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Painting previously wax dipped hives

Someone asked me to assemble some hives that have been wax dipped. He would also like them painted. I told him I wont attempt to paint them. I heard you can paint wax dipped hives if you paint them while it’s still hot. If so, do you use water or oil base paint. @Semaphore, you might know the answer.

If the bloke really insists on painting, I’m thinking of applying heat to the boxes before painting.

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I’m not sure- if a box was waxed a long, long time ago- the surface might have ‘dried’ out enough to paint. But you can only paint a freshly waxed hive whilst it is still hot. As to applying heat: when they are wax dipped the boxes are painted whilst still over 100c. The heat (and wax) have penetrated right through the timber. You’d really need to heat it a lot before it could be painted. Not sure how that could be done short of wax dipping them again.

Hi & thanks Jack These boxes came from China. In some places the wax is thick, other places don’t look like they’ve been waxed at all. I was thinking of enough heat to burn the wax & scorch the timber, then wire brush, or steel wool it before painting. I could warm it up again directly before painting. I’m not keen on the job. However if I was going to proceed, I’d do a couple of test bits before going ahead with it. There’s 3 complete hives involved.

well it may be that they have only applied wax t the outside of the boxes. If they were properly dipped they wouldn’t have areas that didn’t appear to be waxed… Not sure how you will go- good luck Jeff :wink:

I just took a look because they take pride of place in my lounge room. The boxes that are thick with wax are waxed inside & out. You can scrape it off in your finger nails, white stuff. Without saying too much, the bamboo QEs are not waxed.

Chalk paint apparently works on waxed wood Jeff. Google has alot of examples.

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Hi & thanks Dean, it’ll be interesting to check it out if the occasion arises in the future. I wont take on painting these boxes. I’ll let the owner worry about that.

In reply. Actually the owner is my latest “brush with fame”, a former well know politician. I have 3 nucs to go into his 3 hives in the coming days. One is from the compost bin I recently talked about. Another one is from the hive that recently swarmed that I also spoke about. The third one is from that aggressive hive that I split 3 ways & brought one home.

Well as it turned out this former well-known politician didn’t get any of the colonies I spoke about. On roughly the day of my last post, I informed him, as instructed that his hives were ready to pick up. I haven’t heard a word since. Consequently 2 of the colonies went to someone else, plus I used the third colony as a resource hive, so it needs to build up again.

How long should I give someone to pick their bees up after informing them that they are ready to pick up? I sold his 2 colonies & removed brood from the third one 13 days after my phone call to him.

I guess that depends on what you agreed with him when he asked you for bees in the first place. I would think that a week is reasonable if no other agreement has been made. :blush:

I agree Dawn, about a week. I don’t like nagging people about bees. If you have to nag people about bees, they shouldn’t be keeping them in the first place. He has a working Flow hive, of which he only knows how to harvest the honey. This is true, he didn’t even know where the entrance was. A couple of young blokes set it up for him in the first place.

Never trust a politician :wink:. I think 2 weeks is long enough. If he/she does come back educate them on manners and respect.

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Hi Dean, it’s too late for this bloke, he’s now working as a lawyer. I hope I haven’t given too much away, re his identity. I wonder how many former Aussie politicians are working as lawyers.

For me now it’s just a curiosity thing. How long before he contacts me.

After 5 weeks, he finally picked his bees up. He apologized for the delay, I told him I sold the bees, however I’ll be able to install fresh nucs into them. I’m stuck with his fake flow supers for the time being. I think I’ll be the one to fit them for him because his mentors started university this year, plus they have over 20 hives of their own to manage as well.

Your very accommodating Jeff.

Thanks Dean :slight_smile: At least I’m rid of the brood boxes & roofs. Yeah those screened crown boards are also gone. I told him to ditch them & replace them with hive mats. I showed him how the first colonies tried to propolize them shut. Can you imagine the effort involved by the bees to propolize them over?

I don’t think he was listening. He’ll look in 2 months time for signs of progress, only to find the mesh propolized with no population growth.

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realistically he should ditch all those fake hives. They are simply not worth the risk. I doubt the fake frames will work properly- and the woodware of the hives are generally poorly made. Imagine spending a whole season building up a colony- and having a super fill- only to find it doesn’t work correctly? Anyhow I guess that will be his problem now. Poor form for an Australian politician to be purchasing counterfeit foreign made products that rip off Australia IP. Also as a lawyer he should know that’s quite illegal. But then as Happy says: ‘never trust a politician’ :wink: You can bank on that!

I agree Jack, I wouldn’t trust him as far as I can kick him. When he first rang he kept on using the sir name of his mentors, which we thought was a bit strange.

If he doesn’t remove the mesh crown board, I think it’ll be a while before the frames get filled with honey, especially seeing as we’re into autumn now.

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yeah I really couldn’t understand those mesh crown boards. I have seen a few of the fake hives and they really are crappy. I pity the bees that have such an owner. maybe they’ll get wise and abscond on him.

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Have you seen the mesh crown boards in operation after a few months. Do the bees completely propolize them like I suspect they will? They have those 4 large holes in the roof, which I suspect will allow a lot of cold air in, which we are due to get next week. Not so much cold, but the first hint of autumn with a max. of 25.