If your going to extract from 25 - 30 hives then cranking by hand will get real old real quick. If you are thinking about a hand crank because money is an issue, then if it were me I would try to find someone local with a power extractor and save my pennies a little longer. There are some good extractors out there. I have a Ranger from Dadant and really like it but I really I could / might upgrade to a larger one in the future just to save some time extracting. I'm with Michael.... why would you go with a hand crank with 25-30 hives? Not dogging you, just food for thought. Pom51 also gave you some real good advice... get one made in the USA. The cheaper models will not last long. I have heard horror stories about the imports breaking on the first run or only lasting one harvest. If you can't find a local beek in your area with a power extractor that is willing to help out, I don't know how far you are from the Richmond, VA area you are but if push comes to shove I am always willing to help those in need. Good luck!
With that many hives you NEED a powered extractor! Look for a used Dadant 20 frame or Maxant about the same size. Unless, of course, you like spending your life in the honeyhouse! The novelty of extracting honey wears off real quick. I've never used a handcrank type but I can't imagine trying to extract 25-30 hives with one.
I have the 9 frame mentioned in the BM catalogue above. It made very quick work of the super the boys and I did....but then again, I have boys. I bought the other version of that extractor with the storage tank and screen. I also bought mine from a regualr here, Bigbearomaha and he had it dropped shipped fom BM to me directly. He is cheaper than BM as well. Check him out at http://bbe-tech.com/shop/. He has the same one listed at $400.00.....If it were me, I'd buy it from him and do a hold for pickup. You aren't too far from them...then just go get it.
Devdog Im interested in an extractor right now myself, about the same situation as Blueridge. Is this one your recommending offered as motorized? I agree with Mr. Bush, the easy way is for me and my time is worth something, I never have enough time. Ive been considering the Dadant Ranger Power Extractor Kit M00401KIT its a 6 frame extractor, does anybody have any comments on this one? I can drive to Frankfort and pick it up and save a lot on the shipping.
Yessir, they offer it for $795.00 on their site. Check with Bigbearomaha, I think he may be able to beat their price. personally, I will add a motor when I need to because i can do it for a LOT less than buying one...but thats just me.
the Power Ranger is what I use. It has done a great job but now I am needing something larger. This will be my last year using the Ranger because of it's smaller size. It has been a great power extractor.
I thought that you had more hives then six frames worth? Maybe your looking to the future? Uncapping, spinning and bottling six frames doesn't take too long. I would guess maybe 15 to 20 minutes. I have never really timed it. When we extract, we have an assembly line going. One person pulls the frames from the supers while another is on the hot knife and another is spinning and filling buckets. After that comes the bottling and clean up. It will take longer to clean than it will to actually extract. I am planning on harvesting in two weeks if you would like to come then. I usally do it around July 4th but am going to harvest eariler this year. Send me a private message with your number and I will give you a shout.
I do have more than 6 frames, the extractor I was looking at spins 6 at a time. I currently have 14 hives in operation and planning for more next spring. I apreicate the invatation but will probably need to pass, we are planning our family vacation soon and its a long way to VA to spin and bottle honey. I can see this is going to be a two or three man operation. I would like to do mine like you just harvest about one time a year. Good luck on your harvest and thanks for your help and info.
Hey Mike, My dad has a farm in Rutledge, Tn...which seems to be about 4 hrs from you. In the not too distant future, I am headed up with a hive a bees, i would be more than willing to throw on the extractor so you could use it if you like, just cost ya gas money to get down.... Just PM me and maybe i can throw together a date..
You meet the nicest people on this forum, thanks for the offer devdog very generous of you. I plan to own one by the time I need to harvest sometime in July, also I have people close by who would loan me one or help me. The bee keeping society is so good to jump in and help people with whatever need you may have, makes me proud to be a bee keeper and hopefully I can help some people too. You guys are great and this is a great forum, gald I found it !!!
If you have 25 hives and each hive fills a super thats 250 frames to extract, 500 frames if they each fill 2 supers (pretty common and realistic). Thats a whole lot of handcranking, more than I would ever want to do. We run 100 hives and extract with two 20 frame Dadants, we will be either adding more extractors next year or more likely will go bigger (much bigger). It takes about 15-20 minutes per cycle so also factor in the time its gonna take, the smaller the extractor the more time you will spend and believe me the novelty will wear off very quickly. My suggestion start at a motorized 18 or 20, its a good start, forget the handcrank you will hate it with that many frames to extract.
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