Bee Hive Stand Question
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  1. #1
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    Jun 2019
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    Default Bee Hive Stand Question

    Hello and thanks for looking over my question.

    I am completely new to all of this, but I am slowly learning. Very exciting for sure!

    I just ordered a "Hoover Hives" Langstroth Bee Hive 8 Frame 2 Deep 1 Medium set up, which should arrive within a week or so. I do live in So California and I plan on setting it up on top of wood chips over weed mat in my back yard, and I've been looking over hive stands. I am aware of some of the different DYI methods using cinder blocks and or wood beams, but I'd rather see about using an actual stand for aesthetic reasons. And sadly due to my ten thumbs and complete lack of all wood working skills, I am forced to buy one.

    First, is there any reason something like a water heater table wouldn't work? The size seems decent at 21" x 21" and 18" high and can hold 650 LBS.
    I do have concerns about it being a 100% solid top, which would restrict airflow from the bottom. I'm not sure if this matters, but I do see most stands seem to have an open bottom.
    https://www.amazon.com/Eastman-86278.../dp/B00838IOZE (They can be found for under $20 on eBay)

    Can a bee hive stand have a 100% solid top? (I did Google the question with too many off-topic choices)

    Thanks,
    b1rd
    1.jpg

    PS- I forgot to mention that I'm trying to go cheap on the stand.

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  3. #2
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    May 2019
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    Spokane, Washington, USA
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    Default Re: Bee Hive Stand Question

    If you are planning on having a screened bottom board ever in the future, they do recommend having an open hive stand. Have you made your bottom board choice yet?

  4. #3
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    Default Re: Bee Hive Stand Question

    That's exactly what I was wondering about, and no, I have not decided about the bottom board. I'm not sure if it's needed or not where I live as far as the heat (Average high is 85F), but I also understand that they can help with the mites.

    Thanks for the reply and some large colored cinder blocks might have to do the trick after all.

  5. #4
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    Default Re: Bee Hive Stand Question

    If you don't have heat that exceeds 85 it would be ok to have the screened bottom board on a solid stand, and you can just put the pull out tray on the bottom slot position to add for more air flow. You'd also want to make sure you have a top entrance that you can either open up completely once the hive is strong enough to defend two entrances, or you could use an entrance gate to at least open it up for more ventilation in the summer heat at least. However, that metal stand would be a huge heat conductor, so you'd want to coat it with a flat white to prevent it from overheating the hive from the bottom, or find something made from a less heat conductive material.

  6. #5
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    Jun 2019
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    Default Re: Bee Hive Stand Question

    However, that metal stand would be a huge heat conductor, so you'd want to coat it with a flat white to prevent it from overheating the hive from the bottom, or find something made from a less heat conductive material.
    That never even crossed my mind, thanks. At this point I'm going to say that metal table is out and some wood and blocks are looking fine after all.

    All the best,
    Justin

  7. #6
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    Default Re: Bee Hive Stand Question

    Quote Originally Posted by b1rd View Post

    Can a bee hive stand have a 100% solid top? (I did Google the question with too many off-topic choices)

    Thanks,
    b1rd
    1.jpg

    PS- I forgot to mention that I'm trying to go cheap on the stand.
    Sure you can have solid top for your stand - since you generally avoid standing your hive(s) directly onto the solid surface.
    You want some expandable material between your hive and the stand anyway (so to protect more valuable hive equipment).

    A pair of scrap 2x4 boards between the hive and the solid stand will do (as you can replace them as they rot).
    Scrap green wood will also do and will not rot too quickly.
    That will create a gap between the base of the hive and the top of the stand - good for under-hive ventilation.
    Former "smoker boy". Classic, square 12 frame Dadants >> Long hive/Short frame/chemical-free experimentations.

  8. #7
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    Default Re: Bee Hive Stand Question

    Quote Originally Posted by b1rd View Post
    That never even crossed my mind, thanks. At this point I'm going to say that metal table is out and some wood and blocks are looking fine after all.

    All the best,
    Justin
    I know it's not that pretty, but I love my cinder blocks/4'x4' cedar stand. I don't have to find flat surfaces to place things on when I'm doing my inspections because those cinder blocks make handy little tables. I also like it that I can use the wood ends poking out the top holes of my cinder blocks as a frame stand instead of bringing one to the hive. I had to excavate the ground to level it for my hives, and with the Bee Smart Designs Ultimate hive stand I'm using on my 2nd hive, I had to put a paver under each leg, but the cinder blocks were just fine placing on top my 4" of pebble + 2" of sand.

    Will you be starting with bees this summer?

  9. #8
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    Default Re: Bee Hive Stand Question

    Thanks again for the replies. When I used google images to check out some DYI simple designs, I did see various options that should work. I also forgot that I'm able to buy colored cinder block, so that should help pretty things up.

    I'm not sure when I'll get the bees. I want to have all of my equipment in place and a better understanding of exactly how things should go before I get the bees, but I am hoping for this summer. There's a 'hands on' class that I'd like to attend, but it's not until the end of September, and I'm not seeing much from out local bee keeping society as far as newbie stuff. However, I am able to find a fair amount of good info on Youtube and I'm slowly getting there. And I do have most of my other equipment already.

  10. #9

    Default Re: Bee Hive Stand Question

    All you need is two 4x4 and 4 cement blocks. Sure everyone say that you need them 18 off the ground. Not!!!! Unless you have a a bunch of skunks running around. Its no fun pulling honey off a 5 foot ladder. Witch I just did with the 4x4 set up

  11. #10
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    Default Re: Bee Hive Stand Question

    Thanks.

    I was actually looking at cinder block bricks just now and I'm leaning toward the "16 in. x 8 in. x 8 in. HW Concrete Block" for just $1.30 (Much cheaper than everything else i looked at). I like the fact that its open along the sides, which I would suspect would allow for a little more air flow. And I think my 8-frame is just about 16" wide, so it should work out well. One in the front and one in the back.

    v.jpg

  12. #11
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    Default Re: Bee Hive Stand Question

    I use 4-8x8x16 cinder blocks stacked two high and spaced 8' apart with two 4x4s laid on top. Puts my hives at 20" off the ground which is great for skunks and other critters. I can get five ten frame hives or seven nucs on one stand. And the stands are cheap.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  13. #12
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    Default Re: Bee Hive Stand Question

    Quote Originally Posted by b1rd View Post
    Thanks.

    I was actually looking at cinder block bricks just now and I'm leaning toward the "16 in. x 8 in. x 8 in. HW Concrete Block" for just $1.30 (Much cheaper than everything else i looked at). I like the fact that its open along the sides, which I would suspect would allow for a little more air flow. And I think my 8-frame is just about 16" wide, so it should work out well. One in the front and one in the back.

    v.jpg
    Most of my stands are DIY wooden jobs, but if I could source concrete blocks of that description (and price !) - that would certainly be my choice. And they could always be painted of course ...
    LJ
    A Heretics Guide to Beekeeping http://heretics-guide.atwebpages.com/

  14. #13
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    Default Re: Bee Hive Stand Question

    Quote Originally Posted by b1rd View Post
    Thanks again for the replies. When I used google images to check out some DYI simple designs, I did see various options that should work. I also forgot that I'm able to buy colored cinder block, so that should help pretty things up.

    I'm not sure when I'll get the bees. I want to have all of my equipment in place and a better understanding of exactly how things should go before I get the bees, but I am hoping for this summer. There's a 'hands on' class that I'd like to attend, but it's not until the end of September, and I'm not seeing much from out local bee keeping society as far as newbie stuff. However, I am able to find a fair amount of good info on Youtube and I'm slowly getting there. And I do have most of my other equipment already.
    If you are in garden zone 10a, you might not have to worry about starting this late in the season like we do up here, but I'd find out from a local club if it's seasonally hard on the bees if you get them this season, or if it'd best to wait for the Spring in your area. Those hands on classes are invaluable...I sure wish I had taken one before getting my bees this spring. Last minute decision on beekeeping trianwreck, here! LOL

  15. #14

    Default Re: Bee Hive Stand Question

    Strongly recommend screened bottom board because of Varroa mites, with a way to insert a solid insert under the screen for winter

  16. #15
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    Default Re: Bee Hive Stand Question

    I was excited to show off my fea market find for $15.00. It's solid, 19" tall and it's the exact length of the hive body. It also had some slots in the center, and when I cut a couple of them out, it left the perfect opening for a screen bottom board and I ordered one. (Still no bees though).

    However, I later found the "ATTN: New beekeepers with screened bottom boards" thread, so now I need to decide which way to go.

    Still 'dig' the table though.

    1.JPG

    2.JPG

  17. #16
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    Default Re: Bee Hive Stand Question

    Quote Originally Posted by b1rd View Post
    However, I later found the "ATTN: New beekeepers with screened bottom boards" thread, so now I need to decide which way to go.
    That is an opinion thread. It is like asking which is a better bee, Italian, Russian, or Carniolan? They each have positive and negative aspects. Likewise, there are positives and negatives to the two bottom boards.Those that have solid bottom boards love them as much as those that have sceened bottoms love theirs. I think folks in hot and humid environments should strongly consider using a screened bottom board, but let's keep this discussion about hive stands.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  18. #17
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    Default Re: Bee Hive Stand Question

    Thanks.

    I know it was just one person's opinion, but there were a lot of subsequent comments which seemed to agree. I'm not saying that I do, but it is something else I'll have to look into more I guess. I do live in San Diego, Ca, and we don't have the humidity that many places do, and the highs where I live around around 85-95 in the summer. Sometimes warmer. But I'll have both to choose from.

    If you are in garden zone 10a, you might not have to worry about starting this late in the season like we do up here, but I'd find out from a local club if it's seasonally hard on the bees if you get them this season, or if it'd best to wait for the Spring in your area. Those hands on classes are invaluable...I sure wish I had taken one before getting my bees this spring. Last minute decision on beekeeping trianwreck, here! LOL
    I missed this before. Thanks.

    I've decided to try and just wait until the next season for the bees and use the time to learn more, as there's lots. I do have a lecture only class next month.

    We also have a farmer's market here and I like the folks who sell the honey, so I think I'll look at them for the bees. They offer delivery and even hive set up, however my goal is to learn and do it all solo if possible. (With forums and YouTube of course)

  19. #18
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
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    Madison, WI
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    137

    Default Re: Bee Hive Stand Question

    Simplest stand you can buy is a restaurant dunnage rack...you can see hundreds of images of them on Google....they are made of welded aluminum tube, can hold over 1000lbs, come in different lengths, and stand about 8 to 12" tall...you can find 3' to 4' ones for around $40 or less sometimes...a 4' one will easily hold two hives with space between...sometimes on restaurant auctions you can pick them up for $10-15 each. The heavy duty ones run $50 and can typically hold a lot more. Only thing we do is put a pad under the leg so the tube doesn't settle in...gets tough to justify building them out of wood for the cost of these aluminum ones. There are also plastic ones, but I haven't tried those to see how they stand up outside.
    www.capitalbeesupply.com
    Manufacturers and Purveyors of Fine Beekeeping Equipment

  20. #19
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    Default Re: Bee Hive Stand Question

    ...restaurant dunnage rack...
    Very cool.

    Never knew about these and I was even trying to think outside of the box when I found the water heater table, and these are way better.

  21. #20
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    Default

    [QUOTE=b1rd;1745917]Thanks.

    I know it was just one person's opinion, but there were a lot of subsequent comments which seemed to agree. I'm not saying that I do, but it is something else I'll have to look into more I guess. I do live in San Diego, Ca, and we don't have the humidity that many places do, and the highs where I live around around 85-95 in the summer. Sometimes warmer. But I'll have both to choose from.


    I've decided to try and just wait until the next season for the bees and use the time to learn more, as there's lots. I do have a lecture only class next month.

    We also have a farmer's market here and I like the folks who sell the honey, so I think I'll look at them for the bees. They offer delivery and even hive set up, however my goal is to learn and do it all solo if possible. (With forums and YouTube of course)
    That is awesome that you have found a local source for bees! If they’re raising their own queens locally, it means that you will have a hive that already is well suited to your climate and adapted to your seasonal changes. I think supporting local Queen breeders is really important for the survival of the Hobby. You should ask them what type of bees they have, and what they treat their colonies with so you can thoroughly research their treatments to determine if that is a routine you can continue in your hive. Cool stand, btw, and fwiw I know a lot of people are really happy with their screened bottom boards.

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