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  1. #21
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Benton, Ky
    Posts
    83

    Default Re: Let's talk about viewing-windows

    The ones with the glass were older hives i first built, most of them 7-8 yrs old. Also using single strength glass... Moving them around and dropping them even gently cracks the glass. I'm pretty rough on my hives. I'm not gentle. I like to see how my designs hold up with rough use. I use all plexiglass now. Crystal clear, easy to cut and its much safer to use than glass. Problem solved and they almost never break, even shipping them.

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Lucasville, OH, USA
    Posts
    119

    Default Re: Let's talk about viewing-windows

    Quote Originally Posted by Cacklewack View Post
    The windows run the full length on our newest top bar hive model. It works well.

    Attachment 7158

    Best,
    Matt
    Hi, Matt!

    That looks great! I showed it to Rhonda and she likes it as well. We may consider one for next year. I didn't find it on your web site, though. Will it run about the same cost as your current model, or a bit more?

    Cheers,
    Tom

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Portland, OR, USA
    Posts
    642

    Default Re: Let's talk about viewing-windows

    Tom,

    It's the only one we sell now -- so the price on our site is accurate. We just haven't updated the website with photos, as we have to go to the studio to shoot photos of the hives.

    Best,

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Lucasville, OH, USA
    Posts
    119

    Default Re: Let's talk about viewing-windows

    Quote Originally Posted by Cacklewack View Post
    Tom,

    It's the only one we sell now -- so the price on our site is accurate. We just haven't updated the website with photos, as we have to go to the studio to shoot photos of the hives.

    Best,
    Sweet! Thanks, Matt! I can't wait to see the updated photos.

    Cheers,
    Tom

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Lakeland, FL USA
    Posts
    827

    Default Re: Let's talk about viewing-windows

    .

    Does anyone have any suggestions about rust-proof (perhaps stainless steel) hardware for the hinges and lock/bolt device for the window cover?

    I'm building twin hives for a lady who is demanding stainless hardware because she lives in St Petersburg, Florida, by the beach.

    Here's my build thus far. And she wants it ALL painted white, even the roof shingles.

    The white that's on the body is only a primer coat. I still have mucho painting to do.

    They will have landing boards also, underneath the main three-hole entrance.:












    Here is what I showed her and she told me she didn't want the brass hinges or the zinc-plated locking bolt. She wants stainless. She also (because I mentioned it) wants a chain for the door to hold it better so the hinges won't take such a beating......stainless, of course...... Yes, I know I only have two hinges on this hive that needs four. It's only a mock-up for now:







    Last edited by PatBeek; 08-01-2013 at 01:35 PM.

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Lakeland, FL USA
    Posts
    827

    Default Re: Let's talk about viewing-windows

    .

    Just testing to see if my signature now pops up.

    .
    www.savebeesflorida.com (Honeybee removals and top bar hives)

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Raleigh, NC, USA
    Posts
    47

    Default Re: Let's talk about viewing-windows

    How are those hives with the entrance holes in the middle working out? I've always heard that wasn't a good idea.

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Lakeland, FL USA
    Posts
    827

    Default Re: Let's talk about viewing-windows

    Quote Originally Posted by Stan1951 View Post
    How are those hives with the entrance holes in the middle working out? I've always heard that wasn't a good idea.
    It's Phil Chandler's design over at biobees.com

    The main idea behind it (which you may already know) is that the hive has two follower-boards which creates three different chambers. The main three holes are for the main middle chamber. Then on the back side are individual holes on the far sides for doing splits/raising nucs.

    Supposedly it's working fine for many people. I'm not sure if the bees care where and how they enter, as long as they can enter.

    But please elaborate on the issues you've been hearing about.
    www.savebeesflorida.com (Honeybee removals and top bar hives)

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Lakeland, FL USA
    Posts
    827

    Default Re: Let's talk about viewing-windows

    .

    Here's a big thread about it over at Phil's forums:

    Top Bar Hive Entrance in the Center or on the Side?

    http://www.biobees.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=5038

    .
    www.savebeesflorida.com (Honeybee removals and top bar hives)

  10. #30
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Roanoke, VA
    Posts
    1,517

    Default Re: Let's talk about viewing-windows

    I think Stan is saying that as it can possibly increase the work of the beek. If the bees run out of room going one direction and you move the other follower you will end up with the stores on both sides of the brood nest. In the winter they cannot move from one end to the other. So in the fall you have to manipulate the bars to move the brood nest on one end. The problem you can run into with that is that the bars may not fit nicely next to each other.

  11. #31
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Lakeland, FL USA
    Posts
    827

    Default Re: Let's talk about viewing-windows

    .

    Here's what Phil Chandler at biobees says about his design:

    You need to understand that the side entrances are used with two follower boards, as follows (see The Barefoot Beekeeper for full instructions).

    Initially, the followers are placed either side of an introduced swarm or nucleus, with entrance holes also placed centrally, so the colony is held within the central third of the hive body. This means that they have a manageable volume within which to build their first combs, and I have found that this greatly increases the likelihood of these combs being built to follow the starter strips.

    As comb building progresses, ONLY ONE follower is moved, two or three bars ahead of where the bees are building, so as to allow them to expand their colony unhindered. The space on the empty side of the non-moving follower is for use in making splits for increase or swarm prevention, if required.

    The colony continues its expansion in one direction, initially placing stores above the brood, and the excess in combs beyond the brood area. As the colony contracts at the end of the season, the cluster forms close to the stored honey, and during the winter, they eat their way through their stores, comb by comb, moving away from the entrance. At no time is there any need to 'shuffle' combs. (Exceptionally, they may leave a comb of honey between the brood nest and the non-moving follower, which can be re-positioned at the far end if it is felt necessary.)

    If - as is usually the case - there are empty combs either end of the colony as it approaches winter, they can be removed for melting (or stored for replacement in the same colony in the spring, if required). This enables the beekeeper easily to reduce the volume of the hive in winter, so the bees can more easily retain their heat.

    Another major advantage of movable followers is that they enable the beekeeper to do a quick inspection of both ends of the colony at any time, with virtually no disturbance to the bees. You can check both stores and brood nest in a matter of seconds, without moving a single top bar, simply by sliding a follower away. Most times I do this, the bees barely notice. If I need to look a little deeper into the brood nest, for example, if I need to check for eggs or brood, then I can do so by moving only one or two top bars.

    If you hold the colony against one end of the hive with a single follower - or use no followers at all - you cannot ever inspect the brood nest without moving nearly every bar in the hive!

    As I said, the empty space beyond the non-moving follower can be used for making splits and for swarm control, as I provide it with another entrance on the opposite side of the hive to the main entrance.
    www.savebeesflorida.com (Honeybee removals and top bar hives)

  12. #32
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Roanoke, VA
    Posts
    1,517

    Default Re: Let's talk about viewing-windows

    Yes, I've read Phil's writtings and understand the philosophy. It sounds really good, but you limit the expansion of your hive or you set yourself up for having to re-arrange the combs if you have large hives that fill out the hive.

    You can still inspect from the one end if you use a shortened follower board that you can remove and be at the front of the brood nest. If you put your entrances on one side towards one end you can also use a follower board.

    It is what ever works best for the beek. If you like center entrances go with them.

  13. #33
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Raleigh, NC, USA
    Posts
    47

    Default Re: Let's talk about viewing-windows

    I totally agree with Shannonswyatt. However, I'm new to this so I only know what I've read up on or been told. Les Crowder, whose book "Top Bar Beekeeping" I consider to be the Bible of Top Bar Hives, recommends side entrances but always starting the hive on one end or the other. Also Matt Reed of Bee Thinking where I bought my two hives (and have been pestering him with questions all summer) says the same thing. Matt's hives have three entrance holes across the bottom, one on each end and one in the center with three smaller ventilation holes across the top. He recommended only opening one entrance hole on whichever end I wanted to start from and leave the bottom center one for ventilation when it gets hot. The top three ventilation holes are left up to the bees to decide if they want to close them up or not. Happy BeeKeeping!

  14. #34
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Raleigh, NC, USA
    Posts
    47

    Default Re: Let's talk about viewing-windows

    I just read Phil's philosophy and I can see his points. I'm glad I didn't read that before I got started beekeeping or I'd probably still be trying to make up my mind which way to go.

  15. #35
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Roanoke, VA
    Posts
    1,517

    Default Re: Let's talk about viewing-windows

    I have read three recent top bar books as well as Phil's stuff, and not to mention Michael Bush's stuff on his site. I'm also more aligned with Les's methods as well. I personally like the entrances towards one end on the side. It keeps them out of the rain. Wyatt Mangum puts them on the end and it works for him, but I think that his covers (metal roofing sheets) may extend enough over the end to keep dry.

  16. #36
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,554

    Default Re: Let's talk about viewing-windows

    >How are those hives with the entrance holes in the middle working out? I've always heard that wasn't a good idea.

    In a mild climate (such as Phil's) entrances in the middle will work fine. In a cold climate with a break in the middle of winter somewhere, it still might work fine. But if you get a brood nest in the center, honey on both ends, and no break in the weather for the cluster to break and reorganize, the cluster can end up at one end starving with stores at the other end...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  17. #37
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Lakeland, FL USA
    Posts
    827

    Default Re: Let's talk about viewing-windows

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Bush View Post
    >How are those hives with the entrance holes in the middle working out? I've always heard that wasn't a good idea.

    In a mild climate (such as Phil's) entrances in the middle will work fine. In a cold climate with a break in the middle of winter somewhere, it still might work fine. But if you get a brood nest in the center, honey on both ends, and no break in the weather for the cluster to break and reorganize, the cluster can end up at one end starving with stores at the other end...
    We're in Florida, anywhere from Tampa Bay to Orlando.

    I appreciate back-and-forth with the pros-and-cons very much, but I have a feeling it'll work out ok. That's the LEAST of my problems right now. The lady whom I'm building this hive for is now wanting the hinges and lock-bolt to ALL BE STAINLESS !!!!!

    I'm tearing my hair out over "little" detail trying to run down parts that will fit and work properly. What I had in the photos above worked perfectly, but now the stainless piano hinge I just took out a mortgage on is a little TOO WIDE. And no, there's no large selection of sizes in stainless.............it only comes in one option - - EXPENSIVE !!!!

    DYING !!!!!!! DYING !!!! DYING !!!!!

    Now I have to go through the whole deal of emailing photos and receipts and all the stuff that starts adding up to EPIC FAIL with the customer.

    Oh, and for the stainless lock-bolts. No, no no, Home Depot, Lowe's and Ace Hardware have NONE. I had to go to a boating store. Yes, that's right, a boating store in order to place an order for two stainless locking bolts. THIRTY BUCKS TOTAL !!!!!

    I'm so mad right now I can't even see straight.
    www.savebeesflorida.com (Honeybee removals and top bar hives)

  18. #38
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,554

    Default Re: Let's talk about viewing-windows

    I never understood the "Cadillac" top bar hives. Now she wants a Delorean.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  19. #39
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    SW Missouri
    Posts
    55

    Default Re: Let's talk about viewing-windows

    Patbeek,
    Try McMaster Carr for your hardware. They have almost anything and they get it to you quick.
    http://www.mcmaster.com/

  20. #40
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Lakeland, FL USA
    Posts
    827

    Default Re: Let's talk about viewing-windows

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Bush View Post
    I never understood the "Cadillac" top bar hives. Now she wants a Delorean.
    That's actually funny right now.

    But she's concerned about rusting because they live by the beach in St. Petersburg.

    She's also wants them to look nice and uniform (white) to fit in with her home and neighborhood.

    I think the zinc bolt (which would be pretty much under the cover of the roof) and the brass hinges would have been fine, but she's insisting. Now I have problems all-of-a-sudden that I really don't need.
    www.savebeesflorida.com (Honeybee removals and top bar hives)

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