Jim sounds like you have a good understanding of the C&B. I would not change to anything else on the market from what I have seen but this machine has required the biggest learning curve amongst all the equipment in my extracting line for me.
bmac adding to Ian's description of the wax collection system. I augers the honey back from the extractor to the uncapper. The honey and wax mixture are pumped from the bottom of the hopper.
So how long is the system? Right now I have mine archaic setup with my uncapper 10 feet away from my extractors with a 8 foot long uncapping tank sitting between uncapper and extractor just to stow frames waiting for next spinning.
It can be custom made for any length. I think the version made for the 120 extractor would have an auger at least that long. My Cowen 60 is almost 15 years old and required a slightly different length than the 60's they were making several years ago when I bought the wax collection system. Not sure if there would be much resale value in a length that was to far from standard or how well you could incorporate a nonstandard length into an upgraded system.
"was surprised to see the changes in their web site, I am not sure there is as much "
I don't want to sound critical, because I'm not at all. I'm a man who loves constructive criticism and useful feedback. And I also love to give it!! Lol
In this day and age there is no excuse not to have a developed web page. Our farm has a web page, and not perfect, it does provide our cattle customers with that extra bit of info to satisfy curiosity. We need to do more of course but we are striving to tap into all those potential "new aged" cow boys in bringing them into our farm to help them understand what our farm is all about and sell them on our herd management practices. Buyers who understand our management practices are more likely to become dedicated buyers. We are selling our farm as a Brand. Developing that brand take a lot if time and exposure.
I can see tremendous opportunity with some of these companies but then to the point you raised Jim, they are already overwhelmed with sales. Sometimes all you need is a good product and it sells itself!
I am with you there Jim. I have had my spin float for 5 seasons now and still wonder if I am operating it properly or at its optimum.
I've had it for 4 season and at times I fell like a novice.
Last year my was dropping very wet. Cleaned the drum twice - I usually only do so once or twice a season. Tried this and that and nothing seemed to work. Finally called C&B and they suggested to back the cutter off some. Worked nicely. I don't know if the belt stretched or something else created this change. I think I was trying to cut a little deeps. Won't call myself an expert for a long time.
These discussions are very useful.
I especially find these conversations useful as I have only seen a true large commercial operation while NOT in use. Set aside that I feel like I need to learn what a more optimal setup needs to be and with how many operators inside. I am looking at extraction going from 400 to approx 1400 colonies this next fall and I want to be as prepared for that chaos as best as possible.
I only run the water when the knives are cutting and the last hour before shut down. no need to cut to deep i start with the knives all the way out (handle screwed in) add gallon water at start up back out two turns capping come out powder dry. all honey and capping go into a sump with a float,( you can pick out any foreign objects before the pump finds them) and pumped out with a 2 inch pcp to the heat exchanger warm to 105 degrees. I take the drum off only once a year but clean it out every nite by hand after cutting the wax down at the end of the day.
beebotanical.com 40 years-4000 colonies-treatment eo's
David how far do you cut the wax down at the end of the day? Are you doing this after you dump the honey?
Last edited by Allen Martens; 12-28-2013 at 06:53 PM. Reason: added another question
"" but clean it out every nite by hand "
yes please elaborate on this...are you scraping the inside of the drum every nite??
we ALSO ADD one gallon of boiling water at every morning startup.....canola honey granulates quickly, overnite when in a thin layer on drum.This would become a daily occurance after extracting for a couple of weeks and the nites are cooler.At this stage of extracting we are pulling the drum at once aweek to clean, get rid of granulation
Last edited by irwin harlton; 12-28-2013 at 07:57 PM. Reason: MORE INFO ADDED
I kept the water valve off as much as possible but when you are extracting at the capacity of a 120 frame system and you have dialed your pump back a bit to eliminate surges there is going to be honey pumping in most of the time. I found myself thinking that an electronically controlled water valve that is activated when the pump kicks on would be a good thing.
At the end day I cut the wax till you hit honey then dump. There will be about a 1/4 -1/2 inch of wax left in the drum which I remove by hand. Having sharp cutter blades are a must I sharpen mine twice a year. I run my 2 inch Myono pump at the slowest speed I think it runs 50% of the time, if the honey is cold or low moisture less then 15% I will heat the sump. On a good day we can run 750+ 6 5/8 (8 hour day including clean up 16-22 barrels) with a 30 year old 120 cowan. 3 beeks bought their 120's at the same time in our area some are on there 3rd machine I just repair mine. I have though about adding a solenoid valve on the C&B to the pump control but on the to do list.
beebotanical.com 40 years-4000 colonies-treatment eo's
My C & B extractor is a 82 or 84 model 120 , bought it used, replaced the drum a couple of years ago,old drum was wore out and not stainless steel,new one is.Lots of repairs when you run older equip but it has served me well.Thinking of upgrading.Still remmber my first load thru it, pump seemed to run for days.......alot of weight going around in there on the first spins,stood there in awe at the amount of honey coming out of the 2" hole into the sump.Good info here ,thanks fellows
Alright. So I am gearing up to order one from C&B. 2 other problems I have now. Im kind of tight on budget so I can't really afford to buy all new equipment. So along with the spin float I also need to move the slurry to a heat exchange and to the spin float itself. So I have been thinking about using an auger vice progressive cavity pump, mostly because I think I can have one built onto the bottom of my current uncapping tank for a few hundred bucks. Please give me your thoughts on custom creating say an 8 foot long auger.
I bought a used progressive cavity for $2000
I have seen new ones, but havent seen too many used ones. Besides how are you collecting all the cappings and honey into 1 sump for the pump?
Also what are you using for a heat exchange?
I dont know if I understand your question.
Im in the exact same boat as you BMAC, Im investing into this strategy of separating my wax and honey.
Ill tell you what I have done to adopt this method to make it work. Your right, it costs money but keep in the mind that a lot of things in this business can be done as a "hybrid" version, but other things are best to have done the "suggested" way right from the start.
My extractor is a 60 frame Cowen, I previously used a 5 foot cappings auger and an old drum spinner, and I would skim the sump and bulk tank daily.
So to eliminate all that wax work I decided to go with a spin float.
With advice from a local beekeeper who had incorporated one of these machines earlier, you have to set your system up in a certain way.
#1, you need to mix your cappings and your extractor honey evenly
#2, you need to have a mechanism to be able to pump cappings/honey mixture
#3, you need a heat exhanger to keep the separation process uniform and quick
#4, you need the separator.
After the seperator is your bulk honey tank, and bulk cappings barrel.
I bought a cappings / honey collecting unit which pulls the honey horizontally from the extractor into the cappings tank where as it is mixed into a slurry. The theory is the honey and cappings are evenly mixed before the pump. My progressive honey pump pushes it up to the ceiling and then over to the heat exhanger, which then drops into the spinner. Another pump takes the finished product from the spinner into my bulk tank.
Im using the heat exchange unit from C&B them selves. You see I have bought the spinner and heat exchanger new from them. I have spent alot of years scraping wax waiting for the opportunity to make this investment. Im going to be handling over 200000 lbs of honey annually, I need an efficient system of handling wax. Not to mention, all the hoeny I have been leaving in my cappings would easily make my payment.
Im sure your aware of the entire process but thought I would pass on my thoughts on getting this system set up. I dont see any other practical way of making the system work. The entire system pretty much works off the pump that is able to move solids within the suspension.
Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog