I am repairing a neglected top bar hive for a "bee sanctuary" we have in Davis. It is basically a community apiary that has mostly been abandoned due to high ant pressure. Now that we have solved the ant problem it is starting to get more people involved, but had some old equipment that needed repair. This hive has been neglected a few years so I cleaned it up, repaired the screened bottom, and put some ant proof legs on it to survive the hoards of ants in this location (Metal cans half filled with concrete to anchor the legs and a second can higher up the legs hanging down. Fill the bottom cans with vegetable oil and the upper cans with a layer of grease).
I decided to add a set of my special self centering top bars to this hive. The original design has the top bars overhanging the edge of the hive. While I like that for ease of prying the bars, it can be a pain to center the bars. I have previously solved this problem on my own top bar hive by making self centering bars. The dimensions of that hive are slightly different and I took the time to cut the angle at the top on my own hive, but a similar top bar design worked for this hive too.
The self centering bars take an extra two cuts (per side) to make, but make life Sooooo much easier when working the hive.
Essentially, the bars have double stepped ends so there is a notch that sits just inside the lip of the hive with a long tongue that extends beyond the hive that you can pry on. Inside of the notch that meets the side wall is a bee space which keeps them from connecting the comb to the wall.
Will add pictures so you all can see the bars. I hope that someone else likes the bar design and uses it too.