After much mental debate last winter, I decided upon a long lang hive from the plans on "horizontalhive.com". GregV- thank you for the recommendation and advice! My dad made 2 of them for me as a 40th bday present, and I transferred my one colony to them last spring. I made two splits off that colony (it is a very strong one), and the original colony is in one hive, and the two splits are in the other. So far (fingers crossed!), they've made it through winter. Also, we've since realized that my husband has very strong reactions to stings. So it's a huge blessing that I don't need him anymore to cart full boxes.
I used the frames that I had with foundation in these, but I want to transfer to foundationless frames this year. I have googled and have done a search on Beesource, but I'm having difficulty finding out how to make the switch well. I know that I can just add the empty foundationless frames where I would typically add new ones as the season progresses. However, do you ever get rid of frames with foundation completely? Or will I always need to have the originals in there? This is only year 3 for me. Thanks!