After painting on melted wax onto my flow frames and fitting my flow super the bees showed interest after 5 days and 6 weeks after fitting I did my first extraction of all six frames. No big deal, but it was done on July 1st, in Australia, our winter.
I made sure I had 5 degrees of lay back on the hive and opened 20% of the frames at a time and had no flooding, it all went as I expected though I was a bit nervous, ‘expectant Dad’ syndrome.
Now 2 weeks after extracting for the first time I have removed looked at the Flow Frames and finding they are all about 80% capped so they are almost ready for draining again.
I fitted my other Flow Super at the same time as the first but it was only heavily sprayed with sugar/water, the other suggestion to get bees accepting the flow frames, the bees went into the Flow Super and collected the sugar/water but it was never used for honey storage so I then painted melted wax on those Flow Frames and now the bees are busy storing honey in it.
- Painting melted wax on the Flow Frames is the best way to have bees accept the frames.
- When you think all the frames are capped remove each one to confirm that is the case, looking in the widows is only an indicator.
- Check that you hive lay-back is between the 3 to 5 degrees recommended.
- Crack open the Flow Frames 20% at a time to avoid flooding internally. Remember the honey needs time to drain down to the chamber and flow out to the tube so don’t expect to see the honey quickly flowing, I guess mine took about 5 minutes to be visible in the draining tube.
- Don’t crack frames so much that the drain tube becomes full of honey, if that happens you are likely to have the much heard about flooding issue, which is not a fault of the Flow Frames, it is an operator error.
My first extraction went well and I had no issues, but took my time doing it.