My ghetto II station
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  1. #1
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    Default My ghetto II station

    Hi, All!


    This is my most ghetto, el cheapo II station I just finish assembling. Tested on the queen and it works!
    Can you identify all the cheap main parts of what they are? Let me know if you need any hints.
    My next step is to hook up the co2 tubing to complete the entire set up.


    El cheapo II parts:
    Attached Images Attached Images
    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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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
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    Port Angeles, WA, USA
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    Default Re: My ghetto II station

    Quote Originally Posted by beepro View Post
    Hi, All!


    This is my most ghetto, el cheapo II station I just finish assembling. Tested on the queen and it works!
    Can you identify all the cheap main parts of what they are? Let me know if you need any hints.
    My next step is to hook up the co2 tubing to complete the entire set up.


    El cheapo II parts:
    Check the temp on the light of that microscope, run it for 20minute and see if anything is getting warm. One of mine gets too warm.

  4. #3
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    Default Re: My ghetto II station

    I'm never seen the warm LED lights before. This one has all cool lights though I don't use
    them. I have 2 miner's LED lights that I use. One is a wear on and the 4 phase one is stationary on top of
    a can of CA olive shining on the II queen tube. Very sharp focus too.


    Close enough pics:.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Don't mix foreign bees into a virgin hive. She might get balled 100% of the time! When will you ever learn, huh?

  5. #4
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    Default Re: My ghetto II station

    Nice work Beepro although have to say it is very ghetto. With my shaky hands I really need to adjust the sensitive parts by turning a knob rather than pushing them with my fingers. But hey, if it works for you, well done!
    "Every viewpoint, is a view from a point." - Solomon Parker

  6. #5
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    Default Re: My ghetto II station

    All the initial trial run are good. Except now that I have to try on a live subject tomorrow.
    Keeping my fingers crossed!
    Don't mix foreign bees into a virgin hive. She might get balled 100% of the time! When will you ever learn, huh?

  7. #6
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    Default Re: My ghetto II station

    After 2 week of preparation to gather all the needed II materials, I finally got my
    first II Cordovan queen today. Now that I got my first experience in using this ghetto II station there will be
    many more queens to come. Harvesting semen is the hardest part of them all. Next time I will
    time the drones maturity better. Smell like a drone too. One of the drones squirted on my face. Luckily I got my eyeglasses on.
    Still I'm not used to the smell not sure why the girls liked it. Not sure if it is normal or not for some white semen to come out on the other end afterward? I should know the laying result within 5 day. Also took out the QE for her to go open mating as it is 17 day passed already . Curious to know what drones are out there now. One more virgin to go next week and 3 more QCs on the way. I'll wear a mask this time!


    1st II queen done:
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Don't mix foreign bees into a virgin hive. She might get balled 100% of the time! When will you ever learn, huh?

  8. #7
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    Default Re: My ghetto II station

    Not sure with blurry pic but looks like you got the semen in the wrong place.
    "Every viewpoint, is a view from a point." - Solomon Parker

  9. #8
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    Default Re: My ghetto II station

    Quote Originally Posted by beepro View Post
    After 2 week of preparation to gather all the needed II materials, I finally got my
    first II Cordovan queen today. Now that I got my first experience in using this ghetto II station there will be
    many more queens to come. Harvesting semen is the hardest part of them all. Next time I will
    time the drones maturity better. Smell like a drone too. One of the drones squirted on my face. Luckily I got my eyeglasses on.
    Still I'm not used to the smell not sure why the girls liked it. Not sure if it is normal or not for some white semen to come out on the other end afterward? I should know the laying result within 5 day. Also took out the QE for her to go open mating as it is 17 day passed already . Curious to know what drones are out there now. One more virgin to go next week and 3 more QCs on the way. I'll wear a mask this time!


    1st II queen done:
    You should wait 3 days and inspect her spermatheca, if it is clear then she didnt absorb any, if cloudy then it was a partial success, if really milky then she is sell inseminated.

  10. #9
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    Default Re: My ghetto II station

    I have 2 more virgins waiting for II today.
    I don't think this one is fully inseminated though. That is why she's allow to go on her
    mating flights. Will do a better job next time. On you tube vids I didn't see any semen coming
    out after II. This is way harder than I thought.
    Don't mix foreign bees into a virgin hive. She might get balled 100% of the time! When will you ever learn, huh?

  11. #10
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    Default Re: My ghetto II station

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldtimer View Post
    Not sure with blurry pic but looks like you got the semen in the wrong place.
    Nope, not in the wrong place just too much put in I guess. This will not cause an harm to the queen.

    This II queen got eggs today! Saw her laying in the cell along with other eggs already laid. I'm very happy.
    She emerged from the cell on 8/11/17. Got II on 9/1/17 which is exactly
    21 day within her window of mating opportunity. Today I saw eggs 5 day after her II done. Looks like she's been laying on the last 2 day or so by the eggs deposit pattern. If the math is correct then she can lay on the 3rd day after II. She's a bit small because I haven't been feeding the hive any syrup or honey water. Very interesting for a desperate queen to lay as her hive is shrinking in number. Should know if these are the worker eggs after one week. If not then I still have other II queens waiting to lay.
    My first try on the 1st Cordovan queen using el cheapo ghetto II station. And will do II again if she ran out of juice next Spring for an experiment. I will keep her as a breeder after my last expensive Cordovan breeder got squished under my foot on a hive check last time. Now I don't have to buy another breeder queen. You think it will work on the 2nd II try?
    Went out and mark all the remaining drones green for other virgins to II next week. This time I will use the gentamicin since I got it yesterday. For this II queen I only use the saline solution without the gentamicin shortly after the semen harvest. I have more confidence now that even with the white semen squirting out (put in too much?), she can still lay. What is the chance? Lucky shot I guess!

    I could not have done it without the many Bee Source members support and encouragement, especially on the many hits and ongoing PMs support in making my first II station a success. OT likes his operation smooth because of the shaky hand. I will try to source local materials next time to see if it can be done on my next improved design. I'll call it El Cheapo II-2 version. I'm sure they are out there only with more time I will find it. If it is not at the dollar store then it will be at the local flea markets. Maybe a 3-D printer can help me with a set too. Quite a learning experience so far. Thanks much, folks!


    1st II laying queen:
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Don't mix foreign bees into a virgin hive. She might get balled 100% of the time! When will you ever learn, huh?

  12. #11
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    Default Re: My ghetto II station

    Quote Originally Posted by beepro View Post
    Nope, not in the wrong place just too much put in I guess. This will not cause an harm to the queen.

    This II queen got eggs today! Saw her laying in the cell along with other eggs already laid. I'm very happy.
    She emerged from the cell on 8/11/17. Got II on 9/1/17 which is exactly
    21 day within her window of mating opportunity. Today I saw eggs 5 day after her II done. Looks like she's been laying on the last 2 day or so by the eggs deposit pattern. If the math is correct then she can lay on the 3rd day after II. She's a bit small because I haven't been feeding the hive any syrup or honey water. Very interesting for a desperate queen to lay as her hive is shrinking in number. Should know if these are the worker eggs after one week. If not then I still have other II queens waiting to lay.
    My first try on the 1st Cordovan queen using el cheapo ghetto II station. And will do II again if she ran out of juice next Spring for an experiment. I will keep her as a breeder after my last expensive Cordovan breeder got squished under my foot on a hive check last time. Now I don't have to buy another breeder queen. You think it will work on the 2nd II try?
    Went out and mark all the remaining drones green for other virgins to II next week. This time I will use the gentamicin since I got it yesterday. For this II queen I only use the saline solution without the gentamicin shortly after the semen harvest. I have more confidence now that even with the white semen squirting out (put in too much?), she can still lay. What is the chance? Lucky shot I guess!

    I could not have done it without the many Bee Source members support and encouragement, especially on the many hits and ongoing PMs support in making my first II station a success. OT likes his operation smooth because of the shaky hand. I will try to source local materials next time to see if it can be done on my next improved design. I'll call it El Cheapo II-2 version. I'm sure they are out there only with more time I will find it. If it is not at the dollar store then it will be at the local flea markets. Maybe a 3-D printer can help me with a set too. Quite a learning experience so far. Thanks much, folks!


    1st II laying queen:
    Congrats, no II after she starts laying won't work.

    Watch out for queen cells, they often make them with ii queens, her pheromones sometimes take a minute to kick in fully

  13. #12
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    Default Re: My ghetto II station

    Dups!
    Last edited by beepro; 09-07-2017 at 04:34 AM.
    Don't mix foreign bees into a virgin hive. She might get balled 100% of the time! When will you ever learn, huh?

  14. #13
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    Default Re: My ghetto II station

    Dups!
    Last edited by beepro; 09-07-2017 at 04:35 AM.
    Don't mix foreign bees into a virgin hive. She might get balled 100% of the time! When will you ever learn, huh?

  15. #14
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    Default Re: My ghetto II station

    Thanks, I will keep that in mind and will be looking for the QCs. More practice for me. So far a very nice solid laying pattern.
    Now that I have an initial success, I'm trying it on the 2nd queen the second time today.
    She's 2 week old and more yellow than the first sister queen. Another queen is waiting for II that emerged on 9/1.
    Keeping it going with more virgins to practice on. Each time improving the process with better skills and learning experience. Getting better at semen extraction now. All drones on CO2 going asleep. Hurry up to get through that learning curve, eh.



    Another II queen today:
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Don't mix foreign bees into a virgin hive. She might get balled 100% of the time! When will you ever learn, huh?

  16. #15
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    Default Re: My ghetto II station

    Quote Originally Posted by beepro View Post
    Thanks, I will keep that in mind and will be looking for the QCs. More practice for me. So far a very nice solid laying pattern.
    Now that I have an initial success, I'm trying it on the 2nd queen the second time today.
    She's 2 week old and more yellow than the first sister queen. Another queen is waiting for II that emerged on 9/1.
    Keeping it going with more virgins to practice on. Each time improving the process with better skills and learning experience. Getting better at semen extraction now. All drones on CO2 going asleep. Hurry up to get through that learning curve, eh.



    Another II queen today:
    Can you post pictures of your syringe setup and your tip messurements

  17. #16
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    Default Re: My ghetto II station

    My 7.1 MP digi cam cannot pick up the capillary tip pic because it is too small. So cannot give you a measurement of it. I don't even have a caliper device to use. I just follow the you tube vids to make the tips as close as I can. To ensure a more successful II, I am doing a 2nd time on the same queen.
    For the syringe setup I have a mounting bracket that is movable at 360 degree. The entire syringe is tug inside a
    white foam with a channel in the middle. I use wax to sealed the cap. tube inside the syringe for an air tight fit. The
    entire cap. tube is fit inside the syringe through a clear plastic syringe cap all filled with wax inside so the syringe tip cannot move at all. All the connection is air tight and very secure otherwise it cannot suck up the solution and semen. Still ghetto but works for me so far.


    Setup and the syringe connection:
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Don't mix foreign bees into a virgin hive. She might get balled 100% of the time! When will you ever learn, huh?

  18. #17
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    Default Re: My ghetto II station

    Congrats on making this work. One thing you might consider is getting or making better tips. This one in your photo is WAY shorter and more blunt than those typically used. I just compared my tips (from Cobey and Schley) to your picture and there appears to be a big difference. Again, the ones I use have a very long "narrow" section of nearly constant diameter. Perhaps this explains the excess semen after your procedure?
    Horseshoe Point Honey -- http://localvahoney.com/

  19. #18
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    Default Re: My ghetto II station

    Quote Originally Posted by AstroBee View Post
    Congrats on making this work. One thing you might consider is getting or making better tips. This one in your photo is WAY shorter and more blunt than those typically used. I just compared my tips (from Cobey and Schley) to your picture and there appears to be a big difference. Again, the ones I use have a very long "narrow" section of nearly constant diameter. Perhaps this explains the excess semen after your procedure?
    Which do you prefer, the cobey or schley? The ones I got from Sue are more consistant than the ones from I got with my schley unit. The schley ones are not perfectly straight.

    On that note, I finally have my tip puller mock up working, waiting for machinist to build the real one for me now. Ended up using 24g nichrome wire, you can get it working with a much lower end power supply that the gauge most people are recommending. My glass sandpaper just arrived yesterday, so I'll probably give it a go at polishing and finishing tips sometime this month.

  20. #19
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    Default Re: My ghetto II station


  21. #20
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    Default Re: My ghetto II station

    Thanks for the feedback. I've since change the tip to a narrower and longer tube.
    Without this change the semen cannot go in because the previous tip is too blunt.
    Sorry about the blurry vids. Something to time the co2 with. Might not be interesting to
    you but to the new beekeeper like me it is.
    https://youtu.be/QifBBNon6hs
    https://youtu.be/FyfA_rgCU_o
    https://youtu.be/WZ5bTN2_sow
    https://youtu.be/nEpSd4ytRzI
    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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