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  1. #1
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    Santa Monica, CA, USA
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    Default Foundationless and (some) frameless honey in Santa Monica, July 16, 2012

    I am in the process of switching to all foundationless in my two Lang hives permitted in Santa Monica, CA.

    To me,the foundationless approach has many advantages:
    (a) easy to build, no special care required (waxing, wiring, foundation installation etc);
    (b) in combination with mediums - it is universal for all bee-hive related tasks (brood chamber, honey supers etc);
    (c) freshly made wax, no "drawn comb" worries, no old comb issues;
    (d) easy to extract honey especially at the small scale (hobbyist type), crush-and-strain, no special equipment required; shape of the comb is not important; there are byproducts of extraction - honey-vine and wax.
    (e) bees choose proper (for them!) size for the comb cells; they maintain proper bee-space in accordance to their needs.

    I am harvesting a few totally foundationless "frames" every few weeks. Note that there is only a top bar from the standard frame has been shown in one picture.

    Disclaimer: Welcome to this thread. This post has no intention to discuss comparison between foundation and foundationless, frame or frameless approaches. It is for pictures of your foundationless/frameless achevements in Lang hive! Please, feel free to post pictures of your foundationless/frameless latest honey crop here. Sergey
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    Last edited by cerezha; 07-16-2012 at 06:48 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Cheyenne, Wyoming, USA
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    1,693

    Default Re: Foundationless and (some) frameless honey in Santa Monica, July 16, 2012

    Looks great! I really like your suit.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Foundationless and (some) frameless honey in Santa Monica, July 16, 2012

    ooooo
    Thank you! It is expensive one. I got it for Christmas. Very well vented, well suited for California weather (also -fresh from the washer...). In our bee-class, I felt, I am a "star" in this bee-suit, first time in my life! Sergey

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Foundationless and (some) frameless honey in Santa Monica, July 16, 2012

    The final product - 5 kilos of honey out of 4 foundationless frames. Also, I got 3 kg honey-wax mixture - honey will be used for mead, wax - for candles. Sergey
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  5. #5
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    Default Re: Foundationless and (some) frameless honey in Santa Monica, July 16, 2012

    Another beautiful "frame" (top bar) collected today. No foundation, no sides and bottom of the frame.
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  6. #6
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    Apr 2012
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    North Pole, Alaska
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    145

    Default Re: Foundationless and (some) frameless honey in Santa Monica, July 16, 2012

    first post 3rd pic is that just different nectar sources getting the different colored cappings? Looks great, its something I'm considering doing for next summer.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Foundationless and (some) frameless honey in Santa Monica, July 16, 2012

    AkDan
    My theory is that,if foundationless frame (bar) stays in the hive long enough, girls started all kind of comb "renovation". In this case they added an extra layer of the comb on top of the older comb. I have no idea how technically it was done. So, the main honeycomb is older, darker, and lighter part is just freshly cupped newer comb. I guess, honey in original comb is older and thus, may potentially be from different source (different color). In this case, I think, "color" difference is only fresh very light cupping vs older darker cupping. I do not think, the honey was different... but who knows - now, all these honey is mixed together producing wonderful golden tint! Thanks for visiting this post. Good luck with your project. Sergey

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Foundationless and (some) frameless honey in Santa Monica, July 16, 2012

    I got a nice picture of my beehive. ... and some new frames!
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    Last edited by cerezha; 07-31-2012 at 10:26 PM.

  9. #9
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    Jun 2012
    Location
    Citrus County, Florida, United States
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    260

    Default Re: Foundationless and (some) frameless honey in Santa Monica, July 16, 2012

    Nice pics and frames. I'm enjoying your thread. I really like the foundation-less honey frames, perfect for comb honey.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Murfreesboro, TN
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    98

    Default Re: Foundationless and (some) frameless honey in Santa Monica, July 16, 2012

    Foundationless is an awesome approach, and from what I understand the best way for farming honey and wax. Nice images...

  11. #11
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    Jun 2012
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    Todd County, Minnesota, USA
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    47

    Default Re: Foundationless and (some) frameless honey in Santa Monica, July 16, 2012

    Gorgeous frames Sergey. Looks like the bees are working hard for you.

  12. #12
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    Houston, Texas, USA
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    Default Re: Foundationless and (some) frameless honey in Santa Monica, July 16, 2012

    More similarities Sergey, but I am using the Walter T. Kelley foundationless frames with the bottom bar. My TBH is 48" and I am building the bars on Sat. ( no bees yet). I got 20 med. super and 10 deep frames from Kelley until I see how they work. I installed 4 deeps, 2 per box, and 2 super frames last weekend. I will try to get some pictures this weekend to share.
    Later, and nice set up!
    Mike
    N5RWH - 9a

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Foundationless and (some) frameless honey in Santa Monica, July 16, 2012

    O, thanks! Bees are amusing!

    On the picture is a new frame from the last inspection.
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    Last edited by cerezha; 08-10-2012 at 04:48 AM.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Foundationless and (some) frameless honey in Santa Monica, July 16, 2012

    Mike
    My feelings are: as long as you crush-and-strain (which is what I do), the design of frames absolutely does not matter. I tried all combinations - "popsicle"-type starter, grove with wax; full frame; frame with sides; "frame" without bottom and sides. All of them worked for my bees. But, I implemented entirely different (?) management. Since we are in SoCal and something always is blooming, we have no seasons. So, I remove honey every month or so. My normal yield is 4 frames. I took every other frame and replace it with empty one - sort of checker-boarding. This way, bees are always busy "repairing" the damage in their nicely organized honey-storage. At the same time, I do minimal nest management since I am novice and I just afraid to do more harm than good. Good luck with your project! Post a pictures! Sergey

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Foundationless and (some) frameless honey in Santa Monica, July 16, 2012

    September's 4th brief inspection. Not much honey but beautiful cupped brood in the "honey area". All foundationless truncated frames (bars);no cross comb etc.
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  16. #16
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    Jul 2012
    Location
    Rock Port, MO. USA.
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    Default Re: Foundationless and (some) frameless honey in Santa Monica, July 16, 2012

    You might want to consider making lotion bars with those wax you're harvesting. I've found them very effective in helping heal cold sores, shingles and cracked nails faster. One write-up also said it helps with psoriasis.

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Foundationless and (some) frameless honey in Santa Monica, July 16, 2012

    Quote Originally Posted by Bubbles View Post
    You might want to consider making lotion bars with those wax you're harvesting. I've found them very effective in helping heal cold sores, shingles and cracked nails faster. One write-up also said it helps with psoriasis.
    Interesting idea. In fact, I do make my own cosmetics and I am using wax for candles. But, the reality is that there is so little of wax per frame, less than 100 g. Currently, I have more honey than wax and my friends demanded not only honey but wax also.
    Sergey

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Foundationless and (some) frameless honey in Santa Monica, July 16, 2012

    Another truncated foundationless "frame" from today's inspection.
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  19. #19
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    Default Re: Foundationless and (some) frameless honey in Santa Monica, July 16, 2012

    Honey comb I steal during last inspection 9-13-2012.
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  20. #20
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    Fort Worth, TX, USA
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    Default Re: Foundationless and (some) frameless honey in Santa Monica, July 16, 2012

    Maybe I will take photos next time I am in a hive. My Lang boxes are set up 2 plasticell, 1 foundationless, 4 plasticell, 1 foundationless and 1 plasticell. I've heard the bees won't draw out the plastic frames, but they do. Or they have for me.

    All frames are dadant, plasticell is dadant wax coated light colored (to help me see shb, mites, etc), wooden frames are wedge type strung with 20lb test weight fishing line in a horizontal bar pattern topped by x pattern. So if I'm sticking in a piece of comb from a cutout, I just pop it right side up in between the fishinglines and MAYBE add a rubber band.

    Bees have drawn out a gold solid 5 deeps and 4 mediums this year. Good enough for me. Next year I will sub out some plastic and sub in some more foundationless. And I get 100 degree temps here, I just do not do inspections in 100 degree weather and not support the bottom of the comb. I try to work at 90 degrees or less.

    One day I will have honey. For today, I mainly have stored sugar water, but my bees came AFTER the flow, so I'm lucky I've got anything.

    Gypsi
    Time to be a gypsy again, 2014 will be my prep year, my bees want a better area with actual rainfall.

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