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Author Topic: Copper Sulphate  (Read 1696 times)
Johnny253
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« on: September 15, 2011, 10:28:50 AM »

Does anyone dip their boxes, lids and bases in copper sulphate solution before painting them to help preserve the timber? If so, do you know what concentration to use? Can it be painted on instead of dipping?
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Mardak
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« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2011, 06:02:50 AM »

Dipping and letting them soak under a weight in a bath or some other container is what you need to impregnate the depth of the timber. The timber will rot between the inner and outer surfaces of the wood ware otherwise. Drying of the timber is very very important. Not drying it out will make it toxic to your hives. There are variations on copper sulphate concentrations on the web. Chemical suppliers are the cheapest seller, bulk amounts warrant a cheaper price.
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lilyfrog
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« Reply #2 on: October 08, 2011, 02:01:01 AM »

I get mine from a local saw mill,

and mix it 4L of kero to 1L of copper

dip it over night, leave it 3 weeks then paint.

hth

cheers
Mark
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gregted
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I used to be indicisive, but I'm not so sure now..


« Reply #3 on: October 08, 2011, 02:32:35 AM »

How much did the copper cost Mark?
Do you dip the pieces of wood before assembly or just complete supers?
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lilyfrog
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« Reply #4 on: October 08, 2011, 05:26:37 PM »

It is about $16/L

dip it before assembly that way it gets in to all the joints, less harbourage for rot out in the weather.

cheers
Mark

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"At the end of the day, you can't eat money, but it sure helps pay the bills."
Mardak
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« Reply #5 on: October 11, 2011, 04:20:36 AM »

Copper sulphate works a treat, was down in Tassie a few years ago and seen some hives that been dipped some twenty years before. the only work needed was paint every few years or so depending on peeling etc. The hiveware felt and handled just like the newer stuff. Less mucking around to waxing due using an old bath with bricks to weight the wood down in the solution. The unused stuff stores well for the next time.
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weedyau
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« Reply #6 on: October 11, 2011, 07:15:48 AM »

Do you need to paint inside of boxes to seal them when using copper?
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Johnny253
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« Reply #7 on: October 12, 2011, 09:08:35 AM »

Thanks for the info Mark,

So 4L of kero to 1L of copper.

The copper sulphate I have is in powdered form. Do you know if this can be dissolved into kero? Do you know what concentration I would need?

Why is it necessary to use kero and not just water?

Finally, is it okay to coat this with water based paint?
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Mardak
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« Reply #8 on: October 13, 2011, 02:09:30 AM »

If udo not dip and soak them, the hives rot out from the inside. Its real fun to have a super fall apart from you as you lift it. Drying for about six weeks is good to take the toxicity out of the wood before bees use them.
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Johnny253
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« Reply #9 on: October 13, 2011, 09:31:27 AM »

Thanks for that Mardak. I'm hoping to treat my hives but just need to know how to treat them!

What rate of copper sulphate you use? Powdered or liquid form? Do you mix copper sulphate with kero or water?

I have heard it can be toxic to bees, any comments?
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Mardak
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« Reply #10 on: October 14, 2011, 05:01:46 AM »

Powder form is far cheaper from lock stock stores. Liquid means you are paying for mixing which is no big deal they use the same water you would anyway. Whether you mix it with water or kero you have to let it dry for a long time. Spring summer is great time. I do it with water as it all I have ever used. ?? kero probably works as the drying out is I think the most important part. I just mix it so it is blue not thick not watery. I weigh the boxes (either assembled or unassembled) down under the solution with bricks because they were laying around with no where to go. Unassembled means your tools get a bit yucky. Wear glasses as the stuff stings even when dry. Yeah its only copper which is an element but it still stings. I use gloves and glasses as I worry about becoming more toxic than what I am now. Use an old bath or cut down 44 drum depending on how much dipping you want to do. Seal what is left over for safety and reusing whenever. Using water would mean that evaporation is dealt with by topping up the liquid the following year with some more copper powder and water. I do not know much about the kero way, but it probably work just as well I suppose. Water is cheaper though. Set up is heaps cheaper and safer than wax dipping. Some guys warm their copper mix but I have never bothered with it as the solution soaks into the pine after a night or two in it.
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Johnny253
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« Reply #11 on: October 14, 2011, 08:19:25 AM »

Thanks again. I've got the copper sulphate powder and a big plastic tub. I have already assembled my boxes (apparently the timber can warp otherwise) so I'll get into it. I'm surprised they need to dry for six weeks!
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Mardak
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« Reply #12 on: October 15, 2011, 03:33:03 AM »

If you clamp after dipping then they stay in shape. I screw mine together with countersunk decking screws as the gal ones are not suppose to very nice to bees. maybe the galvanic acid in the coating over the screws?? Nails are just as good but my aim is bit off and the fingers do not like the head of any hammer. Iv'e stapled together boxes with gorilla glue or PVA and they seem to hold their shape.
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lilyfrog
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« Reply #13 on: October 16, 2011, 06:23:38 AM »

Hi,

Sorry I have been away with work.

Mixing the solution is your choice, water and kero both have pros & cons.

I learnt from an ex-commercial keeper so I tend to be biased to there ways. but I am always open to new learnings also.

I paint inside and out, and leave out in the weather for another 2 weeks, paint fumes also upset the bees.
Copper mixed either way is toxic to you and the bees. But copper will prolong the life of a super from months to 30+ years.


water dilution
good
-Cheap
-Stores well (can use any airtight container)
- Doesn't not stain skin as bad when spilt.

bad
-asorbs slower (can take up to 72hrs for full penitration)
-water can cause warping
- Can take 8 weeks to fully dry out

Kero dilution
Good
- Asorbs well & fast (8-12hrs is enough to get 100%)
-Less prone to warping
-has been proven to last 30+ years
-termites tend to leave it alone also

Bad
-Cost
-Storage can be hazarous
-Flamable


hth

cheers
Mark
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DeeBee711
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« Reply #14 on: October 21, 2011, 01:05:44 AM »

Don't use kero, it's banned! You're not allowed to use residuals like that any more. You need to mix copper sulphate with water. Cut the top off a plastic 200L drum, 3/4 fill it with water and then add 3kg of copper sulphate powder and mix. It's easier to dissolve the copper sulphate in a smaller amount of water and then add this to the final solution and mix. Dip your woodwork for 10 to 15 minutes.
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Mardak
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« Reply #15 on: October 21, 2011, 04:06:06 AM »

Valid point about the residuals. If you had cold extracted honey from plastic and wood boxes, you notice a taste difference. Both honeys were nice and the boxes were in the same location. Colour and texture looked same yet there was a difference in taste. Neither were unpleasant.
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