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

    Default Bottom Boards - 3/4" vs. 3/8" entrance

    The title says it all. What do you use? Why? Pro's/con's? Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Location
    DuPage County, Illinois USA
    Posts
    9,333

    Default Re: Bottom Boards - 3/4" vs. 3/8" entrance

    3/8". It works. Pro: keeps rodents out. Con: there is none.
    Regards, Barry

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Kalamazoo,MI
    Posts
    325

    Default Re: Bottom Boards - 3/4" vs. 3/8" entrance

    3/4 here. I use a reducer in winter to limit the air coming in. I like to have a space under the frames where the dead bees collect in winter. I've had them pile up and block the entrance on the 3/8 side.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Fairfield County, Connecticut, USA
    Posts
    3,589

    Default Re: Bottom Boards - 3/4" vs. 3/8" entrance

    I built my last nucs with 3/8" openings.
    BeeCurious
    Trying to think inside the box...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
    Posts
    643

    Default Re: Bottom Boards - 3/4" vs. 3/8" entrance

    Should use the 3/4 side of the bottom board in winter and invert the entrance reducer. The 3/8 high opening on the reducer should be on the top side. This leaves a 3/8 high area covering the bottom board for dead bees before dead bees start to block the bottom entrance.

    And with the 3/8 high opening mice can not get in.
    If you always do what you always did, you'll always get what you always got!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Reno, NV
    Posts
    2,844

    Default Re: Bottom Boards - 3/4" vs. 3/8" entrance

    I have two nucs setting side by side. one with 3/4 and the other 3/8. So far no observable difference other than how the bees tend to exit the hive. in the taller hive they tend to exit buy hanging upside down at the tip of the entrance and enter by walking in on the bottom board. on the lower entrance they all walk in and out for the most part. IN effect it is like the taller entrance provides a separate in and out door. I don't know that this makes any difference to the bees.
    Stand for what you believe, even if you stand alone.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Santa Rosa County, Florida
    Posts
    391

    Default Re: Bottom Boards - 3/4" vs. 3/8" entrance

    3/8ths with screened bottom boards.I even narrow the 3/8ths opening in winter and other times of scarcity.Small blocks of wood take care of that.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Cheyenne, Wyoming, USA
    Posts
    1,693

    Default Re: Bottom Boards - 3/4" vs. 3/8" entrance

    Thanks for the replies so far, everyone. Do all commercial/migratory type bottom boards only have the 3/8" entance. That's what we run in our commercial op, but my personal hives are on the 3/4'' side right now. It would be one less peice of equipment that you have per hive since you wouldn't need a reducer. I have seen some migratory pallets with a 3/4" rim. Of those of you that have a palletized operation, what do you use?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Great Falls Montana
    Posts
    3,843

    Default Re: Bottom Boards - 3/4" vs. 3/8" entrance

    My bottomboards are a commercial type I was taught to make before bees were all put on pallets. The entrances are 5/16" and nailed to the bottom of the brood chamber. It makes so many things easier and they are cheap and easy to make.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Cheyenne, Wyoming, USA
    Posts
    1,693

    Default Re: Bottom Boards - 3/4" vs. 3/8" entrance

    http://beekeeping.glorybee.com/shop/...atory-Top.html
    We use this style, but we bought all ours used. They also have a 2" cleat on the underside of the ends instead of just a 1" cleat. P.S. GloryBee has the photos for their bottoms and tops accidentally switched. This link to the page is for the cover, but it has the pic of the migratory bottom. Might have to let them know about that.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Rockford, MI
    Posts
    2,464

    Default Re: Bottom Boards - 3/4" vs. 3/8" entrance

    I can see how a 3/8" opening could get blocked. Especially if it was reduced on the ends with blocks of wood for winter.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Location
    DuPage County, Illinois USA
    Posts
    9,333

    Default Re: Bottom Boards - 3/4" vs. 3/8" entrance

    I just have a hard time believing that a bunch of dead bees on the bottom board could keep live bees inside from exiting the hive. They chew through Styrofoam, wood, paper, etc., why would they not be able to move some dead bees?
    Regards, Barry

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

    Default Re: Bottom Boards - 3/4" vs. 3/8" entrance

    Good feasible observation, Barry. I think you're right.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Santa Rosa County, Florida
    Posts
    391

    Default Re: Bottom Boards - 3/4" vs. 3/8" entrance

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.Beeman View Post
    I can see how a 3/8" opening could get blocked. Especially if it was reduced on the ends with blocks of wood for winter.
    Yeah,it's all that snow we get.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Santa Fe, NM
    Posts
    618

    Default Re: Bottom Boards - 3/4" vs. 3/8" entrance

    And in addition you should also be leaving them a means of egress and return at the top of the hive in winter locations. Ventilation port plus entrance. So dead bees piled up at the bottom shouldn't be a concern.
    "Tradition becomes our security, and when the mind is secure it is in decay".....Krishnamurti

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Location
    DuPage County, Illinois USA
    Posts
    9,333

    Default Re: Bottom Boards - 3/4" vs. 3/8" entrance

    I do, and then the bees proceed to propolize it closed, so I don't worry about it. Never lost a hive of bees because they couldn't get out of the bottom entrance.
    Regards, Barry

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Grosse Ile, Michigan, USA
    Posts
    2,819

    Default Re: Bottom Boards - 3/4" vs. 3/8" entrance

    I build all my own bottoms but I make the entrance 1/2" high as a compromise. John

  18. #18
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Rockford, MI
    Posts
    2,464

    Default Re: Bottom Boards - 3/4" vs. 3/8" entrance

    Ok...not blocked for eternity. lol

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Pueblo, Colorado, USA
    Posts
    655

    Default Re: Bottom Boards - 3/4" vs. 3/8" entrance

    All mine are 3/8" and another beekeeper I work with who uses pallets for bottom boards are 3/8" also. We both nail a 1" tall entrance reducer in front of the entrance with a 3/8" tall slot in it for further mouse protection. A few of my entrance reducers have already been ravaged but the mice have to get through 3/4" of reducer and 3/4" of pine to get to the hive. Still, when you see mouse damage you'll be happy you did something to prevent them from getting into your hives, namely an entrance small enough to prevent mouse intrusion. Also I have seen my entrances get plugged with dead bees but it seems that when and if the bees need a bigger entrance those dead bees get tossed out to accommodate the greater flow of traffic.
    Zone 5a @ 4700 ft. High Desert
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  20. #20
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Saskatchewan, Canada
    Posts
    282

    Default Re: Bottom Boards - 3/4" vs. 3/8" entrance

    Maybe they leave the dead bees there when it's cold as weatherstripping.

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