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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Isle of Wight, VA

    Default anyone supering their topbar hive? or using QMP strips?

    Has anyone done supering of their top bar before? I can find a little bit of info on the web regarding this, but I'm looking for first hand info. My hive is 45" long and I am going to try to have a 2 queen hive in early spring to build up the numbers, and then do a couple splits to populate some new hives for friends and try raising a few queens. Will probably have top entrances to the supers along with the bottom existing entrances and have a few bars spaced/cut to allow movement between honey supers and brood chambers.

    Michael Bush talks about the 2 queen hive in his book, and he mentions honey supers between the 2 colonies. I was thinking of making them the depth of mediums and spanning the 45" length with 2 separate boxes that have top bars the same width as the existing hive. The sides will have to be straight, rather than angled like my existing hive, so the bars are interchangable.

    Do you think there will be a lot of comb attachment to the sides, if they are straight? I have noticed in my existing hive that on the side with the observation window, that they do not build the comb out to touch the window. Maybe it's the faint amount of light that seeps in the cracks that discourage attachment, or maybe I'm just lucky so far. But it's something to test out-glass on both sides to see if it will minimize comb attachment.

    Somewhere it was also mentioned that a hive, without brood to take care of, will really pack in the honey, so I was wondering about experimenting with the QMP strips and a queenless hive during the heavy flow. Anyone used the QMP strips before for temporary queenless situations?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA

    Default Re: anyone supering their topbar hive? or using QMP strips?

    Michael Bush has TBHs with vertical sides (TTBH) and also TBHs with sloping sides (KTBH). Here are his comments on attachments:
    Question: Does a KTBH have less attachments than a TTBH?
    Answer: In my experience no. I only know of one TBH beekeeper who actually seems to think so. Most have had the same experience as I have, which is that they do little attachment either way.
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Chicagoland, IL, USA

    Default Re: anyone supering their topbar hive? or using QMP strips?

    We have plexiglass windows in our KTBH - and the bees have made loads of attachments onto the plexi. I scrape it off to free the combs - and sometimes, the girls just insist on re-attaching the combs!
    No experience with a super on a top bar...have thought about it - but haven't experimented at all. Just thought you might want to know plexi is different than glass...and the bees know it!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Greater Hartford area, CT

    Default Re: anyone supering their topbar hive? or using QMP strips?

    The guy who writes this blog is experimenting with supered TBHs. I'm sure he'd be happy to answer any questions you have about his process/designs.

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