As if I haven’t got enough on my plate at the moment I turned my hand to building a DIY Steam Wax Extractor last weekend!
Inspiration for building my DIY Steam Wax Extractor
With the winter preparations for the bees almost complete – with Apiguard Varroa treatments done and the bees taking down the last of their winter sugar syrup feed – my mind was turning to cleaning up all the hive parts ready for next season. It was then that I spotted the Easi-Steam wax extractors in the Thorne’s online catalogue which retail for about £90. We tend to stick our honey money away in a special account for such occasions/temptations so I was almost ready to place an order but thought… “That looks like it could be built as a DIY project!”
We’ve not done much in the way of serious wax harvesting before but this season we decided to re-foundation quite a lot of super and brood frames at once. We would normally reclaim the wax from these using our solar wax extractor (another DIY effort) but we didn’t see much in the way of sunshine here this year (here being on the Essex/London border). This resulted in a stack of frames and a box of wax parts doing nothing more than encouraging the expansion of the local wax month population! Something needed to be done.
I don’t know about you but whenever a DIY thought enters my head these days the first thing I turn to is Google. Typing in “DIY Steam Wax Extractor” threw up a brilliant YouTube video produced by Michaelmas Blackman from Brighton Hove Beekeepers (apologies if I got your name wrong!). It’s not a complicated thing but Michaelmas explains the process so well that I needn’t give you any more details about the build – just watch his video!
What was really nice is that all it cost me was a sheet of mesh flooring as I already had a steam wallpaper stripper and all the spare hive parts mentioned in the video. With all the parts on hand it takes only minutes to put together and the wax starts to flow as soon as the steam builds up in the enclosure.
My effort worked brilliantly and over the weekend I managed to process all of the old frames and wax. Not only that but the steaming process also sterilises the boxes and frames at the same time – so with just a quick scrape after they were ready for storing away for use next season. All I need do now is to decide if I’m going to further filter the wax and produce some nice candles for Christmas presents or just simply exchange the wax for new foundation. I’ve not weighed it but my guess is that I’ve ended up with about 3 kilos of wax – which is quite a bit of free foundation.
That’s the power of video! If you are ever looking for someone to produce a YouTube or website video for your business or products I’m your man! Please check out my main business website at Video Artisan!