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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
http://s792.photobucket.com/albums/yy204/screed88/used%20equipment/

I have a friend who wants to start a hive next year. These are some pics of the equipment he wants to use. This hive was actually his grandfather's from a number of years ago and, from what I understand, the bees absconded from this hive. I've never used old equipment before, so I don't have much to go on as far as giving him advice. Personally, I wouldn't use it just because I like starting my bees fresh so I know what goes in the hive.

I looked at nearly all of the frames in the top and bottom deep. In the top deep, I found two separate clumps of crusty bee corpses about the size of a baseball. One was near center and the other was in the right corner.

If he does use this stuff, I'll encourage him to use a SBB. You should see the pile of crud on the BB of this hive.

Other than that, does anyone have any advice I could pass along to him? Should he scrap the frames and start new?
 

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Now that you have pictures, that looks like AFB & if it is you or him will need to Burn that hive!!! There is even cob webs on the comb, wax moths was probably all over that comb! There is no ventilation at the bottom, looks like black allegia around the hive! Its not good at all if its AFB but it could also be from wax moths! I would burn it! You might get a better answer from someone else but that my opinion!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Heck no, I'm not planning on using it! I told him I didn't think it would be a good idea, especially not knowing the history of the hive. The equipment has been sitting in his gramp's pole barn for a LONG time. I suggested getting rid of the frames and just using the deeps, but I told him I'd ask around for other opinions.

I agree, he'll be much happier with new stuff.

Also, what clues do you see that this may be AFB? I'm just curious. Luckily, I've never experienced it, but, since this is old comb, what are the indications?
 

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the AFB?- The black dead dried up larva in the picture if thats what im seeing from the picture, since my eyes arent right there on it and its just a picture! and the wax moth! the larvae tunnel through the comb & they defecate which cause the honey to ferment and causes to look like runny slime and webbing that you see in the other picture! It could possibly be both! Either case i would burn the frames and then the boxes! Thats my opinion!
 

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Image #2

this frame i find alot of drone comb, dark and thick walled. It would be a harborer of disease

Image #3

on the lower half of the left hand side, you can see where the comb has been tore out. the bees will not really build anything there but queen cells. So basically you have a frame that is not the best bang for your buck,

Image #4

On the upper right hand side, again it is part of the frame the bees will not build on. Waste of space and $. As well the comb is dark.


Good clean frames are a sure way of being able to control disease a whole lot better. It is also a cheap way to ensure healthy brood. Since i am a bit of a control freak, I would probably scrape the inside of the boxes and then scortch them
 

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I don't see how anyone can say that there is AFB in those frames. Either way I would scrap the frames and start fresh. The boxes look good but I would scorch them inside just in case and use them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks ya'll. I figured the general consensus would be to toss the frames. I think he'll appreciate having the opinion of several beeks.
 

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I myself would scrape and clean the boxes and re-use them if they are still in decent shape, but I'd throw out those frames. New frames are not expensive, and far quicker to hammer a few new frames together than try to clean those NASTY things! Even bee diseases aside, I'd be leery of the harmful chemical residues possibly lingering in that ancient brood comb.
 

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I gotta go with beeslave. I can't see foulbrood from those pictures. I do see what appears to be some chalkbrood though. If he wants to keep the frames I'd probably just replace the foundation with a plastic or wax and reuse the frames. Not worth it to use the old duragilt as it's a pain. Me I'd probably replace the frames with pierco as wood frames of unknown assembly always come apart at the joints or break on me.:doh:

Good luck to your friend.:)
 

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I would dig a hole place all frames and boxes in dump a quart of gas and two quarts of diesel toss a match, Get new.
 

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I'd be much more trusting of really old used stuff that has been stored for a number of years over new used stuff. if it was grandpa's, and has been sitting in the barn for years, there is a good chance it doesn't have the chemical contamination issues of newer used combs.

In the second picture with the Duragilt and the drone comb...use a razor knife and cut through the drone comb and the plastic, but don't cut through the comb on the other side. If you cut just deep enough to cut the Duragilt plastic, the bad comb and plastic will peel right off. The bees will draw good comb there now.

Wax moths damage appears minimal. The bees can easily repair the damage that I see.

In the last pic, I would scrape off the black crusty gunk in the corner of the frame. Scrape all the way down to the foundation if you need to.

Smell the combs. Do they smell like a rotten animal? Look down in the cells. Do you see any foulbrood scales?

If you are worried about foulbrood, you can feed the bees some terramyacin.

I've put combs that looked nastier than those into hives, and the bees cleaned them up just fine.
 

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The equipment from Grandpa's old barn is very nostalgic but I wouldn't use those frames for a moment. For the effort and expense that he will put into his new bees, it would be a crying shame to lose them to some ailment.

Seriously, frames don't cost that much money. At the very least, I would use a torch on the inside of the deeps.

My personal preference would be completely new equipment.
 

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The boxes are fine to use but with frames at less then two bucks ea just start new. The old comb isn't worth the problems.
 
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