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I had a good honey crop (extracted honey) with 3 hives this year. For the second year in a row I could not get bees to make any comb honey. I have a two deep setup and add drawn medium supers on that in Spring. I have one shallow super that I put thin comb honey foundation in. I tried this shallow super on different hives two years in a row with no success. Once I placed it directly above the two deeps with queen excluder. Once I placed the shallow between two medium supers with drawn comb. Both fails. No storage of nectar at all in the shallow. Any suggestions? Thank you.
 

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We get nice crops of comb honey.
You basically need 3 things:
1. A strong ambitious hive.
2. A good honey flow. If the nectar is coming slow and steady, go for extracted.
3. Timing. I usually wait until I see new white wax along the tops of the frames in the upper brood chamber. Then add a super.

The bees are sometimes reluctant to go past the queen excluder into a new box. You can cut a small piece of comb from one of the lower boxes and put it in the new honey super to entice them the first season.

I always use foundation, but that's my personal preference. Helps keep the comb nice and straight.
If you're frugal cut the foundation in half lengthwise and hang that from the top frame bar.

But the main prerequisites are, strong colony and heavy nectar flow.
 

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One thing that help me was just do a couple of frames mix in with drawen comb. I plan on put it on way early next year than i have in the past
 

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Aylett, VA 10-frame double deep Langstroth
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For me it was hit or miss this past season, mostly miss. I use foundationless frames for my comb honey and place them in the center positions of a super in which the bees have already shown an inclination to draw comb early. Even still, I had 10 medium frames, 2 per hive, and only had one hive carry them to completion. Most of my production hives swarmed thIs Spring, so honey came from last year's overwintered nucs. Netted me four really nice straight and fully capped half frame sections of about 1-1/2# each.
 

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For me it was hit or miss this past season, mostly miss. I use foundationless frames for my comb honey and place them in the center positions of a super in which the bees have already shown an inclination to draw comb early. Even still, I had 10 medium frames, 2 per hive, and only had one hive carry them to completion.
Same for me. Screwed up year. Had about 15 out of 25 frames get drawn beautifully, only to have them pull the honey out of it during the next rainy spell. Got 1 good frame.
 

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As mentioned, you need a strong flow and a strong hive. You also will have better luck if you crowd them and maximize the foragers by doing a cut down split as close as you can get to two weeks before the main flow.

http://www.bushfarms.com/beessplits.htm#cutdown
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I want to get cut comb. I tried thin foundation made for cut comb bty may try foundationless next year. I can also try a single deep brood chamber with QE.
 

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Hello cyber,

I had bad luck this year too, everything did go in snail speed and a good strong flow is essential (strong hive too). Hive development was way behind flowering (or flowering was ahead of hive development?) I use one special frame I made in 2018 and it filled then in two weeks, this year I had it in for six weeks and it was not fully drawn.

IMG_6019.jpg

My hives don't have excluders, so that can't be the hold-up. It is all in the year. As a farmers saying: next year is going to be better.

Joerg
 

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To get foundation drawn above an excluder you need a strong hive in a good flow. I place foundtionless frames between drawn combs and am very successful. Foundation will work between drawn combs also but you get thin combs as they draw the drawn comb wide.
 

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I had a good honey crop (extracted honey) with 3 hives this year. For the second year in a row I could not get bees to make any comb honey. I have a two deep setup and add drawn medium supers on that in Spring. I have one shallow super that I put thin comb honey foundation in. I tried this shallow super on different hives two years in a row with no success. Once I placed it directly above the two deeps with queen excluder. Once I placed the shallow between two medium supers with drawn comb. Both fails. No storage of nectar at all in the shallow. Any suggestions? Thank you.
Rusty Burlew of Honey Bee Suite has a bunch of articles on comb honey how to’s. Very informative.
 

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I believe the Killians used a method that involved killing the queen, knocking them down to a single deep, and striking all but one cell. The bees back fill the brood chamber without a laying queen. When she hatches and begins to lay, the bees MUST move the honey up into the sections. This must all be properly timed with the beginning of the seasonal honey flow.

We use a similiar method.

Crazy Roland
 

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Hi Roland, would you mind sharing your method? Thanks!
 

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This year unexpected expansion left me without enough supers and a strong flow expected while I would be out of town. I decided using a deep box with medium drawn comb on one hive would be better than not enough room. When I checked the box the bees had drawn beautiful white comb filled with honey on the bottom of all the (filled) medium frames. Maybe just a strip of drawn comb on a frame would get them started.
 

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I made some Ross Rounds for the first time this summer. I just kept a hive top feeder above the super and crushed honey filled burr comb into it during the flow. Worked like a charm
 
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