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Well, we’ve done our first honey harvest, quite exciting for us. :)
The honey is very floral and thick, I think it must have been the bottle brushes which where flowering until about 2 weeks ago.
All went well and we have some wax from uncapping in a bucket. I use a uncapping station with a uncapping knife . So most of the honey is flowing through the screen.
what is the best way toextract the remaining honey from the wax so we can melt it into bars? Is that possible? I have heard of a wax/honey press, but I wasn’t quite sure whether that is the right tool to use.
Thanks for your help!
Happy Wednesday!
 

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Well, we’ve done our first honey harvest, quite exciting for us. :)
The honey is very floral and thick, I think it must have been the bottle brushes which where flowering until about 2 weeks ago.
All went well and we have some wax from uncapping in a bucket. I use a uncapping station with a uncapping knife . So most of the honey is flowing through the screen.
what is the best way toextract the remaining honey from the wax so we can melt it into bars? Is that possible? I have heard of a wax/honey press, but I wasn’t quite sure whether that is the right tool to use.
Thanks for your help!
Happy Wednesday!
I would put the wax honey slurry in a bucket top screen/filter and let it gravity drain into a bucket. Some people also put the slurry in bags and let it drip out for a few days. I don't remember the name of the bags, but they have a specific name.

After most of the honey has dripped out I put the remaining wax in a pan in a oven as low as it goes and let it melt that way. I usually get more honey this way that I use for baking. I am then left with a block of wax on top of the honey.
 

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After the cappings have dripped for a few days, I mix them with water and heat until the wax all melts. After cooling, the wax block is ready for additional processing and the liquid is fed back to the bees. Just for grins, weigh the cappings, and then weigh the resulting wax block. That will tell you how much honey was still in the cappings after they drained. The amount of slum gum you get from the cappings will not have a significant impact on the totals.
 
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Just as another option to squeeze another "product of the hive" from your extraction, ever consider a bit of mead? Drain the honey as everyone has suggested then wash the cappings a limited amount of water to remove most of the residual honey. Storm the castle link will give you some of the basics to a very simple and relatively cheap process. All About Mead Making
 

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Just for grins, weigh the cappings, and then weigh the resulting wax block.
By volume after letting the cappings drip for a few days I still have about 50% honey left when I melt it down in an oven and separate it.

I use the "baked" honey in breads and stuff where it is going to get cooked again anyways.
 

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I use the gravity method, clean pantyhose works in an pinch in addition to the other ones mentioned (in a warm area if you can). After that I spread out the wax on a cookie sheet or equivalent and leave it out for the bees to clean it up, along with all the extraction equipment and frames. I use a solar wax melter for my wax to initially clean it, then heat it on warm in an oven to fill my molds.
 

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Patience is required here. It can take days for the cappings to drain. I cover them and set them on a table where the sun shines through the window. You won't get it all.

You can at this point spread the cappings on a tray and let the bees clean it up. Either put it inside your hive or set it more than 50 meters from your hive, you don't want to trigger a robber attack. This is optional, I usually don't.

After they have drained you can rinse the cappings in cold water if you wish. You'll get a cleaner first pass wax rendering, but there isn't a significant advantage.

For small scale wax rendering the easiest no fuss and least messy way without having to brood over a pot is to start by getting your wife's best vegetable steamer out and line the colander of it with paper towels…

<record scratch> :mad:

get your wife's best vegetable steamer out to find an old vegetable steamer at the thrift store 😁 and line the colander of it with paper towels. Paper towels make a great filter. Put the wax cappings in the colander. Fill the steamer pan with 3cm of water and put the whole thing in the oven at 80°C (175°F). Wax starts to discolor if you heat it above 85°C so you need to keep the temperature down and let time do the work. Patience. Go find something else to do for a while. In three to four hours the wax will have melted and filtered through the paper towels. The slumgum will be trapped on top of the paper towels. The melted wax will float on top of the layer of water in the steamer pan. Honey and soluble contaminants will dissolve in the water, and any dirt that washed through the paper towels will sink to the bottom of the water. Carefully, so that you don't spill, remove the veggie steamer from the oven and set it somewhere safe to cool. Remove the slumgum crusted paper towels while they are warm, if they cool the wax will glue the towel to the colander. Once the wax has cooled pop it out of the pan and discard the water down the drain. Resist the temptation to feed the water to the bees, the honey it it has been cooked. You should have a nice disk of clean yellow wax. If the wax was really dirty or had comb wax, or if there was still quite a bit of honey in the wax, then you might need to run it through twice.
 

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I let them drip through some kind of filter until no more is coming out. Then put them in a pan in the oven on low (between 160 F and 180 F) until the wax is melted and separated (the wax floats to the top). Then let it cool. Pull the wax off the top and let it drip into a separate batch of honey and when done, rinse it well. Run the honey in that same separate batch of honey. Use this as baking honey. It will not be very good as table honey. Edible, but it loses a lot of the aromatics when you heat it.
 
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