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Author Topic: Honey Gate...Runs, drips and errors???  (Read 1280 times)
Moots
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« on: August 24, 2013, 08:21:52 PM »

First year Beek here...Overall, I've been quite happy with my harvest, bottling, and honey sales.  But like doing anything for the first time, there's no reference point or history for making comparisons.

Which brings me to my question...I've been bottling from a 5 gallon bucket with a honey gate on the bottom, it came as part of the kit I purchased from Kelley Bees along with my extractor.  Whenever I'm bottling, I tend to get drips on to the neck of my bottles, primarily from the right most part of the gate, the end with the handle that I'm lifting.  However, I also get an occasional drip from the left side, hinged end.

So....is this to be expected and just part of operating a honey gate, or is it that maybe this is a lower end honey gate, and you get what you pay for...Or, is there some problem with my technique that could possibly be contributing to the problem?
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sawdstmakr
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« Reply #1 on: August 24, 2013, 08:32:17 PM »

Moots,
This happens but I can usually reduce the amount of dripping by tightening the thumb screw to keep the pressure on the o-ring to keep it sealed. You may be opening it too far which will release the pressure on the valve. Just play with it a little.
Jim
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AllenF
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« Reply #2 on: August 24, 2013, 08:48:18 PM »

It is all in the wrist.   
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kathyp
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« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2013, 09:18:47 PM »

honey drips
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danno
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« Reply #4 on: August 25, 2013, 08:06:45 AM »

Are heating the honey in any way?  heat will make the flow start and stop clearer.   I have a honey gate story to share.  One winter I brought a full pail and gate to the house.   Sales are usually slow this time of year so I fill jars as needed.  I heated the pail with the waterbed heater and got a couple of jars ready to fill.   I filled the first one, shut the valve and tightened the thumb screw to shut off the flow.  SNAP!!!   The plastic screw broke.  I quickly  squeezed the valve shut with my hand.  Now the real problem. I was home alone with nothing to pour the rest of this 60 # bucket into.  I ended up sitting there for about 1/2 hour until my wife came home and got me another bucket.  After that day I replaced all the plastic screws with the metal ones
« Last Edit: August 27, 2013, 07:35:40 AM by danno » Logged
Moots
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« Reply #5 on: August 25, 2013, 10:34:56 AM »

Are heating the honey in any way?  heat will make the flow start and stop clearer.   I have a honey gate story to share.  One winter I brought a full pail and gate to the house.   Sales are usually slow this time of year so I fill jars as needed.  I heated the pail with the waterbed heater and got a couple of jars ready to fill.   I filled the first one, shut the valve and tightened the thumb screw to shut off the flow.  SNAP!!!   The plastic screw broke.  I quickly  squeezed the valve shut with my hand.  Now the real problem. I was home alone with nothing to pour the rest of this 60 # bucket into.  I ended up sitting there for about 1/2 until my wife came home and got me another bucket.  After that day I replaced all the plastic screws with the metal ones

Danno,
I had a similar experience...I've been bottling out of the one bucket with the honey gate, so my routine has been once I've emptied it bottling, I drain the little remaining into my next full 5 gallon bucket of honey, clean up my bottling bucket, refill it, allow at least 4 days for the air bubbles and wax particles to rise to the top and repeat. 
However, the other night, when I went to drain the little remaining in the bottom of my bottling bucket into a full bucket, I loosened the wing nut on the gate a little too much and it fell into the full bucket of honey.
So, I had the wing nut that I needed to secure the honey gate sitting at the bottom of a full five gallon bucket of honey that I needed to pour into the bucket with the honey gate....A regular catch 22!  grin

I had to get my wife to hold the honey gate closed while I transferred the other bucket, retrieved the wing nut, and secured the honey gate.  laugh

In answer to your first question, no, I'm not heating the honey in any way.  I liked your water bed heater suggestion, just hadn't gotten around to getting one yet.  However, I was afraid that heating the honey may actually exacerbate the dripping problem.  But the point you make that it will actually make it a "cleaner" flow is interesting. 
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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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Joe D
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« Reply #6 on: August 25, 2013, 11:04:39 AM »

It is adding another step but I fill a pitcher with honey and then pour in the jars from that.



Joe
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danno
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« Reply #7 on: August 25, 2013, 04:00:43 PM »

Moots as I said in a earlier post buy a waterbed heater for 15.00 and you don't have to wait 4 days for bubbles but the down side is if you break the honey gate 95 deg honey will run out of a pail in about a minute
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OldMech
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« Reply #8 on: August 27, 2013, 12:02:42 AM »

hmm. just realized that when I assisted with bottling, the gent I was helping had a plastic BALL valve instead of a honey gate. It was interesting enough that I recall he had cut off one end of it close enough to the ball that I could see it turn when the handle was turned. The other end was threaded to the pipe on his bucket. It worked exceptionally well. He had a piece of paint stick glued and screwed to the handle to make it longer, and easier to operate. IIRC it was about 1.5" in Diameter..
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danno
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« Reply #9 on: August 27, 2013, 07:50:18 AM »

i have 2 brass 1" ball valves on my bottling tanks that i made myself.   before cutting you need to disassemble the valve.  you then saw then file the threads off one end as close to the teflon ball seat as possible.  these are 1/4 turn valves an have a stop bent into the handle.  simply bend it so it doesn't hit and you can then make it right or left handed.   if you dont want to do all this you can buy one finished at the supply houses for about 70.00
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Moots
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« Reply #10 on: August 27, 2013, 09:52:22 AM »

OldMech and Danno,

It's interesting that y'all bring this up, while I didn't address the question in my OP, the thought did enter my mind as to WHY a Honey Gate is used and why is it designed the way it is....Seems like a ball valve as y'all describe is a better solution to the problem.  Is it simply that a Honey Gate is cheaper, or is there something else at play?
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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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sawdstmakr
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« Reply #11 on: August 27, 2013, 10:00:03 PM »

Moots
Honey gates are a lot cheaper. $11 compared to $50 or $138 for a good stainless.
http://www.mannlakeltd.com/beekeeping-supplies/category/page119.html

Jim
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Joe D
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« Reply #12 on: August 27, 2013, 11:39:25 PM »

I just got the stuff to fix an 1 1/4 inch drain in a 55 gal drum.  1- bulk head fitting, 1- 90 degree elbow, 1- ball valve and 1- 8 inch nipple all PVC, all together it was close to $20.  I am putting the drain in the bottom of the drum.
 One of these days I will finish my extractor.  Still doing modifications.




Joe
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