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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
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    Hiram, Northeast Ohio
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    Hey all, can anyone with unfoundation experience tell me if it's o.k. to use endbars that make the beespace a full half inch when pushed together, rather than the usual 3/8 maximum. I want to encourage full side attachments but I don't want them to web the sidebars together with burr comb.
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
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    Worthington, Pennsylvania USA
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    I do not have any unfoundation experience other than putting used frames back into a hive without foundation. Are you using the frames for brood or honey?
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
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    Hiram, Northeast Ohio
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    Both.

    The idea here is I am making what looks like an super extra deep top bar hive but with full frames inside to support the depth. Since I am making the frames, I am tryping to go with off the shelf stuff, and it is just easier if I can leave a 1/2" beespace on the sides.

    I'm looking to see what kind of cell size tapering I get on an uninterrupted 19" brood face.
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    Beespace is 1/4" to 3/8". Anymore will probably not work well nor will less. I'm not clear what you mean by 1/2" beespace on the "sides".

    If you mean the space between the combs, if you have guides the bees sometimes will agree to space combs 1 3/8" for brood, but mostly they will cheat and only build them 1 1/4" anyway. They will cheat on the honey sections and build them 1 1/2" anyway. So what happens is each comb is off of the guide a bit on the next comb. With starter strips they will simply cheat over a quarter of an inch or so on one and bypass the starter strip altogether.

    My best luck has been spacing them 1 1/4" in the brood and 1 1/2" in the honey areas. With top bars, I make a few small spacers 1/4" or 3/8" and slip them in if the bees start getting too far off.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
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    Hiram, Northeast Ohio
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    I had planned on the 1 1/4 spacing for frames, but what I mean by the sides is the gap between the end bars of the frames. As planned, my end bars are going to be narrower than my top bars- 1" rather than 1 1/4, so when the frames are pushed together there will be a 1/2 inch space between them down below on the sides. I just wondered if the bees would try to build comb in that space, attaching endbars of different frames together, or if it would be allright.

    In the ferral hives you have seen, is the hive divided horizontally into brood and storage, the way a top bar hive is? If not, how does the spacing in a ferral work out?
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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    >what I mean by the sides is the gap between the end bars of the frames. As planned, my end bars are going to be narrower than my top bars- 1" rather than 1 1/4, so when the frames are pushed together there will be a 1/2 inch space between them down below on the sides. I just wondered if the bees would try to build comb in that space, attaching endbars of different frames together, or if it would be allright.

    They will just build the comb out as thick as they want for their purpose (brood or honey) The gap on between one end bar and the next being 1/2" will not matter.

    >In the ferral hives you have seen, is the hive divided horizontally into brood and storage, the way a top bar hive is? If not, how does the spacing in a ferral work out?

    The center few combs are usually brood and are spaced 1 1/4" the next ones are usually more drone and less worker and may be 1 3/8". The next ones towards the outside are honey and tend to be 1 1/2" or even more. Sometimes a lot more. But the honey is also distributed on top over the brood and on the ends of the brood combs. That's typical, but it still varied depending on the shape of the space they are filling etc.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    McMinnville, TN, USA
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    716

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    I have made my own frames from scratch. I make the top bar and end bars one inch wide. I use dry wall screws screwed in the top bar to space the combs. Some have been left sticking out 1/4 inch and some 3/8 of an inch. So the spacing of the end bars is in range. Are you planning on spacing the bars 1 1/2 inches or is this a TBH with a frame structure to attached to the under side of the TB? If you center a one inch end bar you will have 1/4 inch bee space. You do not get 1/4 inch extra space on each side of the end bar you get 1/8 inch extra space on each side of the end bar. So I do not see where you are getting 1/2 spacing.

    A trick I learned making my foundationless frames was to make a saw kerf(very light) center of the end bars to center them with the pointed top bar and to center the bottom bar for the frame. Making the saw kerf on the table saw was much quicker than trying to mark center on each one.

    In the feral removals I have done the structure of the nest was different in each one. If the entrance hole was center(near anyway) of the cavity MBs remarks sound about right. The brood nest is normally nearest the entrance. I have not done any open hive removals. One hive I removed was very different. The brood nest was at the bottom of the cavity with all the honey above it. This hive was in a narrow but long cavity( 6 inches wide 4 inches deep and 8 foot long and all full of comb) and the entrance was at the top. The entrance was 5 feet away from the brood nest. The rest of the removals had one honey comb then brood then the rest of the honey as you go away from the entrance with a bit of honey and pollen around the brood.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Hiram, Northeast Ohio
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    Thanks for the input guys...

    I should have been more clear hillbilly, yes, this is like a TB with a frame structure. So I guess top bar is really just wrong-- but it will be super deep (22") and narrow (9.5" at the top, 6 at the bottom) and angled like a TB hive usually is. I'm trying to create a kind of hybrid between a production hive and an observation hive, but it is almost silly to try to describe it...I'll post my plan model when it is done.

    On the math, I am using 1x dowel material which is of course really 3/4". It's too expensive anyway and maybe not strong enough. I wish I could find something cheap off the shelf that is a real 7/8" or 1", but I can't. I was excited about figuring out that 30 cent grading stakes at Lowes happen to vary from 1 1/4 to 1 3/8, so I was dreaming of not having to rip at all.

    Does that saw kerf on the end bars just help you, or do the bees tend to center side attachments on it as well?

    It sounds like what you guys are saying about ferals you have seen are that these hives are organized by what the space dictates, vertical for vertical spaces and horizontal for horizontal spaces. That sound right?
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  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    >It sounds like what you guys are saying about ferals you have seen are that these hives are organized by what the space dictates, vertical for vertical spaces and horizontal for horizontal spaces. That sound right?

    If I understand what you are saying correctly, yes. The hive will go more vertical or horizontal depending on available space.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    McMinnville, TN, USA
    Posts
    716

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    Yes to a point. One hive in a wall keep the brood nest to the right side where the entrance was and had a com of honey then the brood nest with honey on top and bottom of the brood nest as well as to the left of the brood nest.

    I rip my end bars out of 2X4 pieces. These are a home made frame with a pointed top bar. So for my medium hive bodies the end bar is 3/8 inch thick by 1 inch wide and 5 ?/? long. The saw kerf gives me something to center them when nailing instead of having to measure each one and mark it. My first thought when I did the first 10(small lot but needed to get my pattern right) was to make a jig to place a pencil in that I could slide the peices across to mark center. Then it hit me all I had to do is use the tablesaw to make a light kerf. The bees do not use it but they do not mind it either. For a frame 22 inches deep I think 3/4 inch dowels would work fine. The wider space between the frames would not be a problem as the bees comb would have the right spacing.

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