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Are nails/staples alone enough for assembling frames or do they also need glue?

  • Nails/staples alone are good enough to hold my frames together

    Votes: 18 22.5%
  • I think nails/staples AND glue is required to keep my frames together

    Votes: 61 76.3%
  • I ONLY use glue!

    Votes: 1 1.3%
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
With all the "controversy" in the last poll, I figured I'd try to state a poll more clearly. Though I did get a bit redundant.

Hammer away! (No pun intended)
 

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I glue and nail mine.
 

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For those that may not be familiar with the "last poll" referred to above, here is a link: :lookout:
http://www.beesource.com/forums/sho...that-glued-frames-are-stronger-than-non-glued




When this thread has run its course, then it will be time for someone to start a poll as to what kind of glue is the right glue to use. :D

TBII, TBIII, rubber cement, superglue, hide glue, flour+water, contact cement, propolis, epoxy, Gorilla Glue --- the possibilities are endless. :lpf:


:gh:
 

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I seldom move colonies between yards, other than nucs, and I clean the propolis from the endbars when I do an inspection. I have not had frames come apart because of nail or staple failure. Once upon a time I glued them also, but I noticed that unglued frames performed as well as the glued ones, so I no longer bothered to glue them.

I think beekeepers should always question a practice or manipulation and see if doing it differently works as well or better. Once you find a method that gives you good results, then stick with it. The bees don't care, it's all about pleasing yourself.
 

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I think beekeepers should always question a practice or manipulation and see if doing it differently works as well or better. Once you find a method that gives you good results, then stick with it. The bees don't care, it's all about pleasing yourself.
Point taken, and I believe it is a great one and can apply to a lot of things we do individually as beekeepers. I personally do not know how frames hold up without glue and nails, because I have always glued and nailed them:D
 

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I don't bother with gluing, never had any frame isues yet. Is glue, stronger, probably, but to me there's a point where it's overly redundant.
 

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When I assembled my first hives, they came with nails and instructions for assembly. I was nine years old, and my father helped me with the assembly. The instructions did not mention glue. So they were only nailed together. Then, for the next decade or two, I assembled equipment the same way. From time to time I would experience annoying failures, especially with frames. Sometimes a Top Bar or Bottom Bar would pull away from the remainder of the frame. I started nailing differently. Now I always endeavored to put, at least one nail, through the End Bar and into the Top Bar, and through the End Bar and into the Bottom Bars, at each junction. This served the purpose, but was tedious and used more hardware.

A while ago, on this forum, someone had a thread about gluing hive equipment, in conjunction with nailing/stapling them. I began doing it, first I used polyurethane glues, but they were messy and hard to clean from my hands. Then I tried Titebond II and III. Now I just use Titebond III and a pneumatic stapler. Easy to clean up, quick to go together, and stays together, very well. The only problem, now, is that when a Bottom Bar warps, I need to use the band saw, with its carbide toothed blade, to cut out the bad Bottom Bar, also cutting through the glue and staples, so I can install a replacement Bottom Bar. But, the way the Top Bar is connected to the End Bars, I'm afraid that Top Bar replacement is not as easily possible. If a Top Bar warped or twisted beyond usability, I'm afraid all I could salvage from that frame would be the Bottom Bar.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Seems this new poll did actually serve a purpose. From the old it seemed more of an academic discussion, this one is more of a practical or "in practice" discussion.

Helps me feel better since I just built 100 frames and left the glue the shelf!
 

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I voted for the nail and staple only but really I believe it should be staples of the proper length and not nails.

My first hives came from a old beekeeper who sells nucs and as you would expect the frames that he puts in your hive are very old. Some of them it is quite evident that the only thing holding these frames together is nails. If they were glued the glue was gone. I experienced some of the same when I helped Mark extract one fall. The only thing holding some of these frames together was the nails barely hanging on. Base on this we could do a poll on how long the frames would last nails / staples only or glue only and I would vote nails / staples only from what I have seen.
 

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A while ago, on this forum, someone had a thread about gluing hive equipment, in conjunction with nailing/stapling them. I began doing it, first I used polyurethane glues, but they were messy and hard to clean from my hands. Then I tried Titebond II and III. Now I just use Titebond III and a pneumatic stapler. Easy to clean up, quick to go together, and stays together, very well. The only problem, now, is that when a Bottom Bar warps, I need to use the band saw, with its carbide toothed blade, to cut out the bad Bottom Bar, also cutting through the glue and staples, so I can install a replacement Bottom Bar. But, the way the Top Bar is connected to the End Bars, I'm afraid that Top Bar replacement is not as easily possible. If a Top Bar warped or twisted beyond usability, I'm afraid all I could salvage from that frame would be the Bottom Bar.
FWIW combining old parts with new parts is not worth it. Sawing through nails and staples can be dangerous.
 

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FWIW combining old parts with new parts is not worth it. [HIGHLIGHT] Sawing through nails and staples can be dangerous.[/HIGHLIGHT]
Dangerous?

So can sawing through plain wood! :lpf: Forget the saw -- nails and staples by themselves -- can hurt you. And how about upsetting a bunch of stinging insects? :eek:

That is why smart woodworkers/beekeepers take appropriate precautions .... :rolleyes:

.
 

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When I can, I now cut frame components, then try to let them lay idle for, at least a few months, before I assemble frames from them. This way, if they're going to warp or twist, I'll have warning before I use them to assemble into frames. I only recently began trying to do this, more regularly. However, I did have a batch of frames that had been assembled, last season, and was just now wiring and putting into use. It was one of these preassembled, but still unused frames, that had its Bottom Bar warp. And the new Bottom Board was, pretty much the same age lumber, as the old, warped Bottom Bar, but unusable. Not too dangerous to saw through nails and staples, since I used my carbide toothed band saw. And it can be safely used to cut metal, too. I would not intentionally cut nails or staples with my table or radial arm saw, though their carbide toothed blades can deal with softer metals, and an occasional nail or staple, though fragments of steel can become projectiles.
 

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Seems this new poll did actually serve a purpose. From the old it seemed more of an academic discussion, this one is more of a practical or "in practice" discussion.

Helps me feel better since I just built 100 frames and left the glue the shelf!

Gilligan,
What am I missing, I'm not sure why you, "feel better", about your decision? You still have almost a full 80% saying that glue is necessary...That's pretty strong! I'm not sure you can get 80% of people to agree that the sky is blue. :D

Too me, it's kind of an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure argument. I guess my question is why wouldn't you glue them?

I've never really put a clock or a calculator to it, but if I had to guess...I would think that the proper application of glue to the assembly of 100 frames probably adds somewhere between 10 and 20 minutes to the process and takes well under a dollars worth of Titebond III. If that saves me the frustration of having one or two frames come apart on me at some point down the road, to me, it's worth the extra investment of time and money.
 

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since I used my carbide toothed band saw. And it can be safely used to cut metal, too.
Yes, carbide can safely cut metal but it can also shatter when there is an interrupted cut. The rule of thumb is two teeth must be in contact with the metal at all times. With nails, especially small nails two teeth may not be in contact all the time and results in shattering the carbide tip tooth. Typically in these cases an abrasive blade is usually use. Carbide tipped blades for table saws are not meant for cutting ferrous metals.
 

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Brian,
Thanks for the heads-up. I will definitely keep this information in mind if I ever intentionally cut any ferrous metal, again. Sometimes it happens unintentionally, but fortunately those instances are extremely rare. I'm certainly planning to use a hacksaw or jig saw, with metal cutting blade, for any future Bottom Bar extractions.

Ages ago, while in the Navy, working with the Seabees, I had used carbide saw blades, to cut aluminum components, but there was a very particular protocol for that, and everything was done to promote maximum safety. And aluminum is definitely not the same as ferrous metals.

For example the heavy steel cage, used while inflating heavy equipment tires. Once, a tire blew apart - without the cage, it is easy to see how easily someone could have been injured in that incident. The split rim blew an impression about 1/2" deep in the concrete shop floor.

Definitely granted that salvaging a few Bottom Bars is not worth risking injury, of any kind.
 

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