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Author Topic: My Home Built Radial Honey Extractor  (Read 31230 times)
The Bix
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« on: September 11, 2010, 06:13:53 PM »

I was disappointed with all of the plans that I was able to find online for honey extractors.  So I paid for a set of plans I found on ebay.  Still disappointed, I decided with a friend's help to design and build one from scratch.  I've seen a lot of parts inside homebrew extractors made with wood, galvanized steel products and PVC....none of which is food safe.  I guess wood can be with the right sealing agent, but still it can warp.  So everything in this assembly is food safe HDPE or UHMW plastic and won't warp.  The barrel came from a recycle place and it is food safe.  All of the metal parts are stainless.  It is powered with a 1/2" corded drill and it is VERY effective.  It can do 8 medium or shallow frames radially or four deep frames tangentially.

I'd love to hear your feedback.  I have had a heck of a time trying to use this ImageShack thing, hopefully the pictures show up.

Here it is, ready to go.  It is powered by a corded 1/2" drill, though one can use a 3/8" drill and even works with a cordless drill:


Here's what it looks like with the top pulled off.  You see the "top plate" which is used to secure the frames in place while spinning:


With the top plate pulled off, frames in position for extracting:


With the top plate pulled off and frames removed, you can see the bottom plate and the guide ring:


Spinner assembly removed, the stainless steel shaft extends out from the bottom and inserts into the bearing assembly:


Inside the barrel with the spinner assembly removed, you see the bearing assembly in the center and the honey gate off to the left:


Close up of the bearing assembly with a little propolis stuck to the top, there are seven ball bearings inside the hole where the stainless steel shaft rests:


Close up of the machined bottom plate:



--John
« Last Edit: September 12, 2010, 11:28:17 AM by The Bix » Logged
The Bix
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« Reply #1 on: September 11, 2010, 06:17:35 PM »

Oh, and here's a video of my 8 year old nephew running the extractor...he had a little help, but didn't need much.

DSCF6072.AVI

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JP
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« Reply #2 on: September 11, 2010, 06:36:48 PM »

So where did you get the parts for your spinner? The little man looks like he was having a ball.

Can we see pics of the honey?


...JP
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The Bix
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« Reply #3 on: September 11, 2010, 06:58:54 PM »

JP, the stainless hardware came from mcmaster.com , the plastic originated from Professional Plastics here in Denver.  The barrel came from a recycle place in Longmont, CO. I forget where I purchased the honey gate.

I love it where you see him squeeze down on the trigger and his eyes get real big.

I didn't get any shots of the honey flowing out of the honey gate if that's what you're asking, but I do have a pic of a few 5 gallon buckets full of honey, and my honey supers stacked up after extracting.
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JP
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« Reply #4 on: September 11, 2010, 07:02:04 PM »

Great job man!


...JP
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"Good friends are as sweet as honey" Winne the Pooh

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G3farms
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« Reply #5 on: September 11, 2010, 07:39:24 PM »

MORE POWER SCOTTY.....WE NEED MORE POWER!!!!!

Little guy was having a blast.

That is a pretty good looking extractor, and very nice routing job on the plastic parts.

How much do you have invested in it?
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ArmucheeBee
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« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2010, 09:09:28 PM »

So is the plastic bottom a "one-off" product or do they make these for the public?  It's really nice-very professional. 
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« Reply #7 on: September 11, 2010, 09:29:53 PM »

Very NICE !!! Wink Looks like a bunch of thought went into the design. It should last for years.
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hardwood
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« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2010, 09:52:08 PM »

All I can say to that is...PERFECT! Great job!

Scott
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AllenF
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« Reply #9 on: September 11, 2010, 11:09:13 PM »

You might could start a little biz on the side selling the guts to the extractor.  I am sure most people already got the drill and they can get a barrel (too much to ship) and could put it all together with your in-sides.  Looks good.
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The Bix
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« Reply #10 on: September 12, 2010, 01:30:20 AM »

MORE POWER SCOTTY.....WE NEED MORE POWER!!!!!

Little guy was having a blast.

That is a pretty good looking extractor, and very nice routing job on the plastic parts.

How much do you have invested in it?

HDPE and UHMW plastic isn't cheap, not to mention stainless steel.  There's probably about $200 in raw materials, plus the barrel then there's the machine time to make the jigs, do the routing...

Like I said it's not cheap, but I do like the design.  It is very solid and will last a long time, I might wear out the drill and perhaps the bearings in a couple years, but both of those are easily replaced.  I think that the cheapest radial extractor (motorized) I found was about $750 plus shipping from Mann Lake.  This will handle the same workload for well under half the price of that one.

I used a corded drill, but we tested it with a cordless and it worked just fine.  So it would be possible for one to use it out in the field with no access to electricity.
« Last Edit: September 12, 2010, 01:41:26 AM by The Bix » Logged
The Bix
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« Reply #11 on: September 12, 2010, 01:34:55 AM »

So is the plastic bottom a "one-off" product or do they make these for the public?  It's really nice-very professional. 

Do you mean the bearing?  If so, that's not something you see in the store.  The bearing assembly was machined on a metal lathe from a solid round of UHMW plastic.
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The Bix
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« Reply #12 on: September 12, 2010, 01:36:56 AM »

You might could start a little biz on the side selling the guts to the extractor.  I am sure most people already got the drill and they can get a barrel (too much to ship) and could put it all together with your in-sides.  Looks good.

Sounds good Allen, you'll be my first customer, yes? Wink

Well, it does sound intriguing.  I still have the jigs for making most of the parts so I could replicate the pieces pretty easily....
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lenape13
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« Reply #13 on: September 12, 2010, 05:04:32 AM »

Nice job!  I, too, can see a side business in the making... Wink
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AllenF
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« Reply #14 on: September 12, 2010, 09:05:19 PM »

When I wear out the one I got...    But I think you may be onto something with selling just the insides.  I think people might bite if they could put together a 200 dollar extractor.
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The Bix
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« Reply #15 on: September 12, 2010, 10:18:24 PM »

I think people might bite if they could put together a 200 dollar extractor.

$200 Absolutely! Unfortunately, the cost of the materials is $200 and doesn't include any of the machining/routing, etc.
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deknow
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« Reply #16 on: September 13, 2010, 12:41:15 AM »

what a great job!  I bet you could sell the kit (minus drum) for $400...reinvest in a CNC router and you are home free.

deknow
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Tommyt
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« Reply #17 on: September 13, 2010, 01:06:39 AM »

Let me Be the first to ask for a price for the pattern for these 2 ? 3 Pieces

Thanks
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tecumseh
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« Reply #18 on: September 13, 2010, 07:48:28 AM »

first quite a nice job.  some 30 years ago they use to make a commercially available extractor that was constructed using a food grade plastic trash can and a drill for power.

a variable voltage output device (I have wondered if a router speed controller might not work?Huh) could make controlling the speed of the reel a bit more precise.

snip..
The barrel came from a recycle place in Longmont, CO.

tecumseh:
you are assuming the blue barrel did not at one time transport medical waste tainted honey from china to here?  the 'standard' blue barrel looks like those commonly produced in China. 
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The Bix
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« Reply #19 on: September 13, 2010, 09:49:18 AM »

tecumseh, first...thanks for the compliment and the historical perspective

Second, regarding the speed controller...precision is nice, precision is preferred, but if you demand precision you get to pay up for it too.  I didn't want to pay up for a commercial extractor so the corded drill seemed to me to be the most expedient.  This is only my second year of beekeeping so I'm certain that you have more experience and knowledge than me.  That said, I didn't seem to have one bit of problem extracting honey with the drill.  I got used to the sound at a certain slower rpm level and held it there for the first two minutes, then I would speed it up quite a bit for another 30 seconds (about 3/4 on the drill).  I let it slow down to a stop, reversed the direction and then built it up quickly to the 3/4 level for another two minutes.  This was a very successful method of extraction for me.  I got about 300 lbs. this year.

Occasionally after the last two minutes, I would put the hammer down all the way just to experiment.  I never had a blowout of the honey comb. I did some extraction of a friend's supers later and we had several blowouts, but I think that was due to a cooler temperature, plus he scratched open all of the frames and didn't uncap. 

tecumseh:
you are assuming the blue barrel did not at one time transport medical waste tainted honey from china to here?  the 'standard' blue barrel looks like those commonly produced in China.  

Your assumption that I'm assuming is incorrect Wink  The barrel had two uses prior to becoming part of a honey extractor: corn syrup and then water.  I do not know the origin of the barrel.
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