So I have a top bar hive that is doing well, made by Bee Line apiaries. I also have several 5 frame deep Nuc boxes laying around along with a few deadout double deeps (10 frame equipment). I want to use the top bar to make splits...what is the best way?
The top bar is roughly 48" long and completely filled with comb. Last year I used some of the top bars to start nucs, but just dropped the bars in the box, the bees built out the comb to fit the nucs (rectangular vs triangular). I used 3 to 4 top bars and 1 to 2 deep frames. I then put a 2nd deep 5 frame Nuc on top and waited till those frames were used. I found the queens, brushed bees off of the original top bars and trimmed the combs back to fit in the top bar hive, returning them. I put deep free into the nucs to replace the top bars.
This all required a lot of manipulation and I felt set the nucs back quite a bit. Also, it was tricky to get the bees to go up into the second Nuc, as the top bars blocked them so they could only go up where I placed the langstroth frames.