Daft grafting questions

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Tarahill 

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Today I had another go at grafting, after limited success with my first attempt. I understand that it's important to lay the larvae down in the same way as they were picked up....and not turn them upside down.
Would the bees correct my mistake if I put some in upside down, a bit to the side etc? I think I've developed a decent technique for lifting day old larvae without much trouble. Putting them down again is a bit more finicky
 

Earthboy 

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Today I had another go at grafting, after limited success with my first attempt. I understand that it's important to lay the larvae down in the same way as they were picked up....and not turn them upside down.
a bit to the side etc? I think I've developed a decent technique for lifting day old larvae without much trouble. Putting them down again is a bit more finicky
Would the bees correct my mistake if I put some in upside down,

No. When you turned larvae, it could not breathe and be dead. The trick is bending the plastic tongue (Chinese grafting tool) as you go in and as you lay the larvae down.
 

elainemary 

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Today I had another go at grafting, after limited success with my first attempt. I understand that it's important to lay the larvae down in the same way as they were picked up....and not turn them upside down.
Would the bees correct my mistake if I put some in upside down, a bit to the side etc? I think I've developed a decent technique for lifting day old larvae without much trouble. Putting them down again is a bit more finicky
Try using a scalpel to gently cut the cells across at the bottom and fold down to get better, easy access to the larva.

Otherwise I’ve found Chinese grafting tool easiest, just press this against the cell side wall and go straight down vertically behind the ‘c’ of the larva to lift onto the plastic tongue. Then when placing in the cup, again press the tool straight down vertically against the cell wall and simply push the wooden tool down to release at the bottom.

The other important part is not just the larval transfer, it’s how you’ve set up your cell builder. I had v limited success with the NBU/Ben Harden queenright type method and much more success with queenless methods to start the larva off
 

madasafish 

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Try using a scalpel to gently cut the cells across at the bottom and fold down to get better, easy access to the larva.

Otherwise I’ve found Chinese grafting tool easiest, just press this against the cell side wall and go straight down vertically behind the ‘c’ of the larva to lift onto the plastic tongue. Then when placing in the cup, again press the tool straight down vertically against the cell wall and simply push the wooden tool down to release at the bottom.

The other important part is not just the larval transfer, it’s how you’ve set up your cell builder. I had v limited success with the NBU/Ben Harden queenright type method and much more success with queenless methods to start the larva off
I modified the Ben Harden method to make them Q- for the first 24 hours (a Crown Board over the QE). Made starting QCs much easier. ) More lifting though!
 

mbc 

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I use a 000 brush and sometimes stick the larvae to the side of the cell and sometimes upside down or in a blob of jelly, to be honest the larvae are that small and translucent sometimes I can't see if they're properly off the brush. Seems to make little difference, if the starter colony is desperate for larvae and you get them in there alive then the bees quickly float them in a pool of new jelly and correct any of my hamfistedness. It's all about the state of the receiving bees so long as you've not fatally wounded the larvae (in my experience).
 

Tarahill 

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Thanks for all the advice. I was using a fine artists brush myself. I dont have any difficulty lifting the larvae...just work blind and trust the brush to do the work. However I assumed approaching the larvae from the inside of the curve was the way to go. I see Ted Hooper's book advises approaching from the outside....I suppose this would make it a lot easier to lay the larvae down?
I was listening to a kevin inglin chat on attending a grafting class....he mentioned that the instructor advised taking a piece of 240 grit sandpaper to the tip of the Chinese tool, just to make the nib a bit more flexible. Kevin and his mate found this advice to be excellent
 

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Do you 'twirl' the brush to place the larvae?
 

B+. 

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Would the bees correct my mistake if I put some in upside down,

No. When you turned larvae, it could not breathe and be dead. The trick is bending the plastic tongue (Chinese grafting tool) as you go in and as you lay the larvae down.
Joe May has a YouTube video on how he modifies the Chinese grafting tool if it isn't flexible enough. I keep meaning to try it but I have a bag of these so just keep pulling a different one out until I find one I like.
 

madasafish 

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.he mentioned that the instructor advised taking a piece of 240 grit sandpaper to the tip of the Chinese tool, just to make the nib a bit more flexible. Kevin and his mate found this advice to be excellent

I have tried that. It works.

But also dipping the end in warm water for 10 -20 seconds before grafting and dipping the tool into the same water after each graft for a second or two has the same effect.
 

KJB 

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Thanks for above tips. i tried grafting myself but have poor eyesight. None of my grafts took. I only have 4 colonies and 3 are bad tempered and want to re queen using the quiet colony. Need to graft from them. Tried getting emergency cells but not much luck. I have bought the grafting equipment last year and would like to try again towards the end of this month. Learning all the time.
 

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