GBKA Registered Charity Number : 1014600
In this section I hope to bring you some of the items of Equipment and various inventions developed by some of our members who have a very keen interest in this aspect of beekeeping. If you have something that you would like to share with your fellow beekeepers, please email the details to me. Your name will be on the "credits". (webmaster)
Click on the picture for an enlargement
The adjoining pictures illustrate some pieces of equipment constructed by yours truly (webmaster), to hotwire brood foundation, though I do not take credit for the original concept, which I believe I might have seen at our "resident inventor's" home. George Kinman) the actual final design and construction, was my own handiwork, and could be emulated by any one with simple tools. (I am hoping that I can persuade George to make a regular contribution to this section)
If you click on the pictures you will see that I have catered for both Brood and Super foundation. The power to heat the wire was from a battery charger set to 6 volts 2 amps. and attached to the terminals that can be seen at the rear of the unit.
You will further note that the power is applied through a micro switch under the pressure plate hinged on the front of the unit, at the same time as the pressure plate is depressed to apply tension to the Wire.
I made up this frame work to assist me to wire up my super frames. Since a lot of my frames do not cater for pre-wired foundation. I have found it a simple matter to use the same holder when applying the foundation to the frame. It is a simple matter to apply the positive and negative probes to the two terminating pins for the wire. And Voila with a little assistance the wire melts in.
the side of the frame. You can see that it effectively bends the side frame in, so that when the wire is pinned, and the cam released. the wire assumes a nice tight condition. This is important as you will find when you apply even the smallest current the wire will expand. It will contract again when power is removed.
A lot has been talked about recently of the open mesh floor, and its desirability. It is said that it allows the Varroa mite to fall through, and makes it difficult for them to re -enter the hive. It is further alleged that together with an insulated blanket over the cover board it is better during the winter in so far as it stops condensation. So I thought I would give it a try with G.Ks. mark 1 design with minor mods. To the right is a flat pack of the timber required, but not showing the mesh. Total saving of about 75% on what you might pay from the big suppliers.
It can be seen that it is a simple design, and well within the capabilities of the average DIY enthusiast. It is illustrated here, assembled together with the entrance block and mouse guard. You can also see the removable Varroa monitoring tray. I chose to paint all the components white, simply because I had loads of white undercoat and gloss left over from household jobs. If my last job in the house had required pastel pink they might have finished all pink. I believe that at Buckfast they also use different colour schemes. All that is left now is to try them out this winter
George has produced an excellent video taking you through the complete construction step by step. He is amenable to loaning the video to those interested.
copyright to all illustrations and photographs is retained.