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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Genola, Ut
    Posts
    56

    Default Swarm Traps/Nucs made from pallet wood

    I remember coming across a post about building equipment with pallet wood. It seemed that most of the replies didn't like the idea. It has been a long winter waiting for spring so I decided I would build a few 5 frame swarm traps/nucs with some pallets to show that it isn't a completely stupid idea. I posted the process on my website and a youtube video as well. I get a lot of people asking me how I cut the rabbet for the frame-rest with a circular saw, which I show how to do in the video.
    Building your own equipment doesn't have to be hard or complicated. Your first couple boxes might not look the greatest, but once you get the hang of it you can build quality equipment with a circular saw, screwdriver and some glue. Just thought I would give some of you starting up this year something to think about while you are waiting for your bees.

    Building Swarm Traps Using Pallets - Post

    Building Swarm Traps Using Pallets - Youtube

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Issaquah,WA,USA
    Posts
    2,385

    Default Re: Swarm Traps/Nucs made from pallet wood

    I find that old 10 frame boxes with 2-3 frames of drawn comb work best. Not so much success with nuc's. I think it might be too small.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Genola, Ut
    Posts
    56

    Default Re: Swarm Traps/Nucs made from pallet wood

    I agree... I actually fasten two nuc boxes together. They seem to stay in the trees better because most of the weight is closer to the tree. Regular 10 frame equipment is always awkward to hoist into the trees.
    How do you hang your equipment? Do you use rope or do you nail them to the tree?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Forest grove, Ore USA
    Posts
    192

    Default Re: Swarm Traps/Nucs made from pallet wood

    Is there any species of wood to really avoid for wooden ware? I got a bunch of basswood I am using right now. And of course anything treated with creosote or salt treatments will not be used.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    KC, MO, USA
    Posts
    1,183

    Default Re: Swarm Traps/Nucs made from pallet wood

    I like your nucs and making them from pallets is a good idea. Almost unlimited wood source.

    Look at the D Coates nuc plan on this site, makes a easier frame rest and it will work good for pallet wood.
    http://www.beesource.com/build-it-yo...oates-version/

    Somewhere between 5 and 10 frames is the preferred size by bees (T. Sees Book)
    Also there is no different with bee preference with cracks/holes in it like you might have with pallet wood pieced together. Bees can seal it so they don’t care.

    I think your pallet wood would hold up just fine as long as its not on the ground wet.

    Last winter I made 30+ D Coates 5 frame nucs with old house siding that was sitting in a field for at least 10 years, some of the top pieces were junk but allot of good wood underneath. I did not have much comb maybe 10 had full frames, the other I put brood piece glued into frames. A few only had foundation. I ordered 10 Mann Lake swarm lures and used LGO in all of them. I only refreshed the LGO once. I was very happy when I caught 12 swarms in them last years. It was like Christmas every time I caught one.

    I just finished 10 more traps and have allot more comb ready to go. Hope to catch more than I did last year.

    Was short on frames and had allot of missing frame in the traps last year, the bees built comb on the lids almost making me do a cut out on each one. So all my traps now are full with empty foundationless frames, plus the brood comb frame. just hope they build straight.

    I will be taking them down before Sept, that's when the wax moth get bad and I didn't catch anything after that anyways. And I also sprayed BT on the comb.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Swarm Traps/Nucs made from pallet wood

    If you used a speed Square as a straight edge for your cuts they go faster and Straighter
    My-smokepole
    http://www.davidspaintingandwallpapering.com"

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    4,898

    Default Re: Swarm Traps/Nucs made from pallet wood

    The only bee equipment that I have ever made from pallet wood was a waste of time. Pallet wood is the often lowest grade, pithy and prone to rot. I also made swarm traps from wine boxes, another waste of time. Look for good quality waste wood and paint it well. Better yet, make your traps out of brood chambers and you won't need duplicate equipment. I never hang a swarm trap in a tree. Too much work and bees will move into one at easy reach height just as well. I place them on tables, garden walls, stumps, hoods/roofs of old cars and on decks. Why break your neck dealing with swarm traps. Swarms live in trees because that's where cavities are. They are just as happy with a cavity at a convenient to you height.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    AUBURN IN.
    Posts
    89

    Default Re: Swarm Traps/Nucs made from pallet wood

    I had some luck last season in trapping ---I set my traps on DEER stand ---easy to get to and tie down ---wild plum --crab apple--and a few more flowering bushes ---

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    South Jordan, Utah, USA
    Posts
    128

    Default Re: Swarm Traps/Nucs made from pallet wood

    I've made some traps using old boxes that they have been throwing away from work. I use 5/8" dowels for frame rests in order to quickly modify them. Here's a link to them:

    http://jorgedenton.blogspot.com/

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Genola, Ut
    Posts
    56

    Default Re: Swarm Traps/Nucs made from pallet wood

    George, I love the boxes. Its fun to see what others are using for equipment. I figure the day I can buy all the equipment I could ever need, Beekeeping would no longer be fun. If it can be turned into a beehive, it will.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    4,898

    Default Re: Swarm Traps/Nucs made from pallet wood

    Those remind me of my winebox bait hives. You put as much time and materials into them as you would making a new brood chamber, and end up with an extra superfluous piece of equipment and no brood chamber. This year any bait boxes I make will be out of budget deep brood chambers.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    South Jordan, Utah, USA
    Posts
    128

    Default Re: Swarm Traps/Nucs made from pallet wood

    Quote Originally Posted by Steven Tervort View Post
    I figure the day I can buy all the equipment I could ever need, Beekeeping would no longer be fun. If it can be turned into a beehive, it will.
    Amen! ...It doesn't have to make sense...it just has to be fun!

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Cheyenne, Wyoming, USA
    Posts
    1,693

    Default Re: Swarm Traps/Nucs made from pallet wood

    How much should I expect to pay for a 4'x8' sheet of 1/2" plywood?

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Blount County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: Swarm Traps/Nucs made from pallet wood

    About $15-$20, give or take depending on the type and quality.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Roanoke, VA
    Posts
    1,497

    Default Re: Swarm Traps/Nucs made from pallet wood

    +1 on the D Coates style. If you could get the pallets already disassembled it may make sense to use pallets, but disassemble of the pallets is tedious. Plus you have to piece the wood so it gets big and clunky and unnecessarily heavy. I guess if you had a wood shop you could use a jointer and then use biscuits to assemble them, but geez, this is old pallet wood, and that would be a butt load of work.

    On the other hand, if you have more time than money and it works for you, more power to you!

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