Getting ready for extraction

The day will soon be approaching when we do our first honey extraction.  I mentioned we had borrowed an extractor from some friends, Jim and Beth Peterson.  It is an old extractor and although we cleaned up the flaky rust and gave it a good scrubbing, I still was a bit concerned about the screens in the device being galvanized.  Although use of galvanized metal, which is a zinc coating on iron to prevent rust, was used fairly commonly in the past on cooking utensils and other food preparation tools, today we know the potential hazards of using such items.  The U.S. army used to line up soldiers to watch atom bomb blasts, too.  Not a good idea.
Fortunately, Kathy found a product which may help us out a lot.  It is a clear-coat epoxy called Camcoat, available through many beekeeping supply places.  It is a very hard, clear epoxy coating, applied with brush or spray, that is food-safe and can be used to coat  metal surfaces, including those with a galvanized finish.  In the message boards, some suggest using a vinegar/water solution to prepare the galvanized metal for painting, so I did that.  I will give at least two coats, and also in the message boards people suggest waiting about a week before using the equipment after applying the coatings, which I think is a good idea especially considering the humidity and slowness of drying.  We will wait probably until mid-August anyway but I sure feel better about using the equipment now.  Jim and Beth were happy with the decision as well.


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