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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I wanted to do my bottom 2 brood boxes 9 thin frames in 8 frame medium boxes but due to a wonky start I opted to use 8 normal frames to have more space to deal with it.

now i'm coming close to being able to put a 2nd box on and i'm wondering if putting 9 thin frames would confuse things. this is foundationless.
 

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I just inspected a couple of my hives in that configuration today and found that the bees had attached the bottom bars on the upper frames to the top bars of the lower box because the upper frames were not aligned with the bottom ones. It was a little messy and disturbing to the bees when I broke the frames loose. That attached comb cut down on available bee space between the two boxes. Other than that I don't see any other problems.
 

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I run 11 frames in most of my brood chambers and ten in the rest and down to 8 frames in my supers. Burr comb is going to happen in any case. Even if frames are perfectly aligned the bees still bridge the gap because they need to for travel. It is nothing to worry about.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Bridge comb i can live with. As long as they reset their brain and will build straight from the closer frames i'm fine. hopefully by next week they'll be ready for 2nd box.

also at the moment i run a 4" top entrance and 3/4" bottom entrance so they'll have options of going to the lower box or across the top of the upper box.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Well i put 9 frames over the 8 that were on bottom today. They had 7 out of 8 reaching the bottom bar. i put the undrawn bar into the middle to get more attention. All of the frames were separate and moveable so that makes me happy. this is day 11 after hiving the swarm. didn't see any capped brood yet but i'm hoping that will show up this week. lots of pollen coming in. I took their syrup away since they started to store it and/or the nectar they are bringing in.

probably 6 of the frames were this size or bigger
 

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Beautiful, JakeDatc! You must be over the moon! Is that your queen i see in the upper left, just where the white comb starts to become visible?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Beautiful, JakeDatc! You must be over the moon! Is that your queen i see in the upper left, just where the white comb starts to become visible?
Pretty sure that is her. that pic was from the other day. didn't see her today and i'm a bit paranoid about no capped brood yet but i'm hoping that she was just delayed a bit due to having no comb to lay in at the start. Not sure what other peoples experiences with putting a swarm into an empty foundationless box are with regards to brood timing.

crazy girls were flying in downpours yesterday haha
 

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Hello fellow "Rhodialin." ;)

I also run all 8 frame mediums foundationless. I toyed with the idea of running 9 frames as they would fit in the hive body as-is but it would be tight. I decided against it in the end as I was sure they would be adding propalis to the frames and eventually all that little space would add up and be too tight to work with. If I were to add the 9th frame later, I would likely do it across the board for consistency.

My hives were package starts this year and all from scratch (no comb). I did not see capped brood for about 2 weeks in after installation as they were building out the comb and getting acclimated to their new home.

Love the pic! Natural comb is awesome.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Cool.. I added 9 frames and there is some wiggle room to get them out. They are thinner frames than normal so there is a bit more room. That may change when they get propolis on everything but for now they have been busy with comb building.

I will see how they do with it in this box and then for the 3rd box I can decide which is working the best. i have 1 more box worth of thin frames. Nice thing about all medium is the interchanging.
 

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As long as there is bee space between the boxes, the bees don't care. I have run 11 frames over/under 10 for a couple years now and the bees do fine.

I plan to fix that when I get a new queen laying, as I want to do a summer split and overwinter a nuc this year, and will put narrow frames in place of the standard ones in the brood nest deep. Both mediums (one under, one over) are 11 frame narrows, works great.

So far I've found that narrow frames work very will in the brood nest. Comb is quite flat and there are very few drone cells (this may be because I have two foundation less frames in there that are solid drone cell). They do not build the honey arch over the brood wider than the brood cells, and I think it's easier for them to keep the brood warm in the winter and early spring -- certainly this hive produced a huge population very early, and had a shallow and a medium FULL of bees in early March. Had to feed them, but I don't mind.

Peter
 
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