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  1. #1
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    Jun 2013
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    DeRidder, louisiana, usa
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    Default Material to build swarm traps

    I don't have any used bee boxes, but I have some new cedar fence boards, old cedar fence boards, and old treated pine fence boards. Would there be a problem with using these to build a swarm trap?

    Thanks in advance,

    Merle

  2. #2
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    May 2012
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    Roanoke, VA
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    Default Re: Material to build swarm traps

    I've seen folks post pictures of swarm traps made from just about everything on this forum. Particle board, cardboard boxes, plastic containers, etc. I think that they would be fine for a swarm trap. I've made one recently from old fence boards. I probably spent three times the amount of time on that then if I would have just used dimensional lumber, but it was laying around and I had the time.

    More is better, so anything is better than nothing.

  3. #3
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    May 2013
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    Bells, Texas
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    80

    Default Re: Material to build swarm traps

    Quote Originally Posted by shannonswyatt View Post
    I probably spent three times the amount of time on that then if I would have just used dimensional lumber, but it was laying around and I had the time.
    I built four traps out of fencing panel boards and was successful catching a swarm in one, but agree that it takes more time building them. Also, I think they are initially heavier than using plywood. And if you don't really seal them good with paint, I think they really soak up moisture when it rains. Also fencing boards don't fit exactly right creating possible alternative entrances for the bees that you will have to cover.

  4. #4
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    May 2012
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    Default Re: Material to build swarm traps

    I made a jig and ripped the boards and then glued and clamped them up, so they seal is tight on them. Again, this added more time to the job. It was fun to do though, and I may keep more of the fence and do the same thing this winter. Some of the boards are way to warped to do anything with.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2002
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    San Mateo, CA
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    Default Re: Material to build swarm traps

    I recommend that you buy some cheap deep supers and make your traps out of those. Here is one with slotted plywood:



    Here is one with an entrance disk:


  6. #6
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    Jun 2013
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    DeRidder, louisiana, usa
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    Default Re: Material to build swarm traps

    I'm making some out the thin pine fence boards. The boards are about 3/8" after I run them through the planner. If I hit a nail are a small rock and ruin my planner blades, I'll wish I'd have taken ODFRANK's advice then.

    Thanks all,

    Merle

  7. #7
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    May 2012
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    Default Re: Material to build swarm traps

    I trim the fence pickets to about 20 inches. There is a lot of waste but less than just throwing them away. Tightbond 3 does an incredible job of holding the boards together. I did some tests and the wood would break before the tight bond glue up.

    Again, I don't recommend this to anyone unless you have lots of time and free wood scraps.

  8. #8
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    May 2002
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    San Mateo, CA
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    Default Re: Material to build swarm traps

    >Again, I don't recommend this to anyone unless you have lots of time and free wood scraps.

    This is the caveat in swarm trap building. I learned from my winebox swarm trap days that you spend as much time making a "free" swarm trap as you do making a deep super swarm trap. You waste good time making an item that serves only one purpose when you can make a deep super that can become the permanent home of the caught bees, which you will need anyways. Plywood can easily be found for free to make the slotted bottoms and tops. 3/8" thick wineboxes last only two or three years if that. They warp and split. Look at this waste of time: I added handles, disks, branded them. They caught swarms but didn't last.


  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Jacksonville, Morgan County, IL
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    83

    Default Re: Material to build swarm traps

    "don't recommend this to anyone unless you have lots of time and free wood scraps"

    why waste your time, when you can buy these for under 6 bucks each ?

    http://www.mannlakeltd.com/beekeepin...productInfo/1/

    catch the swarm, let it grow to 4-5 full frames, transfer to full body, repeat

  10. #10
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    May 2002
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    San Mateo, CA
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    Default Re: Material to build swarm traps

    It costs half of a new deep super, won't hold up to rain, leaks bees when moving, is not big enough for a large swarm and does not attract as many swarms as old wood boxes do. Many bait swarms fill a five frame box full. One catch this year in the deep traps shown above, so big it could barely fit in a deep box and took hours to enter:






    Quote Originally Posted by Gary L. Glaenzer View Post
    "don't recommend this to anyone unless you have lots of time and free wood scraps"

    why waste your time, when you can buy these for under 6 bucks each ?

    http://www.mannlakeltd.com/beekeepin...productInfo/1/

    catch the swarm, let it grow to 4-5 full frames, transfer to full body, repeat

  11. #11
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    Jun 2012
    Location
    Jacksonville, Morgan County, IL
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    83

    Default Re: Material to build swarm traps

    I'll give you #'s 1 and 4, and as far as # 2 and 3 go, I've had a couple out for over a month, thru driving thunderstorms here this spring and they are fine, I've yet to have one 'leak' on the way home, and for # 5 I can't see that wood is better when it is the odor of the combs, foundation or whatever is inside that does the attracting.

    But to each his own............

  12. #12
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    May 2002
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    San Mateo, CA
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    Default Re: Material to build swarm traps

    >I've had a couple out for over a month, thru driving thunderstorms here this spring and they are fine,

    You spent $6., they will last a few years at best. A budget deep from Mann Lake with free freight is about $12. It will last 10 or 20 years. A small swarm will fit into a big box but a big swarm won't fit into a small box. I still use five frame traps because I have them. But how many swarms have passed them by because they are too small?

    Like this one that left the next morning:


  13. #13
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    Default Re: Material to build swarm traps

    Seven frames in a fish cooler that the swarm filled both void ends also.


  14. #14
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    May 2002
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    San Mateo, CA
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    Default Re: Material to build swarm traps

    Five frame boxes are too small for Master Baiters like myself. A large catch will produce surplus honey in my area, the five framers not so much. Five frame boxes do catch after swarms with nice young virgins which become a good hive over the summer. This swarm would not fit into a bait box with four jumbo depth frames overnight, so in the morning I overturned another one on top over a feeder lid until I could get back with a ten frame box for it. Once I had the box on top they all filed in, even onto the upside down combs. They would have absconded without that extra space.


  15. #15
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    Jun 2012
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    Jacksonville, Morgan County, IL
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    Default Re: Material to build swarm traps

    OK

    It's obvious that neither of us will convince the other that there is merit in our personal point-of-view, so I'll just drop the matter.

  16. #16
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    May 2012
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    Rockford, MI
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    Default Re: Material to build swarm traps

    Treated.... avoid.
    Cedar... go for it.

  17. #17
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    Jun 2013
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    DeRidder, louisiana, usa
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    Default Re: Material to build swarm traps

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.Beeman View Post
    Treated.... avoid.
    Cedar... go for it.
    Would someone explain why or why not. Is anyone using old treated fence boards for building swarm traps, not to make hives?

    Merle

  18. #18
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    May 2012
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    Rockford, MI
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    Default Re: Material to build swarm traps

    Chemicals used in the treatment process (chromium, arsenic, heavy metals, etc.) If you read the MSDS sheets for treated lumber it suggests the use of gloves while handling the material.
    I can't imagine it would be any good for the bees walking all over it.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Material to build swarm traps

    Quote Originally Posted by Gary L. Glaenzer View Post
    "don't recommend this to anyone unless you have lots of time and free wood scraps"

    why waste your time, when you can buy these for under 6 bucks each ?

    http://www.mannlakeltd.com/beekeepin...productInfo/1/

    catch the swarm, let it grow to 4-5 full frames, transfer to full body, repeat
    Because I'm new to woodworking and I'm having fun learning this stuff, and in the end if I just have a pile of shavings I'm out very little. I've made several little things from the throw away wood. Now if it was football season it would be a different story.

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