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The specialist international beekeeping organisation
Make a solar wax extractorby Robin C TomlinsonHowever did I manage without a solar wax extractor? I ask myself this question every time I see old comb and cappings melting away frames glistening in the sun as wax and propolis run off them - the end result being a block of beautiful aromatic beeswax and clean dry beekeeping equipment. Yet somehow I did manage using the term loosely without it. To my amazement so too do many beekeepers some who have kept bees for many years but why? When wax is such a valuable part of the crop . . . free energy simple in operation hardly any moving parts to clean lubricate or replace virtually maintenance-free non-polluting and even an interesting conversation piece. It is also aesthetically pleasing.So what are the disadvantages of a solar extractor? Cost: can I justify the cost? Given the number of colonies you keep and the amount of surplus wax they are producing only you can be judge: if you are contemplating purchasing a manufactured one and you have only a few colonies then I doubt it unless you share one or buy second-hand. But what about making one? Or better still getting a relative or friend to make one for you! However before you embark upon the task it is as well to consider what a solar wax extractor consists of or how it can be defined simply.