Here are some pics of my wax dipping setup.
Here are some pics of my wax dipping setup.
Very professional looking tank,nice to see craftsmanship still around.You should get many years of use from this piece of equipment! If you dont mind saying just a ballpark figure,what did this piece of equipment cost? Ian what size operation do you run?
Had a local custom metal shop make it for me, was around $2,700 for just the tank, its made of stainless steel. My operation is still small, will be at 50 hives by the end of summer. My goal is to do bees commercially full time in 6-7 years with 1,000 hives.
Last edited by Ian G; 03-26-2015 at 03:54 PM.
'tis a thing of beauty. Have you considered becoming a professional dipper in the winter? If you could work out a profitable rate it might help you fund your journey to 1000 hives.
How do you regulate the temperature? Do you have a simple valve installed? Also, curious to see your setup for doing actual dip if you don't mind sharing that too. >>Don
3 years / 13 hives / Zone 7A www.backfortybees.com
Last edited by Ian G; 03-27-2015 at 08:57 AM.
What size is the tank and how much parafin is needed to fill it ? You use just parafin or you add something else ? .
Inside tank dimension are 36" x 24" by 34" depth, and it sits 8" above the ground on a steel base, so total overall height it 42". It has a 3 inch spillway to catch any foam that may escape and we just hang a metal bucket off the peg in the picture above. I'm definitely glad we included this as it got used. It has a heat shield that sits out about 2 inches from the inner tank. We stand on a pallet while dipping so that we can get reach in and out of it easier. With this tank I can do 10 mediums at a time or 6 deeps. The interior of the tank is made entirely of stainless steel. The bottom plate is 1/4inch and the sides are 11 gauge. We then have a 16 gauge galvanized heat shield around the whole thing so that we don't burn ourselves and a 16 gauge lid that we place on it when we're done to keep dust and debris out of it. 10 mediums displace about 4-6 inches of wax in this tank. I keep the wax depth around 20-22 inches to allow for displacement and foaming. At 260-270 I was getting 6-8 inches of foam.
My propane burner I made myself using a 0-20PSI adjustable regulator, 3/4 black pipe, and a gas/air mixer, HPGX-1, from http://www.tejassmokers.com I just drilled 5/32 inch holes every half inch down the length of the 3 pipes. I used 20# propane grill tanks. I had to keep swapping tanks every 30-60 minutes because they would start to freeze up, then gas pressure would drop, and BTU output would go down. I completely emptied 2 tanks and 3 others have a little less than half left. I rotated through 4 tanks at a time so as 1 froze up, I would swap it out. With 4 tanks, by the time I got to the first one again it had warmed back up to where the pressure was good.
Took 6 hours to heat up all the wax from a solid block to 270F. I turned the burner on at 8am and we started dipping at 2pm. Stopped at 6:30pm, turned the burner off. By the next morning there was only a 1inch skin on top and it took just under 2hrs to heat it back up to 270. Next time I plan to heat it up Friday night after work so that we can get started earlier in the day on Saturday.
Man, you're not fooling around. That's a serious tank. Looks great.
Horseshoe Point Honey -- http://localvahoney.com/
Yep, that stainless is some cheap stuff. LOL I have a metal fab shop in our truck and trailer repair shop, so I am somewhat qualified to say that whoever built that tank did a fine job from what I can tell from the pictures.
Watch for smoke coming off the galvanized. You may be okay with the 2" gap but fumes from galvanized metal are nothing to take for granted.
The more I learn about bees, the less I know.
Wow! Wow! Wow!
And I have people tell me that I get into things full bore or not at all
I'm not being critical mind you-the tank is #1 IMO as is the rest of the setup.
Can I ask what that amount of wax cost and maybe the supplier?
Why Stainless? I can weld mild steel etc but I don't have the machine to do stainless. I was going to make a tank out of steel sheet material but just a vat, not a professional job like yours.
Also wondering about your boxes? Did you build them? I started out doing my own but found that buying was money well spent???
How much wax do the boxes "consume"?
"Challenger" as in the Mopar muscle car. Not a personality description .
Keeping bees to raise money for chordoma.
Wow, that's beautiful! Heh, but I'm always a sucker for anything stainless, especially if it's got burners under it.
Congrats on your new equipment! That'll be very handy.
That is pretty darn slick.
Splitting a first year hive successfully https://youtu.be/ZfRTreQ-S9c
I was concerned that regular steel might start to rust over the long term, discoloring the wax and adding iron flakes to it over time. I knew i wouldnt be disappointed with SS so i just bit the bullet.Why Stainless? I can weld mild steel etc but I don't have the machine to do stainless. I was going to make a tank out of steel sheet material but just a vat, not a professional job like yours.
Yep built them myself from 1x8x10ft boards. Cutting the boards down didnt take too long. I cut them to length on a radial arm saw and my friend ripped them to width on the table saw, then as i dado cut the frame rest and rabbet joint he started assembly. 300 boards took us about 10hrs to cut down. The longest part for us is assembling the boxes and i don't know if buying precut ones would save us that much time or not. For now, making them ourselves is still more cost effective even when considering the time involved. To cut and asemble 475 medium boxes the 2 of us spent about 5 Sunday afternoons about 6 hours each time. If i were by myself then I would definitely be buying them precut but with 2 of us it goes pretty quick. I enjoy the woodworking aspect and find working in the barn in the fall with a heater running and a radio on is pretty relaxing.Also wondering about your boxes? Did you build them? I started out doing my own but found that buying was money well spent???
I'm not completely sure, I'll have to measure better next time, but i think around 3-4oz per mediumHow much wax do the boxes "consume"?
Very fine looking setup for sure.
I can't agree on the economics of spending that kind of coin for dipping wooden ware but if you are happy that's all that matters. Spending $4k+ on dipping equipment yet "saving money" by building hives from shelf board leaves me baffled but hey, that's just me.
Maybe I'm envious?
Last edited by rg58612455; 02-11-2016 at 06:32 PM. Reason: typo
Heat is required to turn liquid propane in to gas inside of the tank. The colder the tank the slower the conversion happens. I have tried years ago to find the math on this but was unable to.
It's better to run a high pressure regulator on the tank. The more you use the system with out one the more the propane will pull the oils out of the hose and they will end up in the burner. It can also be looked at as a safety issue, but that's another day.
A larger tank or dropping the tank into a large drum of water should solve the freeze up issue.