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Thread: pallets

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
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    Manitoba Canada
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    Default pallets

    I would like to hear from beekeepers on how they best set up thier hives on pallets, or how they best find a pallet to be made up. How are your hives fastened, and what kind of tops an bottoms do you prefer using?
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  2. #2

    Default

    My hives are on 4 way pallets with u shaped clips. Most of the tops and pallets are from Mann Lake. I do have some lids that are nothing but a solid piece of plywood. Only thing I don't like about the pallets with the U shaped clips is that ants get in between the boxes.

    Matt
    Columbia City, Indiana

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Beecher Il
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    76

    Default

    It depends on what your trying to do. If your just trying to move a few hives once in a while just throw them on a pallet and go. If your looking to move them more often than that and looking to build a pallet here are a few things to look at.
    Cross boards on the bottom should be spaced where they will not hit a pallet clip when you stack them on top of each other. If you use migratory covers the cross boards have to land on the flat of the cover. I use pressure treated 1X3". If you use pine they will rot fast.
    If you want to load from the side and end it is best to buy made runners with the slot cut in them from a used pallet shop. There all the same and it will save you a bunch of time. If your just going to load from the end 2X3" are fine.
    I like 5/8" plywood for the deck. 1/2" is kinda flimsy and 3/4" weighs allot. Your going to be handling them for years the lighter they are the easer your life will be.
    Now the deck lay out. Your going to have 2 hives side by side a space and then 2 more hives. The space is for your hand when your pulling supers. There are two types of pallet clips U and W clips. The W clips leave a space air can get in between the hives and they don't rot as fast. With the U clip your going to get ants nest between your hive bodies and with them packed tight they hold moisture and will rot faster. I use U clips. In the winter I wrap the skid and like the hives tight together. To control the ants I spray WD 40 on the out side of one of the bodies. The entrance should be on the outside of the pallet. This helps to keep the bees from fighting. I built my pallets so in the winter I can pick the hive off of the front clip slide it back and there is a smaller entrance for winter. I think the summer entrance is 6" and the winter is 11/2". When there in the winter position they are side by side and back to back. I use just flat plywood for covers. If your using covers with a edge this wouldn't work. I wrap the whole skid and I'm done. The edges are made from the cut offs of the ply wood. I have a 2" landing in front of the hive.
    The next batch I'm going to try to put some type of hole to drain the back corners. Pallets are never level when it rains 2 hives always have water in the back of the bottom.

    Hope this helps.

    `
    Al

  4. #4
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    FRASER VALLEY, BRITISH COLUMBIA
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    Default pallets

    Ian:

    Migratory pallets and lids. Ask your neighbour Murray L. how they are made. He's made a bunch of equipment for me over the last few years. I like the u clips. My equipment is dipped in hot parrafin and rosin so boxes touching is a non issue. They won't rot the same as painted equipment.

    The lids should have a cleat on top. This cleat acts as a brake for the pallet that is placed on top. If the top pallet slides then the cleat on the bottom lid will prevent the upper pallet from sliding off.

    In the winter I keep an inner cover for top ventilation. As soon as we start moving bees the inner cover goes.

    Jean-Marc

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Sacramento,California,USA
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    3,620

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    I run 8 frame deeps. The are 14" wide. I make pallets out of 2x4 green treated and 3/4 plywood. Pallets are 28" x 44" and hold 4 hives, side by side and back to back. I don't use any Uclips. The bottom boards are SBB built into the pallets.

    2 - 2x4x44 on bottom, laid flat
    3 - 2x4x28 on edge, on top of that
    2 - 2x4x44 laid flat, on top of that
    1 - 28x44 ply on top, with 4 12x18 holes cut in with circular saw
    #8 mesh hardware cloth over the 12x18 holes in plywood creates SBB for each hive box
    1x3/4 on top of ply around edges and in correct placement for setting the hives on, running 3/4 beespace on the bottom instead of 3/8
    migratory covers, no inner covers.

    can load 72 hives, 36 in each level which is 9 pallets on each level, on 1 ton flatbed truck.

    I don't do pollenation, but my neighbor does and this is what he runs, I help him with loading and hauling each year. I've got 5 pallets I've made and used, but they are stored at the moment as I just can't run that many where I'm at right now.
    “When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.” – John Muir

  6. #6
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    Default

    Good stuff guys, thanks for the input!

    What is a W clip?
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Lakeland FL
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    840

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    it ia a clip shaped like a W lol. it is like a U clip but with a 1/2in space between the hive bodies. Nick

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    VENTURA, California, USA
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    3,604

    Default U & W Pallet Clip Photos

    Here is a URL that has photos of the U & W pallet clips.

    http://www.mannlakeltd.com/catalog/page32.html

    Regards,
    Ernie
    Ernie
    My websitehttp://bees4u.com/

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Fresno California USA
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    2,479

    Default Pallets 4 Ian

    You have gotten all the important design input I think.

    Personally 3/4 ply & W clips. Also if you use resawn ( 11/16 ) for cross pcs under pallet they won't grip the lid underneath. Full 3/4" will bottom out on lids with 3/4" cleats. Copper Napthenate ? wood preserve has worked well specially on ends & edges. Also most make beeways that are 1 1/2" or so wide just for durability . For loading on trucks length of pallet is best just under 48" like 47 or 46. If you use W clips like me the pallets need to be 33" wide.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Clear Lake, WI / Sebring, FL
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    Default

    I use a 35" pallet with a 3.75" clip, there is a 2" space between the hives. It makes it nice to put your hand in between the hives. You dont have to worry about ants building nests in there and falling in a open brood nest . I think I get more air flow when on a semi, I dont know ,it works for me. If you want some pics let me know.

  11. #11
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    Default If you want some pics let me know.

    Trevor,
    Please provide us with some pics.
    Ernie
    Ernie
    My websitehttp://bees4u.com/

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2002
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    San Mateo, CA
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    Default

    [quote=Trevor Mansell;370609]I use a 35" pallet with a 3.75" clip,./quote]

    Source for these clips????

  13. #13
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    I see what your reffering to, cool
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  14. #14
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    Jan 2005
    Location
    Clear Lake, WI / Sebring, FL
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  15. #15
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    Clear Lake, WI / Sebring, FL
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    Default

    [QUOTE=odfrank;370660]
    Quote Originally Posted by Trevor Mansell View Post
    I use a 35" pallet with a 3.75" clip,./quote]

    Source for these clips????
    I get the clips made at a sheet metal shop in town. They cost about the same as Mann Lake or Dadant.

  16. #16
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    Default

    Thanks Trevor for the pics
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  17. #17
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    Jun 2003
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    Lakeland FL
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    Default

    hey trevor cool design never saw one like that. for your clip could you take a regular U shaped clip and just cut it in half and nail it on at th correct spaceing?

  18. #18
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    Clear Lake, WI / Sebring, FL
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    Quote Originally Posted by swarm_trapper View Post
    hey trevor cool design never saw one like that. for your clip could you take a regular U shaped clip and just cut it in half and nail it on at th correct spaceing?
    Probably, you would just have to redrill the holes. The clips cost .50 each ,I just need to have the corners cut off one side so the boxes slide on easier.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
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    VENTURA, California, USA
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    Default Pallet photos

    Trevor,
    Thank you for the pics!
    Ernie
    Ernie
    My websitehttp://bees4u.com/

  20. #20
    Join Date
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    VENTURA, California, USA
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    Default Pallet Photos

    Here is a Mann Lake style pallet.

    http://www.mannlakeltd.com/catalog/page25.html

    Here is a photo of Mann Lake pallets that were for sale on this forum. The photo shows both sides of the pallet.

    http://www.windmillhillfarm.com/pall...for%20sale.htm

    Regards,
    Ernie
    Ernie
    My websitehttp://bees4u.com/

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