View Full Version : To wire or not to wire...frames that is...

02-02-2011, 11:52 PM
A frame wiring question: I know it's wise to wire my medium frames that I am going to extract honey from, but do I need to cross wire the deep brood frames? All my foundation was ordered as crimp wired, the deep and medium. Just curious if additional support is needed for the brood chambers using deep frames?
Thanks for the help....

02-02-2011, 11:58 PM
I've never additionally wired crimped wire foundation at all, in brood nest or in supers. It always seemed to do fine for me.

02-03-2011, 12:49 AM
Cross wiring crimp wired foundation is for beehavers that are brutal with their comb. Several are extracting unwired, no foundation comb without destruction and a few do it with top bars (unsupported on three edges).

Michael Bush
02-03-2011, 05:18 AM
I've wired deeps but don't anymore. I've never wired shallows or mediums but have inherited some wired ones. I have no trouble extracting foundationless, unwired surplus, unwired medium brood, wired, plastic, etc.

I wouldn't wire them. It's just one more thing in the way when you need to cut a queen cell out, or if you want to make some cut comb out of some good looking comb.

02-03-2011, 05:22 AM
Cross wiring crimp wired foundation is for beehavers that are brutal with their comb

:scratch: Beehavers?

These Beekeepers may have changed their opinions but at one time they said:

100% necessary, NO. You can extract very slowly and carefully and be successful.

Desirable, and well worth the effort, YES.
A couple of blowouts when you spin a little too fast will make you go back to cross wiring very quickly.

>Is it really necessary to cross wire full depth frames when using crimp wire foundation.<

I would say yes, if you want straight combs. Have you ever seen wired foundation made? The wires are wound on a big spool. As the foundation moves along a conveyor, the wires unroll off the spool, and are embedded in the wax. These wires have a memory...sort of. The curve from the spool remains, and the foundation will curve accordingly. Wires not only add strength for extracting, they help hold the foundation straight as it is being drawn.

The two center wires are really all that is necessary.

I wire brood frames out of habit mostly to keep straight combs, and in the unlikely likelihood that I might want to, have to, choose to extract them.

Jackson, MO http://www.25hives.homestead.com

The following will give you more to read about "wiring wired foundation".


02-03-2011, 07:04 AM
Crosswiring deeps that will never see the inside of an extractor is unnecessary. There are occasions when some of mine do. The extra time it takes to crosswire is, in my opinion, worth it for the added assurance.

02-03-2011, 08:28 AM
I cross wire (as the previous quote indicated) to keep my foundation straight until the bees have a chance to draw it out. I like straight comb, and I'm a beekeeper. Some of my foundation, if it sits in the frame in my storage shed and gets warm-ish, has been known to bow out to one side. That makes for messy comb when stuck into the bee hive where it is also quite warm.

I would add cross wiring is for beehavers who are brutal with their comb, and for beekeepers who prefer straight combs reserving the possibility of extraction.

BTW, I got into the habit of cross wiring all my crimp-wired foundation irrespective of size. I cross wire deeps, meds and shallows to give my foundation a longer life.

Jackson, MO

02-03-2011, 08:36 AM
we use crimpwired foundation both deep and medium. We do not wire our medium frames but we do wire our deeps. Although I dont consider myself a beehaver who is brutal on comb, even deep crimpwired foundation can sag and droop in the brutal FL heat, and when extracting 200-300 supers of honey I dont have time to clean blowouts from the extractors that could have been prevented by simply crosswiring the frames, to me its worth the extra effort.

02-03-2011, 09:38 AM
We add cross wire to all of our medium honey frames, typically 2-3 wires depending on whose frames we are using.

For our deep frames, we only add the two middle wires, to help ensure the foundation stays straight when its drawn out. This is especially important in hot weather when the foundation might curve or bend due to the heat.

02-03-2011, 12:06 PM
I learned years ago to crosswire my vertical wired deep brood frames. As my splits build up in the early summer, if they're not cross wired, the heat and sometimes weight of bees clustered doing the comb building will cause the comb to sag, or bow. Like Grant, I prefer straight comb, not sagged or bowed comb.

My medium frames are not, nor are my shallows.