Saturday, June 29, 2013

Making Wax Queen Cell Cups

  As a beekeeper I like to be able to make what I need for my bees. By doing this I know what I am getting which is a plus in my book.  I would like to teach you how to make your own wax cups to raise your queen bees in. This is not a difficult task but it can get messy if your not careful.

Whats needed to complete wax cups:

1. 100% Pure bees wax melted
2. 5/16 dowel rod About 6" long
3. A cup of cold water
4. Sandpaper or sander
5. 1 Jz-Bz plastic queen cup
We will start by shaping the tip of the dowel rod. You need to round the tip somewhat and bevel in the sides. It needs to look like the bottom of a cell (nicely rounded). The bees will reject anything they do not like. Just remember practices makes perfect, right? If you fail try something a little different. 

Spend some time shaping the end of your dowel with sandpaper or electric sander. Just don't take off to much. Use your  Jz-Bz queen cup for a reference on the size. Once you get it to fit snug into plastic cup stop sanding and make a mark for the depth of the cell. This will be your stopping point once you start to dip the dowel into the wax. 

But first you need that cup of water and place the dowel into it. Only the bottom needs submerged. It should soak for 10- 15 minutes before you begin. This is a nice time to get your wax melted and ready. After the waiting period passes remove the dowel from the water and shake off. Do not dry with towel. The fibers of the wood are soaked with water so it's unable to soak in the wax. This makes it so you can easily peel of the cups. So drying to much is bad.

Now lets begin by dipping are dowel into the wax but only to the line. Then remove it from the wax for a few second and allow it to start to dry. Then dip again. Repeat this until you get a cup of desired thickness. After the lat dip allow 30 seconds before trying to remove cup from dowel. Now you on your way to making your own queen cups.

If you want to make a bunch at once. Make up more dowels and then use a board as a handle by drilling holes into it to fit dowels. Similar to this.

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