Re: Deep Honey Supers?
From a different perspective some people are using all mediums, mainly due to weight of handling I believe. There are several commercial beeks down here going that direction but this is a low flow part of the country.
One downside to a deep/medium combination is the market, supplies and labor for medium nucs is not favorable.
I use the deep/medium combination because the weight and also it is about right for winter stores in my area. With SHB it is now critical to keep every square inch covered with bees if temperatures are favorable for SHB larvae.
I rotate frames into medium supers to be drawn and then down into the brood chamber medium before the are culled after a few seasons.
Deep frames have to go straight into the brood chamber to be drawn. I'd prefer to be dropping drawn frames in instead but extracting deeps is so much more time consuming with my equipment.
One technique that has worked is to overwinter with a deep over a medium. In the spring instead of reversing the boxes I will pull the medium and replace with a deep on top with 2 or 3 drawn frames. This give me a double deep expansion in the spring to get deeps drawn out. They are then split and a medium added above the chamber is added for the rest of the season. Going into winter the medium will be capped out with honey and pollen and the deep will be capped out on the sides with a brood nest in the middle. At the right point the medium is moved to the bottom so that it is ending the winter empty with the brood nest up in the deep to start the cycle over again.
Deep frames are kept fresh by constantly siphoning off frames to nuc's. The only margin reducing culling is the overaged medium frames that are stripped for wax. i still get the efficiency on honey extraction of using all mediums. Any honey stored in deeps is used for nuc production: cell builders, mating nucs, spring splits, etc or is used for wintering (we don't extract our fall flow - it generally tastes too bitter).
"Beware of all enterprises that require new clothes"
Henry David Thoreau, Walden