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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Transferring a Deep Frame Nuc into Medium Supers

Hello,

I purchased nuc that came on Deep frames. I only have medium boxes and medium frames, I'm wondering what's the best way to transition them into medium boxes/frames?

I was thinking of:

Top Cover
Medium Box - with empty Medium Frames
Medium Box - The 5 deep nuc frames would hang in the middle of this box (no frames would be added on the sides)
Medium Box
Bottom Board

The new nuc would start in a hive with 3 mediums, is this too much space? or should I purchase a deep box to replace the 2 bottom mediums instead?

Is it correct to assume the bees will build upwards and I can eventually remove the deep frames on the bottom?

Thank you and any advice or techniques would be appreciated.
 

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never tried that method but it sounds like they might make a mess with that system if your not careful. When I transition from deeps to mediums, It takes me a year. I start with a deep and stack mediums on top. The next spring all the bees will be in the mediums and I simply take the deep away.
 

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When I was considering this, someone suggested using a dremel and cutting the deeps to size and putting that in the medium, doing so, you lose 20% of the comb, which may or may not contain brood.
You could also put five frames in the bottom medium, five frames in a middle medium, and in the remainng space, put two by fours cut to size and insert the deeps. The two by fours will prevent them from building comb downward in the 3 inches of space below that would be open without it.
 

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I have the same problem - I run 8-frame mediums, and the nucs I buy come as 5-frame deeps. I found a 5-frame to 8/10-frame transistion board at Brushy Mountain:

http://www.brushymountainbeefarm.com/Nuc-Intro-Board/productinfo/649/

I plan to have the 5-frame nuc on the bottom, then the transistion board, then a 8-frame medium. That way, the bees will be forced to start building in 8-frame medium equipment pretty much from day one.

I will remove the 5-frame nuc at the end of winter, like Deepsouth mentioned above. This way, I don't have to buy more unwanted deep frames to fill out an 8-frame deep, or have bees build out deep frame comb that would soon be taken out of circulation.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
When I was considering this, someone suggested using a dremel and cutting the deeps to size and putting that in the medium, doing so, you lose 20% of the comb, which may or may not contain brood.
You could also put five frames in the bottom medium, five frames in a middle medium, and in the remainng space, put two by fours cut to size and insert the deeps. The two by fours will prevent them from building comb downward in the 3 inches of space below that would be open without it.
From what I understand I'll consolidate it down to 2 medium boxes packed with medium frames and some 2x4 wood under the deep frames.

Top Cover
Medium Box - 5 Empty Medium Frames & 5 Deep Nuc Frames
Medium Box - 5 Empty Medium Frames
Bottom Board

Should I still keep another empty medium box on the top in case they want to build upwards? instead of sideways or downwards. Would adding follower boards to the side of the deep frames help them to build upwards?
 

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What if you cut a hole the size of the nuc top opening in a piece of 1/8 or 1/4" sheetstock (whatever's handy -coroplast, masonite, plywood) the same dimensions as your medium brood box, and:

1) put your queen and a shake of bees into the medium box full of comb or frames;

2) put the reducer board described above on top of the nuc
(If you use a med. nuc instead of a hive body for this transition, you won't need his board at all, just an excluder)

3) put a queen excluder on top of that, and

4) put the brood box containing the queen and shake of bees atop that.

If my understanding of bee biology is right, the queen will start laying in the medium box, and nurse bees will move up to attend the brood.

As the brood below emerges, it and the nurse bees that had been attending them will migrate up to tend the open brood above. within 3 weeks there will be no brood below and you can remove the deep nuc, transition board & excluder.

If the bees put up any nectar in the deep nuc, you can set it on end to be robbed right next to the hive if it is the only one you have in that yard, or far enough away ass not to invite robbing if you have more than one hive there.

What do you guys who've been keeping bees for five or ten years think?
Is that a good idea, or is there a simpler way?
 

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I'm going to have the same problem of running medium boxes but will be receiving a deep nuc. Can I just do a cut out? That is cut the comb out of the nuc and rubber band nto my medium frames? I will lose a few inches of comb on each frame. My only concern is that this will be too traumatic to the bees.
 

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Hey, a very quick and easy way to do this is to put the deep frames in a deep box. Then fill in the side or sides with high density foam to block off the extra room. Then simply add your medium boxes on top of that. They will fill up the deep frames and then go into the medium boxes. Once they are there make sure the Queen is up in the medium box and add an empty medium between the deep frames and the now occupied medium. There you have it !! Good luck !
 

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Focus, thanks. That would be easiest. I don't know about quick since they would need to draw the comb in the medium boxes. Also I would then be left with the deep frames of comb and whatever pollen and honey.

Is cutting the deep nuc comb and rubber banding into medium frames such a bad thing? I'm asking because I've never read of anyone trying that which makes me wonder if it's a bad idea.
 

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Re: Transferring a Deep Frame Nuc into Medium Supers

jking..
I saw a you tube vidio of some one doing it, so I know it has been done.
gww
 

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From what I understand I'll consolidate it down to 2 medium boxes packed with medium frames and some 2x4 wood under the deep frames.

Top Cover
Medium Box - 5 Empty Medium Frames & 5 Deep Nuc Frames
Medium Box - 5 Empty Medium Frames
Bottom Board

Should I still keep another empty medium box on the top in case they want to build upwards? instead of sideways or downwards. Would adding follower boards to the side of the deep frames help them to build upwards?
That is the simple way to do it. Just use two boxes until they build them out and move the deeps to the outside when they start raising brood in the mediums. Then take them out when there is not any brood in them and cut the comb to fit in medium frames. and I wouldn't bother adding anything to the bottom of the deep frames. If they add a little comb it won't be enough to hurt anything.
 

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Re: Transferring a Deep Frame Nuc into Medium Supers

jkingqm,

IMHO cutting the comb out and putting it in an empty frame is a bad idea. It is a very messy (and slippery) job, you will have lots of bees in the air, and you will probably kill a lot of bees because they will get "lost" in all of the honey. You (& the girls) will also lose that extra inch or so of comb containing brood/honey that ends up as "throw away" from the five deep frames. If you do choose to go this route, I suggest that you use cotton string to tie the comb in place rather than rubber bands (which become very slippery and hard to work with when coated with honey).

I recommend any of the other variety of approached suggested above.

Steve
 

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Thank you all. I will look for that video. I can't provide a link because it is a PDF file but if you google search "Transitioning deep frame nucs to medium boxes" it comes up first. It gives a couple of methods like you suggested.
 

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Stack two mediums, insert the five deep frames all to one side. Ideally fill the the space below the deep frames. Fill the rest with medium frames, both boxes or five medium frames per box.
They will migrate on their own and pull the deeps out as they empty of brood. Most likely the outside frame.
If you didn't fill below the deeps odds are there will be comb extensions on the bottoms of the frames.
 

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Re: Transferring a Deep Frame Nuc into Medium Supers

jkingqm,

IMHO cutting the comb out and putting it in an empty frame is a bad idea. It is a very messy (and slippery) job, you will have lots of bees in the air, and you will probably kill a lot of bees because they will get "lost" in all of the honey. You (& the girls) will also lose that extra inch or so of comb containing brood/honey that ends up as "throw away" from the five deep frames. If you do choose to go this route, I suggest that you use cotton string to tie the comb in place rather than rubber bands (which become very slippery and hard to work with when coated with honey).

I recommend any of the other variety of approached suggested above.

Steve
This stuff is just not as complicated as some make it sound!
 

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Re: Transferring a Deep Frame Nuc into Medium Supers

We're beekeepers, we can complicate the heck out if anything :D. Just look at the great sugar brick debacle. Mix sugar and vinegar, let it dry. But wait... :)
 

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Re: Transferring a Deep Frame Nuc into Medium Supers

What if you went ahead and just got an eight frame deep box, three deep frames, and an 8 frame queen excluder?. Add the nuc to the 8 frame deep, then put the three frames to the outside. After the bees draw out those frames somewhat, put an 8 frame medium on top of it. After the bees draw out the medium frames and the queen is in there laying, put the queen excluder between the boxes. When all of the brood in the deep frames has emerged, remove the deep and keep going with mediums. If there is honey and pollen in the deep frames, you could just set it away from your hive and let the bees clean them out. Then, you hold onto the deep in case you ever buy a five frame nuc again.
 

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Re: Transferring a Deep Frame Nuc into Medium Supers

Step 1. shake bees from deep nuc into medium box.
Step 2. Set tablesaw fence at 6.25 inches and run bottom of deep frames through blade.
Step 3. Place shortened frames into medium box with bees.
 

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Sounds like more work than I want to do. You could do it though.
 
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