Greetings . . .
I have been reading (Hive & Honey Bee, 1992, p845) about wintering colonies using a moisture-releaser (insulite board) over the inner cover to allow moisture to be absorbed and released precluding the accumulation and freezing of the products of metabolism.
I searched AOL and found 59 items, from concrete products, sleeping bag insulation to panels for green houses.
What do I need for my hive?
Where can I buy?
This is used for overwintering. Different people use different things. A piece of that porus white polystyrene (styrofoam) will work, as will a piece of fiber board (we call it celetex) that is made for sheating houses, but is often used for a back for a bulletine board. Some people use wood chips or a pice of an old quilt. The point is for it to be porus to soak up and give off moisture and prevent condensation. Another solution to condensation is a Screened Bottom Board or a ventilation unit on top. I just use the DE ventelation unit from www.beeworks.com, but you can also just use the screened bottom board or make your own system to allow some air to come up through the hive slowly.
Greetings . . .
Sorry I did not make my question clear. Please allow me to restate:
I would like to use "insulite" board above my inner cover this winter. I am not familiar with this product. Can someone describ it? Is "insulite" a trade-name?
The black/brown asphalt-impregnated composition board that is used for house sheathing is trademarked "Celotex" and is sometimes call "fiber board". But, due to the fibers and asphalt, do I want this in my hive?
Polystyrene, to my knowledge, will NOT absorb water. My understanding is that I am looking for good absorption. Maybe polystyrene REDUCES (or prevent) condensation by providing an excellent insulating barrier between hot and cold.
I used something called "homosote" once for a backing in a large custom-made cork board. I think it was intended as a sound-deading or fire-stop material.
Someone has suggested using lay-in ceiling tile, but again, do I want loose fibers (fiberglass?) in my hive.
Maybe Insulite is a cellulose (wood) product.
I think what you are looking for is also called Builtrite (not sure of the exact spelling, it is a trade name) Check at Menards or Home Depot, it is used often under siding on homes. You could also check the dumpsters at any construction site, all you need is a square the size of the top of your hive. I put mine on over the inner cover.
I have seen and used (for house sheeting when I was a carpenter) both the ashpalt impregnated kind and the kind that is not. You want the kind that is not. Some ceiling tiles are this same cellulose material but smooth and painted on one side. This is what people use, not the fiberglass kind. The fluffy white styrofoam will soak up some moisture. The blue closed cell kind will not.
What happens to the moisture once it is soaked up? Don't you then have a block of ice or a soggy piece of crap in your hive? Sorry, that was snide! But I just don't get it, and I've heard this before. It sounds good for the time the stuff is dry and until it becomes wet. Once wet, how can it help? As an aside, on the amount of moisture in a hive ... I left 10 nucs in my SUV overnight when it was about 35-40 out. It was rainy and I left the windows closed. When I went out in the AM, I was surprised to see all the windows fogged up. Go figure!
Think about the inside of an old hollow tree. The insides are kind of punky and spongy. The moisture soaks in and freezes and then on a slighly warm day it melts from the heat of the bees and the bees can drink the water off of the sides of the tree. It's a water storage unit or a moisture flywheel. It soaks it up when it's too moist and gives it back when it's too dry.
Not sure of the name, but I just bought the same stuff they use for the ceiling tiles. Cut in half to fit the top of the hive. Then cut a channel from where the whole in the inner cover is, out to the front of the hive. I then put a stick on top in the front of this, to give a little lift to the cover.
I also wrap with roofers felt.
I live in Northern Illinois.
I use blueboard, a rigid piece of foam, for insulation and prevention of condensation on the inner surface of the metal outer hive cover. This means that moisture doesn't drip into the hive. I can find big enough pieces from friends who are building or remodeling.
I wanted to bring this thread back, in hopes that someone new to the board might be able to help.
I keep reading (xmas gifts)about something called "Insulite". I want to know about the MATERIAL, who makes it, whats its ORGINAL purpose, and a source.
Dave W . . .
A NewBEE with 1 hive.
First package installed
Dave W. Have tried using the Google search engine instead of AOL. I just type in Insulite on the Google site and got back a ton of stuff. Not sure any of it is what you are looking for, however.
I'm not sure if this helps.... Perhaps they mean Ensolite which is a type of closed-cell foam. With that said, Insulite insulation board shows-up on a google search.
[This message has been edited by kamerrill (edited February 04, 2004).]