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Hive scorching

 
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Rusty Strings
House Bee


Joined: 12 Feb 2017
Posts: 15
Location: UK, Derbyshire

PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2017 9:58 pm    Post subject: Hive scorching Reply with quote

Hi all
When scorching the inside of a new hive, does this also include the top bars? I've seen Phil Chandlers hive on the videos and what appears to be scorched insides but the top bars look unscorched.

John
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AndyC
Scout Bee


Joined: 04 Jul 2014
Posts: 283
Location: Uk/Horsham/RH13

PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2017 8:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

May I ask what the reasoning is behind scorching new hives?
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Barbara
Site Admin


Joined: 27 Jul 2011
Posts: 1563
Location: England/Co.Durham/Ebchester

PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2017 9:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

@Andy C

It takes the newness off the timber that bees (particularly swarms) seem to find unattractive. I combine it with rubbing a scrunched handful of old brood comb over the warmed/hot surface and then scorch again, so that you get the benefit of the melted wax and a little propolis from the brood comb soaked into the wood to make it smell more alluring.

@Rusty Strings

I don't scorch the top bars but they sometimes end up in the oven because of how I prep them with starter strips .... I cut inch strips of foundation (embossed beeswax sheets) or use homemade plain strips of wax, make a saw cut in the top bars, heat in the oven for 15 mins and then hold the strip of foundation into the saw cut until it melts and then sets leaving 1/8th - 1/4 inch of wax sheet protruding that is glued in tight by the wax itself.
If you use triangular mouldings as comb guides, you will be coating them with wax anyway, so that seals the wood.
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Rusty Strings
House Bee


Joined: 12 Feb 2017
Posts: 15
Location: UK, Derbyshire

PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2017 10:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for that Barbara.
After I posted the question I noticed the current featured video from Phil Chandler on the Biobees w/s and there appears to be a scorched top bar in the frame.

As I'm a beginner, I'll have to buy in beeswax. Supplies for making candles, polish and cosmetics appear to be easy to get, are they ok?

I suppose a local beekeeper would be the best place to get old brood comb and propolis.

John
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Barbara
Site Admin


Joined: 27 Jul 2011
Posts: 1563
Location: England/Co.Durham/Ebchester

PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2017 11:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A local beekeeper would be best for some wax too.
It is always useful to establish some local beekeeping contacts even if they have very different goals and ideas about keeping bees from yourself. Beekeepers are usually very keen to share their knowledge and experience with anyone else who is remotely interested, so they are often open and encouraging to newbies. You might even get some hands on experience helping with their bees which can be very valuable when you have never handled bees before. They could also perhaps help you source a swarm if you don't manage to attract one. ....Just be prepared for some negative comment about "natural beekeeping" and top bar hives. Listen to what they say without comment and pick and choose which parts of their advice you want to follow. No one gets it right first time. We all make mistakes and hopefully learn from them and sometimes even change our attitudes, ideals and goals. Being open minded and flexible and learning from your bees is a good rule of thumb. If you can throw good intuitive skills into the mix, you are onto a winner.

Good luck

Barbara
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pavol
House Bee


Joined: 14 Aug 2015
Posts: 11
Location: Luxembourg

PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2017 5:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fully agree with Barbara. I made it the same way two years ago, when I discovered the bees world...

Once again thanks for your great and wise words Barbara, your advice is always very balanced, impartial, modest and very human at the same time.

I cannot stress it more, this forum is a gem when it comes to getting a piece of information.

Have a nice WE!
Pavol
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Rusty Strings
House Bee


Joined: 12 Feb 2017
Posts: 15
Location: UK, Derbyshire

PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2017 5:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks again
I have noted a social meet for Derbyshire beekeepers next month so I'm going along.
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Barbara
Site Admin


Joined: 27 Jul 2011
Posts: 1563
Location: England/Co.Durham/Ebchester

PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2017 6:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

@pavol

Many thanks for your words of appreciation. It's good to know that my posts come across as intended as I do spend some time over composing and editing them before I click the submit button.

@Rusty Strings

Good luck at the local association. Some are quite progressive and others pretty conservative. My two local ones are chalk and cheese in that respect, so probably worth checking out other options if you don't feel comfortable or welcome at the first group you try out.
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trekmate
Golden Bee


Joined: 30 Nov 2009
Posts: 1123
Location: UK, North Yorkshire, Bentham

PostPosted: Sun Feb 19, 2017 7:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Barbara wrote:
.... If you use triangular mouldings as comb guides, you will be coating them with wax anyway, so that seals the wood.

"Coating" is excessive! With triangular guides all you need is to rub a piece of beeswax on the apex of the triangle, just two or three strokes. That's enough to give the bees the clue they need. Coating would need melted beeswax, which will NEVER stick to wood as well as the bees will stick it and will leave a weak part of the comb more likely to detach.

I lightly scorch top-bars before re-using them for a second time.

Some beekeeping associations are more friendly than others, but in my experience even the worst association has a few friendly faces. It's just a case of finding them!
Good luck with the club and also with getting your swarm.

John
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