View Full Version : standard hive size
05-13-2005, 06:44 AM
I am getting ready to build a second hive. My first is appx. 24" wide x 11" deep. It is 38 bars long (1 3/8). Should I scale down a little for the second hive. I would like everything the be interchangeable if possible, but it the first is a little too big I will make the second smaller then standardize to that one. How difficult is a hive of this size to manage practically?
Thanks for all the help and insight!
05-13-2005, 07:10 AM
sounds to me like the comb might get too big and be prone to collapse if you work it too long in the sun... hive volume has been correlated to latitude - I forget the numbers but the info is here on this forum. Look at the section on comb collapse I think. Most folks tend to use top bars that are 16-18 inches long and hives that are 9-11 inches deep.
05-13-2005, 08:56 AM
My top bars are all about 17 - 18 inches across. Inside of the top of the hive is close to 15 - 16 inches.
Hives are about 40 inches long.
bottom is about 3 - 5 inches across.
I agree with ALpine that is pretty long way across for your top bars. But it might work. Usually they tend to curve as you get closer to the side of the hive. So maybe they will curve more if they are longer, I don't know.
If I build another one, I will make the top bars at least 18 inches and the sides at least 15 inches. I think if I wanted to make them even bigger I would either add another story (super) like MB or maybe make them longer, have the entrance in the middle, and use a follower board / feeder at first until they get acclimated, gradually increasing the length.
Based on the fact that all three of mine filled up last year from packages, i do think the bees have the ability to fill a bigger hive.
05-13-2005, 09:11 AM
My medium depth TTBH is standard 19" Langstroth legnth bars.
My deep KTBH is 15" bars.
05-13-2005, 10:32 AM
So I guess it would be safe to assume that the longer the bars, you would want a shallower hive, and the shorter bars can go deeper? If that is the case, is there a somewhat standard comb volume the bees prefer building? A longer, shallow comb would theoretically be comparable in mass to a shorter, deeper comb? It would also seem save to assume that the shorter bars would be easier to work with, but then how many bars would be enough for them?
05-13-2005, 12:55 PM
>So I guess it would be safe to assume that the longer the bars, you would want a shallower hive, and the shorter bars can go deeper?
Probably not safe to assume. But that's my theory.
>If that is the case, is there a somewhat standard comb volume the bees prefer building?
There have been some discussions on this. Do a search on volume in this forum and I'll bet you'll find some ideas. In my experience, in my climate, they seem to like about 3 1/2 to 4 cubic feet in volume. They seem hesitant to go further than that horizontally. Perhaps with drawn comb and an established hive they might go further, but so far I haven't seen that.
> A longer, shallow comb would theoretically be comparable in mass to a shorter, deeper comb?
That's my theory.
>It would also seem save to assume that the shorter bars would be easier to work with, but then how many bars would be enough for them?
Both of mine are about four feet long and about 33 bars (mixture of 1 1/4" for brood and 1 1/2" for honey).
I like how easily both of mine are to work. When I had the 10 3/8" deep one with 19" bars (standard Langstroth deep on a 3/4" deep bottom board) they were not easy to work. But with the shorter bar and corners cut it is very easy to work. With just less depth it is very easy to work.