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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
    Posts
    306

    Default Nuc from deeps to mediums

    I successfully overwintered several five-frame nucs. A new beekeeper near me contacted me and wants to buy some, but she wants to keep her bees on mediums only. My nucs, and hives, are all on deeps. I run mediums only as honey supers.

    Is there a simple way to get the bees in the nucs from deeps to mediums in a reasonable amount of time? What are some of my options? Thanks for your help.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Location
    DuPage County, Illinois USA
    Posts
    9,183

    Default Re: Nuc from deeps to mediums

    I'll look forward to the replies on your question. From my experience, no. I tried placing the 4-5 deep combs in the middle position of two mediums with medium frames of comb all around. The bees were very resistant to move off the deep combs onto the mediums. I kept pulling a deep comb out to reduce their brood, but in the end after all the deeps were out, they just weren't a strong colony.
    Regards, Barry

  3. #3

    Default Re: Nuc from deeps to mediums

    When I changed over from mixed to all mediums I just made up a bunch of bottom bars out of some 3/4 stock, drilled holes and preset nails in each end, made up a jig to measure where to cut the deep side bars, went out to my two colonies at the time and cut the comb with a razor knife and the side bars with a hack saw. I then nailed on the new bottom bar. Knowing what I know now this must have been hard or fatal on any larva or developing bees but it worked and only took a couple of hours. Another thing I have done is set up 4 medium boxes and put your deep frames to the outside and medium frames to the inside. The deep frames hang down into the medium box below. It takes quite awhile for the bees to migrate to the center.

    Good luck,

    Pete0
    Bena, VA

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Oakland, CA, USA
    Posts
    101

    Default Re: Nuc from deeps to mediums

    Marc,

    Haven't done it myself but prepping to get some hives on deeps and then splitting them to nuc size and create all medium hives.

    Here is my current idea:

    1. Create 2 small boxes to fit into a deep ~3 inches tall (I haven't done the exact calculation), so that I can put medium frames above them and leave some bee space. The idea here is similar to what people said, but uses a single deep box rather than 2 mediums. Keep 4 or 5 deep frames in the center and mediums on either side.
    2. As an alternative add a medium box (either using the whole deep or having split it into nucs and using medium nucs). When you see eggs in the medium box, confirm the queen is there and add an excluder between the two. Let the brood hatch out the deep brood, and keep adding medium boxes as needed to handle expansion. Once all the deep brood is hatched you've got a hive on mediums.


    Since you're starting with 5 frame nucs already. I presume the 2nd model would be easiest for you.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Location
    DuPage County, Illinois USA
    Posts
    9,183

    Default Re: Nuc from deeps to mediums

    Pete -
    That is what I did when I converted all deeps to mediums. Simply cut the side bars at the medium length and didn't even worry about bottom bars till later when I could work with the empty comb. I couldn't do that with these nucs as they were not mine.
    Regards, Barry

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Lynchburg, VA
    Posts
    2,530

    Default Re: Nuc from deeps to mediums

    It's simple. Just put the nuc's deep frames in a deep box and fill out the rest of the box with deep frames. When they need more boxes put on mediums. Eventually, move the deep to the top and use it for honey storage. Extract it and either sell the box and frames or save it for installing another deep nuc in the future.

    Installing a medium nuc in deep boxes is just the reverse. Start with a medium on the bottom and rotate it up.
    From each according to his ability, to each according to his contribution. Charles Koch

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Location
    DuPage County, Illinois USA
    Posts
    9,183

    Default Re: Nuc from deeps to mediums

    That only works if you have deep equipment around, which I don't.
    Regards, Barry

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Auburn, Washington, USA
    Posts
    302

    Default Re: Nuc from deeps to mediums

    Removed by author - bad idea.
    Last edited by AramF; 03-07-2011 at 01:30 PM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Nelson, South Island, New Zealand
    Posts
    501

    Default Re: Nuc from deeps to mediums

    I think Pete and Barrys way is the best wont take very long and no mucking around with switching frames and boxs after the bees are sold. I would put the bottom bars on the cut frames the same time as I cut them, All done and dusted with minimal fuss and bother

    You wont lose alot of brood and even if you did with a good young queen and spring build up it wont be long before that hive is packed with bees.

    frazz

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Cookeville, TN, USA
    Posts
    3,599

    Default Re: Nuc from deeps to mediums

    How about just put the deep on top of the stack and add supers to the bottom (nadiring instead of supering ala Warre hives) in a few weeks/months the brood will be on the bottom and the top will either be empty or full of stores. If it gets emptied during a dearth you're done, if not uncap the honey and put it above an inner cover and let them rob it out.

    Trauma to bees = 0.
    Mangled equipment also 0.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    North Bend, WA
    Posts
    504

    Default Re: Nuc from deeps to mediums

    It's not an easy process. That's why I sell both med and deep nucs. Best way to go about it is to use two mediums as a tall deep for one year (get 5 more deep frames). Using it as the bottom box, they may attach some comb to the bottom of the frames, but probably not.

    Next spring, remove the deep frames.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Nuc from deeps to mediums

    How about taking a open bottom med nuc that has some drawen out comb in it on top of the deep with a queen exscluder in between and move the queen into the med box.
    David
    My-smokepole
    http://www.davidspaintingandwallpapering.com"

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
    Posts
    306

    Default Re: Nuc from deeps to mediums

    Those are some creative ideas you posted. Thanks guys. I think I will suggest to my customer to go with a combination of one deep and the rest mediums for this year and get the bees slowly out of the deep. It seems to be the easiest solution.
    Thanks again everyone.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    South San Ysidro, NM
    Posts
    503

    Default Re: Nuc from deeps to mediums

    That probably is the easiest solution. I have all mediums plus two deeps because of buying nucs in the past. After the deeps were rotated out of use, they became swarm traps. When I catch swarms in them, mediums get added and the deeps get rorated out again. Also, if I get a swarm call, I just grab one of the deep boxes (one is usually empty and already has old drawn comb in it).

    It really isn't a hassle having the deep boxes around.

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