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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Santa Fe, NM
    Posts
    618

    Default D. Coats Nuc Boxes

    I have been working on a few 5 frame nuc boxes based on the original specs and post by D. Coates. I started visiting a few local construction sites and after a few calls I was able to gather (for free) several partial sheets of 3/4" plywood and some 15/32" plywood. One project was a remodel, and they had 5-6 full sheets of 15/32" new plywood that they were glad to give me. I started making a few boxes and have been experimenting with the original design to suit my needs. I am making 5 frame standard deeps, as well as a few 6 5/8" shallow nucs. The 3/4" boxes are definitely heavy-duty but the 15/32" seems to work well also. In addition I have experimented using 3/4" for the sides and 15/32" for the end panels. Keeping the correct interior dimensions, and the proper bee space is important. I have a few more to make, and then finish up the painting. Someone asked awhile back about an adjustable entrance. I took a couple pictures of some metal entrance reducers I made (with a sliding closure) that I have used on a few hives. I also use these with the Dadant metal mouse guards to minimize the size of the entrance. They work great. No two of these boxes are really identical. I have never attached photo files here but I’ll give it a try. Thanks D. Coates for getting me started.

    http://i1116.photobucket.com/albums/...P1010491-1.jpg
    http://i1116.photobucket.com/albums/...P1010492-1.jpg
    http://i1116.photobucket.com/albums/...P1010493-2.jpg
    http://i1116.photobucket.com/albums/...P1010495-1.jpg
    Last edited by Barry; 03-21-2011 at 10:42 AM. Reason: images too large - read image posting rules!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Santa Fe, NM
    Posts
    618

    Default Re: D. Coats Nuc Boxes

    Barry apologies regarding the size of my original pictures. I have never posted photos before and tried to follow the procedures. I'll continue to read up on the best practices. Thank you for your assistance.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Issaquah,WA,USA
    Posts
    2,333

    Default Re: D. Coats Nuc Boxes

    So I made a few of these and the frames fit perfectly. so perfectly that there is no extra room around the end of the frames. I could switch my end pieces to 3/8 which would give me an extra 1/4 around the the frames so the girls can climb around the sides of the frames. Is that important? Do they need to move around the outer edge of the frames or is top and bottom enough? My typical boxes are 18 1/2 x 14 3/4 inner dimensions and this nuc winds up being 18 x 7 1/2 so there is not slop on the ends for the bee's to move around the frames. I could switch from 1/2 to 3/8th on the end caps and that would give us more room for them making it 18 1/4 long. Any suggestions.?

    PS I like your sheet metal closers thingy. Nice.

    These were the plans I used http://s196.photobucket.com/albums/a...3-17205915.jpg
    Last edited by EastSideBuzz; 03-21-2011 at 06:26 PM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Oregon City, Oregon
    Posts
    986

    Default Re: D. Coats Nuc Boxes

    Do they need to move around the outer edge of the frames
    If they cant move around the ends they will glue them together and you will hate life... Those nucs turned out nice, the only thing I would do is paint the landing board and about an inch into the opening so they don't rot there first..
    Honeydew

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Issaquah,WA,USA
    Posts
    2,333

    Default Re: D. Coats Nuc Boxes

    That is what I was hoping you would not say. OK. We will cut new ends out of 3/8 and modify them. That will give some moving room around the ends. Might cut a few channels running side ways to allow guaranteed bee movement. Guess the dimensions of the plans I used, I did not take into account my using 5/8 in ply instead of 1/2 inch.

    I will save the 40 ends I will have left over for the next batch of Nuc's and make them a bit larger so I can use them. Or I have 40 started boards for my fireplace.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Spicewood, TX, USA
    Posts
    375

    Default Re: D. Coats Nuc Boxes

    I discovered the same thing using 19/32". I was making swarm traps and it's not that important anyway. On the next batch, I cut the side panels 19 -7/16", which is 18-1/4" + ( 2 x thickness).

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
    Posts
    308

    Default Re: D. Coats Nuc Boxes

    On Saturday we made 8 nucs with a friend of ours according to D_Coates' specs. They turned out nicely, and are really not hard to make. It did tale us a lot longer, but that's mainly because we didn't have a table saw and had to cut everything with a skill saw. Next batch we'll have a table saw for sure.

    The one thing though I didn't like about our nucs, and I start to see several others made a slight change as well to address that, is that the top is slightly overhanging the sides of the nuc. I didn't pay attention to that before I made the cuts, but I had always assumed that the top ends flush with the sides, in case I want to push them together tightly for winter there wouldn't be any gaps. Several of you that posted pictures show the top being flush with the sides and not overhanging. Is that something you simply adjusted?

    Now that I think about, it could also be a factor of what thickness of plywood you use... mine is 15/32 thick...hmmm. What do you think, do you have a preference for roof overhang or being flush with the sides? Also, I am debating whether to add an upper entrance/ventilation hole to have good ventilation especially during the winter. What have others done in that regard?

    Thanks for your feedback. Btw, great looking nucs and i like the slider entrance reducer!!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Santa Fe, NM
    Posts
    618

    Default Re: D. Coats Nuc Boxes

    I have always made my nuc boxes with flush top covers at the sides. I have experimented with several different style tops. Naturally you could also fabricate telescoping tops for these as sold by some of the beekeeping companies. I like the flat tops with flush sides myself. I also have a few nucs made up that have tight frames to the end panels. I simple made an adjustment to the dimensions to allow for 1/4" or so to allow the bees more room to move around. Just model them after a standard 10 frame deep or shallow and you should be ok.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Issaquah,WA,USA
    Posts
    2,333

    Default Re: D. Coats Nuc Boxes

    Quote Originally Posted by Marc View Post
    It did tale us a lot longer, but that's mainly because we didn't have a table saw and had to cut everything with a skill saw. Next batch we'll have a table saw for sure.
    I bought a Ridgid table saw and it cuts like butter. I just cut stuff to cut stuff. It is so great. it wheels out into my driveway and I just go nuts cutting. It is so easy to use you will never go back to a skilsaw. Folds up rolls away. Such a nice saw. If you are going to use it much at all go with a pro saw not a homeowner saw it wil last a lifetime and they guarantee the motor forever. And I don't see them going out of business any time soon. I also love their nail guns also the Ridgid ones that is.




    Quote Originally Posted by Riskybizz View Post
    I also have a few nucs made up that have tight frames to the end panels. I simple made an adjustment to the dimensions to allow for 1/4" or so to allow the bees more room to move around. Just model them after a standard 10 frame deep or shallow and you should be ok.
    Yea I should have measured before I cut 40 side panels. Tough to add back in that 1/4 inch. Also letting the side panel stick out looks stupid and the handle holds don't fit well. I started gluing the second one when my son put a frame in the first and noticed it. Kind of glad I did not get the 20 done. So a sawzall cut the ends out and now we are using 3/8 on the side panels and it has a much larger gap.

    Now for the top. We went 9 inches wide and it over hangs 1/4 can always cut it down. I also use 1/2 on my tops and cut it 22 inches long to start. I wont push them tight in the winter though. I overwinter 2 Nuc's in a deep split in half on top of my regular colonies. these are just summer homes for the little ones. And spring buildings for me.
    Last edited by EastSideBuzz; 03-22-2011 at 09:32 AM.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Santa Fe, NM
    Posts
    618

    Default Re: D. Coats Nuc Boxes

    East Side

    I don't know how long your side panels are but as I recall if they are 19-1/4" and you use 15/32" or less plywood end panels your frame space ends up being perfect. I am still experimenting on various size plywoods and dimensions. I have several proto-types (that work for me) and once I finally figure out which ones I like the best i'll probably just make up some more of those. At first I was skepticle of the thinner plywoods as opposed to the 3/4however, after making up both, the 15/32" boxes seem fine, and the 3/4" nucs are really heavy duty and should last a long time.

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