frame size and bee space
my understanding is that the average space between each side of a standard frame and the inside end of a standard box is 5/16 of an inch,
and that it ranges from 1/4 to 3/8, depending on how the frame is pushed towards the end of the box.
(that's where the bottom bar is 17-3/4 inches and the box is 18-3/8 on the inside).
how do you think the bees would behave if the bottom bar were 17-5/16 of an inch?
in other words, what if the average space between the frame and the inside end of a standard box were 17/32, and it ranged from 15/32 to 19/32 depending on how the frame were pushed towards the end of the box?
do you think there would be a burr problem?
nobody knows... :confused:
Bee Space or not Bee Space
Bee space is between ([1/4 = .25] to [3/8" = .375"]), your proposed ([15/32" = .46875"] to [19/32" = .59375"]) is way beyond, bee space, even at the lower side. My guess is that you could have some problems with burr comb. But I haven't tested it, and probably won't, so if you do, please let us know what happens, if you do test it.
I've sometimes had badly out of square frames where one side of the frame was closer than 1/4" to the inside end of the hive, the bees would glue it with a heavy layer of propolis, but they didn't burr comb the opposite side (which may still have been within the 1/4" - 3/8" bee space parameters. It seems that no matter how tightly I squeeze my frames together the bees are able to get propolis between the end bar edges until it builds up to alter the spacing between frames, until I get around to scraping some off. And most hives seem to build some burr comb between top bars and bottom bars above, between top bars and cover, between bottom bars and top bars below, between the sides of top bars (connecting frame to frame), and comb faces to comb faces, sometimes between bottom bars and slatted rack (though this is rare), between outside comb faces and the inside hive walls - but not the ends. I cannot ever remember a case where the end bars had burr comb attaching them to the hive's inside end walls, just a few attached with propolis.
Last edited by Joseph Clemens; 06-16-2008 at 08:06 AM.