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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    Issaquah,WA,USA
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    Default Filling comb with sugar syrup.

    I was thinking of taking my extracted deep frames and putting them into a tub of thick sugar water and letting the cells fill up. Then drying all the water out of them and having a solid sugar source to put into the hives that need feed. They will clean it out as they need it. Kind of a feeder. Has anyone tried this? + - of this idea.

  2. #2
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    Dec 2005
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    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    Default Re: Filling comb with sugar syrup.

    If you put the frames into a tub of thick sugar water and let the cells fill up, they won't. You'd think they would, but they don't. You have to rain the syrup down onto the cells, otherwise surface tension keeps the cells from gaining much syrup at all.

    How would you dry the water out of them?
    When were you going to use them?
    There are better, more practical and convenient, ways to feed. I would bother doing this.
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
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    Clinton, Illinois
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    95

    Default Re: Filling comb with sugar syrup.

    Or laying the frame horizontal and shaking granulated suger into the combs. Let the granulated suger harden by setting in a moist environment for a few days?

  4. #4
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    Apr 2009
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    Default Re: Filling comb with sugar syrup.

    Quote Originally Posted by katmike View Post
    Or laying the frame horizontal and shaking granulated suger into the combs. Let the granulated suger harden by setting in a moist environment for a few days?
    Oh I like you idea.

    Two reasons. One it is getting to late to feed. The second is for the spring boxes that I wont be able to feed. I like the pour dry sugar idea. I live in Western WA and everything is a moist environment.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Filling comb with sugar syrup.

    Just guessing since I haven’t ever tried this but I think that putting either syrup or sugar into empty comb won’t speed up the delivery process. In both cases I expect that the bees will remove it and put it where they want it. Add to that the fact that they will need to add enzymes, reduce the sugars, and in the case of plain sugar they will need to add moisture as well to make it useful. Once they’ve done that they will store it as they see fit. I think delivering it in a conventional fashion will be as effective….and maybe more so.
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Hudson, WI USA
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    2,200

    Default Re: Filling comb with sugar syrup.

    Eastside, perform a search through Ron Householder's posts. His beesource name is Honeyhouseholder. He has a system of spraying syrup onto frames, then putting them in with packages late winter. They build up quickly enough that he splits them again in spring and uses them to harvest a honey crop. I remember that he started in a small way with a garden sprayer and now uses something larger.
    Also I recall seeing a video on beesource of French Canadians with a syrup sprayer on a fixed bar; They slid the frames under the sprayer and sprayed syrup into them.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Garland, Bladen County, NC, USA
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    2,996

    Default Re: Filling comb with sugar syrup.

    I experimented with this the other day. I used a garden sprayer hooked to a trash pump that attached to a tote of syrup. It produces quite a force. I only did 10 frames, but was quite surprised at the weight that was forced into those cells. Felt almost like a full super of honey. I put it on top of a hungry deep... so will see how it does.

  8. #8
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    Apr 2009
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    Issaquah,WA,USA
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    Default Re: Filling comb with sugar syrup.

    Quote Originally Posted by Adrian Quiney WI View Post
    They build up quickly enough that he splits them again in spring and uses them to harvest a honey crop. I remember that he started in a small way with a garden sprayer and now uses something larger.
    So I ordered 50 Nucs. The way it works is I take a deep box lid and bottom 6 frames of built comb and 1 frame of honey. They put in 3 frames of bee's and a queen. They take them to Prunes and I get the Nuc after prunes. They need the frame of honey to eat while the season starts. The more food they have the better they do. So taking 1 frame of honey and 5 frames of sugar filled comb's will give them the groceries they need to survive. I could take a frame feeder filled with crystallized syrup also. So this is one of the uses for filling frames. It is also tough to come up with 50 frames of honey needed so being able to make frames of food means I can extract the honey and not feed it back to them. Honey is worth more then sugar.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    46,136

    Default Re: Filling comb with sugar syrup.

    You can sprinkle syrup into the cells, but dipping doesn't work, as sqkcrk said, the surface tension keeps it from getting into the cells. but some smaller drops and some momentum will get it in.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  10. #10
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    Apr 2009
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    Default Re: Filling comb with sugar syrup.

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Bush View Post
    You can sprinkle syrup into the cells, but dipping doesn't work, as sqkcrk said, the surface tension keeps it from getting into the cells. but some smaller drops and some momentum will get it in.
    So I am thinking filling them with sugar granules and then spritzing them with water and letting it dry will do the trick. Or on my wet supers just pouring sugar on them and letting it harden will work also.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Grayson, KY
    Posts
    274

    Default Re: Filling comb with sugar syrup.

    I saw a video somewhere(probably YouTube) where the guy made something he called icing and he used a spatula to spread it into the comb.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
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    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    Default Re: Filling comb with sugar syrup.

    >So I am thinking filling them with sugar granules and then spritzing them with water and letting it dry will do the trick. Or on my wet supers just pouring sugar on them and letting it harden will work also.

    The result will be comb filled with hard sugar... not necessarily bad, but not the same thing as syrup which is also not the same thing as stores as the bees will not have inverted the sugars...

    >I saw a video somewhere(probably YouTube) where the guy made something he called icing and he used a spatula to spread it into the comb.

    In fully drawn plastic (PermaComb or HSC) this should work fine. In wax comb I'm afraid it would just mash the comb.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    montreal quebec canada
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    18

    Default Re: Filling comb with sugar syrup.

    I sometime use a "frame filler" inspired from this site: (sorry french speaking)

    http://www.frenchbeefarm.com/framefiller.htm

    and a video

    http://www.frenchbeefarm.com/video_r...urdecadre.html

    I build my own frame filler with a plastic laundry room sink, two drilled PVC pipes an a gas motorized water pump who recirculate the syrup from the sink to the pipes. That's was working great but you need to add a good filter on the system, because the debris (bee legs, wax...) will soon block the hole in the pipe. I use an old water filtration system filled with cloths.

    If you recirculate the syrup for a moment, it get hot and that create a real frenzy when you introduce filled frame in the hive. And that's true, filled frame are very heavy.

    I stop using it for a few reasons:
    -I used it in early spring (mid march), and here in Quebec, humidity is the main concern in spring, wasn't a good idea to introduce so much humidity in the hives.
    -I feed generously at falls, so the girls doesn't need so much food in early spring.
    -in that time of the year, everything is covered by snow. It's difficult to drive a truck to the field with barrels of syrup, sink gas pump etc...
    -it' 1 million time more easy to carry a few pack of candy, introduce them upon ventilation hole and bring back the insulation sheet on the hive without disturbing the bees, if they need it, they will go get it.
    -by filling a lot of frame from hive to hive, you get a lot of chance to spray AFB if present. A big part of the syrup sprayed on the frame is recirculating in the system.

    your idea of giving them to nucs is good, but be careful if you move the hive, if shaked the syrup will flow out from the cell. I try one time to fill the frame at home and carry them to the field an I did a real mess.

    this is all my experiences with frame filler, hope this will help.

    Pascal Fournier

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Grayson, KY
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    274

    Default Re: Filling comb with sugar syrup.

    Quote Originally Posted by BigGun View Post
    I saw a video somewhere(probably YouTube) where the guy made something he called icing and he used a spatula to spread it into the comb.
    I was wrong it was only pics but, here's a link. http://wvbeekeeper.blogspot.com/search?q=Icing

  15. #15
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Hampstead, NC USA
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    608

    Default Re: Filling comb with sugar syrup.

    Does anyone have any idea as to what size pump is required for a setup such as the one in the French site? I read what I could from their website but there information doesn't translate to what I have in mind which is a 110 or 220 volt system using a gear pump. I have a decent size hydraulic pump that I've never run any hydraulic oil through and, being it is a gear pump, I thought I would try to make one of these frame filling units for filling comb?
    Any information is greatly appreciated.
    Thanks
    Howard

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Bellwood, Pa (USA)
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    31

    Default Re: Filling comb with sugar syrup.

    i can't offer you any advise about size but a word of caution, even if you never ran hydraulic oil through that pump i would bet that the factory did.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Aberdeen, Idaho
    Posts
    460

    Default Re: Filling comb with sugar syrup.

    Why work so hard? Filling comb with sugar or syrup is going to be messy and time consuming, just put sugar on top of the frames. The bees will liquify it and put it where they want it when they need it. Putting syrup in frames and then ito the hive will raise the humidity level resulting in more condensation. Dry sugar will reduce the condensation as well as keeping it from dripping into the hive.
    Dave

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    27,093

    Default Re: Filling comb with sugar syrup.

    Quote Originally Posted by trykonxlgold85 View Post
    i can't offer you any advise about size but a word of caution, even if you never ran hydraulic oil through that pump i would bet that the factory did.
    Is this standard operating procedure for pump manufaturers? Even pumps which food such as honey is pumped thru? Why do they do that?
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Bellwood, Pa (USA)
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    31

    Default Re: Filling comb with sugar syrup.

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post
    Is this standard operating procedure for pump manufaturers? Even pumps which food such as honey is pumped thru? Why do they do that?
    No any food grade pumps would be tested with food grade oil like corn or vegetable

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
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    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    Default Re: Filling comb with sugar syrup.

    Oh, duh to me, I read the Post you were replkying to and I see he has a hydraulic pump. Thanks. I should go back to work.

    By the way, Kelley Co had a frame filler device which one could pull behind ones truck which sprayed syrup into combs. Look it up.
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

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