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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    Brandenburg, KY
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    Default Fancy Garden Hive

    We've built an inital prototype of a fancy garden hive. This is a medium super. We're thinking of having a deep hive body with a banner in the center for a name or farm name. What do you think of the design?


  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
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    Farmington, New Mexico
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    6,668

    Default Re: Fancy Garden Hive

    I can't quite tell what I'm looking at. Is that a side of a box with the fingers of the box joint on either side? Is it wood? Pretty impressive.
    Nobody ruins my day without my permission, and I refuse to grant it...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    Brandenburg, KY
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    332

    Default Re: Fancy Garden Hive

    Sorry,
    Should have had more detail, it's an 8-frame medium, the front of the box. It takes a bit to cut out and we run mediums, so I thought we would start with that before moving on to deeps. That way, I get to use the prototypes!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Concrete, WA, USA
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    761

    Default Re: Fancy Garden Hive

    looks nice - id just worry about decay - looks as thought you carved out about 3/8 or so of the wood to get the honeycomb cells ???

    id be upset to order a box that would only last 2 years in the weather ???

    maybe if you dipped the whole thing it might last

    but great job on it

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    Brandenburg, KY
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    332

    Default Re: Fancy Garden Hive

    We figured it would need to be stained/coated or dipped heavily. The other way of making it would be to make the board thicker to accommodate the carving and then sloping it back into 3/4" so the main thickness is 3/4" solid. We may go a head and cut one of those to see how it would look. We were also a bit worried about the final thickness of the panel.

    We were also thinking of making it from sassafras instead of pine for more durability, plus we can get the sassafras locally. I think red cedar would also be very pretty. We can drive a bit and get cypress. That would probably also help on the longevity of the boxes.

    A box like this would be expensive, so you’d definitely want it to last quite a while.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
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    4,960

    Default Re: Fancy Garden Hive

    Handholds, cleats?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Brandenburg, KY
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    332

    Default Re: Fancy Garden Hive

    Handholds on all sides except the front. Could put one in the front and do the carving around it.....do you think that would distract too much from the carving? Could do cleats on the sides and rear also. A cleat on the front I don't think would work well with the carving.......opinion?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    SOMERSET, ENGLAND
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    338

    Default Re: Fancy Garden Hive

    KB.. i like it,looks great.
    We also manufacture lots of cedar hives for sale,and already make a pretty hive for gardens with stand and gabled roof,but have been thinking of doing something similar to yours for a while now,but perhaps not quite as elaborate.
    Have also been toying with the idea of making a few out of english walnut,have plenty of that at the moment. Obviously same as yourself,would not be selling them cheap,made for a select kind of market really,as opposed to the normal production hives. Love to see a picture of one of yours when all made up complete.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Brandenburg, KY
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    332

    Default Re: Fancy Garden Hive

    BeeUK,
    We looked at the hardwoods, but they are tough on the carving tools, plus many of the hardwoods are dense making for heavy boxes. I'm going down to medium 8's right now. I have a few old boxes that are made out of oak. We cut them down to 8's and they still feel twice as heavy as the pine boxes.

    You are correct that we are looking at a select market. These would be show hives, award/prize hives, birthday/christmas gifts and such. There are plenty of folks who can make the basic boxes significantly cheaper that we could, plus we really don't want to make that type of box.

    Do you use the red or white cedar? How is the market for those boxes in the UK?

    We are probably a couple of weeks away from assembing a complete hive. Will post though, when we get there.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    SOMERSET, ENGLAND
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    338

    Default Re: Fancy Garden Hive

    Hi KB
    we use nearly all western red cedar,it's the most popular timber used for hives in the uk,plus pine for the frames,we sawmill and kiln dry all our own timber,and we tend to concentrate on good quality finnished hives. Cannot make them fast enough,as there is rather a boom going on with beekeeping over here at the moment...seems everyone wants to be a beekeeper for the last couple of years,great for buisness, but cannot last at this level i'm sure...lol.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    Brandenburg, KY
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    332

    Default Re: Fancy Garden Hive

    Thanks to everyone for their comments so far. We really appreciate the feedback.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Fairfield County, Connecticut, USA
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    3,685

    Default Re: Fancy Garden Hive

    I would suggest using your carved panels (without handholds) to make three-sided displays for honey with shelves. Shelves could strengthen the assembly and a lightly built Garden Top could bee used. The display could "grow" by adding sections...

    I think you might be able to come up with other uses for hive/bee themed carvings. Perhaps signs, or some sort of gift item. A HONEY sign with the bee relief could be nice.

    Think beyond the box....
    BeeCurious
    5 hives and 8 nucs................... Trying to think inside the box...

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Palm Bay, FL, USA
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    2,297

    Default Re: Fancy Garden Hive

    Instead of making the carving part of the front side piece why not make a free form plaque that would wrap around the handhold? Then just glue it on. As mentioned above the plaques would make nice signs for folks selling at flea markets, farm shows etc.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Concord, CA
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    4,167

    Default Re: Fancy Garden Hive

    I'd buy a 10 frame med with all 4 sides done for my wife. She'd really like that.
    A guy at our club has been making some with the word honey on all 4 sides. She already has one of those.

    Nice Job
    Dan

  15. #15
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
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    Default Re: Fancy Garden Hive

    I think that most of the whining about bee boxes being to heavy is because folks only use handholds, and not cleats. Finger tips are not made for lifting, especially gloved finger tips. I have always had beveled cleats on all boxes. I am weak with MS and I only whine about deeps filled with honey.
    To achieve cleats I would incorporate a twisted branch across the ends with a swarm hanging from it. Or a bench with hives on top.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Brandenburg, KY
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    332

    Default Re: Fancy Garden Hive

    Quote Originally Posted by fish_stix View Post
    Instead of making the carving part of the front side piece why not make a free form plaque that would wrap around the handhold? Then just glue it on.
    I'm not sure I follow on wrapping aruond the handhold....it would go above and below the handhold...we just have a cutout where the handhold is and the plaque fits over the handhold? If it is a plaque, then it will stick out from the box, so the sides should be beveled for water runoff......

    Do I have the concept right? Would folks mind having a plaque project out from the hive box?

    On signage, we can make signs currently up to 24" X 26". With an equipment upgrade we can go 24" X 56".

  17. #17
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    Jan 2010
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    Brandenburg, KY
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    Default Re: Fancy Garden Hive

    Quote Originally Posted by odfrank View Post
    I think that most of the whining about bee boxes being to heavy is because folks only use handholds, and not cleats.To achieve cleats I would incorporate a twisted branch across the ends with a swarm hanging from it. Or a bench with hives on top.
    Instead of carving the box, we carve cleats? So one type of cleat would be a 1/1/2" to 2" wide cleat say roughly 12" in length. We would carve a branch into that rectangle and have a swarm hanging off one end of the branch, so the cleat blank would actually be like a short capital L turned sideways and the bottom of the L would be where the swarm was carved. Is this what correct? I'm not certain what you mean by a bench with hives on top...can you help me out here?

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    Brandenburg, KY
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    332

    Default Re: Fancy Garden Hive

    Ok, here is our second effort in which we framed the panel to help strengthen it and for nailing. Please note that we are using hive body parts we have on hand which are not select grade. These are just prototypes.


  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Brandenburg, KY
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    Re: Fancy Garden Hive

    Here are a couple of more designs we've produced. We have one more that we are currently working on and that will complete our intial set of designs.




  20. #20
    Join Date
    May 2008
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    Concord, CA
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    4,167

    Default Re: Fancy Garden Hive

    Very nice, I'm tempted to buy one of those machines.
    Dan

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