Annual Club Honey Extraction

We had two club members extract honey from their own bees for the first time! Congrats to Tom Savage and Janet Marron.

Our honey extraction workshop started out with a great pot luck. We had between 80 to 90 frames of honey to uncap and we needed to fuel up. With seven uncapping stations and three 9-frame extractors going we made short work of those honey frames. Here are some photos from the day.

Honey extractions always start with good food

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Thanks again to Tom and Linda Savage for hosting the workshop. And a special thanks to President Mary Deitz and club member Lewis Cauble for letting us borrow their extractors.

Some Lessons Learned:

  • The fancy uncapping knives don’t always do the best job. A long serrated knife works just as well if not better.
  • Using a capping scratcher can be faster than a knife. You don’t have to be gentle with it but you have to make sure you get the cappings off.
  • Extracting honey from deep frames is much harder than extracting from super frames or shallows.
  • If pulling a frame in the honey super (ie going from 10 frames to 9) be sure to wait until all the comb is drawn out and that you space them evenly. Otherwise you will have a mess on your hands.
  • Extracting honey is sticky business a bucket of water with a dish towel makes intermittent clean ups easy. For example when going from uncapping to spinning the extractor.
  • A paint strainer that you can buy from the hardware store works great for filtering honey. When you are done you can string it up to allow the remaining honey to filter through the unavoidable wax and bee bits.
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