Langstroth to Slovenian type AZ hive transition- any practical advice? - Page 2
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  1. #21
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    May 2012
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    DFW area, TX, USA
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    Default Re: Langstroth to Slovenian type AZ hive transition- any practical advice?

    Wasn't there a company in the USA making AZ style hives with frames compatible with our deep frames?
    ...We don't see things as they are, we see things as WE are...

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  3. #22
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
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    San Antonio Texas
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    Default Re: Langstroth to Slovenian type AZ hive transition- any practical advice?

    There have been two of us building AZ hives that use Lang deep foundation, for about two years now. and I am one of them.

  4. #23
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    Jul 2010
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    Columbia, Missouri, usa
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    251

    Default Re: Langstroth to Slovenian type AZ hive transition- any practical advice?

    I agree with Vance. My AZ hives are only 2 high, which with a queen excluder, means that a queen can fill that bottom part quickly. I need to check these hives probably twice as often as my Langs.
    Being that I am 75 years old, I thought that it would be nice not having to lift the heavy supers and that is true. But the Az hives make me sometimes do more than I want to.

    Question; what should I do about the queen excluder during the winter? Leave it in or take it out.
    9 hives - 10 years (also had 7 hives in early 1970's) T as needed - zone 6

  5. #24
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Keene, New Hampshire, USA
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    200

    Default Re: Langstroth to Slovenian type AZ hive transition- any practical advice?

    I take mine out. I use thin strips of wood, about a third of an inch to block the space created by the QE, so the bees don't fly out into the bee house. I don't care where the queen is during the winter, and I want to make sure that she is kept warm and fed. When spring comes and I get ready to split, I'll make sure she is back downstairs and the QE is back in.

    Managing an AZ hive is a different system than managing a vertical Langstroth hive. The frames are worked singly (horizontally), so there is no lifting (maximum 8-10 lbs full of honey), but during the season, adding and removing honey frames, moving brood up to the second deep and putting in empty frames below for the queen require the beekeeper to be on hand. No dumping an empty super on top and heading off for vacation.

    Personally, I like working my AZ hives. I can take care of several of them in the time it takes me to inspect one of my Langs, especially if I want to inspect the bottom box and to get to it, I have to empty half the frames out of the upper boxes just to lift them off.

    And then, after I have made sure my AZs all are set, I relax on the couch in my bee house, pour a glass of mead, breath in the wafting sweet honey smell of bees, and listen to them sing.

  6. #25
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    Nov 2018
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    San Antonio Texas
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    44

    Default Re: Langstroth to Slovenian type AZ hive transition- any practical advice?

    Quote Originally Posted by cdevier View Post
    Question; what should I do about the queen excluder during the winter? Leave it in or take it out.
    In Slovenia the bees are bred to shrink down into a minimal sized cluster, which allows them to limit the bees to just the lower chamber. What they will do is remove all of the frames in the upper chamber. and place a thin board above the queen excluder to keep the hive in the lower chamber. Than they will place a blanket or quilt above the board to provide insulation.

    In the USA I like to run 3 Chamber AZ hives. doing this you can place the queen excluder above the second chamber, And than do what I outlined above only in the third chamber.

    Picture of one of my hives is below
    Screenshot from 2018-06-08 17-38-08.jpg

    Steve of http://steve4bees.us

  7. #26
    Join Date
    May 2018
    Location
    Alberta, Canada
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    14

    Default Re: Langstroth to Slovenian type AZ hive transition- any practical advice?

    Time to report:
    After building my bee house last summer, placing 4 AZ hives in it (2 triple and 2 double on top of each other), I had my first inspection for 2019 ... February was called "the coldest for the last 75+ years" in Alberta, so I was glad to see all 4 hives being alive and well...
    Now that I have new enthusiasm about expanding, I see that the Slovenian guy who I bought the hives from, is producing Langstroth-sized AZ hives, so I will be ordering some more. I am kind of sad I will have to deal with two different sizes of frames, but when I did the initial purchase - he did not offer the North American sized AZ hives, so - ...
    It will be my first summer managing this style, I am curios to see what the workload will be, but - definitely pleased with the survival rate ...

  8. #27
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    May 2018
    Location
    Alberta, Canada
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    Default Re: Langstroth to Slovenian type AZ hive transition- any practical advice?

    Steve - question: the Lang frames have this widening at the upper part when looked at from the side, and that widening makes them almost touch each other. The Slovenian frames, being same width top to bottom, have more space between them all the way. do you have observations on the Lang frames sticking together in the Az hive, are they harder to pull out??
    az1.JPGaz2.JPG

  9. #28
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    Nov 2018
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    San Antonio Texas
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    Default Re: Langstroth to Slovenian type AZ hive transition- any practical advice?

    ZANDO

    On Langstroths these are what I call wings on the end bars. and yes the Bees will glue them together.
    on AZ's these are held apart by frame spacers. and these thin metal spacers minimize the contact of the frames with each other and to the hive body so there is almost no gluing of the frames together.

    This is a Video I made to talk about this and other aspects of the differences between AZ's and langstroth frame styles..
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=naa8pCg8Pz4

    And you do not want to use Langstroth frames in a AZ hive you will have the Wings all glued together on the end that you dont see.
    Imagine getting that unglued!

  10. #29
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    May 2018
    Location
    Alberta, Canada
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    14

    Default Re: Langstroth to Slovenian type AZ hive transition- any practical advice?

    My fears exactly. So I have 4 AZ hives with the "normal" AZ hive frames, which took extra effort to place a base on and build up the comb. Now I see AZ hives for sale that are built to fit the Lang frames, and I am split - do I get the original AZ hives and frames, and put in extra effort to build up the comb etc, or do I get the Lang AZ hives that fit the frames I already have from my previous operation (the Lang frames we all have)?
    Anyone here with actual experience having AZ type hive with Lang frames? how easy / hard is to pull them out when full and sticky?

  11. #30
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    Nov 2018
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    San Antonio Texas
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    Default Re: Langstroth to Slovenian type AZ hive transition- any practical advice?

    if you have the european sized AZ frames, than yes that is more difficult to get foundation for in North America and that is one reason I Build AZ hives that use LANG deep foundation in a AZ style Frame.
    If you have a AZ that uses Lang deep foundation s than you can easily move your LANG deep drawn Comb from a langstroth frame to a AZ frame.


    Here is a Video I made of that!
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nl7vJfMGICQ

  12. #31
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    Aug 2011
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    Landing, NJ, USA
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    Default Re: Langstroth to Slovenian type AZ hive transition- any practical advice?

    Couldn't you just alternate the direction that the modified lang frames face to avoid contact?
    Bill

  13. #32
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    Nov 2018
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    San Antonio Texas
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    Default Re: Langstroth to Slovenian type AZ hive transition- any practical advice?

    yes you can orient lang frames so they stand on the end bars. , this allows you to use a hive tool to break the propolise on both the end bars and than pull the frames. I think this is a practical way to add a SUPER to the back of a AZ, and In fact this is the ONLY way that I think that Lang frames should ever be in a AZ hive.
    I built a super to stick on the back of a AZ hive to demonstrate this idea.
    this is only practical during a honey flow and for a short period of time, I would not recommend keeping a super on the back of a AZ long term.
    This is a video of that AZ super.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JNvtJgowGbg

  14. #33
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    May 2018
    Location
    Alberta, Canada
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    14

    Default Re: Langstroth to Slovenian type AZ hive transition- any practical advice?

    Mid-season in Alberta. AZ hive definitely has a different style of management than the Lang hives... still not sure if I like it better, but here are some observations, you assign the pluses and minuses:
    - using the smoker on the inside the bee house keeps me well fumigated as well have to keep it closer to the door / window and take it as I need it...
    - bees fly around in the closed room, and go for the window - have to open the window from time to time to let them out.
    - have to be careful not to forget the window open for too long, or the bees from the outside start coming inside to check the honey smell
    - no real issues with pulling out stuck frames, but I can see how they would become pain to pull if left for the end of the season.... definite need for much "cleaner" operation when it comes to propolis ...
    - the AZ hives have a nifty opening on the upper part of the access door for ventilation - experimented with two hives open and two closed - a lot of ventilating bees at the entrance of the closed ones, and none on the open ones...
    - nothing beats being able to lift the frame up towards the sun and check it out - in the bee house you either have to get to the door / window, or you need very strong light
    - inspecting the bottom level of the lower hive from the side is kind of awkward - I should have placed the hives even higher off the floor.
    - the hives are well protected from the elements - I think the bees are developing much faster / better than the outside hives. This is hard to quantify, however...
    - it is soo nice to have all your tools and thingy-ma-bops close at hand, you can do inspection work / repairs, anything really, regardless of the weather outside...

    More in September ...

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