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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Shickshinny, Pennsylvania
    Posts
    812

    Default Protective suite

    I'm thinking of going with a pair of pants , and a jacket with a zip on veil , if I wore all three I would have complete protection until I get comfortable with my bees and then if the bees seem to be ok to work with or for a quick look I could go with just the jacket and veil . Also for swarms I might feel better with more protection as you never know the kind of bees you come across in a swarm . Is the seal between the pants and jacket bee proof .If I go with full coveralls I'd have no choice but to suite up completely every time.Any thoughts I have no experience with all the different gear. Thanks
    Last edited by laketrout; 03-20-2013 at 06:22 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    320

    Default Re: Protective suite

    If you want something cheap for "just in case" or temporary without spending $150 on a suit, go to Home Depot or Lowes in the paint dept. and get disposable coveralls for less than $15. Some have hoods and elastic at wrists and ankles, some are breathable. With a bit of duct tape, I'm in my 3rd year and still using the first one and I've never been stung through it--but it IS hot in hot weather. I wore it a lot the first year, last year only when I was harvesting or going all the way to the bottom. But if the bees get testy, its great to be able to throw it on. I wear rubber boots and tuck the pants into them. The one time I skipped the boots, I had bees crawling all over my ankles.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Brown County, IN
    Posts
    2,025

    Default Re: Protective suite

    For my first several years, I just wore jeans, an old white shirt and a veil. Eventually got an UltraBreeze jacket/hood combo, which is much cooler to wear in hot weather.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Rockford, MI
    Posts
    2,467

    Default Re: Protective suite

    First off no protective gear is "bee proof". lol
    I wear jeans and a jacket veil combo. Trick is to get a jacket that is large enough to cover your backside when bent over. This year I am planning on wearing white painter's pants and an Ultra breeze jacket, veil combo.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Crowley Texas 76036
    Posts
    24

    Default Re: Protective suite

    Then you could always use a bungee cord around your waist to make sure the seal between pants and jacket is complete. I've used one for years and never had an issue.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    owensboro,ky
    Posts
    2,240

    Default Re: Protective suite

    go to a "goodwill" or other thrift/resell/secondhand type store and get a long sleeve white shirt and a pair of white pants with both large enough to fit over street clothes
    tuck the shirt in the waistband,tape the cuffs/legs and some heavy nitryl gloves and a veil and thats about as bulletproof as you can get and is cheap enough for anybody
    "Wine is a constant proof that God loves us and loves to see us happy" Ben Franklin

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Poplar Bluff, Missouri, USA
    Posts
    2,280

    Default Re: Protective suite

    yeah, Mike's right. Pair of jeans, duct-taped pant legs to boots, old long sleeved white shirt no longer fit to wear to church, pith helmet and veil. gloves optional.
    "If all you have is a hammer, the whole world is a nail." - A.H. Maslow

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    DFW area, TX, USA
    Posts
    1,016

    Thumbs Up Painter's coveralls = Multitasker for bee garb

    I just ordered a set of painter's coveralls that work well with a bee jacket. I ordered them long and loose -you can sew the gaps up to the first set of buttons and the jacket gives plenty of overlap that way. Happy with the set up, just don't know how I would fair in an attack by ultra aggressive bees. Layers would be my friend and yours in that case.
    LeeB
    I try to learn from my mistakes, and from yours when you give me a heads up :)

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Shickshinny, Pennsylvania
    Posts
    812

    Default Re: Painter's coveralls = Multitasker for bee garb

    The jacket is 52.00 the veil is 47.00 and the pants are 29.50 = 128.50 Pretty much need the jacket and veil ,pants are only another 29.50 it sure adds up fast , not sure what to do .

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Frisco Texas
    Posts
    168

    Default Re: Painter's coveralls = Multitasker for bee garb

    $46 on ebay, full suit plus gloves. I bought one because I have developed a small allergy to stings. I now breakout in hives around the sting sight. The suit has been great for me, this will be my second season using it.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Shickshinny, Pennsylvania
    Posts
    812

    Default Re: Painter's coveralls = Multitasker for bee garb

    I was told a detachable veil is a good idea , you can hang it off the back and remove it to wash .

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Houston, Texas, USA
    Posts
    460

    Default Re: Painter's coveralls = Multitasker for bee garb

    I have found a lot of variables that drive the mood of the bees. My best time of day is around 3 PM when a lot of bees are out foraging, not during derth period. I prefer a veil that goes onto one of the pith hats (hole in top with elastic) as it tends to not slip down and block my vision as much as the integrated hat/veil combo. Most of my inspections that only go into the top brood chamber I only wear jeans and a long sleeve T shirt (but have also done short sleeve). If I buy again I would get one of the inspector jackets, but I do have a coverall style I use on times when they are cranky and I need to go into both upper and lower brood chambers (mine is a cheap one off of eBay and I have had to sew up several seams due to cheap seam thread ). Oh yeah when wearing T shirts I also tie a bandanna around my neck to try and block any path into the veil. I had about 30 bees get inside my veil ONCE... I only had the bees go up my pant legs once when I accidentally moved the queen to a split I did, 2 days without a queen made the donor hive very cranky. My bees have taught me a lot in the last year, Mike Bush's book (and his support here) is outstanding, this website is a gold mine of information (learn data mining-search tools).
    Mike
    N5RWH - 9a

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,481

    Default Re: Painter's coveralls = Multitasker for bee garb

    I love my jackets with zip on veils. They are what I use most of the time. On a really hot day, or with a really hot hive, a full ventilated suit is wonderful, but I don't use them as often as the Jacket. I could get by fine with just the jacket.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Crenshaw County, Alabama
    Posts
    1,909

    Default Re: Protective suite

    laketrout, from the mouth of my mentor "If you mess with bees you're gonna get stung.". Simple. But, we do try to keep that to a minimum.

    Blue jeans, white shirt, tennis shoes, and a veil...that's my usual attire. I do have a ventilated jacket "in case", but I seldom use it. In your area I'm not sure if you need a ventilated jacket or not...down here in south Alabama with our summer heat they are *very* nice to have.

    My favorite veil is a Clear-Vue hat...cloth hat with wraparound screen...good vision through it. If I take the inner cover off a hive there's a 99.9% chance that I'm going to have a veil on. If I'm simply taking the outer cover off for some reason and not removing the inner cover (which is screened) I don't worry about a veil. I also have some straps to wrap around around my bluejeans at the ankles to keep the adventurous honey bee from crawling up my leg and giving me an adventure...these are kinda like the ventilated jacket in that I just use them once in a while.

    Most stings that I get are on my hands. I've learned to deal with them...some are "hotter" than other stings...some I don't pay much attention to. Most hand stings naturally happen during inspections. Slow, deliberate hand movements made around the edges of the box (versus over the middle of the box) helps to reduce hand stings. Move slow and let the bees move out of your way...with a gentle push with a finger you can encourage them to move so you can lift a frame. I have at times move my hand across the center of a hive rather quickly and suddenly have several bees clinging to hand...almost looked like static electric drew them to my hand...they were there that quick!...but thankfully these were gentle bees and none (that time) stung me but were letting me know to slow down a bit (which I did). My mentor doesn't use gloves as he "feels" better without gloves and avoids mashing bees and irritating them. His best friend who's kept bees for over 75 years does use gloves...he says he can work bees faster with them. Pick your poison. There are leather gloves but a lot of folks are now using nitrile gloves which can be pretty much sting proof(?) but still get a good sense of touch...but will probably get rather sweaty.

    At the $ figure that you've stated you're well on your way to the cost of a domestically produced ventilated jacket or an imported full suit....quality varies.

    Best wishes,
    Ed

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Shickshinny, Pennsylvania
    Posts
    812

    Default Re: Protective suite

    I was considering the brushy mt. inspector jacket and there zip on veil with hat . Thanks for the tips on hand movement over the hive , its little things like that , that will help make me a better beekeeper .

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Houston, Texas
    Posts
    133

    Default Re: Protective suite

    I like a jacket for most stuff with a pullover or attached veil. Lately I have been getting stung through the suit so I bellied up to a full ultra-breeze & a goldenbee jacket. I've noticed several of the major catalogues are now carrying ventilated suits. A swarm is rarely defensive so all I ever wore was a veil. A friend of mine was called out to get a swarm & it looked just like a swarm but turned out it had become established & needless to say all hell broke loose. Sometimes the bees don't read the book.

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