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Author Topic: Wax Foundation  (Read 1873 times)
OldMech
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« on: September 21, 2013, 08:51:03 PM »



  Pondering on the stamped wax foundation today, that comes in large and small cell...   The question that came to mind was..  What do the bees do with a flat piece of wax foundation with no cells stamped into it?
   Will they go ahead and build the cell size they prefer?

   
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AllenF
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« Reply #1 on: September 21, 2013, 10:41:11 PM »

Yup.
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OldMech
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« Reply #2 on: September 22, 2013, 10:03:47 PM »

Yup.

   Thanks Allen. Brings to light interesting possibilities.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2013, 03:24:04 PM »

>What do the bees do with a flat piece of wax foundation with no cells stamped into it?
   Will they go ahead and build the cell size they prefer?

They do better with no sheets.  They hesitate with foundation or blank sheets and the blank sheets just slow them down.
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Michael Bush
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OldMech
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« Reply #4 on: September 23, 2013, 10:16:47 PM »


  Thats more or less what I am wondering. TY Mr Bush..   I have never tried foundationless.. It "seems" to my mind that having something to start with would be easier and faster. APPARENTLY i am wrong.... again...   I have been reading up on cell size etcetc..  and came to the conclusion that I wanted the bees to build the cell size they want rather than forcing them into something predetermined...
   I am about to order frames and foundation to put together this winter, but have a couple of questions...

   Foundationless...   I have no natural wax to put on the "point" of the frames, (My wife absconds with any and all wax for the candle shop.)  would it behoove me to buy the frames with the wedge top bar and put a small strip of wax in each frame to get them started?

   How much of a starter strip do they need? 1/2 inch?
    Will Cell size on the starter strip matter?

If thats not the best way..what is the best method recommended to get them drawing wax correctly?

   Thanks for the recommendations and answers. I hate wasting money on things I find out later I didnt need.
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rwlaw
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« Reply #5 on: September 24, 2013, 06:47:45 PM »


What I did is cut 30 degree angles in the top bar and a two pc's of popcicle sticks in the grooves and they would draw on it, didn't have to wax at all. Tried uncut top bars and strips of Perico foundation and they wouldn't touch it. Also I got some 1/8" rod & put one in the middle wire hole for support.
Unfortunately all they did was draw drone comb, silly girls!
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Joe D
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« Reply #6 on: September 25, 2013, 12:47:13 AM »

I have used paint stirring sticks, cut in half the long way, put a few drops of hot glue in the grooves and install the paint stick.  I did put a little melted wax on the strip.  They build to it a lot quicker than plastic foundation with wax.  If you put a frame with comb in every other space it will help them keep it straight.  And you can sling the honey if they have the comb anchored good to the sides.  Good luck to you and your bees.




Joe
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #7 on: September 25, 2013, 08:11:52 AM »

>It "seems" to my mind that having something to start with would be easier and faster. APPARENTLY i am wrong.... again... 

Things are often not what they seem.

> I have been reading up on cell size etcetc..  and came to the conclusion that I wanted the bees to build the cell size they want rather than forcing them into something predetermined...

Agreed.

>  I am about to order frames and foundation to put together this winter, but have a couple of questions...

>   Foundationless...   I have no natural wax to put on the "point" of the frames, (My wife absconds with any and all wax for the candle shop.)  would it behoove me to buy the frames with the wedge top bar and put a small strip of wax in each frame to get them started?

I do not recommend putting wax on them.  It will not be attached as well as the bees would attach it and it does nothing to encourage them one way or the other to build on it.  I do not wax my foundationless frames anymore.

>   How much of a starter strip do they need? 1/2 inch?

1/4" is not as much as I would like.  1/2" is about right.  3/4" is about the maximum useful size.  But I prefer wood to a wax starter strip.  The wood is permanent and the wax strip is not.

>    Will Cell size on the starter strip matter?

Not very much.  They will quickly change to what they want instead.

>If thats not the best way..what is the best method recommended to get them drawing wax correctly?

My favorite comb guide is a angled bevel on the wood.  But the simplest at this point is to buy foundationless frames from Walter T. Kelley.

More here:
http://www.bushfarms.com/beesfoundationless.htm
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Michael Bush
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OldMech
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« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2013, 09:10:19 PM »

Thank you Mr. Bush... 500 frames on order from Walter Kelley!!!!
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hjon71
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« Reply #9 on: October 01, 2013, 03:11:54 AM »

Are the frames from there different in an appreciable way or just your preference?
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #10 on: October 01, 2013, 06:42:21 PM »

>Are the frames from there different in an appreciable way or just your preference?

They are the only foundationless frames I know of.  They have a comb guide for the top bar and no groove in the bottom bar.
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Michael Bush
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flyboy
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« Reply #11 on: January 07, 2014, 08:35:55 PM »

This thread may be of interest
http://forum.beemaster.com/index.php/topic,41344.0.html
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Al
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labradorfarms
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« Reply #12 on: January 07, 2014, 09:16:59 PM »

I almost went with foundationless ,but thought me being a new Bee Keeper. I would end up breaking the comb while inspection and all the bees work would be wasted because of me being clumsy.. I saw on a video that the foundationless are much more fragile than standard wax foundations.

I opted to start of with small cell wax foundation... After I gain some more exp. I may try the foundationless idea.
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KD4MOJ
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« Reply #13 on: January 09, 2014, 03:33:38 PM »


My favorite comb guide is a angled bevel on the wood.  But the simplest at this point is to buy foundationless frames from Walter T. Kelley.


HHmmm went on their site and couldn't find those frames... only a replacement top bar or comb guide as they call it.

...DOUG
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iddee
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« Reply #14 on: January 09, 2014, 09:26:57 PM »

Labradorfarms, Cross wire your frames first. The bees will build down over the wires. It will be much stronger that way.
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« Reply #15 on: January 09, 2014, 09:50:45 PM »

My initial idea was to build the frame and then install wires as in the way a tennis racket is wired. This would also give the advantage of added strength to the frame.

Then press the wax foundation on there somehow.

This is all theoretical and maybe ridiculous grin but I was thinking that if you made the blanks, you could somehow press them onto the wires with a female mold on either side that fit between the wooden parts.

Am I dreaming in technicolor?
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Al
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iddee
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« Reply #16 on: January 09, 2014, 10:22:18 PM »

Sounds like you are running a mile to get 20 yards. Much easier ways to get the same result.
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"Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me . . . Anything can happen, child. Anything can be"

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sawdstmakr
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« Reply #17 on: January 10, 2014, 12:10:30 AM »

Flyboy,
The comb will add a lot of strength to the frame once it is fully drawn out.
Jim
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Moots
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« Reply #18 on: January 10, 2014, 07:24:54 PM »

My initial idea was to build the frame and then install wires as in the way a tennis racket is wired. This would also give the advantage of added strength to the frame.

Then press the wax foundation on there somehow.

This is all theoretical and maybe ridiculous grin but I was thinking that if you made the blanks, you could somehow press them onto the wires with a female mold on either side that fit between the wooden parts.

Am I dreaming in technicolor?

flyboy,
I'm with iddee on this one...

I'm not going to say it can't be done, but I guess I'd start with, why would you want to do it that way?

What problem or short coming do you see with the current way wax foundation and wiring is done that you think this would "simplify or improve"?  huh
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iddee
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« Reply #19 on: January 10, 2014, 10:06:56 PM »

Run 2 wires across your medium, or 4 wires across your deep frame, put a small starter strip along the top, and they will build as strong a comb as can be made. They will build down and incorporate the wires as if they weren't even there.
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"Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me . . . Anything can happen, child. Anything can be"

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