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Author Topic: Foundation pros and cons  (Read 18962 times)

Offline Finsky

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Re: Foundation pros and cons
« Reply #60 on: November 20, 2007, 10:39:29 AM »
I do think that you miss the point that Hopeful has no drawn comb and is wanting to start about 85 new hives.

In heading it was talked about foundations.......


To get 85 hives is quite a job. Stores, hives, selling honey, how you stand it fhysically, swarming, places where to put hives. To start beekeeping from zero to 80 hives without basic knowledge. To get combs is smallest problem in this system, if problem at all. --- And ask advices from this forum! HUH, that is huge!

Bees make as much combs as they need. That is not problem.

It is better to go help some professional beekeeper and he tell when working, how business works. This forum with it's altenatives is real jungle.

To keep 80 hives in production is big job to and not hobby any more.

"He want not use chemicals" What does it means?  Not soap when you wash hands or...- for example we are allowed to use oxalic acid in ekological beekeeping because it is least harmfull to consumer.

80 hives produce quite an heap capping wax. Best way to use it is to circulate as foundations.

When I uncap my honey yield, I nearly get my wax needs from uncapping wax.  It pay not much when I give wax to maker and he gives foundations to me.  And to make own foundations is one alternative.






Offline Old Timer

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Re: Foundation pros and cons
« Reply #61 on: November 20, 2007, 11:35:43 AM »
Finsky, he is in for some heavy duty learning!!! Taking care of 100 hives is a big difference than taking care of 12. When you have that many you should have them in at least 5 outyards in my area. Only so much forage and if there is too many bees they all suffer. When you have these outyards you have to do a lot of driving sometimes to check on them, and the bees may suffer due to lack of care like when the weather does not cooperate when you are off from work. When you forget something you need you have to go back home to get it. Having outyards is not as easy as keeping them in your backyard. Yeah, if he gets up to that many, the learning curve will be a steep one for sure!!! Hopeful, I do wish you the best in your endeavor.

Offline Finsky

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Re: Foundation pros and cons
« Reply #62 on: November 20, 2007, 02:38:14 PM »
.
If you have 80 hives and you take from every hive 2 full super off, total weight is 3200 lbs.
You must lift them many times, perhaps 4 times. You need muscles and no injuries in backbone.

OK, finaly it is easy. You train your system that you are able to handle those hives during one day. Of course the day is 16 hours long. Then you are ready to add hive number to 700 hives  8-)

Offline rdy-b

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Re: Foundation pros and cons
« Reply #63 on: November 20, 2007, 09:48:26 PM »
Looks like a winner, Michael. I have read that I should not mix wood with plastic frames, but if these are going in all new hives then that should not be a problem. Any down side to these that you know of?
    the down side is when you get a power uncapper the plastic frames dont perform like wood bound frames this summer i switched about 2/3of my frames out -that was costly not to mention-they where all white wax from honey suppers-took resources to get new frames drawn out for a second time-other than that they where fine-for a while RDY-B

Offline Finsky

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Re: Foundation pros and cons
« Reply #64 on: November 21, 2007, 01:21:41 AM »
! Taking care of 100 hives is a big difference than taking care of 12. When you have that many you should have them in at least 5 outyards in my area.

We need here 10 - 25 yards. Our yield season is about 1 month long. Then you should get 100 - 200 lbs honey per hive.

Good hives or what ever, but honey comes from GOOD PASTURES and tasty honey from tasty plants.

The most think that good hives bring the honey yield but it is good pastures.

YOu may get same yield with 40 hives with carefull pasture selection as with 80 hives.

I have tried to learn to choose pastures,  but every year selection makes me surprise.

*************

I think that it is better learn to take good yields with fewer hives and then multiplye the concept. Merely the cost of 80 hives is huge compared to 40 hives.

Offline pdmattox

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Re: Foundation pros and cons
« Reply #65 on: November 21, 2007, 06:43:40 PM »
When you increase to that size finsky you don't pick them up much by hand anymore(to time consuming), They will be handled on pallets with a fork lift or skid steer with pallet forks on it. the only hanling will be to put on pallet and then off. I think you can put 68 supers on a pallet.

Offline Hopeful

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Re: Foundation pros and cons
« Reply #66 on: November 21, 2007, 07:01:30 PM »
I think I've been misundertsood. I did not mean to say that I was adding 85 hives next year. I am only planning on adding up to 20 next year, but am lanning on growing to 100 within four years or so, depending on how fast I learn and how well things go. I am planning on buying many hives and keeping them in storage until I am ready for them. But I also agree that doing so will eliminate opportunities if good deals come up. I was trying to avoid doing the whole Frankenstien thing with the hives and having some of this and some of that.

What I know for certain is that right now I have 12 and they are a piece of cake under even the worst circumstances (at least so far). I am planning on putting up to twenty on the 500 acre farm that a friend asked me to put bees on next spring. So  in reality, I am for sure going to put up about 20 more hives. These will be new hives with new bees. It is these hives that I am primarily asking about for foundation.

Hope this helps
"And this is life eternal...." "John 17:3

Offline annette

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Re: Foundation pros and cons
« Reply #67 on: November 21, 2007, 08:28:23 PM »
I saw the Mann Lake Plastic foundation that Michael Bush mentions. I visited a beekeeper here from this forum just a few days ago and he bought all the frames for a new hive he will start next spring.

They really looked good to me. I like the idea of starting a new hive on all small cell and having them regressed right away. It helps to solve the mite problems which could take up a lot of your time if you have so many hives.

I am in a similar dilema as you are. I only have 2 hives, and have been just placing foundationless frames with starter strips into my hives here and there. I can not seem to make up my mind what I want to do regarding the honey supers. I am pretty sure I will let them make their own wax in the brood supers and eventually they will be regressed, but I still like to use my extractor for the honey and so I will probably purchase some frames from Mann Lake for the honey supers.

Good Luck on your decision
Annette

Offline Old Timer

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Re: Foundation pros and cons
« Reply #68 on: November 22, 2007, 09:42:52 AM »
Anette, letting them make natural comb will not cause them to regresses to small cell. Natural comb and small cell are two different things. If you would like your bees to regress use the PF120 or PF100 frames from Mann Lake or you can use small cell foundation.

Offline Finsky

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Re: Foundation pros and cons
« Reply #69 on: November 22, 2007, 03:35:48 PM »
I guess it also takes both honey and time to make actua comb then.

Finsky, Does this make sense?


I have not met any problem with time or comb building. All hives are able to build combs as much as they need them. AND, they try to make more than they need. Every gap is full of burr.

************

When I started 40 years ago, I bought tens of swarms and started from zero. I put swarms together to make 8 lbs colonies. That size colonies draw during first week 2 langstroth box foundation with the help of syrup. - No problems.

*****************

5 years ago I lost most of my hives and I burned most of my brood frames. I have no troubles when I make bees to make new combs, 3 boxes per hive per 1 month. I followed MAAREC's advice: give foundations during heavy nectar flow.

But the cost of renewing combs was huge cost, frames and foundations.  - I got splendid yield on that year and bees made so much combs as nectar come in. 3 box new combs to big hive is no problem.


When I have got swarm, and it is rainy weather, bees do not make much combs because they save food to stay alive

If I feed them with syrup, they make 10 frame's combs ready during 7 days.

If big hive 5-6 boxes get a lot nectar, they build combs  2-3 box per week.  I have not seen problem in this.

I do no understand thinking "bees like". Bees do not make "like things". They just follow they instincts and try to survive

Beekeeper like many thing and want bees like same things.


Bee make combs only if they need them for brood or honey storing. If bees do not cap food, it means that cells are not full.

Many beekeepers want that bees draw combs even in case where bees try to save food over bad weathers.

*************

If some hive is eager to draw combs, I take half made combs away and give new foundations. But it stress too much one colony and I do that only once.

***********

Bees do like to draw foundations if you put them between brood frames. And sometimes not.It only breaks the brood are and bees have difficulkties to keep brood war.   But it has no meaning in whole beekeeping.

.




Offline Finsky

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Re: Foundation pros and cons
« Reply #70 on: November 22, 2007, 03:55:19 PM »
I saw the Mann Lake Plastic foundation that Michael Bush mentions.

Odd alternatives. Top frame of plastic but not normal foundations? - Plastic is expensive at least here.

Offline pdmattox

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Re: Foundation pros and cons
« Reply #71 on: November 22, 2007, 06:13:55 PM »
A assembled wood frame with plastic pierco foundation ready to put into the hive sells for about $1.60 us. I can't beat the price.

Offline rdy-b

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Re: Foundation pros and cons
« Reply #72 on: November 22, 2007, 06:34:34 PM »
A assembled wood frame with plastic pierce foundation ready to put into the hive sells for about $1.60 us. I can't beat the price.
      I second that recommendation- you will look back on this and smile ;) RDY-B

Offline TwT

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Re: Foundation pros and cons
« Reply #73 on: November 22, 2007, 09:07:55 PM »
I am getting assembled frames .55 each plus getting my foundation from Kelly, comes up to $1.27 each, thats total for a frame and foundation and the frames are already assembled  :D ( glued and nailed) all I have to do is install foundation , oh and did I mention the frames are already assembled BAHAHAHAHA!!!!! , THIS KINDA BEEKEEPING COULD SPOIL ME  :-P  :evil:
THAT's ME TO THE LEFT JUST 5 YEARS FROM NOW!!!!!!!!

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Offline rdy-b

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Re: Foundation pros and cons
« Reply #74 on: November 22, 2007, 09:28:31 PM »
I am getting assembled frames .55 each plus getting my foundation from Kelly, comes up to $1.27 each, thats total for a frame and foundation and the frames are already assembled  :D ( glued and nailed) all I have to do is install foundation , oh and did I mention the frames are already assembled BAHAHAHAHA!!!!! , THIS KINDA BEEKEEPING COULD SPOIL ME  :-P  :evil:
   you left out the important part :) where can i get such a deal? RDY-B

Offline annette

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Re: Foundation pros and cons
« Reply #75 on: November 22, 2007, 10:09:03 PM »
Anette, letting them make natural comb will not cause them to regresses to small cell. Natural comb and small cell are two different things. If you would like your bees to regress use the PF120 or PF100 frames from Mann Lake or you can use small cell foundation.

I have much to learn about regressing them, but I know that letting them make their own comb is the start. I will have to learn as I go.

Yes I do know about the Mann Lake frames for instant regression and I am seriously considering them. I will have to make some decisions soon.

Thanks for the info
Annette

Offline Michael Bush

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Re: Foundation pros and cons
« Reply #76 on: November 26, 2007, 09:28:30 PM »
http://www.bushfarms.com/beesnaturalcell.htm

In my experience natural cell will regress them.  It sometimes takes a turnover or two.
Michael Bush
My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm en espanol: bushfarms.com/es_bees.htm
My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
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Offline rantcliff

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Re: Foundation pros and cons
« Reply #77 on: December 10, 2007, 09:45:16 PM »
It is amazing that after all this discussion I could still have a question - but ...

If I am understanding correctly (which could be a big If), the whole issue of cell size/ regression has to do with the brood area and not the honey supers - true?

If true, than it seems like any size could be used for the honey supers - true?

Also, if he has no comb, then we are only talking about what kind of foundation (foundationless, wax, plastic) and not cell size or the benefits of using comb.  And it appears that everyone has an opinion :)

So, I am actually in the same situation, just starting out, no drawn comb to use.

So for my honey supers - can I just buy ten empty frames, perhaps put a starter strip on each one, and then put all ten in the super and then expect the bees to draw out ten frames of comb and fill them?


Offline johnnybigfish

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Re: Foundation pros and cons
« Reply #78 on: December 10, 2007, 10:32:24 PM »
Hi Rantcliff,
 I'm new at bees, just started this past spring. I dont know anything about regression, or cell size. I did get some honey this season tho.
 I used EZ frames from Dadants in my bottom boxes and also my honey supers. They were brand new, right out of the box.
 My bees built comb on them right off the bat. It took awhile for them to fill out. At any rate, the bees filled the honey supers as well as the brood boxes. I think my only mistake was using 9 frames instead of 10. I dont know what a starter strip is but I do know I used wax coated empty frames and they worked.
 At this point in time, Im looking through the bee mags.to take the step up to real frames and Plasticell. I plan on starting more hives this spring and the cost of having to build frames and put foundation in them is tons cheaper than buying the EZ Frames. A friend of mine who does bees told me that the only problem he knows of with the all plastic frames and foundation(EZ FRames) is that the "Ears" break off after awhile.
 I found out last spring that once you start doing bees people will call you to see if you'll come and get the swarms in their yards, trees, eaves, and all kinds of places! And before you know it, you need places to put these bees! This is why I'm trying to cut the costs of my frames and foundation,so I can get more bees!
your friend,
john

Offline Brian D. Bray

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Re: Foundation pros and cons
« Reply #79 on: December 10, 2007, 11:51:10 PM »
It is amazing that after all this discussion I could still have a question - but ...
If I am understanding correctly (which could be a big If), the whole issue of cell size/ regression has to do with the brood area and not the honey supers - true?

True, small cell regressiion is only necessary in the brood chamber.  The idea being that the larger the cell the more mites can inhabit the cell and reproduce within it.  That's why drone cells are more desireable breeding grounds for varroa, the cells are larger AND the incubation period is longer so even more mites can be produced within the drone cells.

Quote
If true, than it seems like any size could be used for the honey supers - true?

True again, there are basically 3 sizes of cells in a hive, worker brood comb, drone brood comb, and storage comb which can be even larger than drone comb or between worker or drone comb in size.

Quote
Also, if he has no comb, then we are only talking about what kind of foundation (foundationless, wax, plastic) and not cell size or the benefits of using comb.  And it appears that everyone has an opinion :)

No, cell size is critical on the ability of the varroa mite to reproduce adequately.  The smaller the cell the less desireable the cell is (especially when displaced with a pupae) for varroa reproduction.  The larger the cell, the more mites it can hold as well as the pupae, the longer the incubation period (drone comb) the more mites can be grown within the cell.  basically; Apis C. is smaller and Apis C. drone comb is closer to Apis M. worker brood comb so the varroa can reproduce in the Apis M. worker comb and can really go to town in the Apis M. drone comb.

Quote
So, I am actually in the same situation, just starting out, no drawn comb to use.
So for my honey supers - can I just buy ten empty frames, perhaps put a starter strip on each one, and then put all ten in the super and then expect the bees to draw out ten frames of comb and fill them?

Yes, it works for brood or honey comb.  I use foundationless frames myself and have started packages on empty frames.

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