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I began this blog to chronicle my beekeeping experiences. I have read lots of beekeeping books, but nothing takes the place of either hands-on experience with an experienced beekeeper or good pictures of the process. I want people to have a clearer picture of what to expect in their beekeeping so I post pictures and write about my beekeeping saga here. Along the way, I've passed a number of certification levels and am now a!
Master Beekeeper Enjoy with me as I learn and grow as a beekeeper.

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Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The Joys of the Solar Wax Melter

Since I harvested a couple of weeks ago, I've had wax for the solar wax melter to melt. Every day for the last few I've put out wax balls onto Tupperware containers, sitting on top of rubber-banded paper towels. I set my two styrofoam wax melters out on the hot walkway to my front door and go to work.

When I get home, the slum gum is dark brown and cooked to the top of the paper towel and gorgeous wax is floating below. It gets really hot in the solar wax melter. The two blocks of wax below are turned upside down so you can see what happens to the wax when the water on which it floats begins to boil!

I do love to take off the paper towel and slum gum and see the yellow glow of the wax floating on the top of the water. It always smells so good, as well, like delicious honey in the hive.

Here are the two pieces of wax from today. I have two more balls to do tomorrow and then I'm through until I take off and harvest another super.

Those of you who have followed this blog for a while may remember my 18 pours to try to get the ultimate blue ribbon wax block. All of this wax will be remelted (hopefully not 18 times again this year) in pursuit of another prize-winning block in September.
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5 comments:

  1. How cool. When we move to our next place and start keeping bees, I'll be sure to check back to find out how to make the solar wax melter. Wonderful! Vikki at www.homesteadingbasics.blogspot.com

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  2. Anonymous4:57 PM

    I am finding it very funny that you posted this, because just today I decided to melt my wax cappings in the solar wax melter.

    I have the same one as you having copied it from your blog. So we are on the same wave length today Linda. Yes it is so much fun to see the beautiful wax floating on the water. Here we are having over 100 so the wax started to melt almost immediately.

    Take Care
    Annette from Placerville, California

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  3. Great blog, I have taken several good ideas of yours and put them to good use. My wax melter works well even here in the seattle area.

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  4. Linda, I always enjoy reading your bee blog. This year I decided to make a solar wax melter and instead of buying the parts needed, I took an old 10 gallon aquarium, emptied it, put an aluminum bowl with water in it. Cut apart a t-shirt for filter material, stretched it over the bowl with a rubber band, added my wax, and set an old glass window pane (thick glass) over it. It worked pretty well. I have a couple pretty nice rounds of nice yellow wax. Nice for a no cost melter!

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  5. Linda,

    I am a beginner beekeeper (March this year) and love your videos and blogs. I have some really disgusting colored old wax that I would like to melt down. Is it possible that with the filtering from the paper towel that this ugly brown wax might look pretty again?

    Deb

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