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Oxalic Acid Treatments discussion

I gave my bees my first round of 3 Treatments of oxcilic acid vapor by means of the sublimation wand yesterday with a replacement product bought from a different bee supply company. It was much messier and I have questions perhaps y’all can answer or give feedback on or share your experience.

During the treatment a different result happened than from the last batch of OA that I purchased. The sublimation was not a clean bowl after the allotted minutes. It left a residue and a powdery area. I’m using 99.5% pure product.

Having only treated last year and beginning this year, perhaps some of y’all can tell me if this is normal or not. Last year was very anti climatic though this didn’t seem as so.

Martha,

Sounds like a okay burn to me ! But without pix or two for observation it’s my best (WAG) to your question. I’ve helped on 100’s of oxolic sub limitations as you call it …, Usually it burns to black but once in awhile we might get a lit powdery residue. Was your power source full charged … That could cause the residue …

I’d do a sugar roll test in a week just for check n I might side a sheet of white notebook paper over your screen or solid bottom board for 24 hours recheck n count/backup check. Was there any date on the age of new product ! If you have plenty oxilic powder … make sure your battery supply is full n do a out of hive visual burn check just for giggles n peace of mind.

Hope this helps…

Gerald

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I don’t buy the high-priced “beekeeping” oxalic acid. Call me a “scoff-law”, but I always use Savogran Wood Bleach (from Home Depot). Never ever had a problem with it, it always sublimes fully.

If that dose didn’t sublime properly, I would do a test outside the hive and watch what happens. I would also call the seller and tell them your concerns - they may have a bad batch and an offer of a replacement might be nice. Finally I would get some of my stuff from Home Depot and do a test outside the hive with that for comparison. Cheap and easy to do. :blush:

I would be inclined to discount that first treatment, and only start counting once you have something that sublimes properly.

Funny you asked about pictures because I went out to the shed and took some.

I achieved the vapor but the acid left a glob of residue. Perhaps the hot iron is not working? It’s really bugging me

PS it wasn’t any more expensive than from homedepot

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I’m wondering if because I put a piece of sheet metal down to put the hot iron on so I didn’t set my hive on fire that the two metals might have had a reaction? The bees are active so it’s not a failure that harmed

Martha,

Is the sheet metal galvanized? And where was the powder residue ? ( in the iron cup or on the sheet metal? . The sheet metal really shouldn’t steal that much heat. Was the day dry or did any moisture get to your grains before cooking :fried_egg:?!

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Curious??? Are your bottom boards screened or solid type ?! All mine are screened but the fellow I help (100 plus hives) are all solids. We don’t use sheet metal in any … but I really don’t see any issues using the metal if it give you safety assurances

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My winter bottom boards are solid wood and the sheet metal is galvanized and the powdery substance was on the sheet metal

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It’s vacuum packed and was dry

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Ah, that is helpful. Then I think it is normal. The white powdery stuff is likely OA that has condensed on the metal after subliming. It does that inside the hive too, but you don’t normally see it as you wouldn’t inspect immediately after vaping. By the time you do inspect, the bees have moved it around, so you never really get to see it.

I suspect that you OA vaped on a pretty cold day, and the OA therefore tended to condense faster on the metal than it would on a warmer day. Just a thought. :wink:

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Martha.: it should be okay. Often Danny n I do a practice burn of our iron n crystals just to see if the battery, iron n crystals are working okay.

In a week do a sugar roll recheck if your needing confirmation the treatments worked. That’s never a bad idea …

Hope that helps,

Gerald

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Martha,

Just a cleaning note if you don’t yet ! Danny n I use some course to medium fine steel wool to clean up the iron after a few uses on big day testing or after each personal day tests here at my Apiary. The shiny clean iron burns hotter n betterby a percentage too. Our several irons can really black n gross looking during the multi-hive vapor testing days ( up to a 100 or more hives).

Dawn added great note too.

Cheers.

Gerald no we have already crossed

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I’m going to do that and thanks for the suggestion

It was 65 F out and thanks for the feed back because I don’t have anyone around me that uses the hot iron treatment method so finding normal applications is based on what y’all have to say. So Thanks @Dawn_SD and @Gerald_Nickel for that! I got a little jacked up worrying that my treatment might not have gone well. Additionally, Use of my hot iron wand has been minimal since it’s just me and now 3 hives. Thanks for all the help! Still growing along with my apiary! :smiley:

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Martha,

No problem ! It’s a lonely growing curb for some of you out there. I’ve been lucky :four_leaf_clover: having a pretty great bee support team learning n trying new stuff. The old days 1950’ n 1960’s I was a teen bee keeper n mostly alone non my own. Lucky ! We didn’t have Mites around yet but made all kinds of boo boo’s n mistakes back then.

Cheers,

Gerald.

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The steel wool worked great cleaning the iron cup. Second treatment complete and iron cleaned up.

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Martha,

Good to hear the results improved with clean iron cup. I alway carry steel wool to clean the irons. Danny (my mentor n beebuddy) have to check n treat up to 100 hives in couple days so we’re using 3 to 4 irons … we try to clean each after a burn … We’ve found a drop in temps n poor burns if we don’t keep the irons polished n clean plus batteries at high voltages.

Again… glad you got a good treatment. I will do sugar rolls on my Apiary today n treat or not treat depending on my numbers. I’ve done simple drop live checks up to now (only gives a basic idea not true numbers we have found(but been way too cold to open n deep inspections until now.

Cheers :clinking_glasses: n good luck :four_leaf_clover:,
Gerald


P.S. we can still get killing frost up to about April 20th in foothills of Puget Sound. That can damage our fruit tree crops often.

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I got into my hives yesterday and checked capped drones for varroa and there were only a very few out of all the cells I checked. Last treatment is Saturday and then splits begin. What my bees did to the hive over the winter was amazing and it was a workout to get frames free to inspect. I think I cleaned up a half gallon of wax. Swarm control is the toughest thing I need to do at this point.

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