9mm Queen Cups

Based on an STL file I found on Printables I did some editing in TinkerCAD to adapt the file to my own purposes for this study. The stems are just a touch thicker and I added a notch under the skirt (because I could) to make it easier to get the corner of my hive tool under it to pry out a fully capped queen cell.

Using a Snapmaker 350 printer, I batch-printed 24 cups with black PLA filament so I can easily see if it contains an egg or not. The printing requires supports, but the cups pop out pretty easily. On the Snapmaker, with the settings I used, it takes about 8 hours to print a batch of 24.

I used the same original STL file to design the base only for the wax cups. Although it’s very tempting to keep churning out my own queen cups, I’m limiting the first run to 48. Once I know what the bees do (or don’t do) with them, then I can make further decisions about them.

I will make more bases for my wax queen cups from the black filament since I ran out of the white. I don’t anticipate the base colors to affect the queen’s use of the cups.

Northeast SARE LogoThis material is based upon work supported by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, U.S. Department of Agriculture, through the Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program under subaward number FNE24-102. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

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