View Full Version : Extracting, Extracting, Extracting
07-09-2007, 09:04 PM
Well I was out checking the hives over the weekend and found that the girls had brought in another crop of honey. Now I'm not one to complain but how much honey will these hives produce? the first harvest back in May gave me five gallons plus, the second crop brought in eleven gallons and now I just extracted another six gallons. :-\ That's a total of twentytwo gallons in under four months. I'm starting to run out of containers, even am using one of my six gallon plastic primary pails as a emergency honey bucket. I've reused all the five pound Sam's club bottles I had and even tried to use 1.5 liter wine bottles. The wine bottles look great full of honey but take forever to fill and even longer to empty. I've all my equipment going right now with assorted meads and melomels and am running out of wine bottles and room in my wine cabnet and closet. I have had many years where two or three gallons was a good crop just didn't expect this much from only three hives this year.
07-09-2007, 11:39 PM
My guy uses these large plastic one gallon jugs it looks like a cheap pickle jar I can ask him where he gets them from if you like. Also try a website called www.usplastic.com they have cheap food grade storage containers. You could even store your honey to batch there are so many different sizes.
07-10-2007, 07:16 AM
I went to a local bakery and asked if they had any buckets from frosting and such. They did and they had lots, and they work great. They just need to be cleaned good and smell like vanilla, but that goes away pretty well. Mine are only 3 and 4 gallon buckets, but you can't beat the price on them.
I only asked at one bakery. There are lots of them in the area and have a feeling I could have hundreds of buckets if I wanted too.
07-11-2007, 06:39 PM
Thanks, I'll try asking around at bakeries for any extra buckets. My local home brew store has the six gallon primary frementation buckets that are food grade but I'm looking for something smaller, maybe in the 1-2 gallon range. I'll check a couple of my bee supply catalogs for the one gallon plastic milk jugs. I've already bottled up three dozen 24 oz squeeze bottles for gifts and the occasional cash sale for honey money. Looks like I'm in for a long summer of brewing mead using my own honey. :-\ Now if I can find a source of free bottles things will really be looking up. ;D
07-11-2007, 07:14 PM
. :-\ Now if I can find a source of free bottles things will really be looking up. ;D
Don't suppose you know someone who works at a bar, catering service, etc that would go through a pile a bottles and have no need for them, do you? If you strike up a conversation with someone in such a position they might help out even if you don't know them.
07-11-2007, 08:30 PM
It's just a matter of getting up enough nerve to go around and ask at the restaurants and bars in the area to save some wine bottles for me. Last year at a small pub in St Augustine I was able to get three cases of mixed bottles during one Saturday night, all I did was ask. I just feel a bit strange asking for empty bottles but at over $15.00 a case at the local HBS it should be worth it. Anybody else out there getting bottles from bars or restaurants?. Who did you contact about it and how often did you pick up the bottles?
07-11-2007, 11:53 PM
Try to find a retail store that dose wine tasting thatís how I got allot of mine a friend did a Friday wine tasting. With the bars offer a nice little tip to save you bottles tends to work. The important thing is to find some place that sells allot of bottles you can use. Like you said to pick them up often because most bars are tight on space any way. Give them a box at the start of a Friday night and get it when they close. Also kirin is distributed by bud know and its pretty cheap at about 10$ a 12 pack and you get 12 beers to boot
07-12-2007, 08:13 PM
It's just a matter of getting up enough nerve to go around and ask at the restaurants and bars in the area to save some wine bottles for me. ........... I just feel a bit strange asking for empty bottles
I totally understand that concept. Hey I just said it was an idea, I never said that I've actually done it :toothy10:
I'm hoping to meet someone who works at a bar etc. and bribe them with something tasty to drink. Meanwhile I use crown caps on my used beer bottles.
07-13-2007, 07:03 AM
It isn't a big deal, most people like to help, and this is extreme recycling....
I called a high end italian restaurant and over I think 3 days they had boxes of them for me. And they were really nice about it. That was in December, over the new year I could have tripled the number. I talked to the bar at a not as high scale, and they had 5 , but still very nice about it.
What is actually worse than that is the cleaning and scraping of the dumb things....
07-16-2007, 09:30 AM
if your having a honey problem you could send them to me? or maybe we could trade some mead for honey......? just kidding....i dont know if you sell it nor not.... but it might be a good idea. the local honey guy that lives by me seems to have lots of honey right now. he only sells it in half gallons and less though :( 14 bucks each isnt to bad tho. he wont respond to any attempt to get him to sell it in gallons or more to me, i think hes a grumpy old guy so its all good i suppose ill just be at his half gallon mercy for a while longer......he sells it right out of his front yard, just has a big bod with all the oney in it and a small box for cash, it says "honor box" on it. i know im over a hundred dollars worth of sales for this guy....
07-17-2007, 11:06 PM
Well I was out checking the hives over the weekend and found that the girls had brought in another crop of honey. Now I'm not one to complain but how much honey will these hives produce? the first harvest back in May gave me five gallons plus, the second crop brought in eleven gallons and now I just extracted another six gallons. :-\ That's a total of twentytwo gallons in under four months.
You poor man! Tell you what, you just send that honey right on over to me and I'll send you back the empty containers before a week is up. You'll never have to think of it again!
Sounds like a good year on your end of the country, lets see 22 gallons at a rough 3 lb ratio avg = over 80 gallons of mead this year! (so far ;)) seriously selling a portion couldn't hurt at this point...esp. if you'll offer a little discount for friends met on gotmead...?
PS- ufc: maybe the old man is stuck in his ways, but I sure wouldn't knock it. 14 bucks a half pound is pretty good, 28/gallon is the best I get up here. The only disadvantage is all those extra containers...seems like a waste really, who would want all of those 1/2 gallon containers....
Best of luck
07-18-2007, 08:56 PM
I'm still seeing if this year's crop can produce a good mead. So far I've a classic sweet going that has a different flavor than I expected but it is still very young and needs to age. Almost half of the harvest has been from Saw Palmetto which gives a thin nicely flavored honey that is not real sweet. I've had to add about 3 lbs/gallon of the Palmetto honey to get a SG of 1.12 while the generic Sam's Club honey only needs 2 1/2 pound/gallon to get to the same SG. Big difference between the two but the Palmetto honey has more flavor and is a bit darker. Looks like there are at least two honey flows here in Florida, spring/early summer gives the orange blosson and wild flower mix for the first crop. The second crop is from the palmetto and palm trees along with some summer flowers like Spanish Needle. I was in the hives for a quick check and it looks like the girls are still bringing in more palmetto :-\. Might have some for sale after all.
07-18-2007, 10:11 PM
ya... he probably just isnt interested in selling it for my purposes. he always has an abundance of smaller containers with only a few half gallons sitting out. its ok tho, im at his will, its worth it for the raw honey. :D
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