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I run about 30- 40 hives. I had rotator cuff surgery on oct 2 and am having the other one done tues 29. I have been running dbl deeps all of my life. I live in northern IL. I read your threads about using all 6 5/8 equipment and listening to you guys and gals it sounds really great as far as moving honey, brood, pollen around. I talked to a commercial beek and he said I might have trouble getting a good brood nest. They don't have any problems putting brood in my honey supers. I'm also not getting any younger so less weight would be great.
 

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Local feral survivors in eight frame medium boxes.
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I went from double deeps to all mediums and then from all mediums to all eight frame mediums. The queen typically is laying in three to four of the boxes and the brood nest is plenty large. The advantages go beyond weight. I can do splits by the box when I have four eight frame medium boxes full of bees, just by putting down two bottoms and dealing the boxes. There is bound to be brood in three of them. They winter better because the cluster almost always spans the gap between the boxes and they can move between combs better, and because in an eight frame box they leave less food behind because the box fits the cluster better.
http://www.bushfarms.com/beeswinter.htm#boxes
http://www.bushfarms.com/beeslazy.htm#lighterboxes

I cut down all my equipment:
http://www.bushfarms.com/beeseightframemedium.htm
 

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I'm still kind of new, but I use all mediums and it seems like I have good brood patterns.
I'm thinking of using 3 mediums for brood and using shallows on top for honey. I can't lift a medium of honey. I have to remove some frames, and sometimes that sucks when I'm just checking to see how they're doing.
 

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I followed the link and read the article. One thing I'm unsure of, Is Walt reversing the Deep and Shallow brood box(es) in the Spring? Or, is the Deep always on the bottom with the shallow used as brood and then backfilled with honey?



bennybee,

Please read this link.

http://www.beesource.com/point-of-view/walt-wright/objections-to-the-double-deep/

In the article, Walt Wright discusses an alternative which is a single deep topped by shallows. He makes a good point of discussion regarding the brood colony and honey stores. You may find it quite interesting.
 

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I don't believe he is reversing since Walt checkerboards (see other threads). Here's a quote:

Spring
Swarm prevention is simplified. The two shallows of reserve honey overhead provide more flexibility for opening up the overhead honey reserve to prevent swarming.
Colony build up does not seem to be impeded by shallows overhead. The colony is driven by the urge to reproduce. In my area, they often achieve the equivalent of three deeps of brood (1 deep and 4 shallows.) During the “main flow”, the brood nest recedes down through the shallows by backfilling toward the basic deep. In contrast the DD seldom has more brood than 1 ½ deeps. Checkerboarding encourages more brood, bees, and honey.
 

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Local feral survivors in eight frame medium boxes.
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>I'm thinking of using 3 mediums for brood and using shallows on top for honey. I can't lift a medium of honey.

Me neither. Which is why I went to eight frame mediums...

I still think all the same size frame is important.
http://www.bushfarms.com/beeslazy.htm#uniformframesize
 

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I have one of my hives in all mediums, and I don't think it affects the size of the brood area, brood or honey production adversely at all.
 

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Medium supers, deep supers, shallow supers, 8-frame, 10-frame, 12-frame, or various combinations of the equipment mentioned in this list and other equipment too, can make a difference to the bees, but usually doesn't. But it can, and often does make a much larger difference to the beekeeper, than it ever will to the bees. I've used all 6-5/8" deep supers for the majority of my forty plus years of beekeeping and for the past five or six years, all 8-frame 6-5/8" deep supers. I went 8-frame after reading what Michael Bush has to say about his own conversion to 8-frame supers.

Just as a novelty I keep two colonies using deep supers: one is a twenty-two frame horizontal hive, the other is a single 10-frame deep super with medium 10-frame supers used above it. The only obvious thing I notice about them is how heavy deep frames can be when compared to medium depth frames.
 

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I keep my honey pretty much harvested off so I have 6 or less supers on at a time, including the brood boxes. The whole point was to make it easier to handle, so for me taller is not better.
 

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I run all 6 5/8 boxes, works for me well in the deep south. It has been easier having all the same size box. When I starting getting over 50 hives it was really nice. One draw back is the price per hive figures agains the price of two standard boxes. Its not alot but can add up. I dont run queen excluders and simple make splits off brood frames in the honey super area. But Im running low on equipment and need 200-300 more boxes. I have several picture if you want to see of yards set up with all 8 frame 6 5/8 boxes.
 

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I currently run 8 frame hives. I have switched to 8 frame deeps for the hive bodies and mediums for honey. Seems to be working good for me.
 

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I do one deep on the bottom and the rest mediums (2 more for brood). I never have to lift the bottom deep. And, having the one big box saves some time inspecting. Plus, I can buy/sell nucs which typically have deep frames. At least around here.
 
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