Cut out Question [Archive] - Beesource Beekeeping Forums

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06-23-2011, 07:05 PM
I'm doing my 3rd cut-out in a few days. I have to get through a wall of 2x6's to access the nest. I had intended to use either a circular saw or a sawsall with a short blade. My Dad (non-beekeeper) suggested that I use a chain saw. Would the vibration put the bees in an even worse mood?

06-23-2011, 07:34 PM
What does "getting through a wall of 2x6's" mean? Do you mean "into"? A typical exterior wall has siding and sheathing on the outside of a stud wall (2x4, 2x6) and drywall/plaster on the inside. Are the bees inside the wall cavity? I wouldn't recommend a chainsaw for any residential wall opening. Hitting electrical wires or plumbing would not go well.

06-23-2011, 09:35 PM
Set your skil saw to cut 1/2 inch deep and cut along the center of a stud if you can find one, if the siding is thicker than 1/2 set the saw to cut 3/4 inchs deep nad try again until you have the saw set to just cut through the siding and this may keep you away from elec. wires and plumbing. jim

06-23-2011, 09:59 PM
This is the "mixing shed," a three-sided building where they mix road salt for the highways in winter. There is one streetlight type light there, with the wire in conduit on the outside of the siding. The outside of the building is old vinyl/aluminum siding. The inside is a solid wall of vertical 2x4's or sixes for strength when they pile the salt/gravel/whatever in there. They will repair it after the bees are gone. There is one outlet outside the building next to some tanks, so I can have power if I bring a 100 ft cord. There is no plumbing.

This is in a gable wall. There are two bays for material. The bees are between the solid wall and the sheathing of the outside wall. I don't want to mess with the old siding. This building has trusses, so not much weight on the gable end walls. I saw upright 2x4's spaced 4' apart above where the 2x's started, so I'm assuming a nest in one of those cavities. I saw no line of nails to indicate studs, but the boards have been creosoted, so may just be hard to see.

I would feel more comfortable with a skil saw. Thanks!

06-24-2011, 07:10 AM
I think a Sawzall would be your best and safest saw to use. When you have long boards (as you described) that are secured (nailed) at various points along the length and you cut it in two somewhere, you don't know if it will stay in place or if there is tension on it and once cut, it will move and possibly bind the blade. With creosote as well, that adds another element that will add to the blade binding. The chainsaw should be kept to cutting trees.

07-11-2011, 08:38 PM
So I did the cut-out today, with heat index somewhere between 104 and 108. I tried the sawsall, but went back to the circular saw. I used the bee vac from Bush Kill; it's the BOMB! I wound up with 8 frames of brood and a bucket of uncapped honey.

The DOT is supposed to repair the cut-out area. I was talking to the shop supervisor after the cut-out. I told him there was a 1" gap all around the building which would be very inviting to bees. As I pointed along the walls, both he and I saw it at the same time--two MORE colonies of bees in the WEST wall! I removed one from the south wall today.

Looks like I'll be able to pay for all of the new equipment I bought. I start again Thursday. Sure hope it cools off a little. It was so hot that the comb was dropping without my cutting it, so I was basically catching comb, and laying it out for later.

07-11-2011, 09:17 PM
Way to go, sounds like you are well on your way and have a leg up with the state, word will get around. Jim

07-11-2011, 09:23 PM
LOL! Well, after I did my second cut-out for FREE, I decided THAT would never happen again!

I splurged on a Breeze suit for this;sure glad I did. Having that vacuum was really nice too. It's really nice doing a cut-out without ticked-off bees all over your veil. When I got the girls home, I put the super full of brood on top and pulled the screen. The tone changed instantly from angry to busy.

07-11-2011, 09:31 PM
Yep dosn't take to many free trap outs or cut outs before you decide it ain't all fun(unless your elevator goes left to right instead of up and down):D before you start something for your time and knowledge. jim

07-11-2011, 09:56 PM

What really tickles me is the attitude people have about the HONEY! They seem to think there's a TON of clean, pretty honey in there, just like at the supermarket. Their eyes just gleam at the thought of all that honey! They don't see the black comb, dead bees, twigs, etc, etc. I'll be feeding this back to the bees and keeping the wax.

07-12-2011, 06:13 PM
Yep, they say "I'm giving you free bees and all that honey(if they don't want a cut of it). Had a guy respond to a listing I have in a real estate section for bee removal and the word FREE is not in the add. He was a pro. roofer and said I got bees in gable and they have been there 3 years or longer, I will cut the roof so all you gota do is pull em out. Yeh right, I told him I get $75. per hr and the shortest cut out done to date took me 4 hrs so he should count on that at least. He didn't want to pay as I was getting the bees and honey. I told him by the time I cut and fit the comb to my frames, vaccumed the bees and cleaned up it would be 4 hrs plus.He said I could throw the comb in some 5 gal paint buckets he had cleaned up with gas and take it all home and do it. Long story short , he didn't want to pay me to work on his roof and he sure as heck wasn't gonna work on my roof for 4 hrs free so I passed on the free bees. Jim

07-12-2011, 08:06 PM
Some people just don't get that free bees are not free bees. After factoring in labor to remove them, gas, woodenware, medication, sugar, ect ect ect... free bees have become quite an expense. Had a lady call me just today looking to have a colony removed. Well they were free and she couldn't pay me, and her neighbor even took the time to cover thier entrance with tar to stop them from getting out.??? All I had to do was remove em. Yea right, no thanks. Every cut out I do I charge something. It is a lot of work and costs me at least $150 in woodenware/supplies to set up a colony.

07-12-2011, 08:20 PM
Yes, I had a truck and trailer full of equipment to do this cut-out. Most of the tools were in the truck bed, but the scaffolding and Bushkill vacuum were on the trailer. So a day of prep, getting everything together, and then the clean up afterwards.

It turned out to be a nice big colony. I didn't see the queen, but they act like she's in there. Tomorrow I'm going to put the hive on a SBB and set the vacuum up for the next nest. I hope the next two colonies are as calm as this one. One thing about having hot hives; they make you appreciate the nice ones.

Took me 41/2 hours, but then I was working off a scaffold, so I don't think that's too bad. If they want someone faster who's willing to wait 45 days to get paid, more power to them. :) They called today to see when I could get to the next hive. I only charged $50 hr, but that may go up next time. Cut-outs ARE a lot of work. I picked up a sweat band today. That salty sweat in the eyes--phew!

07-20-2011, 10:28 AM
Well, I got the 2nd colony on Monday. I did it in only 3 1/2 hours this time. My younger sister wanted to come up and watch, so I put her in my Ultra-Breeze jacket. She put on jeans and knee-high rubber boots and stuffed them with rags, lol, in THIS HEAT! After she gained confidence in the jacket, she came to the top of the ladder and watched. She was a good helper. I told her that I would find the queen this time, since I had a beginner along, and I did. I got to use my fancy-dancy new queen catcher.

Sis had to leave as soon as we got the colony out of the wall, so I took the girls up to the farm and set them on a stand. I put a screened double screen on top because of the heat. I looked at the hive yesterday, but they were still clustered on the outside quite a bit, so didn't pull the vacuum bottom or screen frame out. I need them for Saturday, though; got a cut-out in a log. (on the ground. :)

This was a 3 year-old colony. They had black brood comb, but were still using it. I got 2 buckets 1/2 full of honeycomb, which I'm feeding back.

I have one colony left to take from this building. This is the largest colony, and I presume, the oldest. So now, I have a situation: I would like to bring in a bait hive to clean up the bees that I miss in the cut-out. The place closes at 5 p.m. and they lock the gates. So...should I just get all the bees that I can before 5 p.m. and call that good? If I bring in a bait hive, I'll have the same access at night to plug the entrance to the hive.

Any suggestions?