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Thread: DIY Frames

  1. #21
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    Default Re: DIY Frames

    Shaving the end bars down to 1.25 inch would fix the bee space issue.
    Always question Conventional Wisdom.

  2. #22
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    Default Re: DIY Frames

    Quote Originally Posted by bluegrass View Post
    Shaving the end bars down to 1.25 inch would fix the bee space issue.
    It would only change the bee space on the top bars the comb would be to tight then.

  3. #23
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    Default Re: DIY Frames

    I'm not trying to reinvent the wheel here I just figured that a slightly narrower top bar wound't make much difference to the bees and it is much simpler to build. We'll see how they go -- I have enough in hives now that by the end of summer I should be able to see how they are working out. However for the future I may think about how I can make the top bar standard width without a significant increase in production time.

  4. #24
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    Default Re: DIY Frames

    Quote Originally Posted by Summit25 View Post
    It would only change the bee space on the top bars the comb would be to tight then.
    Some people intentionally shave them down to 1.25 in order to fit 11 frames in a 10 frame box. It works.
    Always question Conventional Wisdom.

  5. #25
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    Default Re: DIY Frames

    Quote Originally Posted by bluegrass View Post
    Some people intentionally shave them down to 1.25 in order to fit 11 frames in a 10 frame box. It works.
    I didn't know that. I may try it.

  6. #26
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    Default Re: DIY Frames

    Just today I bought an extractor just like the one in your second picture. With a little cam coat it will make a serviceable if labor intense tool. If yours has legs I would really like to see them. I've a couple of ideas but a pic. would be a great help.

  7. #27
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    Default Re: DIY Frames

    No legs on my extractor either, the barrel part just sets on the ground. Legs would be a good idea though

    Quote Originally Posted by redcrane View Post
    Just today I bought an extractor just like the one in your second picture. With a little cam coat it will make a serviceable if labor intense tool. If yours has legs I would really like to see them. I've a couple of ideas but a pic. would be a great help.

  8. #28
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    Default Re: DIY Frames

    Thanx for the info. If I get legs on mine I'll send you a pic.

  9. #29
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    Default Re: DIY Frames

    Hey summit I make all my own frames too and I actually had a few questions and a found a few solutions to some of your problems. #2 pine works great for top bars and bottom bars but doesnt work so well with the side... 'bars'. #3 pine works better for the side bars as its wetter and my dados tend to not splinter the wood as they come out the other side (even if i cut a bit and then turn the bar around.) I do, however, have to do 2 - 3/8" deep cuts on the side bars with the dados to achieve the needed 3/4" depth required to fit the top bars. The problem i have is a 3/4" cut in the end grain tends to make the side bars want to twist as I run them through the blades. My question is this, is there an easier way to make the dados in the end grain in 1 pass on a table saw without the splintering problems i have had.

    I made 300 deep frames for 1 deep brood box and 1 deep super for 15 hives. I just cut the pieces for 300+ medium frames for 2 medium supers for said hives and im dreading making dados in the pine stock i have as the wood is 70 years old and is as dry as dry can be. I'll be finished machining the top bars soon and then im moving on to the side bars. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

    I suppose i should add that i only put a kerf in the top bar so i can glue a guide in since all i use are foundationless frames.

  10. #30
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    Default Re: DIY Frames

    I had to take a pic and put it in here Anyway that's a painted medium super and the top bars (partially machined) with a side bar (unmachined) as a reference in front of the super a few other side bars on top.



    Well i cant get the image to post so here's a link

    http://s1105.photobucket.com/albums/...BarSideBar.jpg
    Last edited by rwurster; 08-14-2011 at 09:48 PM. Reason: pic didnt show up

  11. #31
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    Default Re: DIY Frames

    Do you have a picture of your frames i would like to see them. My dados on the end bars are only 3/8 deep, so one pass is fine. I also made all the end bars out of 2x12s so I would only have splintering on one end bar out of close to twenty end bars.


    Quote Originally Posted by rwurster View Post
    Hey summit I make all my own frames too and I actually had a few questions and a found a few solutions to some of your problems. #2 pine works great for top bars and bottom bars but doesnt work so well with the side... 'bars'. #3 pine works better for the side bars as its wetter and my dados tend to not splinter the wood as they come out the other side (even if i cut a bit and then turn the bar around.) I do, however, have to do 2 - 3/8" deep cuts on the side bars with the dados to achieve the needed 3/4" depth required to fit the top bars. The problem i have is a 3/4" cut in the end grain tends to make the side bars want to twist as I run them through the blades. My question is this, is there an easier way to make the dados in the end grain in 1 pass on a table saw without the splintering problems i have had.

    I made 300 deep frames for 1 deep brood box and 1 deep super for 15 hives. I just cut the pieces for 300+ medium frames for 2 medium supers for said hives and im dreading making dados in the pine stock i have as the wood is 70 years old and is as dry as dry can be. I'll be finished machining the top bars soon and then im moving on to the side bars. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

    I suppose i should add that i only put a kerf in the top bar so i can glue a guide in since all i use are foundationless frames.

  12. #32
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    Default Re: DIY Frames

    I will try to explain a bit more how i make my end bars. Sorry i don't have pictures to go along for each step but i will try to make it clear. i used 2x12 but other 2x stock would also work. 1) The first thing I do is run it through the thickness planner a couple of times to take it down to 1 3/8. 2) Cut it to length, I run deeps so 9 1/8. 3) on each end/the end grain i now cut 3/8 deep dados the width of my top and bottom bars. 4) I go to my jointer and make a pass on each side of the lower portion of my stock 1/8 deep by about 5 wide. I now have a perfectly shaped "side bar" that is 11.5 wide. All that is left to do is go over to the table saw and hack it up into a whole bunch of little end bars. at 3/8 thick and a 1/8 saw cut i get close to twenty finished pieces out of piece of 2x12 figuring in some waste. This works out really well because i don't have to machine a whole bunch of little pieces. I do the machining on twenty pieces at a time and then just cut off a bunch of finished parts.

    The only way to make frames economical is to figure out how to cut labor time way down

  13. #33
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    Default Re: DIY Frames

    Ahhh very nice system. I don't have a planer and that's the key to the time savings. I have used 2x as stock before and they work very well but without a planer i always had to cut to dimension first which means every end bar must be dadoed separately. i do like the idea of 3/8" deep dados on the end bars with a 3/8" dado across the grain on the top and bottom bars. I also don't have a jointer so after dados are cut into the end bars i run them up the saw blade on both sides cutting 3/16" off both sides thus giving an adequate bee space between frames. Ill do a 30 frame run and take pics of the pieces. Two machines are all that stand between days and days of extra labor, ive made jigs to try to run multiple pieces through the dados but the jigs make things cumbersome and in my opinion a bit dangerous thus I dont use them. Very excellent system though, I have to give it a thumbs up

  14. #34
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    Default Re: DIY Frames

    They are actually called, "end bars" rather than "side bars". It helps some, if we all speak the same language. "Side bar" is actually a legal term.

    With a space of 1/2" between your top bars, I'm afraid you're going to find that violations of bee space aren't to be taken lightly, the bees are going to lock all of your frames together at the top with brace/burr comb. As has already been mentioned you can eliminate this problem with your current design, by reducing your end bar width by cutting 1/8" off of each edge, making them 1-1/4" wide frames -vs- 1-3/8" wide. In many of my own frame designs I have also chosen to use narrower top bars, however, I also trim my end bars to 1-1/4" wide in order to maintain bee space, if you don't, I almost guarantee, you will wish you had.

    Bee space is 1/4 - 3/8", as has already been said, narrower gets propolis, wider gets brace/burr comb.
    48 years - 50 hives - TF
    Joseph Clemens -- Website Under Constructioni

  15. #35
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    Default Re: DIY Frames

    I follow what is being said about bee space, but If this is so absolute why do we not see the frames getting locked together at the bottom? With bottom bars at 3/4" certainly the space betwean them far exceeds 3/8"?
    I had assumed (and so far it has been true in my hives) that bees will draw out the comb untill the space betwean the two is equal to bee space. The place where it seems really critical is in areas that are not betwean combs...like side bars to hive body, or top bars to hive lid?

  16. #36
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    Default Re: DIY Frames

    Quote Originally Posted by windfall View Post
    I follow what is being said about bee space, but If this is so absolute why do we not see the frames getting locked together at the bottom? With bottom bars at 3/4" certainly the space betwean them far exceeds 3/8"?
    I had assumed (and so far it has been true in my hives) that bees will draw out the comb untill the space betwean the two is equal to bee space. The place where it seems really critical is in areas that are not betwean combs...like side bars to hive body, or top bars to hive lid?
    Yes, and top bar to top bar.
    Always question Conventional Wisdom.

  17. #37
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    Default Re: DIY Frames

    Because, generally bees do not attach/anchor their combs at the bottoms, rather they more commonly attach them at their tops, since the combs work better to support the weight of their future contents by being securely fastened at their top edges, fastening their bottom edges would just hinder the bees access, and not really improve their functionality.
    48 years - 50 hives - TF
    Joseph Clemens -- Website Under Constructioni

  18. #38
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    Default Re: DIY Frames

    sure I can see that.... makes sense.

  19. #39
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    Default Re: DIY Frames

    I appreciate all the feedback from everyone. I was looking at the frames this evening and I have decided that on the next run instead of shaving the end bars to 1 1/4 I think i'll just make the top bars 1/8th wider, there is no reason I couldn't have done that in the first place and then my bee space up top will be 3/8 so that should fix any possible problems. I have about 200+ of these frames already drawn out and haven't noticed any problems with the bees drawing comb between the top bars and making a mess, however since it will be just as simple to make the frames with the wider top bar i might as well.

    next time i'll try to take pics of each stage and post them up.

    Cheers
    Summit25

  20. #40
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    Default Re: DIY Frames

    I ran a quick batch of 30 out and assembled ten, to my chagrin i forgot to run a kerf down the center of the top bars to put a guide in but that is easily fixable. I didnt clean any of the parts up before I snapped these pics but you can see the bee space is preserved between frames and top bars. I actually go with a 1 1/8" top bar which leaves a little more than 1/4" between bars. i've never had a problem with it and better yet my bees dont propolize anything together. These are medium frames for medium langstroth supers.

    http://s1105.photobucket.com/albums/...t=DSC00141.jpg A quick pic of the parts, Ive never made top bars like this with a dado across the grain but it was a novel idea i had to entertain. I put a 25# weight on a single top bar and it didnt even creak so i it will hold 0 - 10 pounds of honey easily.

    http://s1105.photobucket.com/albums/...t=DSC00143.jpg Assembled foundationless frames in hive and on top, i forgot the guide on the bottom side of the top bar but its not a big problem. Its not the best pic but i was tired and really just wanted to get these pics posted.

    I can understand the 7/8" top bars so they would fit nicely in the 7/8" dado in the side bars but honestly bee space is important. Something bumped a few of my hives and a few frames in the mostly empty super above one of the brood boxes shifted and i had a burr comb nightmare when i found it. Even though i scraped the burr comb off the sides of the top bars, the bees must sense that comb was built there before so now they continuously keep building burr comb in the exact same spot between the 2 frames even though they are now pushed back together. Such is life
    Last edited by rwurster; 08-16-2011 at 01:37 AM. Reason: posted same pic twice lol

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