5 frame nuc box width
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2018
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    Northern Colorado, USA
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    Default 5 frame nuc box width

    Is there a standard for the width of a 5 frame nuc, or is this not nearly as standardized as 8 and 10 frame boxes?

    I have a 5 frame box from kelly that is 9" wide on the outside. The Mann Lake boxes, top, and inner covers 9.5" wide, the mann lake telescoping lid is 10" wide on the inside.

    This month was the is the first time I have stacked these boxes, and the width difference is very obvious.

    Any one have measurements of the width of other 5 frame boxes?

    Attachment 56963 Attachment 56965
    3 Hives, Started in 2017, Learning as I go
    My data logger

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Walton County, GA
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    167

    Default Re: 5 frame nuc box width

    My nuc boxes from Brushy Mountain measure 9-3/8" wide. After BM went under I bought several nuc boxes from Mann Lake which are a tad over 9-3/4" wide. (More like 9-13/16".) Miller Bee Supply says on their web site that their nuc box is 9-1/4" wide.

    The Mann Lake nuc boxes do not stack well with my Brushy boxes. Also, the Mann Lake boxes use rabbet joints whereas Brushy and Miller boxes have box joints (which I much prefer). My next order for nuc boxes will be from Miller.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
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    Salt Lake City, UT
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    1,442

    Default

    To fit five frames with 3/8" space on each side You need an inside dimension of 7-5/8. If you use 3/4" boards then your outside dimension will be 9-1/4 wide. If you want to fit a frame feeder in place of one of the frames you should probably allow another 1/2"
    Zone 6B

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2020
    Location
    Perth Western Australia
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    42

    Default Re: 5 frame nuc box width

    I just made a couple 5-frame nuc boxes.

    What matters most is the inside dimension. Mine are 191mm. That's just over 7.5 inches in the old money.

  6. #5

    Default Re: 5 frame nuc box width

    I personally like them a little bite on the wide side. So I donít roll so many bees when they get full. But I run 9 frames in 10 frame boxís.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    May 2017
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    Spokane County, Washington, USA
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    402

    Default Re: 5 frame nuc box width

    It annoys me to no end that they haven't standardized this yet. I have nucs from several sources, and none of them are compatible with any others, including tops and bottoms.
    So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Location
    Dane County, WI, USA
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    4,255

    Default Re: 5 frame nuc box width

    Quote Originally Posted by bushpilot View Post
    It annoys me to no end that they haven't standardized this yet. I have nucs from several sources, and none of them are compatible with any others, including tops and bottoms.
    I guess this makes me feel better about my own custom ways.

    In fact, I have scrounged lots of "free" Lang equipment by now and the interchangeability is far from desired.
    Neither frames nor boxes work cross-platform without constant twicking and cutting (often in field and on-the-job - freaking pain).
    Compact tree-pruning saw is my must-have tool - the frames from different sources just don't feet into the boxes.

    That is a supposed standard why people keep clinging to the Lang system.
    I wish.
    Former "smoker boy". Classic, square 12 frame Dadants >> Long hive/Short frame/chemical-free experimentations.

  9. #8
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Algoma District Northern Ontario, Canada
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    5,641

    Default Re: 5 frame nuc box width

    I have not seen enough variance to be anything more than cosmetic. Aside, that is, from some telescopic covers that I made a quite close fit on a narrow range hive body. It does not fit the wider ones. I now make all my covers a more comfortable fit. No more skinnny jeans. Some boxes made with standard outside width but constructed with the thicker 7/8 boards are a bit tight to put 10 frames in a box if you are not conscientious about keeping sidebars scrape. Those ones run 9 frames now as many commercials do with all their 10 frame boxes.

    Height of box, depth of frame rest, and span of the inside of frame rest to frame rest is another story and indeed very important. These are not the variances being quibbled about though.
    Frank

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Location
    Dane County, WI, USA
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    4,255

    Default Re: 5 frame nuc box width

    Quote Originally Posted by crofter View Post
    .....and span of the inside of frame rest to frame rest is another story and indeed very important. .....
    This is the biggest PITA I have been handling so far.
    If anything, this must be the most standard cross-platform thing to have - still not the case.
    Last edited by GregV; 06-30-2020 at 01:06 PM.
    Former "smoker boy". Classic, square 12 frame Dadants >> Long hive/Short frame/chemical-free experimentations.

  11. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    England, UK
    Posts
    2,058

    Default Re: 5 frame nuc box width

    For anyone who builds their own boxes from scratch ...

    Brood boxes with an odd number of frames (say, 9 or 11) is preferable to 8 or 10 if you plan on placing nuc boxes on top of them. A pair of 5's fit perfectly on top of an 11-frame box, likewise a pair of 4's on a 9-framer.
    LJ
    A Heretics Guide to Beekeeping http://heretics-guide.atwebpages.com/

  12. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    Location
    Northern Lower Michigan, USA
    Posts
    1,320

    Default Re: 5 frame nuc box width

    I just set 2 NUCs on the table , measured, made a box, the double divider has it be a nice fit for the 5 over 5 NUC system.

    I also now make all covers a bit "wind" and long" no more snug fits, also if I use a slotted inner cover the air can actually get out.

    I like the 11 frame idea, I can use the NUCs as building blocks then for winter instead of putting them on the shelf.

    GG

  13. #12
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Algoma District Northern Ontario, Canada
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    5,641

    Default Re: 5 frame nuc box width

    Here is the base I made for stackd 5 frame nucs. It is slotted so I can divide the bottom into two or three separate compartments to do again (or later) I would put more slots in as in msl's front range multi purpose hive. I had in mind this 11 frame design fro lj's rose method cell starter finisher. The excluder is in two pieces as is the top inner covers.

    I made this of 2X12 stock stock so slots wont cut into handhold cutouts. Not that this beast really needs handholds. The stacked 4 frame nucs on 10 frame base have some good features one of which is utilising a standard 10 frame bottom. This one to take 5 framers is one of a kind but no snag when you are rolling your own.

    It looks like I will not get bees in it this season but have put bees in the Dadant depth 10 frame box.
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    Frank

  14. #13
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    Apr 2017
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    Aylett, Virginia
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    Default Re: 5 frame nuc box width

    I make my nuc boxes to the 9-1/4" width with the tops 11-1/4" wide. Gives a 1/4" on each side for clearance. Found out that those tops do not fit my Ceracell nuc feeders and had to build a few 11-3/4' wide tops. The OCD part of me is screaming. In the future, I will make new boxes for the feeders so I do not have to play musical tops. No need for MP style resource hives here in Virginia but who knows? I love to experiment with the bees.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  15. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2020
    Location
    Perth Western Australia
    Posts
    42

    Default Re: 5 frame nuc box width

    I find that even staying with the same brand you won't have consistency. I started out with Flow and their boxes (internal and external) sizes vary a bit between versions, and timber species. A telescoping lid from one 8-frame box will not fit on another 8-frame box made a couple years later from different wood, I discovered.

    I can't see me buying any more stuff from them as their prices are ridiculous and quality is poor, so I'm hoping my local beekeeping shop, that make all their wooden boxes and accessories in house will be more consistent. Not guaranteed. The last batch of frames I bought online were also a smidge bigger than the ones I already had, so will stick with this one manufacturer and see how it goes.

    Screen Shot 2020-07-01 at 7.25.19 am.jpg

  16. #15
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    Jan 2015
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    Williamsport, PA
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    605

    Default Re: 5 frame nuc box width

    I make mine 9" but I use migratory tops. I do have some that are 9-1/4 too but they are slowly cycling out of use.

  17. #16
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Location
    Spokane County, Washington, USA
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    Default Re: 5 frame nuc box width

    Quote Originally Posted by JWPalmer View Post
    No need for MP style resource hives here in Virginia but who knows? I love to experiment with the bees.
    The writing is on the wall, I see a double nuc or two in your future ...
    So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.

  18. #17
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    Location
    Tomball, Tx.
    Posts
    18

    Default Re: 5 frame nuc box width

    Quote Originally Posted by crofter View Post
    Here is the base I made for stackd 5 frame nucs. It is slotted so I can divide the bottom into two or three separate compartments to do again (or later) I would put more slots in as in msl's front range multi purpose hive. I had in mind this 11 frame design fro lj's rose method cell starter finisher. The excluder is in two pieces as is the top inner covers.

    I made this of 2X12 stock stock so slots wont cut into handhold cutouts. Not that this beast really needs handholds. The stacked 4 frame nucs on 10 frame base have some good features one of which is utilising a standard 10 frame bottom. This one to take 5 framers is one of a kind but no snag when you are rolling your own.

    It looks like I will not get bees in it this season but have put bees in the Dadant depth 10 frame box.
    Where did you find the individual nuc sized queen excluders?

  19. #18
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Algoma District Northern Ontario, Canada
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    5,641

    Default Re: 5 frame nuc box width

    Quote Originally Posted by Blue Tick View Post
    Where did you find the individual nuc sized queen excluders?
    I cut down two full sized ones; Used the left overs to make a queen caging/timing frame.
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    Frank

  20. #19
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Nashville, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    14

    Default Re: 5 frame nuc box width

    Quote Originally Posted by Blue Tick View Post
    Where did you find the individual nuc sized queen excluders?
    I have purchased a few 5-frame from Pigeon Mountain Trading Company
    https://pigeonmountaintrading.com/pr...bound-excluder

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