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Ethan A

Dipping frames

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Is it possible to dip plastic frames into melted wax to get a good amount of wax over the frame instead of spraying the frame or painting it on would the bees still be happy to comb out from doing this?

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Yes.

Although you then have wax on the top and sides, which is not where you want it. And beeswax is costly.

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I dip all my plastic frames... There are pros and cons...

Pros... Fast, nice even fast drawing of comb.

Cons... Uses a lot of wax... Like twice the amount! While I haven't found warping directly out of the dipper to be a problem if you leave the dipped frame on the ground exposed to the sun it will warp quickly. Last year I had a site get decimated by calfs. Of the 300 frames that were spread around, 120 were broken by the calfs, 100 were warped by the sun (about 5 days later) and the remainder were reuseable. I havnt done enough frames with a roller to know if the frames susceptibility to warping is altered by dipping or rolling.

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Spraying is the most economical and efficient in our experience. As pointed out above, the main difficulty with dipping is the wax on the side, top and bottom bars and the bees love that as much as anything else. The frames are then much harder to get out of the boxes as there is wax everywhere! Rolling works well but uses more wax than spraying and it is harder to get an even spread. Spraying gets an even, light coat of wax for the bees to use. Warping is not affected by different methods of getting wax on.

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Spraying is used by the large frame suppliers. The setup looks expensive though. How do you do it?

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Spraying is used by the large frame suppliers. The setup looks expensive though. How do you do it?

Compressor, hot water bath for the spray paint pot, very clean wax I.e. strained through cloth, and a lot of patience to get things running smoothly. We've done lots now

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