We provide extracting services for those who do not have time to process the honey themselves. Our radial extractors allow us to extract frames with less danger of blowout than tangential extractors. We charge $.55 per pound with a $25 minimum charge. The honey that you receive back comes from your own hives.
Please call before you come out so that we may be ready for your arrival. Your supers need to be free of bees and brood.
We use a commercial grade mechanical uncapper—A Cowen Silver Queen that uses a pair of hot vibrating knives to uncap with. Although uncommon, warped or damaged frames may not feed well through our machine and may need to be uncapped by hand.
Our extracting room is set up for the month of August. We have industry standard commercial equipment. We run 2 radial extractors one having the capacity of holding 20 frames, the other holding 50 frames Extractors are stainless steel, one of them is a Fritz (German) the larger one is a Mann Lake. These extractors are fed by a Silver Queen Cowen Uncapper. The uncapper has a pair of stationary, vibrating, water heated hot knives that cut the cappings from the comb as the frames pass through them. The uncapper works best when the frames are warm or the honey is not too thick. Almost always, we warm your boxes of frames to 85 degrees before we extract them. The uncapper has a sloped feeding rail that holds up to about 7 or 8 frames in a line which are picked up with a chain drive and fed between the knives. After the frames pass through the knives they are then guided onto the rails above a stainless steel drip tray while awaiting loading into the extractor. The drip tray has the capacity of 40 frames. Cappings drop down and into a bucket under the uncapper. After the batch of frames is run for one client the extractor and uncapping drip tray is cleaned with a plastic bowl scraper commonly found in a kitchen. Cappings are drained; and honey from the extractor, drip tray and uncapping hot knives are consolidated into the bucket holding the processed honey from the extractor. This honey can be then filtered, skimmed or left with the cappings depending on what the client wishes. If you desire to have your honey filtered, we do that by running the honey through a fine nylon cloth. The weave of the cloth is pretty tight and almost all visible particulates are filtered out. No further filtering is necessary to prepare your product to bottle or sell. The cloth is not able to remove the finer grains of pollen that are suspended in the honey. Technically the honey is classified as strained. The buckets that we use for our clients are food grade plastic and BPA free. The cost of a food grade bucket with a lid is $13. If you wish we can extract into your buckets. Our extractors sit high enough to accept a 6 gallon bucket. If you bring your own buckets, please be sure that they are ready to have honey put into them. We charge extra for cleaning buckets
Our extracting rates are set at 60 cents per pound.
We can filter your honey as well and have it completely ready to bottle for 20 cents per pound. We filter your honey using only gravity pressure through a very fine nylon mesh which will remove all of the visible particles of wax and debris from your honey. Because we only use only the pressure of gravity, it will take several extra hours to accomplish and only rarely can you receive your honey back on the day that you drop it off.
Because we have to clean out the extractor and uncapping machine between batches, we have set a minimum charge for extracting services at $25. If you have 50 pounds of honey to extract, this will cover that cost and you will be charged at the per pound rate. If you bring us only one frame containing a pound of honey the charge will be $25.
We also can filter your honey into a bottling bucket. This makes it more convenient for you to bottle your product. Bottling buckets cost $35.00.
As part of our extracting services, we also repair frames and boxes. Generally, a simple frame repair to reattach a loose joint requires only a shot or two from our pneumatic narrow crown stapler. Our charge for frame repair is $1 each.
Combs and boxes should be free of bees and most importantly free of brood. Any frames containing brood are not run through our uncapping machine and must be uncapped by hand. Frames containing brood will be uncapped by hand and an extra expense of $1.50 per comb will be charged.
We can hive your packages of bees here in our own starter yard. We started offering this service several years ago to beekeepers who were out of town or away on business during the package arrival time. You may bring your hive to our yard prior to the bees arriving as a single deep box. We will install your package, release the queen, and have the hive ready for pickup 2 weeks after hiving. As many beekeepers understand, hives should not be transported or radically disturbed for a couple of weeks after the new queen is released. It is possible to transport hives prior to this but queens are not guaranteed under this situation.
Your equipment should be in good serviceable shape and be able to be made bee tight for your return trip. Hiving with a caged queen is $20/hive. We can release the queen for $2.50/queen, and feeding is $5/week. Unless you tell us not to we will put pollen substitute on the bees after the queen is out. This will add another $4 but we feel the brood build is worth it.
Hiving time for the bees is during our delivery weeks and we are always short on time. We use frame feeders with caps and ladders for feeding. Other types of feeders do not work with our schedule of travel. If you do not have frame feeders we can provide them for $16.75 each. We also have sheets of top insulation for $5 if you wish to have that.
When you come to pick up your hive it is necessary that the hive be prepared for transport early in the morning to screen the bees off before they start to fly. When you schedule your pickup day we do a final hive check for queenright, and tighten the frames so they won't rattle around during transport. Transport preparation is $5 per hive. If we have to recage the queen for early transport it will add another $10. This is not usually necessary if the hive has been established for a couple of weeks.
Please provide lid, inner cover, top insulation if you want it, deep brood box with frame feeder, and bottom board with an entrance reducer. All of this should be held together with a ratcheting cargo strap.
Sometimes it is possible for us to transport your hive into town when we have business in there during the spring. Our schedule is irregular but if we can save you a drive out to Big Lake we are willing to do so. We charge $25 for one hive, $40 for two hives and $15 for each hive above that.
If you don't have an existing hive, we offer starter hives for $194.75 each, which include a bottom board, a complete brood box with 10 frames of comb, a frame feeder with cap and ladder, an inner cover, and a lid.