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Thread: Is this big

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Berkeley, CA
    Posts
    2

    Post

    Hi, I just built two tbh with 120 degree sloped sides 42" long 12" inside height, bar interior 20" and bottom board 6" wide. They have 6 x 1 3/8" bars and 24 x 1 1/2 bars with waxed cleats on them. I installed a swarm Wed and have a package arriving Sat. My question is, is this hive big? I originally planned to make a bigger one, and may yet but built this size because of the lumber I allready had. Now these look big to me and I'm wondering if I should put in a following board and reduce the volume. I am in Berkeley CA and We have at least some nectar flow most of the year.
    Thanks. Deebee
    Soon I will have been a beekeeper for a whole week.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Berkey, OH, USA
    Posts
    1,487

    Post

    Hi DeeBee

    It sounds like a good size to me. If you want to use a follower board that would be fine. Or make a feeder and that will help them start with straighter comb.

    I don't think it is too big.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,949

    Post

    It sounds like a proper size.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  4. #4

    Post

    The length doesn't sound like any problem, but for the interior dimentions, I'd suggest making your hive dimensions the same as any other TBH'ers you may know, if you know any- we seem to mostly follow Marty Hardison's dimensions in the East Bay ( http://nambehoney.com/topbar/hive/hardison1/ ) (I can think of about 6 different people with those hive dimensions in Oakland and Berkeley).
    The reason is that if you have beekeeper friends in town, sooner or later you'll want to take splits, borrow or loan equipment, get frames of brood if a queenless condition ever arises, etc. It's easy for Langstroth hive folks to do this because their equipment is standardised. In my TBH community locally, we've managed something similar by following the same hive design (this was accidental, but is very convenient).


    In our area it's not particularly hot so 120degree slope isn't really necessary. 120 degrees (and a shallower hive also) seems to make sense in the Southwest where high heat softens combs and makes them more fragile, and the longer bar interior/ longer attachment point is helpful

    Mark

    Mark

    [size="1"][ April 23, 2006, 01:18 AM: Message edited by: girl Mark ][/size]
    urban top bar hives in Oakland and Berkeley, CA...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,949

    Post

    My favorite is my long medium langstroth hive with top bars in it. That way I can interchange top bars with medium frames and use my langstroth nucs with top bars.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Berkeley, CA
    Posts
    2

    Post

    Thanks for the responses, this forum is a wonderfull thing.

    "I'd suggest making your hive dimensions the same as any other TBH'ers you may know,"

    Hah I had not even thought of this. I've allready commited myself on the first two and have shelved any plans to build more right away. The experience of hiving my swarm and my package has made me realize that I have so much more to learn about the hands on aspect of beekeeping ( it all sounds so simple in the books) and that two hives is plenty for now,
    When I next build hives I will have to figure out if I want to stay compatible with mine or others.
    I thought the 120 degree angle was important to rduce comb attachment to the sides. I heard Les Crowder speak in Berkeley in March and basicaly followed his plans.

    Thanks. Deebee.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,949

    Post

    I have built both TTBH and KTBH and don't see any difference on attachments.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  8. #8

    Post

    DeeBee,

    I have a Crowder hive and absolutely hate having one here because no one else does (I inherited it from another New Mexico beekeeper, otherwise I owuld have started with a Hardison hive)..

    If you have two colonies, though, you're not dependent on interchangability of equipment (which is only a problem in emergencies, anyway, which maybe you'll never experience). Obviously most beekeepers own more than one hive so that should be assumed. Being able to borrow or loan equipment to/with others, in the event of swarms is helpful of course.

    My colony just swarmed and it's brood-less at the moment (there's a queen, she just hasn't started laying yet). I"m actually considering taking that opportunity to do major hive surgery - cutting all my combs down to fit into a Hardison hive I own. It's that much of a hassle for me, knowing multiple other beekeepers in town and wanting to be 'standardised' with them.
    urban top bar hives in Oakland and Berkeley, CA...

  9. #9

    Post

    DeeBee,

    I have a Crowder hive and absolutely hate having one here because no one else does (I inherited it from another New Mexico beekeeper, otherwise I owuld have started with a Hardison hive)..

    If you have two colonies, though, you're not dependent on interchangability of equipment (which is only a problem in emergencies, anyway, which maybe you'll never experience). Obviously most beekeepers own more than one hive so that should be assumed. Being able to borrow or loan equipment to/with others, in the event of swarms is helpful of course.

    My colony just swarmed and it's brood-less at the moment (there's a queen, she just hasn't started laying yet). I"m actually considering taking that opportunity to do major hive surgery - cutting all my combs down to fit into a Hardison hive I own. It's that much of a hassle for me, knowing multiple other beekeepers in town and wanting to be 'standardised' with them.
    urban top bar hives in Oakland and Berkeley, CA...

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