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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
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    longton, kansas USA
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    606

    Default should i use all mediums or deeps and mediums ?

    what our the pros versus cons with running all mediums and/or 8 versus 10 frame bodies ? this will be my second year and i will be getting 6-8 nucs this season. im planning on having a few tbh's as well but, since i need to buy a bunch of new hive bodies,frames etc...im curious if i should go with all mediums with my langstroths. any views would be awesome.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Myrtle Beach, SC, USA
    Posts
    876

    Default Re: should i use all mediums or deeps and mediums ?

    I run all mediums and like everyone says they are lighter. If you are a backyard beekeeper I would recommend it especially if you are over 40. If you plan on making money at it then I would probably go with deeps and mediums like the commercial guys do.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Palermo, Maine, USA
    Posts
    731

    Default Re: should i use all mediums or deeps and mediums ?

    Quote Originally Posted by sfisher View Post
    If you plan on making money at it then I would probably go with deeps and mediums like the commercial guys do.
    Now that does not sound like much of a recommendation for going all mediums!
    Like us on facebook This is the place to bee!
    Ralph

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Portland, Oregon
    Posts
    966

    Default Re: should i use all mediums or deeps and mediums ?

    If you plan on selling nucs, most of the market wants deeps.

    If you are planning on using purchased nucs much to expand your apiary, most of the market is selling nucs, and you may have a challenge finding good medium nucs when you find them.

    Mediums are lighter, and it is nice to have only one depth of box and frame to deal with.

    However, to get the same comb area, you'll have to buy considerably more frames/foundation and an extra box or two per hive.

    That's not a big deal if you only plan on having a few colonies, but if you want have many, the expense of the extra equipment might be an important consideration.

    When you start your "bee trip", which vehicle (meds/deeps) is best depends on where you want to get to, and how you want to get there.

    And that, my friend, no one else can tell you!

  5. #5

    Default Re: should i use all mediums or deeps and mediums ?

    I have two deeps on bottom, because I don't pick them up that much and for here, I think that's enough to get them through the winter. I have mediums for supers because they're lighter and get picked up more often. (but if my back keeps going the way it is, I may go to shallow supers.) Also, it's a reminder not to medicate if there's mediums on (because that's where the honey is). But, there are pluses to having all interchangeable equipment, too.

    You'll no doubt get lots of opinions. Just take the best of the bunch and figure out what's best for you.

    Good luck!
    Greg Whitehead, Ten Mile, TN
    Blog - http://gregsbees.blogspot.com/

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Cheyenne, Wyoming, USA
    Posts
    1,693

    Default Re: should i use all mediums or deeps and mediums ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Slow Modem View Post
    I have two deeps on bottom, because I don't pick them up that much and for here, I think that's enough to get them through the winter. I have mediums for supers because they're lighter and get picked up more often. (but if my back keeps going the way it is, I may go to shallow supers.) Also, it's a reminder not to medicate if there's mediums on (because that's where the honey is). But, there are pluses to having all interchangeable equipment, too.

    You'll no doubt get lots of opinions. Just take the best of the bunch and figure out what's best for you.

    Good luck!
    SM's got some good thoughts. I run deeps for brood, and meds for honey.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    OKC, OK USA
    Posts
    2,869

    Default Re: should i use all mediums or deeps and mediums ?

    I run deeps for brood, and meds for honey.
    Ditto, but it is how I have always done it. I am thinking about hiving a swarm this year on all meds and see if I like it.
    Mike Forbes
    Red Dirt Apiaries

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Portland, Oregon
    Posts
    966

    Default Re: should i use all mediums or deeps and mediums ?

    deleted.. commented to wrong thread

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
    Posts
    1,974

    Default Re: should i use all mediums or deeps and mediums ?

    I spent a fair amount of time deciding on this one and elected to go with 8 frames for easing the load, but still maintained deeps for brood. I just like the bigger combs for brood, and like that I can easily interface with other beekeepers in terms of nucs and whatnot. Using the 8 frame boxes and mediums for honey supers means significant reduction in weight.

    That's what I came to...

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    longton, kansas USA
    Posts
    606

    Default Re: should i use all mediums or deeps and mediums ?

    well thank you to everyone for the great advice. i think what im going to do is go with 8 frame hives with deep brood bodies. it makes more sense to stick with what is standard in the industry...at least for now. especially with wanting to be more than a hobby or backyard keeper. -blesings

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Hartwell, GA
    Posts
    183

    Default Re: should i use all mediums or deeps and mediums ?

    I did a fair amount of research before starting and even though having only one size frame and box is favorable I decided to stay with industry standards just in case I bought more NUCs. Don't know anyone who sells Medium NUCs, not that they are not out there. If I remember there is about the same surface area in an 8 frame Medium as a 5 frame Nuc. I do have one hive that is all mediums and the last one I have with top entrance only. If my brood is still in the medium when it comes time to split, and it appears that we will split early this year, I will use Mediums.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Great Falls Montana
    Posts
    4,001

    Default Re: should i use all mediums or deeps and mediums ?

    It costs quite a bit more to provide the same cubic of space for bees in mediums as it does in deeps. That is why my first time in this game i went all deeps. Now I am old and puttering and mediums are very attractive.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Bunker Hill, IL
    Posts
    503

    Default Re: should i use all mediums or deeps and mediums ?

    I currently have both types of hives. Hives with deeps for brood and med for honey , and i have a another hive that somehow got converted to all med. (i think they packed the one deep super full of honey one year and i took it leaving behind a the other 2 med supers that were on the hive)

    deeps are heavy, but med take more time to inspect as you have to move more boxes around to cover all the hive.

    I like running a single deep with med on top of it (more med supers for honey) the deep never gets moved, which is why ive considered moving to a dadent deep for the single bottom box. I usually overwinter with a deep and single med super that is full of honey.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Hartford, CT
    Posts
    607

    Default Re: should i use all mediums or deeps and mediums ?

    Running mediums are gonna cost you more too. 2 deeps equals 3 mediums. Thus you'll need 3 supers vs 2 and 10 extra frames. Each hive will liely run you and extra $20-$40 dollars. I prefer using 2 deeps for the bees and then mediums for my supers. Deeps aren't so heavy in early spring.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Redwood City, CA
    Posts
    85

    Default Re: should i use all mediums or deeps and mediums ?

    I am young-ish (or I like to think I still am!... 35) and started with the standard deep brood box with mediums for supers. I thought, "70-80 pounds, I got that." Just for reference, I am a lean 6'2" @195lbs. Last year I switched out to all mediums. Numero Uno - I like the lighter weight. I think it will pay dividends over the years I am going to do this. Also, I really like having the same form factor for everything. I can swap and switch out when I need to: pull a frame of honey or pollen or brood, and it's no skin off my teeth. I also enjoy pulling out the smaller frame size for some reason. Partly because I run foundationless I guess. I don't have to worry about blow-outs or warping as much with the deeps. I don't mind buying a few extra boxes and frames. With the money I save not buying foundation, I like to think it all works out Plus l find that where I live coupled with the fact that I keep mostly Carniolans, my bees don't need a big deep or large amounts of stores in the winter. I have had some colonies reduce to one medium to overwinter. Heck, they are bringing in tons of pollen and nectar right now, and have been for most of January. I suppose you just need to analyze your style of beekeeping and mix that with a personal philosophy (not hard to come by amongst beeks). If it works for you, do it!

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,217

    Default Re: should i use all mediums or deeps and mediums ?

    All the same size frames is wonderful.

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beeslazy.htm#uniformframesize

    Lighter boxes are also.

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beeslazy.htm#lighterboxes

    The only down side is it costs more because you need more boxes and more frames and the mediums are not significantly cheaper than deeps for either frames or boxes. But I think you'd have to have several hundred hives to save enough to pay for your back surgery...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    longton, kansas USA
    Posts
    606

    Default Re: should i use all mediums or deeps and mediums ?

    im very undecided as to which route to take hahaha. im pulled towards all mediums...and alot of it being that i already have read and possibly seen you Michael talking about this on youtube. it just makes sense. and since im just starting a desent size yard this year i want to set out the correct way ya know. what would you say are the downsides of going all mediums ? other than needing more boxes and frames for the same amount of storage.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Danbury, CT
    Posts
    2,887

    Default Re: should i use all mediums or deeps and mediums ?

    I pretty much use all deeps. I have some mediums around that I use just because I have them, but most hives are all deeps. I don't find the weight difference enough for me to worry about.
    Always question Conventional Wisdom.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Houston, Texas, USA
    Posts
    460

    Default Re: should i use all mediums or deeps and mediums ?

    I'll know more next year. I currently have 3 that are 10 frame Langs. that have 2 deeps for brood and use med. for honey. I am adding 2 hives in April that will be 10 frame med. only hives. I almost went with 8 frame set ups for the two new hives, but after looking into equivalency to 2 deeps that takes 4 8 frame med. boxes. I felt that being narrower than 10 frame they might be more unstable, especially in windy conditions if they had 3 more harvest boxes on the brood boxes (7-8 boxes total).
    Mike
    N5RWH - 9a

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Robesonia, Pa., USofA
    Posts
    439

    Default Re: should i use all mediums or deeps and mediums ?

    I tried an experiment when I started last Spring.
    Started with five hives. Three had all 10 frame Deep supers, one was an 8 frame with all Deep supers and one 8 frame hive of all Medium supers.

    The bees had to make all new comb for themselves and they were started on foundationless frames.
    When adding supers to each hive, It was advantageous to be able to pull a frame or two of brood from one super and place it in the same sized super above to get them to move up.

    I started a Nuc with mated queen in early August and they are on all deep frames.

    Am buying 6 more Nucs this Spring and will be trying the more traditional approach of 2 deep supers on the bottom and the rest of the supers will be mediums. I want to experiment and see how fast the bees build up with that equipment.

    Also plan to make more Nucs on Deep frames. As frames of brood get pulled from the Nucs and are added to the main hives, you can hang a deep frame in a stack of two medium supers.
    Deep frames like that will be marked so there are no surprises when removing the medium supers for inspection.

    The problem last year was getting the bees to draw out and fill 3 deeps of comb before winter.
    If I left the 8 & 10 frame deep hives the way they are with three deeps, I'd probably be looking at a 4th or maybe even a 5th deep honey super.
    If you run all deeps and you have a super that is maxed out with honey, pull half the frames and place them in another deep before lifting it off the hive.

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