I built a cover for one of my three TBH's, but in looking at some pictures on the web it looks like many TBH's don't have a cover, just the Top Bars themselves. What have the rest of you done?
I am thinking about leaving my other 2 uncovered.
When I get time I will put together a spread sheet with the various dimensions of each, so I can track the results...
You gotta cover the hive, I thinkt he pictures you have seen are just without the cover.
The cover provides protection from rain, and also from the sun, the sun beating directly on the top bars will cause comb collapse.
If the topbars get wet, they'll warp.
The cover can be somethign really simple like a piece of plywood or corragated tin roofing or something. But its really needs to be there.
I don't think I've seen one in use that didn't have something on it, but a piece of corragated tin seems to be a common roof. Mine, right now, is a piece of old warped 3/4" plywood.
OK, thanks. I will continue with the covers. Basically some left over "bar" stock (ripped 2x4) which frame the outside dimensions, with a piece of 3/8" plywood stapled on top, covered with a piece of roof flashing. Don't do what I did! I stapled the thing right to the hive! Got a little trigger happy on the staple gun!
I know you're convinced to do one, but I'll expand on why I think you need a cover. I have several long hives with frames that I use standard migratory covers on. The three covers are butted up against each other. But when it rains they swell and this pushes the two outside ones (the front and back) out a little. Then they dry out and shrink and now there is a gap between the covers. There are two of these cracks, on one of my horizontal hives. I haven't noticed a big problem but I tend to put a concrete block directly over the cracks to help break some of the rain and keep them from blowing off. I'm guessing it leaks some, but they faithfully fill it with propolis. Now the question is do you want 30 of these cracks instead of two?
[This message has been edited by Michael Bush (edited March 09, 2004).]