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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Roanoke, VA
    Posts
    1,047

    Default Lang to Top Bar adapter plate

    Folks, I'm going to move a Lang to the top of a Top Bar Hive, and try to transition the hive to the TBH this way. If the girls don't start building down I will either move them back to a standard bottom board and leave this as a Lang hive or do a cut out. I was hoping they would take to this method and I would probably over winter with the original brood box as a super and in the spring remove it. Depends on how well the hive is working. I've heard mixed results from the type of transition, so I'm looking for input.
    PlateDesign.jpg

    This is the idea I had for an adapter. Basically it is just a sheet of plywood cut to the same size as the Lang body. Then I would route out or dado cut 11 slats that are 14 inches in length, and 3/8 inches wide. Just beyond the end of each slot towards the handles there are 3/8 inch holes drilled, a half inch in depth. I'll insert a 1 inch length of dowel with the protruding end slightly tapered. These are used for aligning the slots with the top bars.


    For the top bars I need to make 10 new bars that are 1 inch thick. Then I will need 3/8 inch thick spacers. These would be cut originally to the full length of the bars (19 inches), but then I will cut out a keystone piece approximately 14 inches or so in length. The reason for this is that when I finally remove the Langstroth hive body I can easily place the cutout pieces into the gap and nail or screw them into the side of the top bar, ceiling off the top of the hive.

    Another and simpler option would be to just remove all the material between the first slot and last slot and ditch the alignment pins, so basically this adapter plate would function as a gasket. No doubt that is simpler to make, and the alignment pins are probably overkill. The main reason for me not wanting to cut out the whole center is I don't want all the comb/propolis building up in the 1 1/4 inch between the bottom of the lang frames and the top of the top bars. If it seems like a pain in the behind I can always just open the whole thing up.

    Has anyone tried this? I saw that Phil Chandler had done something similar, but in his case he just used a Lang brood box for the top bar hives and made sloped sides. I could do this as my top bars will fit into a lang, but I liked the idea of moving directly to the top bar. Plus I would have to build out the sides in the Lang box for the Chandler method. Any comments or suggestions?
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Moyock, NC, USA
    Posts
    207

    Default Re: Lang to Top Bar adapter plate

    Is it possible for the lang frame to be suspended from the top bar and acually be in the hive?
    If so you could move them in and leave every other space open for them to build new combs from the top bars inbetween. If you put the lang on top of the TBH then how is your roof situation going to work?
    One other crazy idea...What if you drill a big hole like 4 inches in the side of the TBH and the lang and siamese them together sideways? This would give them access to the new hive but your repair in the end would be easy.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Roanoke, VA
    Posts
    1,047

    Default Re: Lang to Top Bar adapter plate

    Only by doing a chop and crop. Things have slowed down around here and it is getting pretty dry. I hate to chop out the hive given how good of a hive it is.

    I have a beautiful roof for my hive and it wont work at all! What I'll do is use a piece of plywood. It will be fine. I can use some flashing at the gap, but this shouldn't be a problem.

    Drilling the hole is rather crazy. We think alike! Hadn't thought of that. I could do that with my top bar nuc and a large hive body. I'm going to look at that later this week. I could just use some lag bolts to hold the whole mess together.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Landing, NJ, USA
    Posts
    197

    Default Re: Lang to Top Bar adapter plate

    If you go over to the swarms trapouts and cutouts forum you will find discussions of Cleo C Hogans trapout method. Simplified it involves making the donor hive believe that an addition in front of the donor hive is a part of it. Go read there. Mr Hogan is generous with information if you ask him. It seems to me that this might be an easy way to move stock between mismatched equipment.
    Bill

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Alachua County, FL, USA
    Posts
    6,437

    Default Re: Lang to Top Bar adapter plate

    Wow, that is so complex it better work. Our KTBH has 19 inch top bars. We have the bees draw them in a Langstroth and move them to the KTBH - no adapters, cut, chop, drilling, spacers, shims, or screwing around.
    americasbeekeeper.com
    beekeeper@americasbeekeeper.com

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Roanoke, VA
    Posts
    1,047

    Default Re: Lang to Top Bar adapter plate

    Actually the plate is rather simple. I haven't made it yet, I'll probably do it today and I'll photograph it.

    My bars will fit in a Lang as well. The situation is I have a really strong Lang that I want to move to a top bar hive, but it is late in the season and I don't want weaken it just to have a top bar. The top bar hive has an observation window. This way my kids can look at the hive without having all the gear on in the summer.

    I figure either they will move down into the top bar, or they won't. If not, no loss, just move the top bar out and put in a standard bottom board. It shouldn't cause any problems, it is just a flip of a coin as to if it will work like I want it to. They will do what they want, not what I want!

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