Hi all built an observation hive last year for our farm market. Built its own enclosure 4' wide 7' high and 40" deep. it has swing open sides which when open allows viewing of the hives and then the sides act as additional roof to prevent any direct sunlight. We built 2 seperate hives each is 3 frames single wide. The exit for the bees is at the bottom on the side. They have to go 12" horizontally then 7' up through a 1 1/2" pvc tube. it was important for the inlet to be high so that children wouldn't be bothered by the entrance. It appeared to work good last summer with them coming and going. Our bee keeper started the hives in may. After 2 weeks we started seeing some dead soldiers beeing removed. My beekeeper felt it was from beeing to cold. It was a very cold may. We added heat lamps to try and help maintain hive temp. Also every night we would close the exterior doors to try and help with the cold. Then when june rolled around the temp turned very hot for michigan up in the 90s. by the end of june one hive left. leaving only a few soldiers behind. Approx 1 week later the second hive left. People really enjoyed what we had until they took off. Then in October one warm day both hives were swarming with activity inside the cases and out then they were gone. it appeared they came and took any remaining food for the winter. My question how to improve for next year. i was wondering about building new hives but this time making them double wides but doing everything else the same. Wanted to know how much time they will be spending between the frames vs out where they can be observed in the sw that we had this year? Thought this may allow them to maintain hive temps better in the cold springs. Question #2 has anyone tried using double pain insulated glass like in your house instead of single pane glass? I thought that may keep the cold from radiating thru to the bees so much. Then maybe we could stay with a sw setup for more viewing. Sorry for the novel trying to give as much detail as possible. Please let me know any and all advice. Thanks in advance