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Author Topic: Winter Heater  (Read 6078 times)
Finski
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« Reply #40 on: October 06, 2013, 10:49:51 AM »

.  

Despite my mods, the bees know winter is coming! .  


And you just said that they make brood in December...Clear your head man.
This discussion ...God Lord, I cannot say it...

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« Last Edit: October 06, 2013, 11:04:25 AM by Finski » Logged

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RHBee
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« Reply #41 on: October 06, 2013, 10:54:20 AM »

.  

Despite my mods, the bees know winter is coming! .  


And you just said that they make brood in Decembed...Clear your head man.
This discussion ...God Lord, I cannot say it...

.

Just having fun Finski. Might not be practical but fun.  grin
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Ray
BlueBee
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« Reply #42 on: October 06, 2013, 04:12:32 PM »

I never considered making my own controller. With the relative low cost of some PLC's like the Seimens LOGO. I now see that I can go way lower on cost. You got me thinking about the possibility's. SCR Control of low voltage AC. Thanks.
I havenít used the Siemans LOGO, but it looks pretty capable too.  Quite often the best solution for a problem comes down to time (time = money).  If one solution is going to be much faster to implement than another, then a higher upfront cost may be the better solution.  The LOGO already comes with buttons and a display unit which is nice. 

On the other hand, with a little time and a little skill you can make your own custom controller for a much lower cost.  In volumes of 50 to 100, a person could probably make their own system for under $5 a unit.  Thatís without a display, buttons, or fancy case.  Buttons and cases are quite often more than the electronics!  I would forget a LCD display in the north.  They freeze up (L= Liquid!) in the winter and are useless outside.  Go with RS485 to a PC, or USB, or hard coded with no display other than some status LEDs which cost pennies.

A single one of these low cost microcontroller chips typically have 20 to 30 I/O pins that can turn on/off 20 heaters if you want.  If your heat source is being powered by DC (say 12VDC), the best switch is a low cost couple amp nFET.  If your heat source is a being powered by AC, then you could either use a relay or a TRIAC (back to back SCRs).   

Finally paint it orange to look MODERN.  Smiley
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RHBee
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« Reply #43 on: October 06, 2013, 06:57:48 PM »

Finally paint it orange to look MODERN.  Smiley

Grin Just can't help yourself can you.

Anyway,  BlueBee did you make or buy the interface card the chip was mounted on?
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Ray
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« Reply #44 on: October 07, 2013, 01:15:51 AM »

Professor, I listen to my bees and observe.  The bees are my teacher. applause
Now I must say, it is time to buy couple of beekeeping books.
I did enjoy Brother Adamís bee keeping book and base many of my bee keeping habits on his methods.  However I seem to recall youíre not too fond of British bee keeping either huh  Maybe I need a bee keeping book from Finland. Smiley  Are you going to write one?  My guess is you could write a very entertaining book.

Ray, I lay out my own boards for these little projects.  Theyíre just two layer boards.  You donít really need separate power and ground planes for such a basic system.  There are sites on the web where you can layout a board and theyíll machine it for you and ship you the board(s) at a pretty low cost. 

Iím not planning on heating any hives this winter.  However if I ramp up nuc production next year, I will probably build a number of heaters just for an insurance policy against bitter cold spells and to boost spring buildup.  I was pretty impressed with the result of a little spring heating last year.   
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Finski
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« Reply #45 on: October 07, 2013, 04:22:31 AM »


I did enjoy Brother Adamís bee keeping book and base many of my bee keeping habits on his methods.  


.

Brother Adam was a German, and he moved to south England. On that area bees can forage pollen in January.
Mr Adam tells about "severe winter, where temps go even near freezing point".


To me electrict heating teached how really important the heat is for bees.
None of books handle heat economy of beehive in spring build up.

The most amazing thing is that heating gives the biggest advantage to the biggest hives. But it happens after that when the hive have new nurser bees in spring and it does not limit brood rearing.
The cause to that is the formula of ball volume.

When by the help of heat radius grows, how much grows the brood ball volume
 




An advantage to small colonies is that you may give a frame of emerging brood from bigger hive and heating keeps brood alive. Otherwise big part of brood will die when you give it to a small colony.  When I started the heating 10 years ago in April, the nights were often -6C even if days were +10C.

The best way to build up small colonies is to give brood frames.
They do not react much on patty or heating because their ability to make brood area is almost zero. And the cycle of brood is long = 3 weeks.


In my climate brood amount in May rules in honey yield. Eggs are foragers  6-7 weeks later. It is 1,5 month.
If you have 15 frames brood in the middle of May, I have 5-6 boxes bees at the beginning of July.

If I have 2 brood frames, after 1,5 months the colony has so much foragers that it can feed enlargening brood area.
All is consumed to rearing of brood.
.

But if the bees makes to you only fun, it is same what you do with them. Then it is better to search Welsh jokes. They have much funny stories about sheeps.
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During winter bees must have winter rest and they are better be in cluster. If they are active during winter, bees will be short life.

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« Last Edit: October 07, 2013, 04:44:36 AM by Finski » Logged

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Bush_84
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« Reply #46 on: October 11, 2013, 07:08:43 PM »

Who these things often explode quite quickly.  So I plop down heat ape in there instead of light bulbs.  Great.  I get a 30 watt heat tape.  Great.  So what about the bottom?  I am not sure that I have seen a response to that.  There's already a bee proof screen on there.  So do I put a bottomless nuc on there or do I just keep them in the nuc with the solid bottom?  I am leaning towards just leaving them in the solid bottom board nuc they are in.
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BlueBee
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« Reply #47 on: October 11, 2013, 09:25:27 PM »

I think Finski said he heats from the top!  When I heat, I heat from the bottom and I have used a box very similar to your photo.  However there is a potential problem with that design.  If the hive is warm enough for wax moth larvae to move around (chased by the bees), they will find their way through the screen and multiply down below if you keep it too warm.  The wax moth larvae really enjoy a nice heat source too and the easy food (debris) down there.  If anything gets into the heater box, they are free from harassment by the bees.  

IF you can fit the heat tape on a solid bottom board (and I think you should be able to) that is probably a superior approach.  As long as the surface temp of the heater isnít so hot it starts cooking bees or starts a hydrocarbon fire!  Might be an ordinance against that. Wink
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BlueBee
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« Reply #48 on: October 11, 2013, 09:37:12 PM »

Finski, my bees use this equation

E = m*c*c  

to keep warm  Smiley
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« Reply #49 on: October 11, 2013, 10:33:34 PM »

I get a 30 watt heat tape.  

Unless you're using a temp controller, 30W is too much.

Solid bottom and just put the heat tape on top of the bottom (below the frames)
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Bush_84
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« Reply #50 on: October 11, 2013, 10:52:08 PM »

Again this bottom is sealed to the box.  The entrance is a 7/8 inch hole.  I would almost have to jam it down the side to get it in.  It's a tight fit. 

Also I thought most said to use 15 watts per hive?  There are two hives that go on that stand.  So that's 15 watts per stand. 

I also plan on putting a shim over the nucs and filling it with sugar for the bees to munch on.  So heat above the sugar will likely do them very little good. 
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Finski
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« Reply #51 on: October 12, 2013, 02:31:45 AM »

Again this bottom is sealed to the box.  The entrance is a 7/8 inch hole.  I would almost have to jam it down the side to get it in.  It's a tight fit.  

Also I thought most said to use 15 watts per hive?  There are two hives that go on that stand.  So that's 15 watts per stand.  

I also plan on putting a shim over the nucs and filling it with sugar for the bees to munch on.  So heat above the sugar will likely do them very little good.  

Now Bush, be carefull what you read. It seems that you are not enough experinenced to understand what others are telling.

Natural heat production of winter cluster is 3-6W in autumn. In spring when bees have brood, the food consumptiong is really something else.

Important is that bee cluster stay in peace during winter rest. YOu cannot tamper resting hives like Bluebees seems to do.


15 W is too much to wintering. I use  6-15 W in spring when I feed pollen patty to hives to get early build up.

- in winter 3W is good  heat aid to nucs in winter
- first, use insulated hive; after that use electrict. And restrict the bee room to minimum.

- in winter, do not heat cluster. Heath the upper part or side of the cluster like it were a bigger part of cluster.

If you heat cluster, winter reast is not any more in natural control.

Like in winter shelters, air must be under +7C the room.

When you put a heater to the wintering hive, it is easy to chek, do heater brake the cluster or not. You just lift the cover next day.

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« Last Edit: October 12, 2013, 05:21:07 AM by Finski » Logged

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Finski
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« Reply #52 on: October 12, 2013, 02:38:03 AM »

.

I have heated hives 10 years and I have  told many times what I do.
I know very well how it work in my cold climate. In warmer climate it is a danger, that heating makes harm when it disturbes winter rest.
I have seen how bees walk along the hive in over heated hive. It is easy to see. They should all be in solid cluster and very quiet.

But my climate is not so exceptional.  I have only 3 months when temps are almost all the time under 0C. Most of winter has bare ground and temps -5C to +5C. If I cover hives with snow, it is possible only 2 months period.

BUT, many in this forum has twisted my sayings on purpose so that I have never did what they write.
Only purpose has been tease me on forum. But at same time to give wrong information to guys.

Thanks to all tontos for that.

And funny thing is that guys cannot make difference with "winter" and "spring".  
I use heaters in spring build up 2 months, and that is very different than wintering. .

My bee wintering rest time is from October to May. It makes 7 months. And bees live with normal sugar 8-9 months.  At the beginning of May they start to get willow pollen.

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« Last Edit: October 12, 2013, 05:32:05 AM by Finski » Logged

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Moots
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« Reply #53 on: October 12, 2013, 09:07:30 AM »

Finski, my bees use this equation

E = m*c*c  

to keep warm  Smiley

Blue,
I don't know much about physics, but I have managed to master basic math, order of operations.  grin

"E = M *C*C" is NOT the same as "E = MC^2" or "E = M*(C*C)"
Thank God Albert Einstein didn't use your formula....no telling what the repercussions would have been. lau
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« Reply #54 on: October 12, 2013, 09:21:04 AM »

Again this bottom is sealed to the box.  The entrance is a 7/8 inch hole.  I would almost have to jam it down the side to get it in.  It's a tight fit. 

Also I thought most said to use 15 watts per hive?  There are two hives that go on that stand.  So that's 15 watts per stand. 

I also plan on putting a shim over the nucs and filling it with sugar for the bees to munch on.  So heat above the sugar will likely do them very little good. 

I agree with Finski,  15 watts is too much for a nuc.   I used two 7 watt bulbs on  two 10 frame deeps.   As for  your nuc design goes,  it sounds like it is not very accomodation for heat.  I would suggest moving them to a 10 frame deep with normal bottom board and reducing the space to just 5 frames by using rigid insulation.  search on some of Finski's posts, he has shown pictures of reducing a colony down with insulation board.   That way you can but the heat on the bottom board.
 
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BlueBee
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« Reply #55 on: October 12, 2013, 09:48:13 AM »

Congratulations Moots, you just failed 2nd grade multiplication.

Itís called the associative property of multiplication.  http://www.aaamath.com/pro74bx2.htm

Do you really want to debate me on Math and Science? 
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BlueBee
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« Reply #56 on: October 12, 2013, 09:58:40 AM »

IMO, the real goal of electric heat for wintering is to maintain the temperature in the hive around 45 to 50F (or Finskiís +7C).  How many watts that requires is completely dependent upon the temperature outside and the insulation you have.  A well insulated box might get by with 6 watts on an average winter day whereas a wood box might need 30 watts.  

The wattage needed to maintain +7C, varies with temperature (heat loss = function of delta T).  So you canít just say 6Watts, or 9 watts, or 15watts will work in all cases.  It is best to include a thermostat in your design and have the capacity of extra watts if the thermostat needs them.  Kind of like having a V8 under the hood just in case.

IMO, the 30 watt heat tape should be fine if it is the stuff used to keep pipes from freezing.  I believe they have a thermostat set at about 42F.  So you donít get 30 watts ALL the time.  I've used that stuff to keep copper pipes from freezing before.
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Finski
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« Reply #57 on: October 12, 2013, 11:12:58 AM »

IMO, the real goal of electric heat for wintering is to maintain the temperature in the hive around 45 to 50F (or Finskiís +7C).


Good heavens. I have not said anything like that!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Finski
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« Reply #58 on: October 12, 2013, 11:21:27 AM »

IMO, the real goal of electric heat for wintering is to maintain the temperature in the hive around 45 to 50F (or Finskiís +7C).  How many watts that requires is completely dependent upon the temperature outside and the insulation you have.  A well insulated box might get by with 6 watts on an average winter day whereas a wood box might need 30 watts.  

The wattage needed to maintain +7C, varies with temperature (heat loss = function of delta T).  So you canít just say 6Watts, or 9 watts, or 15watts will work in all cases.  It is best to include a thermostat in your design and have the capacity of extra watts if the thermostat needs them.  Kind of like having a V8 under the hood just in case.

IMO, the 30 watt heat tape should be fine if it is the stuff used to keep pipes from freezing.  I believe they have a thermostat set at about 42F.  So you donít get 30 watts ALL the time.  I've used that stuff to keep copper pipes from freezing before.



Good heavens what dangerous rubbish!!!
You really want to kill anothers' colonies.

You really have a bad dyslexia. You are not able to understand what I write.

And you do not understand that if control mechanism fails, system kills the hives.

.
I have written all the time about spring build up and you write about wintering with same heating values.

Bluebee, what is your experience about the issue. It seems that you have not at all
You are really dangerous Master of Beekeeping.
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Finski
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« Reply #59 on: October 12, 2013, 11:23:13 AM »

Finski, my bees use this equation

E = m*c*c  

to keep warm  Smiley

YOur head is runing with speed of light. Your bees use flying muscles to produce heat.
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