Harvesting honey from your beehives is a very rewarding activity when you have the right tools. Pierce Beekeeping has an uncapping knife for beekeepers to use in cutting away the caps of honey cells. The Pierce Beekeeping Speed King Uncapping Knife uses electricity to help you move through honey frames quickly. It is nicknamed the speed king due to the speed with which you get through each honey frame from your beehive.
About Pierce Beekeeping
Pierce Beekeeping has been in the industry since 1947. It was founded by Paul Pierce who was an inventor based in Southern California. The company has carved out its own little space for uncapping knives in the beekeeping community. Pierce Beekeeping has a variety of quality tools and accessories for beekeepers. Most of its products are ready to use once you take them out of the box, including their electric uncapping knife.
About the Pierce Beekeeping Speed King Uncapping Knife
The Pierce Beekeeping Speed King Uncapping Knife features a sturdy stainless steel build and is an easy to use tool for honey uncapping. The knife is great for use by both beginners and professional beekeepers. Pierce Beekeeping knives are handmade, and as such, are quite a bit more expensive than other uncapping knives in the market.
The knife comes in a variety of choices for various continents and their different power supplies. There are USA/Canada/Mexico, Europe and Australia/New Zealand versions. The knife runs on AC (Alternating Current). Options available based on voltage are the 220/240 Volt option for all regions except the USA, Canada and Mexico (for these regions, a 120 Volt option is made available). All options feature a grounded 8 feet electric cord.
The heater element specifically designed for the knife is durable. It works well with the internal thermostat that is set to an optimum temperature for uncapping honey filled cells on beehive frames. This allows continuous heating during uncapping. The electric uncapping knife features a built in thermostat with silver contact for added longevity. It is also calibrated to ideal uncapping temperature that is just right to sear through bees wax without cooking your honey in the process.
The Pierce Beekeeping Speed King Uncapping Knife is basically a heated blade used in harvesting honey. It is built by bringing together two steel blades, a copper plate and a wooden handle. To achieve even temperature distribution, there is a top and bottom blade and in the middle a copper plate. The knife has a wooden handle to reduce heat transfer from the blades to the handle. Beekeepers using the knife are sure that they will not sustain any burns to their hands. For extra caution, you may wear some gloves or light protection while using the knife.
To use the Pierce Beekeeping Speed King Uncapping Knife, simply plug it in to an AC power outlet. It will take a few seconds before you’ll feel it getting hot. You then use the knife to remove the caps on honeycombs. Once you are done with your entire honeycomb uncapping, unplug the electric uncapping knife and it will cool off. It is advisable to clean the blade while it is still a little warm. The blade is both sharp and gets hot; so in use, you have to be careful not to cut or burn yourself.
This electric uncapping knife can be used in both an upward or downward uncapping motion, although the downward motion is recommended. You should do this in a way that allows the wax to fall away from the knife blade. Pierce Beekeeping has an uncapping tub kit that works well with the electric uncapping knife. You may use it, or uncap on your preferred tub. Some beekeepers may opt to use a slight sawing motion while uncapping. Beekeepers using the electric uncapping knife are advised to use an uncapping stroke that does not strike any parts of their body.
Beekeepers that are not familiar with the use of electric uncapping knives do not have to worry about using the Pierce Beekeeping Speed King Uncapping Knife. It comes with a user manual that is easy to read and understand. For the European version, there is a manual in both English and French. In case beekeepers misplace or damage their user manual, a free download from the Pierce Beekeeping website is available.
This electric uncapping knife comes with a 2-year warranty provided by Pierce Beekeeping. This warranty from the manufacturer requires registration upon purchase. It is a strong reassurance that beekeepers are getting a quality product from a company that is ready to stand behind what they make and release to the market.
Beekeepers using the Pierce Beekeeping Speed King Uncapping Knife should be cautious not to set it down on flammable surfaces when it is hot. It should also not be allowed to come into contact with a surface that can melt. If not actively uncapping honey frames, you may unplug the knife from your power source. Do not leave the plugged in uncapping knife unattended. You may not use the uncapping knife as a hitting tool, and do not drop it. Pierce Beekeeping also advises against using their electric uncapping knife as a prying tool.
As with any electric equipment, the knife should be kept out of reach of children. It should not be used when wires are frayed. There have been a few cases where careless beekeepers have cut the cord when using electric uncapping knives! Make sure not to join the list of these careless beekeepers.
A Final Word
All in all, the Pierce Beekeeping Speed King Uncapping Knife is a splendid tool for beekeepers. It is easy to use and gets the job done with ease and speed. While it is quite expensive, it does provide great value for money. Of course, the knife is a tool and requires a little maintenance to ensure its longevity. Simple cleaning with some water or damp towels is adequate. Beekeepers should also plan their work area in advance to ascertain it will remain clean and work will flow well. Keeping everything in reach is great for a seamless uncapping activity with the Pierce Beekeeping Speed King Uncapping Knife.
Have you ever used the Pierce Beekeeping Speed King Uncapping Knife? Leave a comment below and let us know what your experience was like.