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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have several hive bodies and supers from hives that were wiped out by moths and mice. What's the best way to clean them? Some are wood frames with plastic foundation, some are fully-drawn plastic comb. Do I need to recoat the plastic foundation before it can be reused?
 

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scrape down to the comb, wash off at the second closest car wash, so you can still go to the closest, recoat if you wish or use during the next heavy flow.
 

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given you do not know the history of the equipment boiling in lye water is (use to be) the preferred method for treating old equipment.

and welcome to the board David.. it is always good to see other West 'by God' Virginia folks on this board.

ps.. I don't really get much used equipment anymore so I don't really have any process with dealing with old stuff besides taking a acetylene torch and scorching all the surfaces (frames and boxes).
 

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Americasbeekeeper said:
scrape down to the comb, wash off at the second closest car wash, so you can still go to the closest.
:lol: :rolling: :rotfl:
Too funny, how many of us quickly blast something at the local wash while quickly looking around to see if anyone notices!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks. I had considered using a pressure washer, but hadn't considered the car wash. I don't know about the "honey super cell" deep frames of fully drawn plastic comb, but the last time I tried boiling any plastic foundation it shriveled and curled to uselessness. If flaming will work on the boxes, that's worth a try, though I suspect flaming the frames might consume them...
 

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What do you people think about the effectivity of the heat from a solar extractor as a means of sterilization?
It's great for cleaning out the messed-up wax and killing any unwanted larvae and pupae, but is it considered sterilized with regard to diseases?
 

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EF:
I think it would depend on what the equipment was infected with. I'm thinking it would kill off larvae and pupae very effectively, but I'm wondering if it would be hot enough to kill some of the more exotic bacteria that our equipment may be infected with. I'm basing this on the SWAG principle. (SWAG is scientific wild a$$ed guess).
From my reading here the past few months, I'm thinking that a quick pass with a propane torch would do the trick.
I'm not a scientist, but it sounds feasible.
 

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Do you plan on re-using the plastic foundation? What does it look like? If the drawn comb is all black and nasty looking, I would scrape it back down to the foundation, and start over.
The question probably is-How many frames are you talking about? If it's a couple hundred, yeah-I would try and re-use it. If it's only a couple of boxes worth, I would buy new foundation.
I really like the Rite-cell waxed plastic foundation from Mann Lake Ltd.
I have tried the wired wax foundation, but don't like it, plastic is so much easier, and the bees don't seem to mind. They use it.
If you are re-cycling enough frames to try a comparison, try coating half of them with wax, and leave half of them un-coated.
Please let us know the results.
Good luck.
 

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having also been in the Navy and having spend a good deal of my life around science folks (married one) I would suggest a scientific wild ass guess is better than a guess based on no or bad information or an improper mental model.

just for the record David I torch boxes (generally only the seams are necessary) and the frames tops and bottoms (while still in the boxes).

none of this will counter foul brood type diseases (which according to national survey are now quite rare). the spore form of these kinds of diseases are quite robust (having been compared to anthrax) and generally can only be remedied by radiation or by a boiling lye water bath.
 
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