Do you clean and reuse plastic foundation or throw them away?
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
    Location
    Spring, Texas
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    271

    Question Do you clean and reuse plastic foundation or throw them away?

    Good news is my bees are going crazy this year.
    I robbed some supers and did not put a couple back on the hives but cut the wax off back down to foundation for next year.

    I was going to store them but noticed that mold set up in the foundation where pollen had been plus the bees started back up with the new flow.

    What do you do?
    Throw plastic sheet away and buy more
    Run them thru the dishwasher and re-wax them for future use

    If they clean up how would you rewax them at home?

    Thanks,

    jim

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Woodbridge, VA (But planning to move to NW Louisiana soon)
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    285

    Default Re: Do you clean and reuse plastic foundation or throw them away?

    I don't even clean them up much. I've had some made very nasty by SHB and moths, I just scrape them off, and rub wax all over them. The bees finish cleaning them up and rebuild the cells.
    My wax is reclaimed from cappings and in small blocks about an inch thick. I soften the wax with a torch, but not to the melting point.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Crown Point, NY, USA
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    576

    Default

    I just scrape them down. I have an old crock pot with wax and a mini paint roller. Put thin coat on the foundation and your done. Try to avoid putting wax on too heavy so that it fills the cell base.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Derry, New Hampshire
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    2,295

    Default Re: Do you clean and reuse plastic foundation or throw them away?

    never ever ever put bee stuff in your dishwasher. even a little wax will make a mess of it. for really nasty ones i pressure wash them clean and put away till next use. i've never added wax.
    Terrence

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
    Location
    Spring, Texas
    Posts
    271

    Default Re: Do you clean and reuse plastic foundation or throw them away?

    Appreciate the info.

    The Fat Bee Man said the same- Pressure Wash Them

    Is that what you do to your suppers during the fall? Remove the wax, wash and store for the winter?
    Last year I just let the bees clean up the frames and stored them in a plastic bag but did not have any pollen and such stored.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Santa Fe, NM, U.S.
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    256

    Default Re: Do you clean and reuse plastic foundation or throw them away?

    Quote Originally Posted by JimD View Post
    Is that what you do to your suppers during the fall? Remove the wax, wash and store for the winter?
    Well drawn comb is far to valuable to destroy.

    Badly drawn/drone on worker, smashed, really old, badly infested, yes. After scraping down and adding to melt, I scrub off what I can with a stiff brush and then roll on a new skim of melted capping wax.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Byron, Il, USA
    Posts
    374

    Default Re: Do you clean and reuse plastic foundation or throw them away?

    I put them all in supers and put them back on top the hive. The bees clean them up fast and may start rebuilding the comb which is nice for next year.

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Covington County, Alabama, USA
    Posts
    1,541

    Default Re: Do you clean and reuse plastic foundation or throw them away?

    Quote Originally Posted by kaizen View Post
    never ever ever put bee stuff in your dishwasher. even a little wax will make a mess of it.
    You might have just saved my marriage Terrence.

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Location
    Vestavia Hills, Al. USA
    Posts
    422

    Default Re: Do you clean and reuse plastic foundation or throw them away?

    I have a basement sink with a sprayer. I have, in the past, used it to remove the fermented nectar and other nastiness.
    Then I set it on the ground outside and the ants clean out any remaining biological matter. I have reused them in hives without issue.
    Started April Fools Day 2017

  11. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
    Location
    Spring, Texas
    Posts
    271

    Default Re: Do you clean and reuse plastic foundation or throw them away?

    I cut the wax and used a pressure washer to clean the pollen and such from the foundation which I popped out to clean.

  12. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Menomonee Falls, Wis.
    Posts
    4,138

    Default Re: Do you clean and reuse plastic foundation or throw them away?

    Since it appears that pesticides build up in the wax, I would also assume that it build up in the plastic. Therefore we replace with new foundation, tested bt Dadant.

    Crazy Roland

  13. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    53,885

    Default Re: Do you clean and reuse plastic foundation or throw them away?

    Just give them back to the bees. Do nothing else...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 42y 40h 39yTF

  14. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Pepperell, MA.
    Posts
    6,102

    Default Re: Do you clean and reuse plastic foundation or throw them away?

    Let the bees take care of them. Unfortunately and ultimately, you have to deal with that plastic you bought and are responsible for. Plastic has consequences in the long term.
    "My wife always wanted girls. Just not thousands and thousands of them......"

  15. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Salt Lake City, UT
    Posts
    1,136

    Default Re: Do you clean and reuse plastic foundation or throw them away?

    If you don't have a pressure washer the next best thing is a roll of quarters and a car wash. I re-rinse when I get back home just because I don't know what kind of anti-spotting additives might be in the car wash rinse.
    Zone 6B

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