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Author Topic: Honey Super Cell  (Read 6978 times)
Joseph Clemens
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« on: June 18, 2005, 09:38:05 PM »

Has anyone tried any of the products from "Honey Super Cell"?

http://www.honeysupercell.com
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Joseph Clemens
Beekeeping since 1964
10+ years in Tucson, Arizona
12+ hives and 15+ nucs
No chemicals -- no treatments of any kind, EVER.
thegolfpsycho
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« Reply #1 on: June 18, 2005, 09:57:58 PM »

Robo and I, along with several othes emailed them to get first crack at some of the new 4.9 fully drawn comb.  I have visited their site numerous times in attempts to order the product, but it always says product not in stock.
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bayareaartist
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« Reply #2 on: June 20, 2005, 12:21:52 PM »

As a manufacturer of things, I am a potter; I know that what they are trying to do has stumped them.
They keep pushing the dates back as to when they will have the product.
Obviously there are technical difficulties pertaining to getting the frames to come out of the mold without warping, If you think of a piece of plastic and what it is going to go thru to get it out perfect, which it needs to be it is a daunting task.

I have seen pictures of pierco plastic frames and they look as if they have been assembled from modules. Or they are broken up into sections on the frame to give it stability so it comes out of the mold correctly.

I sent them an email about casting foundationless plastic frames with a starter strip all the way around, I have not heard back from them, but I haven’t called them yet.

It’s hard to reinvent the wheel. I know, I am constantly trying to do so, and in the end it is easier just to go back to the old method.

I guess I don’t understand either, it’s going to run at least 2 dollars a piece. Is it the durability issue that draws people to it?

It seems the best way to set up the hive and use fully drawn frames is to use small wax foundation on wooden frames in the brood chamber then in the honey supers use the drawn out drone brood frames spaced at 9 per box, but I could be trying to reinvent the wheel here again.

In the end it would be nice if they could just keep the website updated about the frames.
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« Reply #3 on: June 20, 2005, 11:08:04 PM »

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I guess I don’t understand either, it’s going to run at least 2 dollars a piece. Is it the durability issue that draws people to it?

Most of us are looking for the 4.9 fully drawn plastic for instant regression.  That way we don't have to go through the hassle of the process of regressing the bees and culling frames that are not drawn small enough.  Instant regression, first generation, smaller bees to draw smaller cells and varroa control right out of the box.
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Joseph Clemens
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« Reply #4 on: June 20, 2005, 11:18:23 PM »

For me it would be two-fold: 1) Instant small cells, 2) wax moth proof
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Joseph Clemens
Beekeeping since 1964
10+ years in Tucson, Arizona
12+ hives and 15+ nucs
No chemicals -- no treatments of any kind, EVER.
bayareaartist
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« Reply #5 on: June 21, 2005, 01:35:53 AM »

Well for some reason, thinking that if you install plastic 4.9 mm frames in a box then bees and then presto you have instant regression.
I would bet money it wouldn't work that easy.
A silver bullet these frames will not be.

I can see it now, bees that don’t like 4.9 so they draw their own leaving a gap between the plastic and their comb.

Just look at what Michael Bush went thru with his Peirco, he heated them up in an oven then dipped them to get the right size.  For me, I can see myself burning a building down. And my studio mates already think I am ready for the padded room with my interest with the bees.

In pottery I can buy commercially made clay, mixed and bagged, but it lacks something, a natural fluffiness, I know this sounds strange but clay that is mixed the old time labored way is better.

And when you fire a kiln and it isn’t going the way you want you mess with one thing at a time, to see what the effect that might have.
So instead of plastic brood frame, go to starter strips and see what natural does to the bees.

In the brood comb, don't the cells regress in size anyway after long use?
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Donn
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« Reply #6 on: June 23, 2005, 07:26:19 AM »

Quote from: bayareaartist

I can see it now, bees that don’t like 4.9 so they draw their own leaving a gap between the plastic and their comb.

There is no room for them to draw any quantity of their own comb.  Any comb they do squeeze in will  be drone because of the lack of it in the 4.9.
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Phoenix
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« Reply #7 on: June 23, 2005, 02:16:27 PM »

Quote
I would bet money it wouldn't work that easy.

I'll take that bet... How can you refute instant regression when the size of the cells can not be changed?

Quote
I can see it now, bees that don’t like 4.9 so they draw their own leaving a gap between the plastic and their comb.

The bees can not draw comb in a gap that doesn't exist.  Honor Langstroth's theory of beespace, and do not waver.  Ten frames to a box, no gaps.  3/8"  beespace is not enough of a gap to draw a sheet of comb that will hold any brood.

The queen will lay in the cells already provided, and the workers will have no choice but to feed the brood and cap the cells.  The first generation of brood that hatches will instantly be able to better draw smaller cells.

Quote
Just look at what Michael Bush went thru with his Peirco

Pardon me for correcting the record, but it is "Permacomb" that he coats to achieve the 4.85 to 4.9 mm size needed for "instant" retrogression.  The same result will be had from 4.9mm fully drawn plastic.  

Quote
In the brood comb, don't the cells regress in size anyway after long use?

Yes they do.  How long would you like to wait without treatments, to achieve chemical free wax, downsized to 4.9mm from the standard 5.4mm?  Do you have an estimate in mind for the amount of time it will take for the casings of cocoons to build up in a cell to achieve the size needed to create Small Cell Bees, and how to you feel about the use of old comb in your brood chamber?

Please elaborate on your objection to "instant" regression, as I have a very open mind and may very well be overlooking something.
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bayareaartist
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« Reply #8 on: June 23, 2005, 07:04:26 PM »

Now I’m a newbie at all this but I know that Murphy’s law is around and in effect.

Do you know what I know, like the back of my hand, the thing I truly know is POTTERY. Do you want me to teach you how to make beautiful pottery, build and fire a kiln to 2350 degrees, get THE colors you are after? I’m your man.
But Bees are a hobby for me. I am at best clueless about what is going on.
I just want to keep them where they are at, and not have them fly away, land on a tree next to my box and have someone come along and put them in their box that sits 20 feet away, this happened to me yesterday, good thing I didn’t drop my wallet too.

I do know this; nothing in life is simple or free. Assumption is the MOTHER of all messups. And if you assume that you will get instant regression from bees that are not regressed to begin with by sticking them on small cell plastic, nature will do the tune up on you. I have seen it too many times in what I know and do. And what I mean is shortcuts are a short path to disaster.

I just don’t see it being that simple.

What’s going to happen when the BIG non-regressed bees can’t GET in the cells?

Maybe they won’t like the smell. Bees have a hard enough time with plastic frames.
I guess you could put a queen excluder over the opening to keep the queen from leaving.

How I see it will work is taking packages that are regressed already and installing them on the plastic frames, when they get the frames to work. And you have to mortgage your home to change over to them. Then they are regressed bees on regressed comb, but with no drone on there.
Why didn’t they put a small amount of drone on each frame to keep the bees closer to nature?

Here’s another idea, a lot of people change over to small cell, and Varroa is knocked down a bit. But one or two mites a cycle regress too. It’s a symbiotic relationship, and to think that when the bees regress and change their emergence time that the mites by some point won’t is being in denial big time.
Someone will say that won’t happen, there have been studies done.
There are not enough people out doing small cell to change the bee size/ life cycle yet, on the grand scale, but when they do the mite will change too.
Nature will adapt.

In the end, I know I don’t know anything about beekeeping, I read and I come up with common sense comments.
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Donn
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« Reply #9 on: June 23, 2005, 07:59:17 PM »

Before there were manufactured large cells there were smaller bees on smaller cells with shorted emergence cycles. Man changed the bees emergence by placing them on large cell. It takes longer to grow that big.

Now the mites are still the same mites as they have been for who knows how long. A female goes into the cell just before it is sealed up. She produces an off spring every so often. The longer the bee is developing the longer she has to make more babies.

So with small cell, she first of all doesn't like the size of the cell because of the fact of the shorter capping/uncapping time. So she goes off to the drone cell department. Second the cell gets capped before she feels a need to get in there herself. Then if she does get in soon enough, she can only lay so many eggs in a certain amount of time.

She usually lays two females first, and then a male if there is time. I believe that is correct. So on large cell when the bee comes out you got the mother, two daughters, and a son popping out. Where on small cell you got only the mother and one daughter emerging with the bee. No Male to fetilize more females.

Then most bees after being established on the natural cell size developes more grooming skills and hygenic behaviors. They start pulling out any larva that are invested with the mites.
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« Reply #10 on: June 27, 2005, 10:49:57 PM »

I'm not quite sure what some of the points being made are but the essential issues to me are:

1)  Yes, you can do instant regression.  I've done it.  With wax dipped PermaComb, not with Pierco.

2)  What size is the SuperCell actually going to be.  If the inside diameter of it ends up between 4.8 and 4.5mm it will probably work fine because I see worker brood cells of these sizes naturally.  (BTW a natural cell wall is 0.1mm)  If it ends up 4.3mm I have no idea if the queen can lay in it or not and I'd have to try it to see.
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Michael Bush
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Joseph Clemens
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« Reply #11 on: July 23, 2005, 05:57:13 PM »

I just received 10 pieces of Honey Super Cell's 6.25" Heavy Duty Frames. I plan to try them on my next honey flow. This may be as soon as a few weeks depending on the summer rains.

I like the feel of them - very sturdy. I like that they already have 1-1/2" wide end bars and both sides have the cell bases oriented the same way (in other words for Housel positioning both sides have the "Y" inverted -- I'm curious to see how the bees handle this). Cells are 6mm with a raised bump in the bottom of each to inhibit egg laying. They are pre-coated with beeswax and are an almost black, very dark grey.

I plan to continue my review as soon as I have the opportunity to put these into action and see how they perform.

I am still anxious to try their small-cell product, though it is not available yet. The specs say the I.D. will be 4.3mm. MB, do you think this will be a problem?
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Joseph Clemens
Beekeeping since 1964
10+ years in Tucson, Arizona
12+ hives and 15+ nucs
No chemicals -- no treatments of any kind, EVER.
Michael Bush
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« Reply #12 on: July 23, 2005, 08:13:50 PM »

>I like the feel of them - very sturdy. I like that they already have 1-1/2" wide end bars and both sides have the cell bases oriented the same way (in other words for Housel positioning both sides have the "Y" inverted -- I'm curious to see how the bees handle this). Cells are 6mm with a raised bump in the bottom of each to inhibit egg laying. They are pre-coated with beeswax and are an almost black, very dark grey.

Of course these are just foundation/frames, not fully drawn combs.  But they should make nice frames for honey supers.  They would not work in a brood nest as they have oversized cells and the fake "egg" in the bottom to inhibit laying.  1 1/2" spacing, of course, is dandy in the supers.

>I am still anxious to try their small-cell product, though it is not available yet. The specs say the I.D. will be 4.3mm. MB, do you think this will be a problem?

I "think" it will be a problem.  Yes.  But then I have seen as small as 4.4mm natural cells now and that would be an inside diameter of 4.3mm.  Still I think large cell bees are going to accept 4.8mm inside diameter better than 4.3mm. When it comes out, I will have to buy a little to see how it works.
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Michael Bush
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