What day do you transfer cells into incubator? - Page 2
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  1. #21
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    Default Re: What day do you transfer cells into incubator?

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Bush View Post
    It depends on my goal. Usually I don't use an incubator because I have better luck with them emerging in the mating nucs and I have better luck with the bees caring for them. When I do use an incubator it's either to free up the cell starter for another batch, or because I'm going to be out of town when the cells need to go in the mating nucs. The first case, I put them in as soon as they are capped. The second case, I put them in before I leave town...
    This is exactly how I utilize my incubator - mostly to maximize throughput of the finisher. I strongly prefer to NOT let the cells emerge in the incubator. Virgin queens are very hungry when they emerge and I believe that they greatly benefit from having nurse bees present. Sure, you can provide food so they can feed themselves, but I believe it diminishes the quality of the queen. Besides, it is far more difficult to deal with virgins than cells.

    I use a old deep chest freezer as my incubator. The heating is accomplished by a cluster of 3 60 watt incandescent light bulbs and the controller is a Ranco ETC-111000. I use a small box fan that is cycled with the heater to evenly distribute the heat. I get very steady temps with this system and do not see overshoots that some try to avoid by using PID controllers. The freezer can easily accommodate a deep box where I place the grafting frame. This way there is minimal handling of the cells - I gently pull frame out of the finisher and brush off bees and place in incubator. I make very sure that the temperature probe is placed right next to the cells. I've used this system to incubate 100s of cells without a single failure.

    Costs: controller about $50, light bulb fixture (free since I had it laying around), chest freezer (free as my neighbor was throwing it away), but these are often discarded and can be picked up for free pretty much anywhere. The fan, again free since I had it, but these can be purchased on ebay for about $10.
    Horseshoe Point Honey -- http://localvahoney.com/

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  3. #22
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    Miami, Manitoba, Canada
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    Default Re: What day do you transfer cells into incubator?

    One thing I learnt is queen rearing runs a strict schedule. If cells are to be collected on day 10 after graft, they need to be collected on day 10 regardless the weather.
    Luckily I have an assistant that I send out into the rain to collect cells. And she is insisting on an incubator to allow collection time over a few days to help manage the weather. Lol
    I've pushed the boundaries and have been punished with early hatches

    I think I might be leaning towards a larger unit. Quickly dropping in frames will be important around here. We are hopping through May

  4. #23
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    Feb 2006
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    Default Re: What day do you transfer cells into incubator?

    Here is a visual to give you an idea how we use it. A nice improvement for someone so inclined is to mount the two trays on some sort of drawer glides. Currently they just friction slide aluminum on aluminum.
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  5. #24
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    Default Re: What day do you transfer cells into incubator?

    There I go
    That's exactly what I was imagining
    That is what I'll set up
    Through the split we will be pulling cells into the incubator everyday for a couple weeks so I want to set up for space

  6. #25
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    Default Re: What day do you transfer cells into incubator?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ian View Post
    And she is insisting on an incubator to allow collection time over a few days to help manage the weather.
    Once you use it, you'll wonder how you got along without it. You extend your flexibility for several days. And you have the ability to rear more cells than you need so unexpected failures won't hurt your schedule.

    Get her a big umbrella and a cheap weighted stand she can move where ever she needs it. Works great in hot sun too.



    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by Lauri; 02-03-2017 at 12:26 PM.
    Lauri Miller.
    Carniolan Hybrids. Glenn, Latshaw & Wild lines.

  7. #26
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    Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
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    Default Re: What day do you transfer cells into incubator?

    Do you have any spare calf sheds that you can place the cell finisher in?
    Zone 3b. If you always do what you always did, you'll always get what you always got!

  8. #27
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    Default Re: What day do you transfer cells into incubator?

    Quote Originally Posted by mgolden View Post
    Do you have any spare calf sheds that you can place the cell finisher in?
    Lol ya but I also like working in those nice sunny beautiful days

  9. #28
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    Default Re: What day do you transfer cells into incubator?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lauri View Post
    Once you use it, you'll wonder how you got along without it. You extend your flexibility for several days. And you have the ability to rear more cells than you need so unexpected failures won't hurt your schedule.

    Get her a big umbrella and a cheap stand she can move where ever she needs it. Works great in hot sun too.

    5-3-14 grid check.jpg
    I once tried that idea of an overhead canopy while shaking packages. Until it hit the tree top canopies lol ha ha , quite the expression on my workers faces ha ha

  10. #29
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    Default Re: What day do you transfer cells into incubator?

    Zone 3b. If you always do what you always did, you'll always get what you always got!

  11. #30
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    Default Re: What day do you transfer cells into incubator?

    Ha, ha. Never getting into a photo posting duel with Lauri. You lose every time.
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  12. #31
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    Default Re: What day do you transfer cells into incubator?

    Jim you need to adopt a more photo friendly presence like Lauri

  13. #32
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    Default Re: What day do you transfer cells into incubator?

    Thank for all the feedback guys. Very much appreciated. I ended up buying the Digital Professional Cabinet Incubator 1500 for $500. Thanks to some program funding associated with encouraging producer sustainability, I'll have 2/3 of the cost covered.
    I'm as excited as a kid on Christmas morning


  14. #33
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    Default Re: What day do you transfer cells into incubator?

    You got that for $500? You have a friend that works there or did you make them an offer they couldn't refuse?
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  15. #34
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    Default Re: What day do you transfer cells into incubator?

    It's new apparently, I put my trust in Amazon.
    I've been looking at it everyday for a week now, it was $775 last week....
    Cost shared too

  16. #35
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    New Albany, Ohio, USA
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    Default Re: What day do you transfer cells into incubator?

    Ian,

    Is the incubator in the pic the actual one you purchased? It is the "setting" machine. The unit is fine but if you notice those three horizontal bars that hold the trays are stationary, unlike the hatcher Jim has. You will just have to do a little retrofitting to get frames in. They are nice units and easy to get parts for.
    Breeder Queens & Honey Bee Nutritional Supplements
    www.latshawapiaries.com

  17. #36
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    Default Re: What day do you transfer cells into incubator?

    Amizon failed me with a canceled order but I placed an order through EBAY. I accidentally bought the 1550, I was going to buy the cheaper 1500 but As Joe suggested the trays will work out better.
    This is what is being sent;



    I'll have to modify the unit. I'll take a couple of the slide trays out and build frame supports. I'll see what exactly needs done when it arrives.

  18. #37
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    Default Re: What day do you transfer cells into incubator?

    I think you will like it. GQF has been around a long time. They build simple machines that work. Modifying the hatcher unit to your needs will be easier.
    Breeder Queens & Honey Bee Nutritional Supplements
    www.latshawapiaries.com

  19. #38
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    Jan 2005
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    Southern Oregon
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    Default Re: What day do you transfer cells into incubator?

    We transfer ours on day 6... start placing on day 10. Home built incubator insulated cabinet with lab grade temperature control and a heated water bath to maintain humidity and help with temperature maintenance so the unit returns quickly to temp after the door has been opened. We keep ours at 94F. I have seen several studies that show cooler temps can adversely affect memory and learning. Most will hatch on the beginning of day 13.
    John B Jacob www.oldsolbees.com

  20. #39
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    Default Re: What day do you transfer cells into incubator?

    That's the problem with a cheap incubator, I can't trust the digital temp reading to be totally accurate. Every thermometer/ hygrometer I have reads slightly different.

    91 degree setting F on the unit itself puts me at the correct gestation and emergence. Who knows exactly what the temp is. But that's how I run it. After 4 years I have no complaints.
    Lauri Miller.
    Carniolan Hybrids. Glenn, Latshaw & Wild lines.

  21. #40
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    Default Re: What day do you transfer cells into incubator?

    I'm not sure about the avg. temp. then. Some say 94 and Lauri's 91?
    So the average might be around 93F for me. I will test it out first before running more
    cells in it. And what is the average humidity inside? Good idea for the hot water bath.
    Don't mix foreign bees into a virgin hive. She might get balled 100% of the time! When will you ever learn, huh?

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