Processing large quantities of beeswax
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Location
    South Australia
    Posts
    18

    Default Processing large quantities of beeswax

    I have about a dozen buckets worth full of unprocessed beeswax. My plan was to process it all via a solar wax melter, but I've found that, with the amount of beeswax I have, it'll simply take too many years to process it all this way.

    I had some wax moth in some of these buckets awhile back, so I melted down all that wax, and sieved it into a bucket using an old t-shirt. I took a photo of one of these buckets it's the first photo:

    https://imgur.com/a/J9dEdLg

    The wax is now stuck to the sides and I'm not sure how to actually get the wax out of the bucket. Note that it's also got mold growing on it. I have three buckets like this. The rest of the buckets are the leftovers from when I used to do crush and strain.

    Can any of you suggest the best way for me to go about processing all of this wax? I'd like to turn it all into uniform size blocks, maybe 0.5 or 1 KG rectangles. I figure I'll have to buy some things for doing this as I've had the misfortune of discovering everything I use to process wax becomes ruined.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Crystal Water, Queensland, Australia
    Posts
    1,224

    Default Re: Processing large quantities of beeswax

    Hi Fuzz,
    just answered another question you had on another forum.
    Place the buckets with wax in the freezer for a few hours and the wax will come out easily.
    I purchased a wax melter from " Quality Beekeeping" in Brisbane and it works for me. Right now I'm using the melter to clean some old frames - easy.
    from the Bee House -http://ecologicalsolutions.com.au/bees/?page_id=8
    40 years - +/- 20 H - TF - Subtropical

  4. #3
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    6,834

    Default Re: Processing large quantities of beeswax

    >My plan was to process it all via a solar wax melter, but I've found that, with the amount of beeswax I have, it'll simply take too many years to process it all this way.

    Huh? I melt a five gallon bucket in a day for many days every season. Probably 30-50 buckets a year. Been doing that for 40 years.
    All of my opinions and suggestions are based on my five decades of actual beekeeping,
    not so much on book learning, watching YouTube videos nor reading internet sites.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Location
    South Australia
    Posts
    18

    Default Re: Processing large quantities of beeswax

    Would it be better to freeze, or heat the bucket to get the wax out?

    That's interesting odfrank. I made a DIY solar wax melter, maybe it's just too small or inefficient for it to work at a fast pace for me.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    6,834

    Default Re: Processing large quantities of beeswax

    My melters were built off plans from some college about 40+ years ago similar to the plans on Beesource. They easily fit 5 gallon plus of cappings. On good hot sunny days five gallons melt easily. In my area that is May into August, 90 degree heat waves being the best days.

    I overwinter about 20 buckets that get extracted after August that we fill one inch from the top. They have some granulated honey on the bottom and are very stuck. I take a wide plastic nursery container and place the bucket of capping upside down in it. I push down on bottom of the bucket to budge the granulated honey off the bottom. Then i pick up the bucket and drop it down hard into the nursery container. Usually the whole wad of contents breaks free from the container. I then cut it up with a small shovel and move it into the melter. Or maneuver the bucket with the now loose contents into the melter and chop it up in there.

    All of my opinions and suggestions are based on my five decades of actual beekeeping,
    not so much on book learning, watching YouTube videos nor reading internet sites.

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