Re: young newbee
Your 1x6' and 2x6" lumber is actually 5 1/2" wide. That is smaller than the height of a "Shallow" super, which is 5 11/16". I would suggest acquiring appropriate lumber to make a standard size medium. If you were determined to use what you have on hand, you could fabricate/glue an extension to the 6" boards such that you can make a 6 5/8" standard medium super.
I don't see any advantage for ever using 2x lumber, especially here where weight is a primary consideration. Some beeks use foamboard insulation in winter months. If you chose to doe this, it could be just tied or strapped around the box stack rather than permanently attached.
Top bars only I understand. But I don't see what you gain from the extra effort of cutting down frames to be half frames?
Most arguments in favor of an excluder revolves around keeping brood out of honey supers intended for harvest. Perhaps you should not expect to get a significant harvest the first year. An excluder is not likely to be of value the first year, IMHO.
"Cinnabar" as a placename in BC is somewhat obscure. I saw one possibility on Vancouver Island, and another in the University of Northern BC Research Centre near Fort St James. Where are you located ... I imagine the climate at those two locations is markedly different.
Last edited by Barry; 10-21-2013 at 02:16 PM.
--- Victor Hugo - "Common sense is in spite of, not the result of, education.”