The National Uncapper

Beekeeping & Apiculture Forum

Help Support Beekeeping & Apiculture Forum:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.
Maisemore's version available soon and a lower price than the OP. See comments from Maisemore under their original Facebook post


Thanks @Jimmy, i have had my eyes on this. I'm going to blow our own trumpet and say i think our version is better designed in several ways. less wingnuts, mild steel bolts protruding, adjustable force without having to break the unit down, less likely to trap your fingers, no need for steel plates, etc, etc, etc all the things we aimed to improve on when coming up with the design.
And we will be offering a design for each hive geometry in the new year and better distribution.

Please keep posting as all your comments are invaluable!
 
Uncapper to the NHS.jpegTradestand NHS.jpegI am off to the National Honey Show at Trade Stand No. 45, right near the Hall entrance.
I hope to see some of you there, please do come and kick the tyres and introduce yourselves.
I'd welcome the opportunity to say thank you for your criticisms, questions and experience which have helped focus our minds on the final design - the V3. I'll post a separate update on the last design development that is aimed at the beekeepers with the fatter combes from 9 or 10 frame setups.
 
Just as a balance to Polymath’s post, a friend of mine and I both tried the uncapper independently recently and both decided it was not for us.
We were both disappointed with the amount of honey left in the frames after extracting ( I would estimate about 10%) but what disappointed me most was the amount of damage done to the comb especially if you put it through a second time to try to overcome the problem with honey left in the comb.
When cutting into the comb the blades slice deep and due to the action of the honey being forced out of the slits during extraction, the cells become distorted.
We both found it no quicker than using a knife and the small fragments of wax caused by the damage soon clogged our course filters.
As I said at the start, it’s not a gadget I’d invest in but Martin assures me he’s making improvements so we shall see in the future.
Neil, phew - after several months of trials we have produced a simple spacer that clips into the uncapper frame ends. This spacer increases the minimum distance between the cutting blades, so if you use a 9, 10 frame set up it will reduce the depth of cut into the wax, which (trials ongoing, combined with adjusting the spring force by reducing the number of O ring Bands ) will reduce the distortion effect you observed on the 9 frame, drone comb set up you use.
Now it might still not be the tool for you but you pushed us to come up with a simple, inexpensive solution. The photos are attached and the design allows for any spacer thickness from 2-10mm - we 3D print them in nylon.
I will be showing them off on stand 45 at this year's National Honey Show - 2 days and counting.
 

Attachments

  • Spacer inner face.jpeg
    Spacer inner face.jpeg
    2.1 MB · Views: 2
  • Spacer outer face.jpeg
    Spacer outer face.jpeg
    2.2 MB · Views: 0
  • Spacer slotted into place.jpeg
    Spacer slotted into place.jpeg
    2.1 MB · Views: 1
  • Scaper between spindle axels.jpeg
    Scaper between spindle axels.jpeg
    2.4 MB · Views: 0
I like the look of your design and would want to fix it to my existing Abelo Melliflow Pro. However, I am primarily now operating with Langstroth. Would you plan on offering your design for use with Langstroth in due course?
Gunner, good to meet you at the NHS and yea i can now confirm we have the parts on order for 10 of the Langstroth version. I'm going to keep one myself as i have 4 Abelo Langstroth Poly hives and 3 deposits from other enthusiastic Langstroth owners. We have also designed a simple adaptor kit so it can be attached to the standard Box if you want it to.

We should have them in our hands later in January, but we will also be going to the www.thebeekeepingshow.co.uk in February as well and might be doing the Show Discount!

I'll message separately but, check the website.

Martin
 
Gunner, good to meet you at the NHS and yea i can now confirm we have the parts on order for 10 of the Langstroth version. I'm going to keep one myself as i have 4 Abelo Langstroth Poly hives and 3 deposits from other enthusiastic Langstroth owners. We have also designed a simple adaptor kit so it can be attached to the standard Box if you want it to.

We should have them in our hands later in January, but we will also be going to the www.thebeekeepingshow.co.uk in February as well and might be doing the Show Discount!

I'll message separately but, check the website.

Martin
Hi Martin, thanks for the follow up. I will be at the Beekeeping Show in February so will see you then.
 
I bought a Harmony Farms one - two big issues were, it does not handle Hoffman frames at all and it leaves quite a bit of honey behind - even after spinning for 2/3 times as long as after 'traditional' read breadknife, uncapping. I re-sold it at a significant loss afte reveeting to the breadknife.
 
I bought a Harmony Farms one - two big issues were, it does not handle Hoffman frames at all and it leaves quite a bit of honey behind - even after spinning for 2/3 times as long as after 'traditional' read breadknife, uncapping. I re-sold it at a significant loss afte reveeting to the breadknife.
Looking at the photos on the Harmony sire I think that the Harmony Farms extractor problem is the diameter of the shaft at the ends of the rollers which then follows the frame shape and forces the blades away from the surface of the comb and prevents bruising. No bruising = no extraction. To be fair self spacing frames were not mentioned in the advert - only Langstroth and it would not necessarily be obvious that they were self spacing or not.
 
I bought a Harmony Farms one - two big issues were, it does not handle Hoffman frames at all and it leaves quite a bit of honey behind - even after spinning for 2/3 times as long as after 'traditional' read breadknife, uncapping. I re-sold it at a significant loss afte reveeting to the breadknife.
Somerset, The Harmony Farms version is geared up for Langstroth frames with flat sidebars only. Any variation on that and the uncapper will not function as designed and will either destroy your comb or fail to uncap, hence the poor results. You are not the only UK beekeeper who bought this one - same results for you all.

Our National Uncapper has some passing similarities to the US one but can handle all sidebars, has adjustability for frame thickness and is sized to the UK National frame. The "Roller Uncapper" mechanism has been incorporated into dozens of pieces of equipment (now tried and tested) but the geometry of the set up and improved design makes the difference. I was looking over a Lega version in France this Christmas that has trays and a lever!!! A snip at €4,600 which is out of my reach in any case. This is why i designed the one i am selling, you should give it a try.
 
Last edited:
A short update for you all. Following a successful NHS last year we sold out and also had requests for a Langstroth version. We made a design change to accomodate the shorter top bar lugs that non-National frames come with and are now stocked with National (will also uncap Smith frames), Commercial and Langstroth. We have also made an adjuster bar that allows the Commercial and Langstroth to fit the standard box. www.beecooperative.org .

We will be at the Telford Beekeeping Show at the end of Feb so please come visit us.
 

Attachments

  • Variants02.JPG
    Variants02.JPG
    91.7 KB · Views: 2
  • IMG_7142.JPEG
    IMG_7142.JPEG
    1.1 MB · Views: 2

Latest posts

Back
Top