

  9. #89
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Evansville, IN
    Posts
    2,540

    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Unless you live on the moon, you are going to get pesticide build up in your comb. I cannot think of anywhere that someone isn't spraying something --- even the Forest Service sprays herbicides and insectides on National Forests. If you have anyone living within six miles, be assured that some time or another you will get your bees exposed to something, and whatever it is will very likley accumulate in the wax.

    We live in a soup of pesticides, no way to avoid them. They come in with the rain, in dust blown in, and in the ground water.

    This is why there is really no "organic" honey, it's not possible to prevent the bees from picking up pesticides somewhere or other, particularly if you are within 6 miles of any sort of agriculture.

    If you live in a large, fully organic community, you will have significantly less accumulation, but will still get some.

    Peter

  10. #90
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    5,113

    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Pesticides are ubquitous. You'll find traces of them at every point above the soil surface of the earth and many places below the surface. And it's not just pesticides. There are all manner of chemicals released all over the planet which drift all over the planet.

    The turnover of comb in natural hives is part of the health of the hive.
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  11. #91
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Santa Fe, NM, USA
    Posts
    119

    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    The point I was making is not that pesticides will not accumulate in the comb, it was that comb started on foundation, all else being equal, will always have significantly more contaminants present, especially miticides used by the previous owners of the wax.

    As an environmental scientist/engineer, I would have to say that it is a stretch to say that every point above the soil surface will have traces of pesticides. I think every point within a certain range of populated areas would be a more accurate depiction.

    The Forest Service may use pesticides and herbicides around designated campsites that they maintain, but they aren't spraying these chemical willy nilly "on National Forests." They certainly don't have the time or money for that, at least not in NM. Is there actually any NF in Indiana?

  12. #92
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    5,113

    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    I disagree, but I won't frivolously use my credentials as an environmental engineer to back up that statement. I have to save those for lawsuits.

    There are a vast array of chemicals that exist everywhere, carried by the wind, water vapor, and particulates therein.
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  13. #93
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Santa Fe, NM, USA
    Posts
    119

    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    I have personally sampled many areas that have no traces of pesticides.

    I don't disagree that there are a vast array of chemicals everywhere, as everything consists of chemicals, just not specifically pesticides everywhere.

  14. #94
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    5,113

    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Traces? I find it hard to believe that you tested for all pesticides and found not a trace. But I could be wrong.
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  15. #95
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Santa Fe, NM, USA
    Posts
    119

    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    I guess I should qualify that with "non-detect" based on the detection limits of our current analytical technologies.

    We live in very different states, as well.

  16. #96
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Calvert, Md,USA
    Posts
    1,701

    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    The aforementioned being the case, why not let the bees adapt to the pesticide ridden environment they live in? It's what we do. Why go through the trouble to rotate comb to protect the bees when we aren't protecting ourselves any better? Seems to me the bees need to APIS Up!!!

  17. #97
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    New York City, NY
    Posts
    4,317

    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    The pesticides that accumulated in wax foundation were put there by beekeepers as part of their routine treatments. I doubt that you would be able to detect any of those specific chemicals in the 'background' since they aren't that widely used.

    I suppose that bringing up that the plastic foundation of small cell PF 100s and 120s ,that has been touted by many treatment free proponents as being effective in producing resistant bees, doesn't add any clarity to the issue.

    It's plastic, it's foundation, and it's effective.

    However, it isn't foundationless or natural cell.

    If you don't treat, chemical accumulation in PF 100s/120s won't be an issue either.

    Does anyone treat and use foundationless?

    Here's the reference on what was found in brood comb:

    http://www.plosone.org/article/info%...l.pone.0014720
    Last edited by WLC; 06-14-2012 at 07:16 PM.

  18. #98
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Santa Monica, CA, USA
    Posts
    1,536

    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Solomon Parker View Post
    Traces? I find it hard to believe that you tested for all pesticides and found not a trace. But I could be wrong.
    I apologize for being not polite, but it is just a paranoia (nothing personal) to think this way. To think this way is counterproductive - than we all shall just kill themselves since everything is polluted and we will die... Russians say that life is most dangerous thing because it causes the death (if you are not living, you could not die).

    Mother nature actually has incredible powers to restore itself. Most of the organic chemical compounds (see definition of organic chemistry on Google) are sensitive to UV and oxygen; it will degrade quick when on the surface. Underground compounds will stay much longer, but from bees prospective they are unimportant. Plants also have an ability to purify the environment. The problem with contamination of the wax - it is inside the hive and wax protects chemicals from degradation via oxidation and UV. Thus, those chemicals will stay active (bad) longer and will be accumulated... Solomon, it is not "treatment-free" forum with special rules. Solomon could do whichever Solomon wanted in Solomon's forum (I follow the rule not using "you"), but here, I think it is rude to comment on somebody's credentials the way it was done - I would rather listen the person with proper scientific background speaking sense. I am sorry, but your comments are nonsense to me (well, I am a scientist). I apologize for inconvenience, nothing personal, just healthy comments. Sergey
    Last edited by cerezha; 06-15-2012 at 12:17 AM.

  19. #99
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Sullivan, MO
    Posts
    901

    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    And what exactly are the limits of our current analytical technologies. How pure would you like to test down to 1 part per billion. GEEZ Give me a HP Gas chromotography machine, standard material of active we are testing for, a good internal standard, and I will test samples checking down to 50 or so parts per million. (I have worked in an analytical lab at a company that manufactured bug killers so been there done that a few thousands of times). In fact with malathion I can detect the active in a flush sample down to like 100 ppm with just my nose. I doubt that the environment it self is so contaminated that the bees are bringing SO MUCH back to the hive that it's contaminating the wax to a great extent. If there was that much everywhere the bees would just die. As was stated by someone else the problem with wax these days is what the beekeeper puts there not what the bees are bringing back. Now who is going to buy me my GC so I can get to testing????
    Last edited by rweakley; 06-14-2012 at 10:55 PM. Reason: noticed a typo that would have taken away from the post making sense

  20. #100
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Santa Monica, CA, USA
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    1,536

    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Quote Originally Posted by rweakley View Post
    ... I have worked in an analytical lab at a company that manufactured bug killers so been there done that a few thousands of times...
    Rod
    Could you evaluate the paper WLC mentioned above: http://www.plosone.org/article/info%...l.pone.0014720
    As a specialist, you probably could tell us it it truthful or not. Thanks, Sergey
    Last edited by cerezha; 06-15-2012 at 07:12 PM. Reason: corrected URL

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