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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Slidell, LA, USA
    Posts
    259

    Default Joints on hive bodies

    I just joined the forum and have a question about building hive bodies. I plan on using 3/4 plywood and have a question about alternatives to the standard box joint.

    I would like to miter the ends on a 45 and use 1/4 inch dowels, screws and glue to hole them together. If necessary I can also use fiberglass tape and resin to seal the joint and strengten it a bit. I am planning on using resin to weatherproof the outside of the hive body.

    Will this provide enough stability to the hive body?

    Thanks,

    Al

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Fairfield County, Connecticut, USA
    Posts
    3,659

    Default Re: Joints on hive bodies

    I would skip the dowels and just use Titebond III and screws for the mitered joints. Sealing/reinforcing the corners with some two or three inch fiberglass tape and resin sounds good. You'll also want to seal all edges with resin or TBIII.
    BeeCurious
    Trying to think inside the box...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Slidell, LA, USA
    Posts
    259

    Default Re: Joints on hive bodies

    Thanks for the responses.

    I probably shouldn't put resin on the inside of the box, don't see any real reason to do that unless it makes removing frames easier. If I use plywood sanded on one side (BC) would it be better to put the smooth side inside the hive to facilitate removing frames? Is there any reason to paint the inside of the bodies? It was suggested in a beginners class at the local bee club that we could paint the hive bodies with melted bees wax, is there a good reason to track some down and use if for the interior of the hive bodies

    I will order the Titebond III, looks like a pretty good product.

    So now the question is butt joint or miter joint. From the experiences I have had with wood working I was thinking just the butt joint and the dowel but wanted to have more glue area and decided on the miter joint.

    Maybe with the butt joint, dowels, and Titebond III I could do without the fiberglass tape but I do like the idea of the extra stability. Its tough not having any bee experience and trying to change a widely accepted constuction technique (box joint)

    Thanks Again CG3 and Beecurious

    Al

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Issaquah,WA,USA
    Posts
    2,394

    Default Re: Joints on hive bodies

    Glue Screw with TB3 and you should be good.

    1/2 ply is not going to make them as thick as a normal box so keep in mind you will have a different outer dimensions then regular bought boxes. I use ply for tops and bottoms and make the boxes normally. I do make all my Nuc's out of ply because they are smaller anyway. My nuc's have an attached bottom so it gives them strength.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Slidell, LA, USA
    Posts
    259

    Default Re: Joints on hive bodies

    Yea I wish I could afford true 3/4 ply sanded both sides but depending on what I learn about the requirements for the interior of the hive I will probably just use 3/4 (23/32 you pay for the layer sanded off) for the bodies.

    You guys are making it easier and easier.

    Al

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Cattaraugus,New York, USA
    Posts
    345

    Default Re: Joints on hive bodies

    Why not just use 1" lumber. From the mill it is usually 3/4 inches and is about the same cost per box as plywood, atleast here it is.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Athens, OH
    Posts
    2,721

    Default Re: Joints on hive bodies

    Depending on the quality of the plywood both rabbet and miter joints can cause plywood to delaminate in the weather. I think you'd be better off to use a plain butt joint with a good polyurethane construction adhesive ( PL5000 or similar NOT Gorilla glue). Fasteners don't hold well in plywood end grain. Fiberglass tape would probably help but to coat the entire box would be too much of a vapor barrier, preventing moisture in the wood from passing through, promoting delamination and/or mold.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Draper, UT
    Posts
    30

    Default Re: Joints on hive bodies

    A great way to join plywood into a hive box is the Eco Bee Box bracket.

    http://ecobeebox.com/ecobeebox/Home.html

    or

    http://www.facebook.com/pages/Eco-Be...66536623369158

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Union County, Ky, USA
    Posts
    215

    Default Re: Joints on hive bodies

    I would build them how ever I wanted to if I was you. Use what ever skills you have with what ever materials you can get. I have built hives with box joints, butt joints and rabbit joints. Butt joint is the fastest & easiest. The rabbit joint is probably the next fastest and next easiest. The box joint is probably the most costly and requires a bit of setup. A good dado blade is expensive and getting the setup is a pain. I have a saw with a dado blade and a box joint jig that is dedicated for my box joints. Hands down, the box joint is the strongest. It has more gluing surface area than the others too. Stays square. Drop one of those butt joined or rabbit joined boxes on its corner, or pry up on that corner after is been glued down with propolis and you will appreciate the strength of the box joint. Regardless of the glue and fasteners used.

    That being said. I have some butt and rabbit joined boxes that I have used for a few years & they work well. So I am not knocking them at all. I just have to be gentle with em. I built them before I had the skill or tools to cut the box joints. But a hundred dollar dado blade later and an extra table saw, box joints are the way for me. If you want similar strength of a box joint, there is an easy way. Instead of 6 interlocking fingers or so on the end of the board, just cut two, or one or three. They can be cut with a jig saw, and dont have to have too much precision.

    Any way you go, it'll be fine. If it doesnt work for ya, you will do something different .

    Rob

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Fairfield County, Connecticut, USA
    Posts
    3,659

    Default Re: Joints on hive bodies

    Quote Originally Posted by beehivestate View Post
    A great way to join plywood into a hive box is the Eco Bee Box bracket.

    http://ecobeebox.com/ecobeebox/Home.html

    or

    http://www.facebook.com/pages/Eco-Be...66536623369158

    Beehivestate,

    I suspect that you are the owner of the website...

    I don't see the advantage of adding a device that opens the joint to the elements.

    I can almost purchase a box for the price of a set of corners.
    BeeCurious
    Trying to think inside the box...

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Draper, UT
    Posts
    30

    Default Re: Joints on hive bodies

    After reading this thread, really I was besides myself. The traditional box corner is a dado corner and has been around since 1853. Why did they choose this corner, because it was the strongest corner they could make. Problem is there are twice the amount of cut edges that could damage and their fasteners go into end grain. Side problems are when manufacturing them, one mistake and the entire box is trash, painting is required to keep moisture out of the cut edges. Over the years all sorts of paints have been used, but fail year after year. Just look in any bee magazine to prove the point. Purchasing the brackets serve many current problems; never have to dado again; less cut edges on corners; no end grain fasteners; wood can't warp; wood also won't crack due to the constrictive dado cuts; the humidity inside the hive causes probably most of the paint failure; leaving the panels natural allows everything to breathe; if a panel breaks it is simple to remove and replace it saving many hours repairing; the box can be thrown and won't break; the problems due to frame rests breaking is solved; also have added locking clips that lines up and holds everything together. You can paint the panels used with the Eco Bee Box, or left natural it is an option. How many problems do you need to encounter with a traditional box and how many hours fixing it when a solution is there that solves all of them and is stronger in the end.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Evansville, IN
    Posts
    2,505

    Default Re: Joints on hive bodies

    Properly painted (alkyd primer followed by high quality paint) and box joints will last indefinitely. Note that you must PROPERLY paint the joints -- they must be tight or filled completely, you MUST use a good primer, and you must use high quality paint that sticks well.

    Repainting is only required every decade or so -- my brother's boxes look new and they have been in use for seven years now. May repaint any that are not in use this winter just for the hell of it, but done right it's not a big deal.

    I still think that properly made boxes with box joints in good lumber properly painted are permanent. I certainly make all of mine as if that were the case, wrong place to save money.

    "naturally weathered" pine will rot in a few years.

    Peter

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Menomonee Falls, Wis.
    Posts
    2,729

    Default Re: Joints on hive bodies

    I support Psfreds claims ALMOST, they will last a long time, but not forever. The supers(deeps) that my father and Grandfather built in the 40's are still functional, but the repair pieces on the top and bottom are numerous. They have reached the end of their economic life.

    Crazy Roland

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