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Author Topic: Honey extraction: Tangential vs radia - which one is " better"?  (Read 2640 times)

Offline max2

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Honey extraction: Tangential vs radia - which one is " better"?
« on: October 26, 2023, 06:10:48 pm »
While my radial extractor was out of action I had to get my very old tangential extractor dusted off.

The pros and cons of the tangetial extractor inoticed:
I seem to get more honey out of the frames ( good reason - higher speed on the outside of the drum), the top bars are not sticky
BUT - frames have to be turned, fewer frames fit the drum, slower to load with 1/2 frames

Radial extractor:
Can fit more frames, possibly easier to get balanced(?), faster extraction
Those messy top bars

What is your experience?

I have never used one of those " reversable" extractors.


Offline Lesgold

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Re: Honey extraction: Tangential vs radia - which one is " better"?
« Reply #1 on: October 27, 2023, 02:17:46 am »
Hi Max, I generally agree with what you are saying. I run a 12 frame radial and it does a pretty good job for me. I reverse the direction of rotation part way through the spin to help get a bit more honey out of the frames. The big advantage of a 12 frame extractor is that I can run 2, 3, 4, 6, 8, 10 or 12 frames at a time and still have it in balance. I used to run a 4 frame Penders tangential and it was pretty good. I got rid of it a long time ago as it wasn?t stainless. The tangential does throw a bit more honey out  at a faster rate but there is a bit more handling involved unless you get one of the better, programable units. I?m more than happy to give a gram or two per frame back to the bees so there?s no real loss as far as I?m concerned. New frames in the extractor need to be treated carefully as you would know and both styles can distort wax or blow out. I still have a Penders 2 frame tangential that has both a hand driven and motorised head. It?s a great little machine that I keep as a backup. I really don?t think it matters what you use as you establish a routine to work with what you have.

Online Ben Framed

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Re: Honey extraction: Tangential vs radia - which one is " better"?
« Reply #2 on: October 27, 2023, 02:24:50 am »
I have had trouble with blow out in the past with foundationless combs, so what I did is start out VERY slow with the extractor on the newer stuff which takes more patience but pays off most of the time. I moved on to skewers in my foundationless frames as described by Paus and that helped tremendously. The best thing that I did as far as new comb is concerned is using plastic foundation... I hope you, our friends from Down Under, fill many jars of honey this season!!

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« Last Edit: October 27, 2023, 02:47:07 am by Ben Framed »
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Online Michael Bush

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Re: Honey extraction: Tangential vs radia - which one is " better"?
« Reply #3 on: October 27, 2023, 10:08:16 am »
Dee Lusby has to use a tangential because her honey is dry so dry.  Typically the radial holds more frames and you don't have to reverse the frames.
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Offline max2

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Re: Honey extraction: Tangential vs radia - which one is " better"?
« Reply #4 on: December 03, 2023, 12:09:04 am »
Dee Lusby has to use a tangential because her honey is dry so dry.  Typically the radial holds more frames and you don't have to reverse the frames.
Michael, can you explain why tangental is better for ' dry" honey?
What would you cal " dry honey"? 16%?

Offline Acebird

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Re: Honey extraction: Tangential vs radia - which one is " better"?
« Reply #5 on: December 03, 2023, 08:25:29 am »
I have had trouble with blow out in the past with foundationless combs, ...
Tangential will tear apart more frames because the comb is the weakest in the perpendicular direction.  There is less of a difference with medium frames for the amount extracted then deep frames for obvious reasons.  A slight increase in speed after most the honey is out of the frames will make even less of the difference.  And of course time makes a difference.  You can lengthen the spin cycle of a radial because the load cycle of a tangential is so much longer.  I don't see much of an advantage for tangential unless your honey is paste.
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Offline BeeMaster2

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Re: Honey extraction: Tangential vs radia - which one is " better"?
« Reply #6 on: December 03, 2023, 09:25:13 am »
I use a 9/18 radial extractor. For the most part I extract medium frames so I?m extracting 18 frames. For the past 12 years we averaged around 25 supers per pull. I used a tangential my first year at a friends house and several years ago at my father in law?s house. I would not want to have to use a tangential for 25 supers of honey.
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Online Ben Framed

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Re: Honey extraction: Tangential vs radia - which one is " better"?
« Reply #7 on: December 03, 2023, 10:07:26 am »
Good subject. Good points made for each type of extractor under varying circumstances.
Les, being another here, who has used both types, has a pretty good analysis of both in Reply 1.

Regardless of which type a beekeeper 'may have' or 'prefer', one thing is for sure; An extractor sure beats the crush and strain method. lol
 :wink:

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« Last Edit: December 03, 2023, 10:57:57 am by Ben Framed »
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Online Michael Bush

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Re: Honey extraction: Tangential vs radia - which one is " better"?
« Reply #8 on: December 04, 2023, 10:12:41 am »
>Michael, can you explain why tangental is better for ' dry" honey?

The "pull" is in direct line with the "exit".  It will extract thick honey better.  Another solution for thick honey, if you use an excluder, is to use drone foundation in the supers.

>What would you cal " dry honey"? 16%?

I think Dee Lusby's honey runs around 14%
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Offline Acebird

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Re: Honey extraction: Tangential vs radia - which one is " better"?
« Reply #9 on: December 05, 2023, 08:14:52 am »
>Michael, can you explain why tangental is better for ' dry" honey?

The "pull" is in direct line with the "exit".
I don't see that making much of a difference.  In a tangential the cells are all the farthest away from the center of rotation so the honey is under the greatest force to pull it out.  As I said speeding up the extractor will increase the force to void the cells closer to the center in a radial.  With a tangential it is a given that you must have supporting wires in the frame to protect from blow out.  Fresh natural cell is a no no.
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Online Michael Bush

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Re: Honey extraction: Tangential vs radia - which one is " better"?
« Reply #10 on: December 05, 2023, 09:44:39 am »
Any new comb is going to fail.  New comb is not completed yet so it's white and soft like putty instead of being yellow and tough.
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Offline Lesgold

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Re: Honey extraction: Tangential vs radia - which one is " better"?
« Reply #11 on: December 05, 2023, 03:41:48 pm »
A tangential extractor works better when the honey is dense or cool. Winter extracting requires extended run times and or heating of the extraction room to keep the honey warm. During those times, the advantages and disadvantages of each style of extractor are exaggerated. New comb also demonstrates clearly the forces involved. Blow outs can occur in both styles of extractor but are more likely in a tangential machine. Cell distortion occurs in radial extractors on new comb with cells near the top bar being compressed and lower cells being stretched. Another issue with the radial extractor is that the forces throwing honey from the cells become less as you get closer to the bottom bar. To overcome this, an increase in speed is used towards the end of the spin cycle. Radial extractors also remove honey a little easier from the trailing side. This can be seen during a winter extraction. Reversing rotation direction eliminates this problem. Plastic foundation has obvious advantages during the extraction process and reduces the time required to remove honey from cells due to the higher speeds that can be used.

Online Ben Framed

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Re: Honey extraction: Tangential vs radia - which one is " better"?
« Reply #12 on: December 05, 2023, 10:33:07 pm »
Thumbs Up Les...

Phillip
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Offline Acebird

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Re: Honey extraction: Tangential vs radia - which one is " better"?
« Reply #13 on: December 06, 2023, 08:44:04 am »
Any new comb is going to fail. 
Assuming it did not have a round of brood in it.
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Online Michael Bush

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Re: Honey extraction: Tangential vs radia - which one is " better"?
« Reply #14 on: December 06, 2023, 11:48:16 am »
>Assuming it did not have a round of brood in it.

By definition, that is not new comb.
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Offline Acebird

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Re: Honey extraction: Tangential vs radia - which one is " better"?
« Reply #15 on: December 07, 2023, 08:31:10 am »
>Assuming it did not have a round of brood in it.

By definition, that is not new comb.
And unless you are producing comb honey it doesn't make sense to extract from new comb so you should discourage it.
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Online Michael Bush

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Re: Honey extraction: Tangential vs radia - which one is " better"?
« Reply #16 on: December 07, 2023, 08:46:44 am »
If the comb has a yellow cast to it, it extracts just fine.  Some people go out of their way to make sure they NEVER have cocoons in the comb they are extracting so the greater wax moths won't eat it.
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Offline max2

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Re: Honey extraction: Tangential vs radia - which one is " better"?
« Reply #17 on: December 14, 2023, 12:47:38 am »
It has been pretty humid here and I checked the moisture of our honey: 16.8!

I'm happy with that.
It is worthwhile, I have found, to take multiple samples.

A samples near the top of the bucket can be quite different to a sample lower down.

A friend of mine who used " crush and strain" found that by the next morning the reading went up by 1 point - figures with honey being hygroscopic.