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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Oak Harbor, WA
    Posts
    317

    Default Mann Lake 8 frame mediums - too big?

    I'm a newbie, so please bear with me.

    I purchased Mann Lakes's 8 frame medium supers with frames. I placed the frames in and there's a large amount of space left over if I have all the frame touching each other. ...enough so, I can stick a 9th frame in there.

    With only 8 frames in there, isn't all that extra space a violation of "bee space"? How do you place the 8 frames in there, touching and centered or touching and all to one side? Anyone ever place a 9th frame in there?

    Thanks,

    Robert
    Last edited by rniles; 12-15-2012 at 06:46 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Rockford, MN, USA
    Posts
    43

    Default Re: Mann Lake 8 frame mediums - too big?

    All pushed together, centered in the box. That will leave some space on either side.
    Last edited by honeyman46408; 12-15-2012 at 04:11 PM. Reason: UNQUOTE

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    5,041

    Default Re: Mann Lake 8 frame mediums - too big?

    Some folks advise the use of follower boards. You have room for two 1/4" boards that will give you double insulation from cold through the side walls and additional clustering space. I use them in my 19 7/8" square jumbo hives.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Issaquah,WA,USA
    Posts
    2,427

    Default Re: Mann Lake 8 frame mediums - too big?

    I would create a ply follower board same size as the frames and put it in. Problem solved.



    "Anybody who doesn't cut his speed at the sight of a police car is probably parked."

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Cheyenne, Wyoming, USA
    Posts
    1,693

    Default Re: Mann Lake 8 frame mediums - too big?

    A friend of mine that I was mentoring had the same problem. Bought all new frames and 8-frames boxes to start out with, and could just fit 9 frames (fairly tightly) in the 8-frame boxes. We just centered them and then let the bees have at it. All went well, but the frames at each side were drawn out quite a bit farther than the rest.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Great Falls Montana
    Posts
    4,285

    Default Re: Mann Lake 8 frame mediums - too big?

    If you put the 9 frames in, the bees seem to draw tightly spaced frames better than spaced ones. After they are drawn, you can keep running 9 or space the eight drawn ones equally. I shave my frames to 1 1/4" so I can get 11 in my ten frame boxes. I find it improves the quality of the drawn comb and In the brood nest, the bees seem to be able to maximise the amount of brood they can cover and keep warm.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    6,716

    Default Re: Mann Lake 8 frame mediums - too big?

    Quote Originally Posted by rniles View Post
    Anyone every place a 9th frame in there?
    Some beekeepers do deliberately place an extra frame in the brood boxes, sometimes also shaving some material from the standard frame to get them to fit better. Here some info on that concept:

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesframewidth.htm
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    San Francisco, CA
    Posts
    2,477

    Default Re: Mann Lake 8 frame mediums - too big?

    Mann Lake 8 frame box interiors are 12 1/2" wide and will take 9 frames easily. That's what I do for the brood nest and then use 8 frames in the honey supers spaced evenly. Works really well for me.
    President, San Francisco Beekeepers Association
    www.habitatforhoneybees.org

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Tsawwassen, BC, Canada
    Posts
    280

    Default Re: Mann Lake 8 frame mediums - too big?

    I have found the same thing and worse, if you have mixed frames ie some plastic from last year, or wood of a different manufacturer, then 9 won't fit at all, but 8 won't quite fill the box. I find stuffing the 9th frame in makes all the frames too tight to get out again as well...so I will be making follower boards to take up the extra space. I like the idea of one narrow one on each side.

    Another complication with this poor fit for the 8 frames is that it is hard to line up the frames in one box with the frames in the box below! I wonder if the bees care if the frames are aligned vertically??

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    5,041

    Default Re: Mann Lake 8 frame mediums - too big?

    Quote Originally Posted by WesternWilson View Post
    I wonder if the bees care if the frames are aligned vertically??
    No. I produce substantial crops mixing supers with different spacings. Alignment in wild comb is non existent. I make follower boards by sawing luann paneling to size and gluing and stapling on a hardwood strip to serve as a topbar.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Tsawwassen, BC, Canada
    Posts
    280

    Default Re: Mann Lake 8 frame mediums - too big?

    Good to hear, I have enough to fret about when working the hives without aligning frames in the stacked boxes!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Quincy, Illinois, USA
    Posts
    289

    Default Re: Mann Lake 8 frame mediums - too big?

    Quote Originally Posted by odfrank View Post
    Some folks advise the use of follower boards. You have room for two 1/4" boards that will give you double insulation from cold through the side walls and additional clustering space. I use them in my 19 7/8" square jumbo hives.
    Saw your post and I'm curious. The follower boards, do they make that much of a difference in adding insulation? We can have some wicked winters here in Illinois.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Tsawwassen, BC, Canada
    Posts
    280

    Default Re: Mann Lake 8 frame mediums - too big?

    I do not imagine the follower boards give much in terms of insulation, but every little bit helps. Here on the Pacific coast, we don't get the deep, deep cold (although we do get below freezing frequently and a bit of snow), but we get the big, big rain. Last year I not only wrapped the hives with insulation layers, but put on a rain roof and a ventilated top box filled with wood shavings that acted as a moisture blanket. The inside of the hive stayed nice and dry.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Vancouver, WA
    Posts
    129

    Default Re: Mann Lake 8 frame mediums - too big?

    My 8 frame medium will fit 9 frames perfectly, I just equal space 8 frames out. Bees dont seem to care. They seem to like having thicker cells for the honey band on top so it works for them.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Tsawwassen, BC, Canada
    Posts
    280

    Default Re: Mann Lake 8 frame mediums - too big?

    The problem with the extra space is that when you are swapping frames around for any reason, they tend to get drawn at different depths if the frame shoulders are either not touching or are at random widths apart. That makes for fit problems and squished bees later.

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