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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Hudson, WI USA
    Posts
    2,172

    Default Has anyone tried using an upside down fish tank as a Solar Wax Melter?

    I was thinking that old fish tanks are cheap on Craigslist; They are waterproof and would be bug-proof if put upside down on a flat piece of board. Has anyone tried it and found any problems or could see any problems with this idea?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Champaign, Illinois, USA
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: Has anyone tried using an upside down fish tank as a Solar Wax Melter?

    Sniff, sniff... naw!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    moravia,ny
    Posts
    1,187

    Default Re: Has anyone tried using an upside down fish tank as a Solar Wax Melter?

    I think you had better go back to the drawing board. better off using an old window. google solar wax melters. stick with a more proven design. good luck.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Denison, Texas
    Posts
    510

    Default Re: Has anyone tried using an upside down fish tank as a Solar Wax Melter?

    No. but, that's a good idea to try. There's alot of ways to rig up solar melters. Like a hive body with a piece of glass over it. I do
    understand how hot a fish tank can get in the sun. I've stored some outside before. I also used them like mini greenhouses
    to start seeds in peat pots.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Remsen, NY, USA
    Posts
    367

    Default Re: Has anyone tried using an upside down fish tank as a Solar Wax Melter?

    Adrian,

    Tried a few designs, but not that one.

    Sounds like a fun idea to try. You wouldn't have to tip it to face and/or chase the sun like the typical box-based solar melter. Be interesting to see how hot it gets compared to a typical one.......

    Keep us posted.

    Good luck,
    Steve

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Cupertino, CA, USA
    Posts
    279

    Default Re: Has anyone tried using an upside down fish tank as a Solar Wax Melter?

    The whole trick of an efficient solar wax melter is insulation. The heat has to enter faster than it exits. When it heats up the heat radiates out or is conducted out more rapidly. So if you heavily insulate the parts of the fishtank that don't face the sun, and add a double layer of glass or plastic with air space between, on the side facing the sun and minimize air leaks, it should work.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Auburn, NY
    Posts
    112

    Default Re: Has anyone tried using an upside down fish tank as a Solar Wax Melter?

    I think it's a good idea Adrian, in fact, it was already on my list of things to do this winter! I was thinking an old 10-gal aquarium, sides painted black on the inside and insulated on the outside, upside down on a black board, aimed at the sun. Or, an old picnic-type cooler, as they are already insulated and even have a drain, with a glass lid. I'll let y'all know if/how mine works.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Wash Co., Ohio
    Posts
    117

    Default Re: Has anyone tried using an upside down fish tank as a Solar Wax Melter?

    That is exactly what my son and I used the first time we had cappings. Little bit of strategically placed foil and black paper on a sunny day and it worked fine. Even used it last year for his 4-H beekeeping project (Products of the Hive) to show how "...simply using materials you find around the house..." etc
    Practically, I dont advise it if you have more than a few hives, but it theoretically works

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Cupertino, CA, USA
    Posts
    279

    Default Re: Has anyone tried using an upside down fish tank as a Solar Wax Melter?

    Mine works great with only duct tape, insulation board and two layers of 1/16" plexiglas.
    It worked fine a few weeks ago on a sunny November day.

    https://picasaweb.google.com/Michael...58449294053970
    https://picasaweb.google.com/Michael...58457078808802

    I'm not sure that the fish tank adds anything.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Hudson, WI USA
    Posts
    2,172

    Default Re: Has anyone tried using an upside down fish tank as a Solar Wax Melter?

    Thanks for the replies. This summer I used an old window on top of a box which worked, but it isn't bug tight and didn't work as well as I'd like. Yet I notice that my car heats up in the sun quickly almost everywhere I leave it; I'm going to give it a shot next summer.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Hudson, WI USA
    Posts
    2,172

    Default Re: Has anyone tried using an upside down fish tank as a Solar Wax Melter?

    Well it's bug tight and works well enough on a hot day. I ended up using the right way up and put a piece of glass on top instead of turning it upside down. I am keeping it in the bee yard now as the first piece of glass got broken when a raccoon took an interest.
    http://s1110.photobucket.com/albums/...Wax%20Melters/

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