Angled Comb on Bars
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Honey Brook, PA, USA
    Posts
    207

    Default Angled Comb on Bars

    I'm going to do a poor diagram to display the 'problem' I'm having. I can't really call it 'cross-combing' but I'm seeing a lot of this:

    _|/
    /|
    _|/
    /|
    _|/
    /|

    The vertical bars '|' represent the top bar, and the slashes '/' represent comb being built on the bar. So I'm having comb contained within the bar (mostly), but instead of a continuous line of comb, I'm getting small sections of comb angled to each other. What should I do with this 'angled' comb? Leave it? Or try to straighten the comb?

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    England, UK
    Posts
    2,147

    Default Re: Angled Comb on Bars

    Even if it's not a major problem right now, it will never cure itself - and if this were my problem, then I'd straighten those combs asap. Just brush away the bees from the top, and press each stray comb area inwards to line-up with the Top Bar.(*) Don't worry about compressing a few square inches of comb in the process - it's almost impossible to avoid doing that. They'll fix any damage in a day or two.

    If you want straight combs (and most people do), then it's important to ensure that straight combs are drawn from the outset - as all future combs are drawn using each previous comb as a template. So - straight combs produce straight comb, and wonky comb ensures that more wonky comb results.
    LJ

    (*) In practice, you'll need to push the comb past the Top Bar by a 1/4 inch or so, as it has a tendency to 'spring back' into position.
    A Heretics Guide to Beekeeping http://heretics-guide.atwebpages.com/

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Aylett, Virginia
    Posts
    5,390

    Default Re: Angled Comb on Bars

    LJ is spot on with this advice. I do not have TBHs, but do use foundationless frames. It is important to check new bars as they are being drawn out for straightness before the bees get too far along. The small tabs are much easier to adjust. Once you get a few that are straight, you can insert empty bars between them and the new bars will get drawn out properly.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Earlysville, Virginia USA
    Posts
    165

    Default Re: Angled Comb on Bars

    Like JW I do a lot of foundationless frames. another tip after straightening by hand is to take every other frame and flip it around a hundred eighty degrees. It can help steer things straight as it breaks up their pattern

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