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The market offers countless honey extractors that can make one’s search a tedious job. Every brand promises the best results, but only a few can truly deliver. To help our fellow beekeepers especially the new ones, I’ll be discussing a great product that exhibits not only great results, but also impressive durability. This equipment comes from one of the best and trusted names in the industry, Hardin. The Hardin Royal 3 Electric Three Frame Honey Extractor is a stand out that many beekeepers love to use every harvesting season. But before we go down to the nitty-gritty of this product, let’s discuss some fundamentals to refresh our knowledge about honey extraction and honey extractors.
About Honey Extraction
The methods and materials used in honey extraction are a serious matter. It is something that cannot be mastered overnight. Proper knowledge and experience are the perfect tools to achieve flawless extraction. That said, you as a beekeeper must exert a lot of effort into it and a lot of patience to back it up. There is no shortcut to the process. But, we’re not going to discuss every single detail to perfect the art of honey extraction. As a matter of fact, an accurate step by step honey extraction procedure is hard to come by. Beekeepers developed different skills and techniques to do their beekeeping chores, and I’m sure that you have your own way to deal with every phase. Instead of dwelling on the tricky parts, let’s stick to the equally essential aspects – the basics.
How Honey is Made
The first thing that every beekeeper should know is how honey is made. Food production is one trait or skill that both humans and bees share in common. Bees are very proficient to it and have maintained that level of skill for millions of years. Bees feed on nectars found in flowers and they store it in their honey stomachs. Once full, they return to the hive and pass it to the younger bee females. These bees chew the nectar and deposit it into the individual cells. The cells make up the honeycomb and the honeycombs make up the hive. The honey stored in the cells becomes food for the younger generation of bees and serves as a food reserve for the entire colony.
When to Extract
Throughout the years, humans learned how to extract honey from the hives. Historical evidence proves that ancient humans used different techniques to harvest honey. Just like the ancient beekeepers, we share the same excitement when it comes to honey extraction. It is the best part of the whole beekeeping process. However, honey extraction is not as easy as it sounds. It is a tricky business that one should pay close attention to. Knowing the right time to extract honey is crucial. Your first attempt to extract honey might not be as good as hat you’re hoping for, but it gets better every season. A bee colony needs at least a season to grow its population, and in beekeeping, there’s more honey when there are more bees. The summer season is an ideal time to anticipate honey. This time, you’ll be needing to check the hive every two weeks. Monitor how many frames are capped. If you see that the frames are capped around 80% and filled with honey, you can proceed to the next level of the process – extraction.
Proper Extraction Procedure
Honey extraction is actually a fun activity despite its intricacies. Before gearing up, know that it is essential to leave plenty of reserved honey for the bees, especially for the brood chamber for the winter season. Suit up properly and use a smoker – bees are not as excited as you are during the extraction process. Once you’ve removed the frames, dehumidify them for about a day or two and make sure that the moisture content is below 18.5% using a honey refractometer. Manually remove the wax caps and load it to a honey extractor. The honey extractor will do the rest of the work for you. The last process is for you to bottle the clean honey.
About the Hardin Royal 3 Electric Three Frame Honey Extractor
This is a stainless steel honey extractor that operates via electricity. It is designed to carry out the extracting task for beekeepers with 5 to 15 hives. It has a 16-gauge stainless steel drum with sealed gears and bearings. The extractor measures 17-inches tall by 11-inches wide.
Pros and Cons
- Being made of stainless steel increases its durability.
- Features a clear Plexiglas lid to keep debris out and for easy viewing.
- It can handle 3 shallow, medium or deep frames in one go.
- Has a 110V variable speed motor which can be controlled by a dial.
- Due to its reliable motor, this extractor can do multiple loads in a short period of time.
- Its three legs allow for easy unloading of honey.
- The manufacturer offers a lifetime warranty upon purchase.
- The manufacturer offers parts and customer service with a direct phone line – 1-866-425-4693.
- Very expensive. There are other electric extractors on the market that work just as well that cost a lot less.
- Lacks an instruction manual.
- Legs a bit shorter compared to other extractors.
- Can be a bit of a challenge to clean up.
The Hardin Royal 3 Electric Three Frame Honey Extractor is a solid product that works well and is made all the better thanks to its lifetime warranty and customer service offered by the manufacturer. Some extractors, once you buy them, the manufacturer forgets about you and you’re on your own if you have any issues. Thankfully, it is not so with Hardin. Unfortunately, its price is a high barrier to entry and as such I’d recommend it more for experienced beekeepers rather than the hobbyists.
Have you ever used the Hardin Royal 3 Electric Three Frame Honey Extractor? Leave a comment below and let us know what your experience was like.Check Price