You have me slack-jawed on this one.
Don't producers of comb honey go totally foundation-less and let the bees make the comb? They then cut out chunks of the honey filled wax and put them in boxes to sell - no need to add honey.
I see some people using jars for comb honey but they employ nifty little hive-top jars that the bees, once again, fill with comb and then fill the comb with honey.
Am I missing something here?
Since you are a new beekeeper, either you have the concept wrong or you have the terminology wrong.
Tell us some more details about what you want out of your hive.
It's all comb honey. Used to be a sign that the honey wasn't adulterated since it's still in the original comb and capped. No one has bothered to make wax comb and fake the cappings, I guess, to cover up the high fructose corn syrup they used instead of honey. Probably doable these days, but not profitable.
At any rate, there are several ways to make comb honey. You can just cut it out of the comb frame, drawn on thin surplus or regular unwired foundation, or foundationless frames. Doesn't matter so long as it's clean and there are no brood cocoons or wires in it.
You can also use the Ross Rounds which make a nice round comb in a plastic sleeve, capped over with the plastic container the sleeve fits in. Works well if you can get the bees to work it (not as easy as it sounds, although my big hive this year would have filled them in a second!). The old fashioned square basswood boxes are still available, and work best with thin surplus foundation and the special shallow boxes.
However, simply cutting it out of a frame and boxing it works just as well -- best to let it drain overnight before boxing, it's less messy.
All comb honey should be frozen for at least 24 hours before storing or selling it, this will kill off any wax moth or SHB eggs and larvae. Otherwise, you are going to have trouble selling fermenting comb honey with worms in it....
Thin surplus foundation is for making comb honey with thin midrib of comb and worker sized cells. This is what's usually used for cut comb honey in 1lb +/- sized flat containers, plastic now a days. Old school times it was basswood called basswood section comb honey.
Using regular foundation makes the comb midrib quite thick in terms of comb honey.
Using foundationless works fine, but tends to give drone sized cells of comb, as that's the size bees make for honey combs above the broodnest.
Putting the cuts in a jar and filling with honey is normally called chunk honey, or chunk comb honey.
I agree with Ray - chunk honey. I am strictly foundationless in my hives. The supers that end up with warped combs end up getting cut and put in jars for my chunk honey sales. The comb is usually worthless for reuse/extracting if they bees built it off center on the frames so I cut it out. I like the larger cell sizes that they draw out though and think it makes for a better presentation in the jar once I top the jar off with extracted honey. I don't get too many people asking for the chunk honey so I don't make a lot of it but the ones that do think I have "super bees" based on the large cell sizes.
I like to use foundationless frames for making comb honey so ill know where the wax is coming from.
If you make chunk honey,which is what you described, you dont need to freeze the honey comb. If you make comb honey, you have to freeze the honey comb to kill beetle eggs.
a trick to get nice comb is to put the undrawn super under a part drawn super during a big honey flow. the old time extra shallow supers worked well because the bees could fill them fast giving nice perfect "white" comb. you need big strong colonies for the nicest comb honey. I liked the basswood squares for the nicest. if it was not quite perfect you could cut it, put it in a wide mouth mason jar and fill it with honey for a "bulk comb honey" jar this is the same as the chunk honey package but the name could vary by area.. the bulk comb was popular and brought a premium price. the deeper the super the more difficult to get it totally uniform. another thing you can do is recycle outside part drawn, outside frames or squares by moving them to the center of the box and putting them back on the hive to finish them. it takes some rearranging the comb to get things nice, a lot of manipulation.. it is best to use "thin surplus foundation"... if you do not have a wax moth problem skip the freezing, freezing could lead to earlier crystalizing and shorter shelf life..
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