Problem with oxalic acid wand
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
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    Default Problem with oxalic acid wand

    In the beginning of this year I bought an oxalic acid wand and a new battery. I used the wand in the spring and it worked fine for my 5 hives. Now, I'm in the process of using it again for fall. This morning I used it on 3 hives and then came back in the afternoon to do the rest.

    The wand warmed up but the oxalic acid just didn't form the vapor. When I took it out of the hive the OA was still in the bowl and looked dry and a bit stiff. What is causing it not to heat up or is there a problem with the OA?

    Not sure what to do now. I did check the battery and charged it but it didn't need much. Don't think that's the problem.

    Could it be the OA if the lid wasn't fully sealed in storage? Can the wand get encrusted and not work?

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
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    Aylett, Virginia
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    Default Re: Problem with oxalic acid wand

    Just like with jumping a car battery, I would suspect you had a bad connection at the battery terminals that caused this problem. Can't think of anything else besides a wiring problem with the wand. Try again with some OA but not in the hive, out in the open so you can observe what happens.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  4. #3
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    Mar 2015
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    Ocala, Florida, USA
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    Default Re: Problem with oxalic acid wand

    What type of wand?

  5. #4
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    Apr 2016
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    Rutland County, Vermont,USA
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    Default Re: Problem with oxalic acid wand

    Quote Originally Posted by JWPalmer View Post
    Just like with jumping a car battery, I would suspect you had a bad connection at the battery terminals that caused this problem. Can't think of anything else besides a wiring problem with the wand. Try again with some OA but not in the hive, out in the open so you can observe what happens.
    What JP said is your first step with a fully charged battery. If it gets hot but doesn't vaporize, I suspect your OA has too much moisture. Last thing I would suspect is the wand, given its age.

  6. #5
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    Jan 2007
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    Default Re: Problem with oxalic acid wand

    Probably the premature capacity lost.

  7. #6
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    Apr 2011
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    ElDorado,Arkansas,USA
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    Default Re: Problem with oxalic acid wand

    Not getting a good connection if you know your battery is charged good.If your oa has moisture it will still boil off.Remember they will get hot enough to char your wood.I have had problems with them not getting good connections on the wires,clips and on the heating element.

  8. #7
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    Default Re: Problem with oxalic acid wand

    Quote Originally Posted by sjj View Post
    Probably the premature capacity lost.
    *loss

  9. #8
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    Aug 2014
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    England, UK
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    Default Re: Problem with oxalic acid wand

    Quote Originally Posted by snapper1d View Post
    Not getting a good connection if you know your battery is charged good.If your oa has moisture it will still boil off.Remember they will get hot enough to char your wood.I have had problems with them not getting good connections on the wires,clips and on the heating element.
    Agreed. OA could be put on the wand soaking wet, and it would still work - it'd just take longer. There's either a bad connection somewhere or perhaps an inadequate battery.
    LJ
    A Heretics Guide to Beekeeping http://heretics-guide.atwebpages.com/

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
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    Deep Brook, NS, Canada
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    Default Re: Problem with oxalic acid wand

    All good advice above. I would load it with the right dose of OA and time it out in the open. It should take about 2 minutes or so.
    This sounds like a low voltage problem to me. I don't know how old your battery is, but even new batteries can go bad. They will show full voltage but lag badly under load. You could charge it over night to make sure it's fully charged, then take it to you automotive shop and have them do a load test on it. That's the only reliable way to test a battery.
    When I'm doing OA, I keep some water handy, and a turkey baster. After a treatment, I squirt some water into the bowl to cool it off, but it also steams off any baked on residue so the bowl is clean for the next treatment.
    I want bees that make up for my mistakes.

  11. #10
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    Feb 2007
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    Default Re: Problem with oxalic acid wand

    I looked at the connections and they have some residue on them. I'll take the 2 connections apart and clean them. I was thinking of using carburetor cleaner. Is that good?

    gnor answered another of my unasked questions about cleaning the bowl.

    I'll try another battery just to check it out. One of my mower batteries...

  12. #11
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    Default Re: Problem with oxalic acid wand

    One other thing... I said the wand warmed up but it was only warm not hot as it should have been.

  13. #12
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    Rutland County, Vermont,USA
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    Default Re: Problem with oxalic acid wand

    Then its the battery or wand. J

  14. #13
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    Default Re: Problem with oxalic acid wand

    Is carburetor cleaner the cleaner to use?

  15. #14
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    Aug 2016
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    Vestavia Hills, Al. USA
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    Default Re: Problem with oxalic acid wand

    Quote Originally Posted by Sr. Tanya View Post
    Is carburetor cleaner the cleaner to use?
    absolutely not.

    a little water and a chemical free shop towel works fine.
    Started April Fools Day 2017

  16. #15
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    Default Re: Problem with oxalic acid wand

    Thanks.

  17. #16
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    Feb 2019
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    Winston-Salem, NC
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    286

    Default Re: Problem with oxalic acid wand

    baking soda and water, I used to have the same trouble, after 3 hives the battery needs charging again, I was using a lawn mower battery though.
    NCSBA Certified Beekeeper - my Youtube Vlog
    https://www.youtube.com/c/BackyardBeesNC

  18. #17
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    Feb 2007
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    Default Re: Problem with oxalic acid wand

    thanks ifixoldhouses. That sounds logical. Does it clean propolus (sp.)?

  19. #18
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    Feb 2019
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    Winston-Salem, NC
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    286

    Default Re: Problem with oxalic acid wand

    doubt it, but who knows, any battery can be cleaned of acid residue with baking soda/water.
    NCSBA Certified Beekeeper - my Youtube Vlog
    https://www.youtube.com/c/BackyardBeesNC

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