How to Extract Honey – for Newbees

When it comes to beekeeping, many new beekeepers have questions, specifically about honey.  One question we hear most is, “When will I get honey and what do I need to extract it from the hive?” Usually, you won’t get honey your first year of beekeeping, as the bees need all their honey stores to survive their first winter. After your first full year, it is likely safe to harvest your honey in late summer, early fall. And to do that, we’ve compiled a list of the essential tools you need to extract honey.

Our soft bee brush with long yellow bristles is great for gently brushing bees off the hive and frames during inspection and harvesting.  

The bees will cap each cell of honey with wax and you’ll need to remove those cappings to get the honey out. For uncapping your frames, use a bottling pail with gate  in conjunction with a comb capper . The capper fits any standard 5-gallon bucket.  The underside features a recessed arch that provides stability. This allows you to turn a 5-gallon bucket into an uncapping tub. 

Uncapping each side of your frame is easily done with our Cold Knife in addition to the economy capping scratcher . Our Cold knife is a Kelley Beekeeping original, 10” with wooden handle and deep separator blade that can be placed in hot water to heat, to make uncapping easier, but is still sharp enough that heating is not required. The blade is flexible to make uncapping a breeze. 

2-Frame stainless steel extractor is the perfect beginner extractor.  This hand-cranked extractor is made from quality 18/10 stainless steel. This tangential extractor can be used with two deep, two medium or four shallow frames. Includes honey gate, cover and legs.

You’ll also want to be sure you have a bottling pail with gate and filters below your extractor. This bottling kit comes with one 5-gallon bucket with lid and gate along with one fine filter  and one coarse filter . These filters help strain out any bits of pollen and leftover wax cappings.

Ready to bottle? We have an assortment of labels and bottles to personalize your honey. Search: Container, or Labels at kelleybees.com for more information.

MEASURING TIPS:

  • One medium super can hold 40 to 45 pounds of honey
  • One bottling pail can hold approximately 65 pounds of honey

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