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Author Topic: Bee vacuum  (Read 571 times)
dfizer
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« on: June 02, 2013, 06:42:46 PM »

What do you all use for a bee vacuum?  Did you make yours yourself and if so out of what?  I am looking to make one of my own but dont know where to start...

David
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Moots
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« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2013, 06:58:03 PM »

David,
I went with a Bucket Vac style, kind of with my own twist.  I've been very pleased with it.  Others go with a hive box style...each has it's advantages and disadvantages.  For me the plus of the bucket vac was portability.  I can throw it over my shoulder and go...Here's a link to the thread I started about it.

« Last Edit: June 02, 2013, 07:21:58 PM by Moots » Logged

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Tim Bates
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« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2013, 07:12:36 PM »

First one I built was a box in a box style, I didn't care for it at all. It worked like it was supposed to, I just didn't care for the way you had to transfer them or the fact that if you have a large cutout/swarm you would need at least two inside boxes.
I was considering a bucket style or concrete tube vac because I didn't think I could build a bushkill style vac to my liking but I ran into a carpenter that wants me to do a cutout on his house and he helped me build one and I like it. I have not used it yet but it looks like its gonna be about perfect. I hope to use it one afternoon this coming week,
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Moots
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« Reply #3 on: June 02, 2013, 07:25:02 PM »

Don't want to put words in anyone's mouth, but of those that use the box style vacs...The bushkill style vac is quite popular and has a loyal following.  I've never used one, but the concept is solid and I've heard nothing but good things about it.
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"We must reject the idea that every time a law’s broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions."
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rbinhood
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« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2013, 08:01:31 PM »

The one advantage the box style vac has over the others is you remove the bottom part of the vac, slide the box on a bottom board then remove the top of the vac, then place an inter cover and a top.  Shake the remaining bees on the ground in front of the hive and that is it....no need to move the bees into another box which equals less stress on the bees.  JMHO
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Moots
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« Reply #5 on: June 02, 2013, 09:36:11 PM »

The one advantage the box style vac has over the others is you remove the bottom part of the vac, slide the box on a bottom board then remove the top of the vac, then place an inter cover and a top.  Shake the remaining bees on the ground in front of the hive and that is it....no need to move the bees into another box which equals less stress on the bees.  JMHO

Personally, in my admittedly limited experience, I've never seen any problems caused by transferring the bees from the bucket to the hive box.  That being said, I know many people see this as an issue.  If you do use a bucket style vac, one way of avoiding this "problem" is to make yourself a "bottom board" with a hole in the center that matches the inlet on your catch bucket.  Set this board atop you catch bucket with a hive box with frames and a top cover.  Leave it in a lit area and the bees will move upwards to the dark box on their own.  No added stress caused by dumping and no trash that may have been vacuumed up dumped in the hive.  

I actually made a board to do this, but have never actually used it...Mainly, because as I've said, I've never had an issue with simply dumping the bucket of bees.  But it does seem like a pretty good option if that's a concern to you.
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"We must reject the idea that every time a law’s broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions."
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chilibee
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« Reply #6 on: June 03, 2013, 12:53:54 AM »

I copied the robo vac style with slanted inner board that leads to a 10 fram deep super. Removed a swarm today and it worked great minimal to no dead bees. Made out of pine and luan.
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PLAN-B
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« Reply #7 on: June 03, 2013, 12:34:08 PM »

For the same reason as Moots, I also made a bucket vac.  That and it was inexpensive and not very time consuming to build. Put it together in about 1 1/2 hours.  You can make more than one bucket insert for large removals and the whole thing weighs maybe 4 lbs...
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Marshall
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« Reply #8 on: June 03, 2013, 01:45:44 PM »

I copied the robo vac style with slanted inner board that leads to a 10 fram deep super. Removed a swarm today and it worked great minimal to no dead bees. Made out of pine and luan.

I did the same thing but I took a medium super cut it in half used half for the bottom and halve for the top put plywood on the bottom and top and no# 8 wire under top part drilled holes in bottom and top for hoses. You can use deep or medium for the bees. I made in less then two hours because a friend had a swarm call and the bees were in a forked tree so we vacuumed them up. Works great.
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chux
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« Reply #9 on: June 03, 2013, 02:51:19 PM »

A friend made a bucket vac system. We've used it twice with very little bee casualty. I have an old small shop vac from walmart. Maybe 20 bucks. I think it's 2.5 hp??? Anyway, we run the hose from it to a shop vac inlet (male end sticking up to receive the hose) that is bolted onto the lid of a 5 gallon bucket. I use duct tape to secure the vac hose on this inlet. A cheap wire mesh strainer, the kind used in the kitchen to separate eggs, is screwed in place under the lid and over the inlet hose to prevent bees from being sucked out of the bucket and into the vac. On the other side of the lid, another shop vac inlet is bolted. This one is a female end that is sized to receive another shop vac hose. This is the hose we use to suck up bees. There is a small hole cut in the lid with screen on the inside to keep bees from getting out. On the outside of this hole is a piece of plastic held in place with one screw. I can make more or lesson suction by adjusting the size of the opening.

Once the bucket is crowded with bees, or we need to take a break, I remove the lid with hoses attached and replace it with another lid. This lid has a large hole in the middle of it that is covered by screen. The bees will be cooler in this bucket and can be transported easily. I was concerned because we are using a smaller hose. I think it is 1.5 inch. But the bees didn't seem to mind on either job.     
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capt44
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« Reply #10 on: June 03, 2013, 11:02:08 PM »

I use a Owens Bee Vac from Brushy Mountain Bee Farm.
It's easy to use, has the round cage insert.
The main thing about a bee Vac is the amount of suction you use.
I have mine set to where it just lifts the bees off the cluster.
When I learned how to set the vacuum I very seldom have damaged bees.
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Richard Vardaman (capt44)
Michael Bush
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« Reply #11 on: June 04, 2013, 02:22:10 PM »

>What do you all use for a bee vacuum?

I don't.
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Michael Bush
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cdray
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« Reply #12 on: June 04, 2013, 03:52:30 PM »

i use Robo's Bee Vac and love it.

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