Honey Harvest Equipment Suggestions

Discussion in 'Beekeeping 101' started by Eddy Honey, Apr 8, 2012.

  1. Eddy Honey

    Eddy Honey New Member

    Messages:
    1,042
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    My wife and I have been looking at honey harvesting stuff. I don't want to buy anything for fear of jinxing myself into not getting a honey crop like counting chickens before they hatch.

    Anyway, when we do make a purchase, we both like this extractor http://www.htkbeesupply.com/index.php?route=product/product&path=62_65&product_id=85

    and my wife thinks these items will also be helpful: http://www.brushymountainbeefarm.com/Multi-Use-Straining-System/productinfo/295/ with filters and this: http://www.brushymountainbeefarm.com/5-Gallon-Strainer-and-Bottler/productinfo/365/

    I'm hoping to hear from folks who have extracting and bottling down pat and know what is needed and what is overkill.

    Thanks,
    Ed
     
  2. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

    Messages:
    5,162
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I know our club has an extracting set up that they will loan out for free, just have to bring it back all cleaned up.

    Also check craigslist for used equipment. Stay away from the old galvanized stuff.

    A that is a dandy extractor for sure and can do almost a ten frame super in one spinning. How many supers are you planning on taking off in say five years from now?
    Do you have an outlet for your honey?

    Just a few questions to ask yourself, I am not big on producing much honey for sale, lots of hard work for the customers who actually asked for it to only want a squeeze bear and that will last them 3 years. Finding good customers that cook with honey are the best ones, they buy in volume and come back every year.
     

  3. Eddy Honey

    Eddy Honey New Member

    Messages:
    1,042
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I'm not wanting to sell much honey either;
    I eat it lol! Plus we have lots of friends on our Christmas list where we could unload it.
    I also now have friends of friends asking me for local honey for their allergies.
    We do a booth at our local 4-h fair promoting our chimney sweep biz and I can sell some honey there as well.
    I'm hoping to maintain 15-20 hives plus do some nuc production off of those.
     
  4. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

    Messages:
    5,829
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Eddy, if you are (or wanting) to run 15 to 20 hives, go motorized! Hand cranking gets really old, really quick!
    I'm with G3 on looking for a good used power unit (no galvanized, unless you clean it up and paint it with Camcote).
    The uncapping trays are one way to go, but if you can pick up a good used stainlees steel sink and build a homemade stand all the better. As for the 2 buckets for $60..??? Why not just pick up a couple of food grade plastic buckets at a restaraunt, put a honey gate in one of them and drill holes in the other and there you have it.
     
  5. Eddy Honey

    Eddy Honey New Member

    Messages:
    1,042
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    The maxant unit can be motorized. This way if I really do make it to 15-20 hives from my current 6 I can power up. For right now I have 2 motors at the house, one is 10 and the other is 8 :thumbsup:.
     
  6. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

    Messages:
    5,829
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    :lol: I've got a 10 as well, but it only lasts a couple of minutes and then wants to go outside and play!
    You can never go wrong with anything made by Maxant. I have a Dadant (20) and a Maxant (2) and a Maxant bottling tank. All top notch stuff! :thumbsup:
     
  7. Zulu

    Zulu Member

    Messages:
    973
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Yep and Maxant is made in America too.

    The links to the brushy kit, is the same stuff I have. I "inherited " the bucket system and bought the uncapping tank. Works well.
     
  8. Murrell

    Murrell New Member

    Messages:
    382
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    If I may;
    The info says, 6 mediums extracted radial, 3 full size frames extracted tangentially,
    I believe this means full size frames (3) will have to be done 1 side then taken out and reversed do do the other side.
    I believe for full size frames this would be a slow process, figuring 5 hives, at 10 hopefully 20 frames each, extracting 3 at a time plus having to reverse.

    Maybe someone else reads it differently!

    This makes the old man tired thinking about it.

    Murrell
     
  9. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

    Messages:
    5,162
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    You read it right, will make for some good strong arms.
     
  10. Marbees

    Marbees Member

    Messages:
    983
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    I believe there is a place in every honey house for a small manual extractor. Sometimes you may want to extract only few boxes (early harvest of basswood honey or black locust), or power goes off, and you need honey for tonorrows market...
    fellow beekeeper wants to borrow your extractor, and you don't like the idea of your 20 frame Dadant leaving the house....
    As for other things, I would follow Perry's advice with stainless steel sink, sometimes you can find cheap restaurant style sink with legs attached, ready to be used.
    With food grade pails free from deli/restaurant/donut shop and honey gates around $10 you got bottling equipment really cheap.
     
  11. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

    Messages:
    8,996
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    The maxant is for someone using mediums or shallows for supers, but may accidentally have a few deeps now and then. As said above, it's top notch American made.
     
  12. riverbee

    riverbee Active Member

    Messages:
    3,048
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    i would plan for the future and spend the dollars. a motorized unit is not overkill, and really is the single piece of equipment i would make the investment for. i would also purchase a unit where deep frames can be extracted without having to stop and flip them over. this is a real PITA. even with 6 hives now, you will make your wife happy if the two of you don't have to hand crank 20- 30 or more supers.
     
  13. barry42001

    barry42001 New Member

    Messages:
    1,322
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    mine is a 2 deep frame extractor hand crank ( will have to look for the manufacturer ) but suits me fine for hives.
    Barry
     
  14. Hobie

    Hobie New Member

    Messages:
    1,399
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I only have a couple hives, so all my opinions are for small scale harvests.
    If doing the uncapping by hand, I find a good uncapping knife to be invaluable:
    http://www.brushymountainbeefarm.com/Cold-Knife/productinfo/900/

    Also, the honey bucket with the gate is a must for bottling. Personally, I have never seen the need for a double-decker system. I extract directly into the bucket through a strainer like this one:
    http://www.brushymountainbeefarm.com/Double-Sieve/productinfo/833/

    I use an old SS 2-frame hand crank extractor that I bought used for $50 because the basket was a little bent. Works great for small quantities.
     
  15. riverbee

    riverbee Active Member

    Messages:
    3,048
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    hobie,
    great advice on the cold knife, and the strainer. because of the volume of honey, i also extract into a 5 gallon pail, but i use this strainer from b and b honey farm, http://www.bbhoneyfarms.com/store/c-41-honey-extracting--removal/p-136-new-double-sieve.

    i use an uncapping plane from them as well and i love it: http://www.bbhoneyfarms.com/store/p-134-electric-uncapping-plane?keyword=uncapping plane

    hobie i have question for you on that cold knife, i keep a couple long serrated knives around just in case the replaceable element in the plane goes out, and i have in the past, neglected to get an extra element. i have heated these knives in a cake pan of boiling water, PITA. how well do you think that knife would work for slicing thick comb from 8 frame supers?
     
  16. Eddy Honey

    Eddy Honey New Member

    Messages:
    1,042
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Could some explain radial vs tangentially? I hear all this talk about the two. I suppose I could do a google search but this is more fun.
     
  17. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

    Messages:
    5,829
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Tangential extractors - think of the letter H (surrounded by a circle), with the two uprights being where your 2 frames sit. This H spins but only the outer sides of your two frames will extract so half way through, you have to stop, turn your frames over and spin the other side out.

    http://www.dadant.com/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=35_72&products_id=1096

    Radial extractors - look like a bicycle wheel (surrounded by a circle) with frames sitting where the spokes would be. Both sides can be spun out at the same time.

    http://www.alibaba.com/product-gs/376677651/12_frame_honey_extractor.html

    These are just pictures I found to help describe.
     
  18. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

    Messages:
    6,487
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    or how the frame is placed in relationship to the center or axis/axle of the extractor.
     
  19. indypartridge

    indypartridge New Member

    Messages:
    349
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    For the first half-dozen or so years I kept bees, I borrowed extractors. When I finally bought one, I did buy the 3100H. Not only is it a fine product, I like that it easily converts to motorized once I get tired of cranking.

    In my opinion, the buckets and uncapping tanks are overpriced. I use (free) food grade buckets I got from a bakery with the double-strainer similar to the one Hobie linked. For my uncapping tanks, I got some plastic storage bins at WalMart for about $8 apiece.
     
  20. Hobie

    Hobie New Member

    Messages:
    1,399
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Riverbee, If you are asking about cutting the comb completely out of the frames, I'm not sure it is the right tool. It has a very thin blade and is very sharp (my fingers know this!), which would suit your purpose. However, the offset handle, which makes it great for uncapping, might make it awkward for cutting out comb. I must say I have never tried it. I would definitely not want to hack through any wired foundation with it.

    If you are just wondering about trimming the top off of thick comb to make it "normal" thickness again, I think it would work great. It is much easier to keep level than a kitchen knife, and I have never had to heat it. (Disclaimer - I extract in June or July, so I'm sure ambient temps help.)

    I like the sieve you have! The cone is a good addition. Mine does get clogged after a while.