General information

Wax refinery: how to apply in beekeeping


Waxes are plastic, water-insoluble substances of animal, vegetable or fossil origin with a melting point of 40–90 C. From animal waxes, everyone knows beeswax produced by the bees' glands for building honeycombs.

The main areas of use of wax:

  • medicine, cosmetology,
  • beekeeping (production of honeycomb),
  • food industry (food preservation),
  • production of candles and wax figures,
  • chemical industry (mastic, polish).

Pure beeswax is obtained by refraining wax scraps, culled honeycombs, zabrus, and wax left in honeycombs after honey has been eaten. Requirements for beeswax, its labeling, packaging, acceptance rules, test methods, safety are regulated by GOST 21179-2000.

What is wax pot

Wax refinery - a device for waxing wax, which is carried out by heating the wax raw materials to the desired temperature, filtering the melted wax and collecting the finished product. Wax waxes are:

  1. Steam. The energy source is water vapor. The steam enters either from the compartment in the wax refractory itself or from a special tank connected to the raw material tank by a tube that withstands high temperatures.
  2. Sunny. Due to the effects of the sun, which produces both heat and wax clarification, as well as the duration of the process, these devices produce the highest quality wax.
  3. Water. In them there is a digestion of raw materials from which wax of low quality turns out. In the manufacture does not require special skills and can be collected from arbitrary vessels.
  4. Electric. As a rule, it is either a factory device or an electrically heated solar wax stove.

On the market, you can buy high-quality, relatively inexpensive wax furnaces of various capacities, manufactured in the factory. However, many beekeepers prefer to have devices of their own production on their farm.

Steam wax refinery

The block diagram of the wax refinery is shown in the drawing sketch.

The design of most wax refractories provides for the loading of crushed raw materials, which fit on the grill or fit into mesh bags. In more advanced devices, you can install multiple frames. Water vaporhaving a temperature of 100 ° C, freely penetrates to the wax raw materials. When the melting temperature is reached, the raw material melts. Heated wax through the filters flows freely into the receiving tank, where it is cooled. After completion of the process in the steam wax refinery there is marva.

The design shown in the drawing can be simplified. To do this, the pipe 2 is removed from it, and the water vapor needed to melt the wax is formed when water is poured into the wax furnace itself.

Steam wax refinery is easy to make yourself. Firstly, a conventional juice cooker made from food grade aluminum can be easily converted into a wax refinery. Secondly, a large pan or even a barrel is quite suitable for this. On a stand installed on the bottom of a large vessel, another vessel is being installed smaller diameter. From above, above the smaller vessel, with the help of hooks, a metal grid is fixed, filled with waxy raw materials. This design is closed with a lid and placed on the heat source. After the melted wax begins to fill the smaller vessel, it is important to prevent it from overflowing.

Wax refinery from washing machine

In the presence of ingenuity and minimal technical skills, you can make a wax refinery with your own hands from a variety of outdated devices: an old beehive, a refrigerator, a washing machine.

How to make a wax refinery by yourself? Two manufacturing methods are described below.

The tank from the washing machine is quite suitable as a container for wax raw materials. As a steam generator, a milk can or a kettle will fit. Raw materials are packed in a nylon mesh, resulting container placed in a washing machine, which is covered with a lid. Water vapor is supplied from the can to this structure for 20 minutes. After stopping the steam supply, the net is wrung out with gloved hands.

The tank from the washing machine can be modified by cutting the bottom, welding a stainless steel grill instead and securing this structure to the top of a large pan. An aluminum bowl with holes drilled along the upper perimeter is mounted in the middle of the pan. Water is poured into the bottom of the pan, the washing machine's tank is filled with raw materials.

Other designs of wax stoves from the washing machine are also known.

Framework wax refinery

The dream of any beekeeper is his own framework wax refinery (see drawing). The use of such a device eliminates the tedious procedure of cutting sushi, allows you to disinfect and clean the frame.

The basis of the frame waxing is a rectangular tank of alloy steel. The melted wax from the frames suspended in the upper part of the tank, through the filters, drips onto an inclined surface, from which it flows through a special opening into the receiving tank. The size of the frame wax refinery is determined by the performance of the steam generator and common sense.

Solar wax refinery

In areas with a predominance of sunny weather, it is economically feasible to use solar waxes. The output of these devices is an extremely eco-friendly product of the highest quality. The advantage of solar waxing is the lack of energy costs.

Features of the use of the device in beekeeping

Wax refinery - one of the devices that facilitates the work in the apiary. From the very name it is clear that wax is mined through exposure to raw materials of high temperatures. But the principles of operation and the quality of the product depend in many respects on the type of structures, of which there are a large number.

Any device can be made independently, as well as purchased in a specialized store. If you want to do it yourself, then do not forget about the exact calculations and schemes.

The main types of wax for beekeeping

We have already noted that the raw materials are processed at high temperatures. Water and even electricity can be sources. Depending on them, they distinguish the following types of devices:

  • solar,
  • steam,
  • centrifugal,
  • electric
A significant advantage of these types is that they are easy to make yourself.

Its design is significant in that the wax is melted from the frame. This mechanism can be made independently, but you can buy it.

And its price will depend on the manufacturer and the material (stainless steel is more expensive than aluminum).

Water is poured into the lower compartment of the tank through an extension tube (it is located in the funnel). The amount of water depends on the volume of the structure.

Melting under the influence of steam, the wax flows through the mesh and into the upper bottom of the structure.

The solar wax refinery is a box in which the front wall (20 cm) is located below the back (10 cm). Boards for the manufacture of structures should have a thickness of 2-2.5 cm.

The cover is made of two parts. The wooden part serves to cover the wax furnace while it is not in use.

The second is glazed frame (usually with one glass, less often - with two). In order for the frame to fit snugly to the body, you need to use hooks. Two parts are mounted in the drawer: a “trough” and a tin-coated metal pan. That is where the wax will be placed. The very same design set on a wooden pole.

It is recommended to make a cross to facilitate the rotation of the wax pot. Sometimes the design can be set at an angle so that the penetration of sunlight is greater.

The wax raw material to be melted is placed on the grid, which is located between the frame and the metal pan. The grid does not allow ingress of various impurities, larvae, etc. At the same time, the raw materials should not touch the glazed frame.

On average, in clear weather and an air temperature of +19 degrees Celsius, the wax refinery can be heated to 120 degrees. It should not be left in the same place, it is necessary to turn in the direction of the sun's rays, so that they pass through the glass. Do not forget to clean the grid from dirt.

Electric wax refinery

This is an improved version of the solar. The disadvantages of the latter are that it is impossible to exercise continuous control over the angle of inclination, there are limitations on the time of day, and there is also no possibility of constant monitoring of the melting temperature. Therefore, to improve performance, heaters are added that replace the sun's rays.

Is it possible to heat wax without waxing

Of course, to obtain such a valuable product, it is not necessary to buy or make various devices. Therefore, below we will look at how to melt the wax at home.

There are several ways. The most common can be called "steam bath". Need to take two pans. One should be bigger so that the other can fit in it, where the wax will be directly located. In large poured water. Next, it is necessary to boil and put on top of the tank with wax. Remember that the fire must be reduced and always ensure that nothing boils. Must be melted in a metal dish. If possible, use a kitchen thermometer.

Anyway, wax refinery - this is an obligatory element in the household of a professional beekeeper.

Features of waxing model

Among the existing models of wax refining, it is accepted to distinguish four types. They differ in the principle of work and are divided by it into groups:

  • steam - based on the use of steam as a heating factor, easy to operate, used to process a large amount of raw materials,
  • solar - apply the sun's rays, under the influence of which melting occurs,
  • centrifugal - steam is also present in the construction, but the wax is also exposed to centrifuge,
  • electric –– is similar to solar, but does not depend on the presence / absence of the sun.

Each wax refinery is effective and designed for a certain amount of wax raw materials. Solar has some drawbacks - the inability to adjust the temperature and dependence on weather conditions.

Steam wax refinery frame is made by craftsmen from scrap materials. Tanks from activator-type washing machines and cases of old refrigerators go to work. The device is based on the principle of operation of a steam boiler; therefore, the capacity for heating water is also made from a gas cylinder or from a flask and a milk can. Such structures are able to process a sufficiently large amount of wax in a short period of time, without losing the quality of the product.

Making your own hands

Any kind of wax refining can be done by yourself, but not all are simple in execution. For some, you need drawings and special equipment, others practically do not cause any special difficulties in their work.

Solar design - easy to implement and operate. It is a box with a glass lid, mounted under a slope on a wooden base. Inside the box is a special tray for placing the wax and a container for collecting the melted product. Under the influence of sunlight, there is an increase in temperature in the closed space of the box, as a result, the wax melts and drains into the prepared container.

Solar wax refinery is considered the most environmentally friendly. The result obtained without impurities. The main advantage - does not require the expenditure of energy resources. But dependence on the presence of the sun and a long fire period are significant drawbacks.

Handmade steam wax can be both round and rectangular. The second is preferable because it allows you to put it dry on the framework, further disinfecting them. But the form is chosen from those materials that are in stock. It is worth remembering that if you are going to make a stationary unit that allows for work on the melting on an open fire, you need to pick up the capacity under the steam generator. When using such a device, observe safety precautions and monitor the level of heated water.

The self-made steam tank with steam principle consists of the following parts:

  • steam generator
  • container with lid
  • mesh for the location of raw materials
  • baking tray for collecting wax.

There are also options for compact devices designed for a small amount of raw materials. Here they use a ready-made juice cooker or a steam cooker of industrial production, in which the principle of operation is the same as that of the wax refinery. Many options for self-production can be found on the Internet. Beekeepers describe in detail not only the manufacturing process, but also the results of the device operation.

Materials and tools

The materials and tools required in the production process differ significantly depending on the type of wax chosen. For the sun, you will need a woodworking tool and a wooden base: old floor boards, window frames or furniture residues. From them, according to the drawing, it is necessary to make a wooden box with a slope of the upper edge. There is a trick here - the angle of inclination depends on your geographical location and corresponds to the angle of incidence of sunlight. To accurately determine the most optimal value, it is necessary to subtract 23.5ºC from the indicator of latitude. Be sure to have a cover with glass that transmits the sun's rays. The body is better painted in black to increase the level of heating.

Steam wax refinery requires the presence of a metal tank of various configurations. Additionally required grilles, connecting tubes, pipes. The tools will need grinder, screws, drill, hammer, chisel. It may also be useful heat-resistant sealant.

Step-by-step instruction

The manufacturing process depends on the final model and materials available. It will not be superfluous to see the drawing of the future device, which are offered in the assortment by skilled beekeepers. If you have old evidence, and steam waxing will be based on it, then the process requires the following actions:

  1. Clean the bottom of the hive. 4 holes for lattice fasteners are drilled. Here also have steam supply devices.
  2. Cut the slope on the side walls on the principle of the pediment on the houses, on one wall it does more for the formation of the slope and form there drain for the future product.
  3. A galvanized sheet of iron is sawn according to predetermined measurements for the upholstery of the inside of the body of the hive. When fixing galvanizing, do not forget to make a flag to drain wax.
  4. The body is collected again and insulated with any material. It is worth remembering that the lid should fit snugly to the tank to prevent loss of steam.
  5. The steam generator is made from any container, which was described above, and connected with a hose.
  6. Steam homemade wax for the frame is ready to go.

The operation of such a device is simple and based on steam heating. A special feature is the use of the old hive, and not the finished metal tank.

How to make a wax refinery from a washing machine

Older activator machines are popular for home-made steam waxing machines. The base is a stainless steel tank, which is converted into a container for reheating raw materials. But in the process of work, you will need a specific tool: a Bulgarian and an electric welding machine. To obtain the necessary construction from the tank, its lower part is cut and the grid is welded there.

The process of homemade wax from the washing machine is as follows:

  • 40 liters pot filled with water
  • set aluminum collection bowl,
  • on its edges are drilled holes for steam,
  • on a bowl they put a tank with a piece of land on the framework and cover it with a lid made of metal sheet or other materials.

The device is easy to operate, roomy and does not require special training.

A method of making wax from an old refrigerator

Another way is to make wax from an old refrigerator. It is very relevant in the presence of a large apiary and considerable amounts of wax for heating. The case with an internal aluminum or iron layer, which was in older models, is ideal. The design allows you to install dry with frames. To obtain wax from the refrigerator, you must perform the following steps:

  • peeled from all parts of the body, set on bricks,
  • a hole is made in the back wall and a tin groove is fixed with a sealant,
  • in place of the motor connect the hose from the steam generator,
  • inside set filtering mesh,
  • under the drain put capacity to collect.

Such a wax refinery is effective and does not require special costs for manufacturing.

Whatever method of manufacture you choose, follow the safety rules to prevent negative consequences.

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