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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Salem, Indiana, USA
    Posts
    54

    Default foundation question

    I have read several posts about whether to use foundation or not in the brood boxes. I believe previous beeks have tried all the tricks. So here is my question: I think embossed foundation allows the queen to lay before the comb is drawn, right?, but is there any way that a wax foundation sheet without the embossing would be used to draw comb? Its easy to make the sheets but not to emboss it without a major cash outlay for a roller. Even if it worked, would it be worth the effort?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    KC, MO, USA
    Posts
    1,097

    Default Re: foundation question

    >I think embossed foundation allows the queen to lay before the comb is drawn, right?
    Yes but it needs to be started

    >but is there any way that a wax foundation sheet without the embossing would be used to draw comb?
    Yes that's how they use to do it long time ago, but the bee don’t like to draw it

    >Its easy to make the sheets but not to emboss it without a major cash outlay for a roller. Even if it worked, would it be worth the effort?
    If you shop around you can find them used $1000 to $2000, it would not be worth it for a small scale beek, large operation may not think it's worth the time. There are some bee suppliers that will turn your wax into foundation for a fee plus shipping bothways, people looking for treatment free foundation do this.

    If you trying to cut costs use foundationless frames. The bees will draw them quicker than anything else.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,458

    Default Re: foundation question

    > I think embossed foundation allows the queen to lay before the comb is drawn, right?

    No more so than foundationless. The queen will start laying in the cells when they are about 1/4" deep usually. They will draw the foundationless faster.

    > but is there any way that a wax foundation sheet without the embossing would be used to draw comb?

    Yes, but it's even slower than embossed wax, partly because, unless you run it through a press, the cast sheets (by dipping a board) are tougher and harder to draw than the pressed sheets of foundation are.

    The fastest is foundationless.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Midland, MI
    Posts
    574

    Default Re: foundation question

    When using foundationless, is it posible to incorporate wire reinforcing? Will the bees draw comb around the stainless wires, or will it disrupt them?


    edit: some quick searching seems to indicate the the bees are okay with this wire.

    So, does one eventually work towards having only 8 frames in a 10frame box?
    Last edited by KPeacock; 02-07-2013 at 10:26 AM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,458

    Default Re: foundation question

    >When using foundationless, is it posible to incorporate wire reinforcing? Will the bees draw comb around the stainless wires, or will it disrupt them?

    Not a problem. http://www.bushfarms.com/beesfoundationless.htm#canwire But I wouldn't.

    >So, does one eventually work towards having only 8 frames in a 10frame box?

    I would work towards having 11 frames in a 10 frame box or 9 in an 8 frame box...

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesframewidth.htm
    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesfaqs.htm#framespacing
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Richmond, VA UNITED STATES
    Posts
    163

    Default Re: foundation question

    Michael: Do you think the unnatural size causes us to be more accustomed to 10 frames in a 10 frame box? I realize that in the wild the bees have sizes all over the map, but when Huber was making his measurements, was he not dealing with a smaller bee? Would we have to regress bees to get a comfortable 11 frames in a box?

    I personally like putting 10 frames in my brood areas, and 9 above to make things simpler in extraction. (still use queen excluders in my Langstroth hives)

    As for my top bar hives, I vary the width by the size of the bars. However, if I get around to building the Warre hives this year I'm wondering if I should try for a smaller spacing as those will be foundationless.

    Rob.
    www.mongrelbees.com

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