Ross Rounds (Honey Sections) – Assembly & Harvesting

Ross Rounds (Honey Sections) – Assembly & Harvesting

Firstly – I hope your beekeeping season is going well.  I’ve got some healthy hives at present and the nectar flow is definitely on, as is the swarmy season.

Section Honey Comb

I am very excited.  I mentioned earlier this year I had bought three racks of Ross Rounds sections to make comb honey (link to this post at bottom of page). The boxes have sat unopened at the back of the garage but have very much been at the front of my mind.  I had little niggles about whether I would be able to assemble the racks and would it work, will they make honey?

I managed to get a couple of hours to myself on the late May Bank Holiday Monday to crack on with it and banish some of the worry.

It took me about 60 minutes to read the literature, open the box, have a play, go on youtube and then finish the job. I took my own video, further down.  It’s really easy.  It takes about 20 mins to assemble a rack and if all goes well I’ll be popping out sections over the next few months rather than putting aside a day for extraction.

Section Honey Assembly
Section Honey Assembly – May 2016

I’m smiling now … will I be smiling in August?

The idea is that the bees come into the sections which contain a thin foundation, lay down honey and cap it.  Then you take off the rack pop out the sections, put in a round container that neatly fits the section and hey presto … gourmet honey.  The best.  The Holy Grail of honey.  The bees knees.  That’s the idea. The next few months will reveal the truth.

Busy Beekeeper

Having assembled the sections and with a flush of newness and excitement, I am now starting to think that honey sections is definitely the way for me.  I say this because my free time is so limited with work, 2 young kids and the regular admin and jobs that need doing.  At my current stage in life I would actually prefer to make no honey than spend a day extracting.  Hence, sections.  Either (A) I get nothing; or (B) I get gourmet honey.  Either way, I save myself a day of extraction.  If I don’t get anything for a couple of years, hopefully I’ll find myself with more time and go back to spinning the honey.

Ross Rounds Assembly - May 2016
Ross Rounds Assembly – May 2016

Ross Rounds Assembly

Here is a 2 minute video of me assembling Ross Rounds. It’s very home made with the little man making an appearance (so to speak) and the mother-in-law not realising I am in the process of making serious beekeeping videos!

Ross Rounds Assembly – My Top Tips

  1. Don’t panic (like me when faced with anything vaguely practical) – it’s quite easy and fast.  A lot faster than assembling a super
  2. Place the white plastic rings in the brown plastic section racks.  The smooth bit goes on top and the shaped bit is the side you push in.  You need to line this up as you push it in.  If you’re still not getting them in because the ridges do not quite line up (I had this problem in year 1 and year 2, hopefully I’ll remember in year 3), then try rotating the white ring 90 degrees.  You’ll get it
  3. There is a piece of wood and 3 springs to push the racks close together. I basically squeezed the spring in between this piece of wood and the side of the wooden rack (I’ll take a photo soon and add to this post)
  4. You are good to go

Ross Rounds – On The Hive

You want to avoid oil seed rape nectar in the honey sections as it granulates very hard and it will be inedible. Hence, my plan:

  1. Place a regular super with frames on each hive that needs one during oil seed rape season, i.e. approx. mid-April to end May
  2. After oil seed rape nectar flow, put honey sections on top of brood box and then if the super contains any nectar, place that on top of the honey section rack, otherwise remove that super.  (The idea is that the nectar from the oil seed rape can be used to draw out the wax in the honey sections and when blended with other nectars, will not set too hard)
  3. Let the bees draw out the frames and lay down the nectar
  4. When capped – remove, take home, pop out sections and if there is time left in the honey season, assemble sections again and add to hive.  Any uncapped sections can either be jiggled around whilst on the hive, or put back on for finishing off when you have popped out the other sections
  5. At end of season, I plan to dissemble racks and start with fresh foundation in the following year

Ross Rounds – Harvesting

I haven’t done this yet, but as soon as I have, I’ll update this blog. Basically:

  1. Split the two halves of the plastic frames
  2. Push out the sections, cutting off spare foundation between the round sections
  3. Put the 32 sections into 32 containers
  4. Freeze it to kill off any possible wax moth spores
  5. Take out of freezer 24 hours later, or when you want

The sections are 1lb each (454g).  You could put in two layers of thin foundation per plastic rack and then create two 1/2lb sections (227g).  But I figure this will increase the ratio of wax to honey a bit too much and also, create more work.

Read More

Photos Added At Later Date

Ross Rounds - Placing Foundation In Frames
Ross Rounds – Placing Foundation In Frames

The individual brown plastic frames are known as “Visicheck” frames.

Ross Rounds - How I Put Springs To Push Wood Into Plastic Racks
Ross Rounds – How I Put Springs To Push Wood Into Plastic Racks

Author: Roger

regaining my sanity through beekeeping

5 thoughts on “Ross Rounds (Honey Sections) – Assembly & Harvesting”

  1. Interesting about oil seed rape – its a very hard seed but why the Honey from it???
    Plus the farmers need the Bees to pollinate it… perhaps it could be used in candles or polish?

    1. I’ve always wanted to try this too. I’ll be really interested to hear how it goes for you. Did you use a 4 1/2 inch high super?

  2. hi, I too thought ross rounds were the way to go, and like yourself bought three units, I have added them onto my hives in my woodland and like yourself am waiting patiently, high hopes for one out of the three hives as I’ve been told the colonies need to be very strong and full to bursting to fill, I’ve started a new bee keeping venture, and want to make a blog similar to yours, I like this page layout so if you could point me in the right direction that would be much appreciated

  3. Interested in using Ross Rounds. Do they require something other than a standard sized box? They look less deep than a standard sized frame? I have a FlowHive and am wanting to put an additional box on top to hold Ross Rounds. I also have a feeder rack I want to put there so it will be easy to access. But, that setup won’t work unless the Ross Rounds racks can work in a regular sized box.

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