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I live in Maine and there are loggers and mills all over the place here. SO, my question is, as long as you use the proper specs when building a Langstroth hive, does it matter if you build hive bodies out of any kind of wood (Pine, Hemlock, Cedar, etc.)? And, I can get massive deals on rough cut wood. Can I use rough cut or does it need to be all planed and smooth?

Thanks!

Bob
 

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Bees don't care in the least. When building with overdimension rough-sawn, remember the interior void dimension of the hive is the critical measure and not the outside dimension.
Interior long dimension == 18 3/8" The width could likely stay 16 1/4" outside over-all, as there is a bit of slop in the frame spacing.
Use the green wood least likely to warp.
 

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Use what you can get for sure. Free is great. Especially when the costs for woodenware are nuts and the shopping makes it nearly ridiculous and IMO. Rough wood makes no matter other than it is easier to rot, get airborne dirt, and dust, soaks up paint etc. Inside HAS TO be proper bee space. Pay attention to bee space and try to use something close to 1X nominal size for at least some compatibility.
 

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As long as the inside dimensions of the hive bodies match, you can use wood that is not 3/4" thick. Most rough cut lumber will be larger than 3/4" so keep that in mind. Rough cut wood is also often sold without being 'dried', meaning not air dried and not kiln dried, but sold pretty much straight off the mill.

Wood has a tendency to warp, curl, check and/or cup as it dries, so if building with wet wood, what you end up with a year down the road may not be exactly what you want. :)

If the price is right, I suggest stacking the wet wood properly and 'air dry' it for at least 6 months, and preferably a year before utilizing it. If that doesn't fit your schedule, look for a mill that offers dried wood (at a higher cost) for your initial efforts at hive construction, and plan to build the following year's hives with the wet wood after it has dried.
 

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As long as the internal dimensions are accurate as relates to the bee space (open spaces between internal hive components), which must be accurate. Rough cut can work just fine. The only issues with various species of wood, as to their suitability, is their durability and work-ability when used to make boxes and frames. For instance, some certain species, such as oak, maple, or other dense hardwoods, are a little bit more difficult to work, and would make very heavy hive components.
 

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The budget grade is more than adequate for what you want you will have a hard time beating the prices since you live in Maine.Unless you have a lot of woodworking equipment available to you.I really don't know how many hives you are going to build just remember one thing if you ever sell out it's easier to sell hives that are standard .


http://humbleabodesinc.com/

BEE HAPPY Jim 134. :)
 

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Lumber mills are great, I bought alot of Eastern Red Cedar for the hives I keep out in the open. It dries quickly and looks great with a sealer coat of deck stain. Lightweight and durable, bandsaw cut looks good and rustic. Watch out for knots, make sure they are tight.

The pines and other woods need some drying time. You will have to stick and air dry for a year or so to make it stable. You will be better off buying kiln dry lumber if you go with pine.
 

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in maine look up "humble abodes" it is a saw mill/hive builder owned by a beekeeping family. native white pine, low prices and quality. tough to beat combination for just a few hives... some ny commercial guys spend their blueberry pollination money there. those guys do not waste much money. nice assembled frames... if using rough cut to build with run it thru a planer after thourough drying. I have had ok luck with rough hemlock but I plane it to 7/8 when it is real dry and paint it well. for every other wood I use 3/4 pine or spruce. the hemlock deeps are holding up fine. green hemlock is a bad plan. swedish spruce is my least favorite, I am not a big pin knot fan. my telo covers are a bit oversize on purpose so I can use 3/4 or old fashioned 7/8 wooden ware... the reason for planeing is not to get it smooth but to get the dimensions right so the box inside is as exact as you can get it. if the rough cut is thin so I can plane one side only the rough side goes in. the smooth side takes the paint better.
 

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I buy #4 white pine, deck screws,Titebound 111, Butt joint my boxes, and use 3/4 x 2in. strips across the front and back for handles, and of course skills for primer and a good brand paint. For knots i the glue on them before i paint over them.
 

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I buy #4 white pine, deck screws,Titebound 111, Butt joint my boxes, and use 3/4 x 2in. strips across the front and back for handles, and of course skills for primer and a good brand paint. For knots i the glue on them before i paint over them.
Ditto on all that only I use 1 1/2" staples instead of screws. Used to do rabbit joints than that got old and I think the butt joint works just as well for a bee hive. Really for as cheap as 3/4x12"x10' or 12' (deeps)or the 3/4"x8"x10'(supers) is.....it's just easier to use dried lumber straight from the git-go. I used to break down pallets and use that wood and while its great to use ...free...by the time I broke it down....glued it togather to make wide wood...dealt with the nails and garbage in the pallets....it wasnt worth it. Plus after awhile...you get so much of that crap..boxes....landing brds. covers and just junk wood that scrap pallets is more garbage.
I like making all the componets woodworking but now I'm more selective in the wood just to save me time these days which there is never enough of.
 
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