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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Brainerd, MN
    Posts
    533

    Default Feeding Fondant Idea

    So feeding fondant has always bee a struggle. I am finishing my second year. Last winter I tried slipping it under the cluster. I saw the videos of Chandler scraping it into an old comb. I then had an idea when filling a feeder. My top bars are by no means touching each other anymore. They have filled them with propolis. Some to the point where there is a little channel where bees may move up, but never do. So this week I made some fondant and put it over the top bars where they had an opening between the top bars. I mad a couple more on other top bars and slapped down the fondant. Above that I put my insulation. Do you think I would need some sort of covering over the fondant so the bees don't have to struggle getting under the insulation? Even just a small tote cover may help. Either way...just thought I'd pass on my idea and I will check back next week to see how they did.
    Not Michael Bush. My name is Dan. Sorry for the confusion.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    pomfret, ct,USA
    Posts
    163

    Default Re: Feeding Fondant Idea

    here's the set up I use for fondant instead of sugar. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E_WLCc21-Hk

    2nd year for me. Last winter this worked well for me. I had a screended inner cover above the feeded and an insulated top.
    We'll see how it works this winter. Last year was very mild in these parts.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Dunlap, TN, USA
    Posts
    146

    Default Re: Feeding Fondant Idea

    Oddly enough I was just sitting at my desk at work about 2 days ago thinking about a very similar topic.... I got to wondering if there is a way I could mix up something that is almost hard. If you could make a fondant/candy mix that was hard enough you could shape it into the same shape and size of one of the combs and just attach the whole piece to an empty bar and just place it in the hive where space is available.

    Obviously I haven't tried this and have absolutely no idea if it would work well or if it is even a good idea.

    I think your idea would work just fine as long as the bees have a place to get up to it.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Roanoke, VA
    Posts
    1,465

    Default Re: Feeding Fondant Idea

    Could you just make a triangle looking frame that would have 1/4 inch screen on one side and just butter it in? I would think that if you waited until it cooled off it wouldn't ooze out if you make thick fondant.

    If I'm wrong it wouldn't be the first time, probably not even the first time today.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2012
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    Roanoke, VA
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    1,465

    Default Re: Feeding Fondant Idea

    Just did some real quick research via Google. I think that if you want to hang it you can, but do something like this. Make a frame with screen on one side. I would go smaller, not bigger. You would have the follower board behind it anyway. Make the sides the necessary for your application, I would think at least an inch thick. Make your fondant, spread it into your frame and let it dry for a long time (weeks, not days). It should dry pretty hard as the moisture evaporates.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    pomfret, ct,USA
    Posts
    163

    Default Re: Feeding Fondant Idea

    The screened feeder board is simple, cheap to make and easy to fill even in winter. - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E_WLCc21-Hk

    All you need to do is put a pile of fondant on a piece of newspaper or parchment.. The screen holes allow plenty of access for the bees. They can also chew through the paper from below and access the fondant.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Roanoke, VA
    Posts
    1,465

    Default Re: Feeding Fondant Idea

    Yes, I've seen that vid, but that is for a lang. For a top bar the top is usually not available to the bees. You could put something on top of the hive, but I think that Dan is looking for a way to do it internally like Phil demoed on his youtube with some old comb and was asking if you could fill your feeder. My feeder is behind the follower board, so I don't think that it would be a good choice since it would be too far from the cluster and be pretty cold. Langs have the advantage there as heat rises. Put it in a board on top and call it a day.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    43

    Default Re: Feeding Fondant Idea

    Here's how I feed fondant in a TBH - works very well
    http://thirteenvegetables.wordpress....-top-bar-hive/

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Houston, Texas, USA
    Posts
    460

    Default Re: Feeding Fondant Idea

    Quote Originally Posted by cpm View Post
    Here's how I feed fondant in a TBH - works very well
    http://thirteenvegetables.wordpress....-top-bar-hive/
    Neet idea! However since I play Chicken Little a lot I would be tempted to arrach some 1/2" hardware cloth to the bar for support before I poured the hot fondant into the mold. Looks good too.
    Mike
    N5RWH - 9a

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Greenwood, Indiana
    Posts
    182

    Default Re: Feeding Fondant Idea

    Quote Originally Posted by cpm View Post
    Here's how I feed fondant in a TBH - works very well
    http://thirteenvegetables.wordpress....-top-bar-hive/
    CPM, THAT is one great idea. Seems like a person could make several with open, narrower sides... all filled with fondant on both sides and put them all in together. What do you think; would it work?
    BTW I made a Word document of your site's page, pictures and all, for future use... THANKS!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Roanoke, VA
    Posts
    1,465

    Default Re: Feeding Fondant Idea

    Cool, that is what I was thinking, but I was thinking of using a mesh backing. The wooden back seems way easier!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Roanoke, VA
    Posts
    1,465

    Default Re: Feeding Fondant Idea

    BTW, nice Tandem. We have a custom but haven't rode much since we had kids. Maybe someday...

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    pomfret, ct,USA
    Posts
    163

    Default Re: Feeding Fondant Idea

    oopps didn't realize you guys were talkin' top bar....

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Roanoke, VA
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    1,465

    Default Re: Feeding Fondant Idea

    No problem. I figured that was what the deal was. Still a good link though. I've forwarded it to some friends.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Brainerd, MN
    Posts
    533

    Default Re: Feeding Fondant Idea

    Ya candy boards are neat, but certainly won't work in a tbh. I made some similar fondant follower board feeders, but worry about a couple of things. Firstly my winters here are nasty. During most of the winter it is going to be way to cold for me to feel comfortable enough to open the hive to place one of these feeders in the hive until spring. I would also be worried about the bees moving laterally and hitting that feeder. There is no comb in this feeder to cluster on. It seems like it would either impair movement of the cluster or be to far away to utilize or require me to open them more than i would like to in order to tinker. So I would really rather try to feed the bees above the cluster.

    My bees seem to keep a few of these passageways open anyways. So I figure that if I open up another one or two it will allow them to access the fondant easier. They lose no heat because of the insulation above the fondant. I can also place more fondant with little to no interruption to the bees. In fact I disrupt the bees less than what you would with feeding a Lang fondant.
    Not Michael Bush. My name is Dan. Sorry for the confusion.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Denison, Texas
    Posts
    510

    Default Re: Feeding Fondant Idea

    On the "French Beefarm" website, he makes candy and pours it into a cheap type zip-lock container. Then he places that upside-down over the holes that he wants to feed from. This would work with a TBH with gaps in the bars. The plastic container would support the insulation. I made a tray for a nuc I had last winter, fed them syrup that way.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Honduras
    Posts
    228

    Default Re: Feeding Fondant Idea

    I sometimes use a “candy frame” for feeding some of my tbh hives here in Honduras. It’s made to fit inside my Kenyan tbhs and will hold about five to six pounds of sugar. I like these for my hives that are up in the mountain that I don’t get to as often. One of these frames will hold them for a good while—two even longer. They are also good for the last swarms that I catch that often stay in their trap hive through the dearth. Space is limited and these can be easily slipped into the small boxes. I just need the space of one bar.

    http://i155.photobucket.com/albums/s...rameinhive.jpg
    http://i155.photobucket.com/albums/s...atingsugar.jpg

    I don’t use a fondant. I usually make a hard-type of sugar candy. I run some wires through the frame to help hold in the block of sugar as the bees are eating it. My bees can get out to collect water year round here so they have no problem dissolving the sugar.

    http://i155.photobucket.com/albums/s...garframe01.jpg

    When pouring the sugar, I clamp the frames down onto a board covered with a piece of plastic so the mixture won’t run out of the frame while it is cooling and hardening.

    http://i155.photobucket.com/albums/s...s/102_0066.jpg
    http://i155.photobucket.com/albums/s...ederframes.jpg
    http://i155.photobucket.com/albums/s...garframe02.jpg

    If I were to use a more pliable fondant I would probably staple some wire mesh over the frame to hold it in.

    Here is an idea if you want to use a lang-style candy board for feeding above the brood nest rather than at the end. I’ve been incorporating some of my bars with a transit space in case I want to add a super with frames to the tbh. Usually it is just five spaces right in the brood nest area. I use a jig-saw to cut them. If I don’t use them I keep it covered with a small piece of plywood or metal. A candy board could be easily installed above these same spaces. However, the hive cover might have to be changed to accommodate the thickness of the feeder rim.

    http://i155.photobucket.com/albums/s...entersuper.jpg
    http://i155.photobucket.com/albums/s...acetosuper.jpg


    ----------
    Tom

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