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Discussion Starter #1
So it seems that self spacing frames come at 1 3/8". I just saw a few different videos and read a few things suggesting that, at least in the brood area comb should actually be 11/4 (32 mm) on center.

Is this just a hippy thing for small cell natural cell people or is there anything to it?

I figure I can space them out wider in a super with one of those 7 in 8 thingies based on the top bar size anyway, but if I am Going to make frames it would make sense to make them to the smaller size.
 

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so mathematically if you have an understanding of calculus, when you calculate the area in between the combs, as this area shrinks the cluster size will increase. So in terms we can relate to the 8 inch circle of bees goes to a 10 inch circle of bees if you squeeze the combs together say 20% ish. At some point bees do not fit so there is a theoretical max when you do not gain any more and actually loose.
Add in small cell and the number of cells in the 10 inch circle increase. As well the bees would hypothetically be smaller and one could squeeze a bit more.
So the concept is more brood is covered, as you shrink the frame spacing down. Cover more brood faster spring build up.

So you should pick a strategy ( many on the net) and go with it. make your frame size make sense to you and go with it.

The concept originates from measuring "natural" comb in a wall or some other cavity. Done by a hippy, so one could surmise it is actually a hippy thing.
:)

GG
 

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The spacing of the brood frames is the result of hundreds of measurements done by early beekeeping greats such as Huber, Dzierzon, Berlepsch, Wyprecht, Root and others. Hardly a group of "hippys" I would say.

Their measurements found that most brood combs were spaced a "scant 1 3/8 inches," as Root put it. Storage frames spacing ran all the way up to 1 3/4 to 2 inches. Test done by Root found that foundationless comb on 1 3/8 inches produced more worker size cells that the larger spacing which tended to favor more drone cells being built. Being in beekeeping for profit, they favored all worker cells if they could get it. Dadant favored a wider spacing of 1 1/2 inches because he believed it reduced swarming.

When Root began to manufacture the Modified Hoffman Frame he chose 1/38 in. spacing knowing that propolis buildup would eventually increase the distance, but would not become excessive because beekeepers would scrape the joining surfaces. Brood comb is an average of 7/8 in. thick and the 1 3/8 in. spacing gives a bee space of 1/2 inches between uncapped comb and 3/8 in. between capped brood comb.

Comb for storage of honey is wider allowing for extended cells for more storage and wax production from cappings.
 

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1 1/4 through 1 1/2 have been around along time. 1 1/4 requires that you have very flat foundations/ combs there is no room for deviation. 1 3/8 is the industry standard and makes a good compromise. 1 1/2 is what I have been using in my lang hives, 9 frames in a 10 frame box. This is for both brood and honey. When adding a box of foundation to the broodnest I add 9 frames plus a division board feeder. Once drawn I pull the feeder and space out to 9 frames. The bees look real nice on 9 frame spacing but thats just my preference.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
The size thing that I was wondering about is this. People who espouse small cell or whatever they are calling it now say that it makes their bees smaller over time. And, industrial wax foundation and so forth has over time created artificially larger bees. I have not heard of any "official" increase in bee-space, but I always assumed that to be based on thoracic heights as opposed to bee lengths. If bees are larger in all dimensions, and thus become longer, then comb depth should become larger as well. Is my logic on track here?

So from all the measurements I assume the bee pupa length might increase as well. The idea being that in a perfect world combs would be so close that two bees working on opposite combs would have their backs just touching. But if they are industrial bees from non-regressed stock, do they then need wider spacing until they get regressed into small cell sized bees? Or does the cell-size the bee was grown in have nothing to do with the comb depth they will create for the next generation?

Does natural wild comb size have anything to do with bees raised and maintained on industrial wax foundation? I assume that if I were to raise bees in small cell foundation based comb, or on foundation less frames, they would eventually regress back to tiny little bees, no longer needing as much space, nor building cells quite as large. But, does that affect the comb depth as well?

I love the idea of 1 1/4" if for no other reason than that it is 32 mm. That is the minimum distance that spindle boring machines were capable of drilling holes apart, and thus set the standard for the European cabinet industry after the war. My True32 tape measure even has special marks every 32 mm. :) So it is a cool number. But a number based on dimensions of a bee, or beespace, which I assume is based on some dimension of a bee would be even cooler. :)

So the question still remains, if 1-1/4" is the appropriate wild size distance based on wild size cells and wild sized bees, and embraced by "natural cell" or "small cell" foundation (or foundation-less) proponents with the claims that otherwise bees are 150% larger would it still be an appropriate distance if someone is using industrial sized foundation and raising the kind of bees that spend all their generations on such foundation or comb build based on that foundation?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
If you make adjustable self-spacing frames, they can then be tailored to the size of bees within the hive. But - you first need to have some bees on site in order to determine their size. (BIG hint)
LJ
Are you suggesting that I go and get some bees and then somehow measure how well they do on all the distances possible between frames, then determine what they like best, and then change the sizing based on that? So what you are saying is that this is actually an unknown number, and no one really knows what it is or should be? Or are you saying that even if you knew the actual answer to my question, you are not interested in sharing it with me because you don't feel I have paid my dues enough in performing research, or that I am not worthy of an answer because I am not currently in possession of a living colony?

I do appreciate that you take the time to respond to me. Unfortunately, you always leave me more confused as to what to do with your response. Supposedly, I would be asking a question like this prior to building equipment for bees that I would be planning on getting at some point in the future. Since it would be of little consequence to know such an answer after I made all the equipment. Or are do you intend that I do nothing until the day I drive home with the bees, then go into some kind of flurry of building to do all the things necessary to house and care for them, only after they are here? That sort of seems like lighting the stove and putting the frying pan on it before going to the store to buy my eggs.

If it would make you more comfortable in responding to my questions, we can simply say that I have bees. Let's say I have double deep 8 frame Langstroth. WIth a medium super and a shallow super. It has a slatted rack and a screened bottom board and it raised on an 18" open center platform. The bottom 2 boxs are packed full of brood and the medium box is 50-70% full of capped and uncapped honey. The shallow honey super has neither drawn the wax foundations out to any significant degree nor stored any nectar in them. It has a current mite count of 3 and the shallow super will be removed the end of this week and a hive top syrup feeder will be placed. Last inspection showed no queen cells, and no recognizable brood diseases. The brood pattern in the bottom box is nice and consistent with a 1-2" swath of honey and pollen across the top. The second brood chamber above is a weird mix of brood and resources in no discernible logical order and there is a fair amount of ladder and burr comb all around it. Two frames one on each side of the bottom one are packed full of capped honey and some pollen. This is the exact state I would be in had spent the money and bought more bees this year. It is the same state I was in at this point for all the previous years (except the first where I didn't do anything for mites). So even though I am not sure how this would affect the answer, I will even rephrase it so that I am not being vague or or somehow deceptive in my motivations for how I will be using the data from the answer.

So I want to build 150 to 200 frames. Because next year I will be housing multiple colonies in 8FD equipment. If I plan on using starter strips, foundation-less, or small cell plastic would I be better off making the frames for 1-1/4" or 1-3/8? And if I plan on using regular Acorn plastic foundation or whole sheet wax foundation with current industrial cell sizes, does the same answer still apply or is it different?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
1 1/4 through 1 1/2 have been around along time. 1 1/4 requires that you have very flat foundations/ combs there is no room for deviation. 1 3/8 is the industry standard and makes a good compromise. 1 1/2 is what I have been using in my lang hives, 9 frames in a 10 frame box. This is for both brood and honey. When adding a box of foundation to the broodnest I add 9 frames plus a division board feeder. Once drawn I pull the feeder and space out to 9 frames. The bees look real nice on 9 frame spacing but thats just my preference.
Thanks! 1-1/2" feels like miles apart :) Do you keep them at that width even into the winter? Do you have problems with burr comb at that width? So with the feeder configuration, you are actually using 1-3/8" frames then when you pull the feeder you use that spacer thingie or just your eye to space them out to 9 in 10? (All the more reason I wished I asked some of these specific questions 5 years ago :) )
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The spacing of the brood frames is the result of hundreds of measurements done by early beekeeping greats such as Huber, Dzierzon, Berlepsch, Wyprecht, Root and others. Hardly a group of "hippys" I would say.

Their measurements found that most brood combs were spaced a "scant 1 3/8 inches," as Root put it. Storage frames spacing ran all the way up to 1 3/4 to 2 inches. Test done by Root found that foundationless comb on 1 3/8 inches produced more worker size cells that the larger spacing which tended to favor more drone cells being built. Being in beekeeping for profit, they favored all worker cells if they could get it. Dadant favored a wider spacing of 1 1/2 inches because he believed it reduced swarming.

When Root began to manufacture the Modified Hoffman Frame he chose 1/38 in. spacing knowing that propolis buildup would eventually increase the distance, but would not become excessive because beekeepers would scrape the joining surfaces. Brood comb is an average of 7/8 in. thick and the 1 3/8 in. spacing gives a bee space of 1/2 inches between uncapped comb and 3/8 in. between capped brood comb.

Comb for storage of honey is wider allowing for extended cells for more storage and wax production from cappings.
I don't think I would call any of those guys hiiipes. But then again you are telling me about 1-3/8 and larger. I was wondering if the 1-1/4 thing was a hippy thing. i had initially assumed that there was a smaller spacing for the brood area and a larger spacing for the honey area and that 1-3/8 might have been a manufacturing compromise so as to not need to gear up to make 2 different sizes.

As for the propolis thing, wasn't the hoffman frame the one with one side angled to a knife point and the other side flat so that it would minimize the effective area that would be propolized?

I did remember reading some background, and I can't remember the author who spoke of the distances in really weird numbers like 1-9/20 and stuff like that. I assume that was done with a calipers in machinist numbers at 1 and 180 thou or something like that instead of converting to the 1/32 based numbering system normally used with carpentry inches.
 

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In reality you will have little space in a hive that is purely worker brood. The bees will manage to fit in drone cells that project much more. Where you have drone production on one frame face the adjoining surface may be cut back and used for pollen or nectar storage. After a few random cycles the frames get an interleave of hills and valleys that results in raking against each other and killing bees if you do not slide each frame sideways before lifting it. If going foundationless this randomness is even more pronounced.
Fusion_power has put together a lot of info on the subject. He sees a benefit for early cold weather buildup with narrower spacing but stresses that frames and foundation have to be especially straight and true to prevent interference. The associated negative is a tendency to earlier swarming.

If you choose to search with an open mind the subject of small cell bees, regression, associated mite resistance, africanized genetics I think you will find more philisophical than controlled testing support for the whole idea of narrow frames. Really I should say that I found the conclusions to be that way. Your milage may vary;)

I inherited a bunch of shaved frames and scratch built several hundred; I wont be going back. The conclusion was 1 1/4" spacing created more problems for me than it solved.
 

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In reality you will have little space in a hive that is purely worker brood. The bees will manage to fit in drone cells that project much more. Where you have drone production on one frame face the adjoining surface may be cut back and used for pollen or nectar storage. After a few random cycles the frames get an interleave of hills and valleys that results in raking against each other and killing bees if you do not slide each frame sideways before lifting it. If going foundationless this randomness is even more pronounced.
Fusion_power has put together a lot of info on the subject. He sees a benefit for early cold weather buildup with narrower spacing but stresses that frames and foundation have to be especially straight and true to prevent interference. The associated negative is a tendency to earlier swarming.

If you choose to search with an open mind the subject of small cell bees, regression, associated mite resistance, africanized genetics I think you will find more philisophical than controlled testing support for the whole idea of narrow frames. Really I should say that I found the conclusions to be that way. Your milage may vary;)

I inherited a bunch of shaved frames and scratch built several hundred; I wont be going back. The conclusion was 1 1/4" spacing created more problems for me than it solved.
Good information Frank, I have tried a 25 pound box of 5.1 MM foundation this year, sanding the frame edges a bit to gain a tiny bit. Intent was to close space 4-6 frames in the center of the box and use the older ones I have near the edges at wider spacing. I have seen with closer frames you tear apart Supercedure cells as well, due to them being attached to 2 frames. as long as the bees/queen can make more not to worry but if she is gone then you can end up in the weeds more often.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
In reality you will have little space in a hive that is purely worker brood. The bees will manage to fit in drone cells that project much more. Where you have drone production on one frame face the adjoining surface may be cut back and used for pollen or nectar storage. After a few random cycles the frames get an interleave of hills and valleys that results in raking against each other and killing bees if you do not slide each frame sideways before lifting it. If going foundationless this randomness is even more pronounced.
Fusion_power has put together a lot of info on the subject. He sees a benefit for early cold weather buildup with narrower spacing but stresses that frames and foundation have to be especially straight and true to prevent interference. The associated negative is a tendency to earlier swarming.

If you choose to search with an open mind the subject of small cell bees, regression, associated mite resistance, africanized genetics I think you will find more philisophical than controlled testing support for the whole idea of narrow frames. Really I should say that I found the conclusions to be that way. Your milage may vary;)

I inherited a bunch of shaved frames and scratch built several hundred; I wont be going back. The conclusion was 1 1/4" spacing created more problems for me than it solved.
Thanks!

That was more what I expected. I think, in reality boxes are cheaper than frames (time and energy wise) and if I want a few extra frames in the box I might be better off just making a bigger box.
 

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Thanks!

That was more what I expected. I think, in reality boxes are cheaper than frames (time and energy wise) and if I want a few extra frames in the box I might be better off just making a bigger box.
Well IMO you have Box "Size" and Box "Density" each are somewhat separate topics.
I have reduced my box size, from 10 to 8 frames, for my own reasons. I would ask around at your location in NC and see what works the best there, fortunately we do not need to invent the wheel, just copy someone who has success.

frame width your original question is a box density question IMO

example in the spring you have 6 frames of bees survive the winter, in a 40 frame box or 8 frame box, is there a gain for the 40 frame,My Vote is no more room to heat there fore a smaller tighter cluster so lees brood can be covered.
what about the same 6 frames of bees in a 1.2 or 1.25 inch frame space 8 frame box, now here less total room to heat, less dense cluster, more comb covered, one could see that as a benefit.

Consider you in a 60 degree warehouse, and you in a 60 degree phone booth. one you can never heat, one can in time be heated a bit. this is box size.
now put 3 people in the warehouse with you, any difference? not likely , how about 3 more people in the phone booth?, might get a bit more toasty, this is bee density. Now take 50 people and fill a 4 foot wide gap, be 25 ish people long, how about a 2 foot wide gap be 50 ish people long , this is frame density. All 3 have an effect. Now put a hole in the roof, this is ventilation/top entrance, Now just optimize the race bee you pick in your locale.....

:)

SO IMO bigger box in the north may be worse not better.
There is granularity in many aspects of keeping, as well locality, what is good in one place may be not good in another.

Choose wisely
:)

GG
 

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Thanks! 1-1/2" feels like miles apart Do you keep them at that width even into the winter?
yes. Most of Europe uses 1.5" spacing as they embrace the dadant spacing. Lots of beekeeper, especially commercial beekeepers use it too in the US.

Do you have problems with burr comb at that width?
Sometimes. Since I eyeball it and get it wrong from time to time. No big deal I scrape it into my wax scrapings bucket.

So with the feeder configuration, you are actually using 1-3/8" frames then when you pull the feeder you use that spacer thingie or just your eye to space them out to 9 in 10? (All the more reason I wished I asked some of these specific questions 5 years ago )
Yes. they get drawn out with 10 frame spacing. Then spread out. It could be done with 9 frames, but occasionally get fat combs on some hives. Much of Europe uses 1.5" spacing so it can be done straight up if wanted.

I use small cell 4.9mm foundation for 16 years. Never once did I use 1 1/4" spacing, it has nothing to do with cell size in my POV. I think cell size is more genetic. If you keep AHB's then small cell might do well for you. However if you use EHB's you will likely struggle to keep them on that cell size. After 16 years they would almost always revert to 5.1 to 5.3mm cell size. So I recommend using regular old foundation. Also 4.9mm cell size did NOT control varroa enough to keep bees from collapse. The Lusby's coined small cell, and interestingly there bees are in AHB area. If you ever watched the videos of there bees you would no that they look dangerous. Anyways if you use 1 3/8 spacing you can't go wrong it works great since its been the standard for so long. I use 1.5 cause it works well for me. Start with 8 or 10 depending on your box and try out 1.5 if you like. Easy enough to scrap the end bars and go back to 1 3/8. Your choice. I will say 1 1/4 has issues especially with drones comb.
 

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I love the idea of 1 1/4" if for no other reason than that it is 32 mm. That is the minimum distance that spindle boring machines were capable of drilling holes apart, and thus set the standard for the European cabinet industry after the war. My True32 tape measure even has special marks every 32 mm. :) So it is a cool number. But a number based on dimensions of a bee, or beespace, which I assume is based on some dimension of a bee would be even cooler. :)
1-3/8 is a lot closer to an even 35mm than 1-1/4 is to 32mm (3 times closer). So close that I build my sidebars at 35mm just because SI is easier. Those numbers are however anthropomorphic; being convenient for us doesn't automatically make them magic for the bees.\

The Hoffman frame is named for Julius Hoffman is the name given to frames where the side bars make the frames self spacing. It doesn't have to have the propoils breaker (the chamfered side bar). There are bee journals with drawings of the Hoffman frame that predate Hoffman so its either something Hoffmann also saw or its a good idea that more than one person came up with. Either way, Root visited Hoffman and saw his self spacing frames and liked the idea so he ran with it, and as a result today frames that use the sidebars to self space are called Hoffman frames, regardless of what kind of hive they are in, what size they are, or what other details the frame might have.


Don't get defensive at LJ. We all want you to just take the plunge. Instead of walking around and around the pool wondering how deep the water is and how cold it is and how chlorinated it is and whether your bikini is too baggy or too pink and whether the pool filter needs cleaning and the deck needs swept and if your nail polish is waterproof, tucking your pony tail into your swim cap over and over, and whether a dive, a cannonball, or the pool ladder is the right way to get in the pool, we just want you to get in the pool already.
 

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Frankly, 1.25" frames did not save my bees.
Honestly, I am not spending anymore time on shaving the frames and similar tinkering.
Seriously, instead of spending time on 1.25" individual frame compliance, I'd rather spend the time on the entire volume ergonomics (something about that tight Warre cross-section).
 

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Discussion Starter #17
1-3/8 is a lot closer to an even 35mm than 1-1/4 is to 32mm (3 times closer). So close that I build my sidebars at 35mm just because SI is easier. Those numbers are however anthropomorphic; being convenient for us doesn't automatically make them magic for the bees.\

The Hoffman frame is named for Julius Hoffman is the name given to frames where the side bars make the frames self spacing. It doesn't have to have the propoils breaker (the chamfered side bar). There are bee journals with drawings of the Hoffman frame that predate Hoffman so its either something Hoffmann also saw or its a good idea that more than one person came up with. Either way, Root visited Hoffman and saw his self spacing frames and liked the idea so he ran with it, and as a result today frames that use the sidebars to self space are called Hoffman frames, regardless of what kind of hive they are in, what size they are, or what other details the frame might have.


Don't get defensive at LJ. We all want you to just take the plunge. Instead of walking around and around the pool wondering how deep the water is and how cold it is and how chlorinated it is and whether your bikini is too baggy or too pink and whether the pool filter needs cleaning and the deck needs swept and if your nail polish is waterproof, tucking your pony tail into your swim cap over and over, and whether a dive, a cannonball, or the pool ladder is the right way to get in the pool, we just want you to get in the pool already.
Oh, sounds like you have seen me get in a pool before! I have already been in the pool, however, but I got out to eat a hot dog. Now Mom says I have to wait a whole hour or I will get cramps! I actually wish I took as much time before I jumped in the first time, asking some of the questions, and reading some of the literature that I have only recently been exposed to, instead of making all my decisions from information gained from someone whose main concern was as a sales person for a particular vendor. Actually, I really wish I had seen and heard some of the stuff from Sam Comfort and my whole attack may have been much different. I am even sorry that I went with 8 Frame equipment, multiple depth equipment, and a few other decisions I was led towards by the class I took. And after today, I am even a little sorry that I even went with Langstroth equipment at all. So now I am gearing up to build what I am going to need, because although to some people time is money, to me money is money. Since I have the time, I can build what I need, but I would like to build it and make rational decisions for a reason, not just because someone's company sells a certain thing.

I would understand if I came up with questions about oddball hypothetical situations. But I am not. I am reading stuff and asking clarifying questions to be certain that I understand it. Or I am setting up jigs and fixtures and determining if something is aesthetic vs practical or if things may have changed in the last 200 years. I don't think such things are unreasonable, and I don't believe others might not have similar concerns. If I thought a question could only be answered by having bees, I might preface it that way, or simply not ask it until such time as I have bees or access to someone else's bees that I am helping with.

Forgive me however, if I get a little defensive, when something that the first few times might have been considered playful or even funny, just now feels like a jab to try and get my goat, break my b$%%s or try and take the p#&& out of me (depending on where you are from). It is just getting a little old and I reacted. But at least in this case, whether or not I have bees in hand waiting for a box to move into or not, has no bearing whatsoever on what I set my table saw fence to.

Oh, now I have a great question to ask... Let me find an appropriate thread to put it in...
 

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I try to think things through as far as I can project them but in hindsight realize that there comes a point of diminishing returns. Your experience along the journey will change your perceptions and the reality then will not match the best of your projections. Your interests will change as will your physical condition. What you anticipated as fulfilling may become a drudgery aspect. A person cannot escape from their essential subjectivity no matter how objective they try to be. I have found myself looking in that mirror more than a few times.

For those reasons I rather agree with LJ. I would suggest not waiting for the perfect plan to jump deeply into but start small with something very plain vanilla and easily acquired and easily passed on.

Amassing the knowledge of the basic natural moves of the honey bee, and the skill at assessing what went wrong when apparent contradictions happen, is the first necessity. That is transferable to any style of hive or focus on honey production, queen or nuc production, or the powerful challenge of doing any or all of these things under the treatment free umbrella.

Dont become the poster boy for Analysis Paralysis! :D Jump in and start enjoying the journey and let the destination be what it may!

Some wise fellow was quoted as saying " Perfection is the enemy of good enough"
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I try to think things through as far as I can project them but in hindsight realize that there comes a point of diminishing returns. Your experience along the journey will change your perceptions and the reality then will not match the best of your projections. Your interests will change as will your physical condition. What you anticipated as fulfilling may become a drudgery aspect. A person cannot escape from their essential subjectivity no matter how objective they try to be. I have found myself looking in that mirror more than a few times.

For those reasons I rather agree with LJ. I would suggest not waiting for the perfect plan to jump deeply into but start small with something very plain vanilla and easily acquired and easily passed on.

Amassing the knowledge of the basic natural moves of the honey bee, and the skill at assessing what went wrong when apparent contradictions happen, is the first necessity. That is transferable to any style of hive or focus on honey production, queen or nuc production, or the powerful challenge of doing any or all of these things under the treatment free umbrella.

Dont become the poster boy for Analysis Paralysis! :D Jump in and start enjoying the journey and let the destination be what it may!

Some wise fellow was quoted as saying " Perfection is the enemy of good enough"
But I am not in analysis paralysis. I have actually come up with several changes to the previous attempts. I decided not to try and stay with a single hive and avoid swarms. Instead I am going to split as early and as often as practical/possible. Thus the need to make more equipment. I decided to stick with 8FDs because I already have the most of them. I am still debating how to do the splits, most of the ideas I have involve nucs of one size or another, but in keeping with the theme, I am sticking with Langstroth deep. so regardless of size, I just need that many more frames. And I know the long sides that I need, and can later decide on the fronts and backs depending on whether I want to match the smaller size with some specific larger size. The idea of 3FD nucs, 2 of which will match the size of my 8FD's would possibly allow me to pair them over/under an 8F box. Or make a split box. Again, none of which matter other than that I need more frames. I have also decided that I will actively try to catch some swarms. So I have a stack of parts cut out and jigs made to create 3 of them. I have also spoken with several of the people I know to see where I can legally place traps next year. In keeping with 8FD I have gotten the wood and cut out the parts for 3 of them so far. That is enough for a second stack. I need another set at least so I will get more wood and cut them out, and it will require more tops and bottom boards. I have a few more things to decide in order to make them. When I decide I will get the wood and make them. I need to do a little each weekend, because I only have so much shop time. And, oh, yeah it is raining yet again... I am so glad I don't have bees this year :)

If that isn't enough. I have also decided on some mite testing different from what I was using before. I have also eliminated one of the products I was using for mites, and will be using a different one in its place. Not only is it still raining, but it is unlikely to be under 90° for another week at least. I am working out and have changed my mind on a feeding technique. And I have made the contacts necessary and got the details for purchasing my sugar syrup by the bucket. I still have to figure out how much I will need, at least ball park because it will be a PITA to get there so I don't want to make that trip more often than I need to. And for all this, I need to come up with storage plan that won't p#$s off my wife.

As for bees, I have not found a local nuc provider though I have several recommendation for queen providers. It would have been nicer if our association wasn't quarantined out of having meetings, and if they actually interacted a little more on the internet. But I don't really know of another way to find out much about the local folk and I really don't want to drive several hours to pick up bees. However, most people want you to order by November so they can deliver whenever they please, hopefully by about half way through flow.

There is more, but no one is going to read any of what I just wrote anyway, or care. Point is, that I have made many decisions along the way, and have acted on those decisions. I am doing the things necessary within the time-frame I have. I am not certain what rushing to get bees at any expense at the wrong time of the year for the highest cost possible with the least opportunity of success is the right decision. In another week I am going on vacation. I have no one else to do any care on my bees, so even if I could find a really expensive nuc of bees, that will require 100% hands on care, dropping them in right now would also not be the best time for success.

Anyway, none of this matters, and I am pretty sure it is literally off topic. I think I am liking 1 3/8" for several of the on-topic reasons. I would have loved discuss some of the ins and outs of frame size. All of the sizes and numbers leading to some of the design decisions of hives and why they work is an interesting topic to me. Unfortunately, I am spending yet another thread laying out my plans, and justifying my decisions.

Thanks for all the answers.
 

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" Unfortunately, I am spending yet another thread laying out my plans, and justifying my decisions." Ah go on wit ya, you are loving every moment of it.

"There is more, but no one is going to read any of what I just wrote anyway, or care." Sure they will!
 
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