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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Ankeny, Iowa, USA
    Posts
    598

    Default Top Bar Hives from Honeybee Habitat

    Have any of you ordered the Top Bar Hives from the advertiser to the right on the Forum page? Here is the link:

    http://www.honeybeehabitat.com/Home/...6/Default.aspx

    Is $165 a good price for this type of hive? How do you extract the honey in a TBH? I have a new Mann Lake 20 frame extractor but I don't see how that would work with a TBH.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Oceanside, New York
    Posts
    80

    Default Re: Top Bar Hives from Honeybee Habitat

    You don't extract from a top bar hive, you crush and strain. you can throw out the extractor if all you have are TBH's. $165.00 is a good price, but the box looks somewhat flimsy, and it gets "cold" in Iowa. 1" pine is really 3/4". You need as much insulation from the cold winter as possible.

    larry

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Ankeny, Iowa, USA
    Posts
    598

    Default Re: Top Bar Hives from Honeybee Habitat

    Larry, do you typically use 2" lumber (1 1/2") for TBH's? I still need the extractor for my other hives.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Oceanside, New York
    Posts
    80

    Default Re: Top Bar Hives from Honeybee Habitat

    As thick a board as possible. I have used plywood. Although its 3/4 plywood, it is a very heavy grade and provides better insulation than 1" pine board.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Lafollette,Tennessee,USA
    Posts
    177

    Default Re: Top Bar Hives from Honeybee Habitat

    Looks like a pretty decent hive to me. Especially for $165 shipped. Crush and strain, no extraction. As for insulation, aren't most Langs 3/4" pine? R value of 3/4" pine is .937, and 3/4" plywood is .94. Not enough difference to worry about IMHO.
    Integrity - Doing the right thing when no one is watching.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Roanoke, VA
    Posts
    1,520

    Default Re: Top Bar Hives from Honeybee Habitat

    Looks nice to me! I wish I could make a roof like that.

    I'm with Beev on the wood thickness. Langs are made from the same material. I've been trying to find out the R value of a Bee tree but I can't get a consistent answer.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    St. Louis, Missouri, USA
    Posts
    626

    Default Re: Top Bar Hives from Honeybee Habitat

    Nice price! Bummer there is no observation window or legs on it. Both are nice additions.

    Do a search for Philip Chandler and also Golden Mean Hives. I have one that is a variation on the Philip Chandler design and really like it other than I have added upper entrance holes. On his website you can find a link to download his hive design book for free. The 48" length seems to be good and the top width makes accomodating a chop and crop from a nuc easier. A lot of people talk about having Golden Mean hives but the ones under 4 feet sound like they might be too short (just based on some things I have read, I don't have any first hand experience with them).

    Don't get me wrong, the one in your link sounds great. I'm just trying to let you know about the options I am aware of.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Houston, Texas, USA
    Posts
    460

    Default Re: Top Bar Hives from Honeybee Habitat

    I bought the Chandler book and used the plans to build a 48" with observation window, with legs. The reason legs are not included in the above unit is to save on shipping costs, according to my initial query with them. April I will put package bees in both of them.
    Mike
    N5RWH - 9a

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Ankeny, Iowa, USA
    Posts
    598

    Default Re: Top Bar Hives from Honeybee Habitat

    Mike, did they give you any tips on adding legs? I sent an email asking if the kit included legs or if they had instructions on adding the legs. I have not gotten a response.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Houston, Texas, USA
    Posts
    460

    Default Re: Top Bar Hives from Honeybee Habitat

    It has only been one day since I sent my request in for additional information. Below is their original response. The only thing I am scratching over is that I do not see any holes in the side panels for entrances or end entrances so I am not sure what type of entrance system they have used. I will probably use blind nuts (T nuts) on the end plates, but want to make sure that they do not interfere with the bottom board or entrance systems. I could also do some landscape timbers and just set it in like saw horses that tied together (cradle in the mid section). The pictures do not show a lot of detail for me to make a decision on implementation, but I will solve that.

    "On Sep 20, 2012 6:35 AM, "Steve Collings" <Steve@honeybeehabitat.com> wrote:

    I use 2x4's and screw these into the sides. I wanted to add this to the TBH, but it added so much weight to the packaging that I found it wasn't worth it. I have seen customers use sawhorse type devices and also cinder blocks to lift it to the desired height. I prefer the 2x4's because they are very steady and I have some hives in a high wind area."
    Mike
    N5RWH - 9a

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Moyock, NC, USA
    Posts
    207

    Default Re: Top Bar Hives from Honeybee Habitat

    Contrary to some of these posts..You CAN use an extractor with top bars. The video I watched showed the guy using a tool that looked like a paint roller with little spikes on it, he rolled it and basically stabbed holes in each cell. He stabbed both sides of course. Then he put the comb in the extractor and spun very slowly. He only spun it for a very short time then flipped it around and spun again to try and keep it even during the process. Each time he flipped the comb around, he was able to spin a little faster without damaging the comb. After about 3 times per side he was done. Efficient? No. Possible? YES

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