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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    De Kalb Mo
    Posts
    14

    Default buying foundation

    Looking for the cheapest place to buy foundation. Not wanting plastic and don't think i want wired foundation. Any thoughts

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    knoxville, tn
    Posts
    647

    Default Re: buying foundation

    Just be sure to add shipping to your cheapest price found. Some suppliers are not charging for shipping but their prices do reflect it also.

    You will just have to do a little research since you did not mention what size (deep, medium or shallow), thickness (thin surplus or brood), cell size (small cell, 7/11, drone). lots of variables.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,336

    Default Re: buying foundation

    Cell size is important to me. Also don't get confused on terminology. "Medium brood" is a thickness, not a frame depth...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    De Kalb Mo
    Posts
    14

    Default Re: buying foundation

    I am glad you mentioned this about terminology. I notice a thin and a medium. What are the pros/cons of this. I am making deep brood boxes and supers. I have noticed a small cell size but from what I have read I don't think I want to use it. Is the only other option large cell or is there one in between these two. What is the preferred size. Not a lot of info on foundation from the sites that sell it. I am looking for all the info I can get before I but so that I don't have to buy it again after finding out I should have bought something else. Also I am planning on harvesting the honey and will probably use some type of extractor for it. Do people prefer wired or not. I have heard if you plan on raising queens it is easier to cut out the cells without the wire. Thoughts. Thanks for all the info

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,336

    Default Re: buying foundation

    There used to be more designations but most don't seem to be in the catalogs anymore. They were, from thick to thin:

    Heavy brood: For brood
    Medium brood: For brood
    Surplus: Comb Honey
    Thin Surplus: Comb Honey
    Extra Thin Surplus: Comb Honey

    >I have noticed a small cell size but from what I have read I don't think I want to use it.

    I would and I do. What have you read that you don't want to use it?
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Great Falls Montana
    Posts
    4,064

    Default Re: buying foundation

    I don't think you want unwired wax foundation! I wired medium brood in medium supers in my youth and they blew out with great regularity. Caused me to upgrade to duragilt which didn't blow out as easy and cut frame building time in a huge way. Now I buy plastic frames PFXX from mann lake because they are cheap and the bees just don't care once they are drawn and I have little trouble getting them drawn and I too value the small cell size. If you don't care about that. The plastic foundations are a quantum leap up over wax foundation for durability and ease of installation in frames. I would do foundationless before I would bother with wax foundation.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    De Kalb Mo
    Posts
    14

    Default Re: buying foundation

    I guess I am really confused now. I thought I had read that the small cell the bees didnt like because it was smaller than what they were used to. Maybe I misunderstood. I have read where people had problems with bees drawing out plastic foundation. Do I need to use the same size cell that the nucs are using that I am buying? Mr Bush, I live about 100 miles south of you and would love to come by and visit some time. I am wanting to learn as much as possible before I get my bees in May.

  8. #8

    Default Re: buying foundation

    Part of yours answers are the ask a beekeeper a ? And you will get 12 answers. Personally if it is wax I like wire in everything but for cut comb. Unless I was doing crush strain. For cut comb thin with no wire. You will get into different philosophies on large and small so I won't worry about it this time. It is more important to learn to learn beekeeping in general..
    My two cents.
    David

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,336

    Default Re: buying foundation

    >I guess I am really confused now. I thought I had read that the small cell the bees didnt like because it was smaller than what they were used to.

    Maybe you mean large cell bees didn't like it because it was smaller than they were used to? I have had no issues with any bees drawing the plastic PF100s (deep) or PF120s (medium) from Mann Lake. They draw them fine.

    >Maybe I misunderstood. I have read where people had problems with bees drawing out plastic foundation.

    I have had less issues with the PF120s than most plastic. Bee prefer to build their own comb without foundation.

    >Do I need to use the same size cell that the nucs are using that I am buying?

    No.

    > Mr Bush, I live about 100 miles south of you and would love to come by and visit some time.

    That would be great. Check first, as I'm often gone somewhere speaking on weekends.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Lake County, IL
    Posts
    22

    Default Re: buying foundation

    I make my own foundation with a foundation roller. You can get away with un-wired foundation as long as the sheet is thick enough

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    mountainair, torrance, new mexico
    Posts
    23

    Default Re: buying foundation

    Just want to extend the conversation a little. One, what are the cost differences between plastic and wax foundation? Two, I have it on good authority that a light coat of wax on plastic foundation is very good. Three, on top bar hives many bee people use a 3/4" wide strip of foundation, is the same technique worthwhile on a Langstroth frame? If so, how does one cut the sheet foundation, with a paper cutter or a scissors or an exacto blade? I know that every beekeeper has their own way of doing things, but the local bee guy wants $1.50 a pop for deep wax foundation, and that is a bit too steep for moi just now. Looking for a cheeper way to get out of Kansas, ha ha.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Vancouver, BC, Canada
    Posts
    1,335

    Default Re: buying foundation

    Out of ignorance and curiosity I started out with various kinds of foundation and some foundation less frames. My honey dadants are plastic or was supported with a cross of fishing line. None blew out in the extractor. Bees drew all but the frames outside well. They pulled better on the west side of the hive.
    The brood deeps have plastic or foundation less ...they definitely prefer the latter. I don't extract these so blowing out is not an issue. If they fine a space with no frames that is their favourite place to put beautifully drawn comb.
    I read about Perone boxes...I think would love that for brood and would be strong enough to fill supers above. However I think in N America there are regulations requiring removable frames.
    Janne....first hives April 2013, 19 hives, treat, plant zone 8b, at sea level, latitude 49.13, longitude 123.06

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Lake County, IL
    Posts
    22

    Default Re: buying foundation

    At the going rate of beeswax foundation (1.25-1.80) I paid for the wax roller (2k) in a couple months. The only way to get it cheaper is to do it yourself. Once you have made it, you understand why its so expensive. I save all my beeswax scraps, clean it and then make sheets of wax. Beats making candles for sure.

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