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Watching a lot of youtube lately, and I am seeing lits of nucs and traps and other such paraphernalia that appear to be made from OSB. Is this a generally safe material for making hives? I have not used a lot of it in my life, but I always thought it was like pressure treated.
 

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Aylett, VA 10-frame double deep Langstroth
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The material is Advantech sub-flooring, available at most Lowe's for around $32 per sheet. It holds up well even unpainted, but does really well when coated. It is about 1-1/2 times heavier that white pine, so is not really good for 10 frame deep hive bodies. I have several deep and a crapload of medium nuc bodies made from Advantech and I am happy with it so far.
 

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It seems that plywood/OSB products seem to not last as long in the elements in my experience, even when painted/sealed. Once any moisture gets in the laminations, its only a matter of time before everything starts to delaminate and flake off. Never ever use anything pressure treated, I would be wary of any wood product that is weather resistant on its own, except something like cedar of course.
 

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Aylett, VA 10-frame double deep Langstroth
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Advantech is not your typical OSB. It is made with special resins and waxes that provide for weather resistance. No chemicals like in PT lumber. It will eventually swell a bit and get a little flakey if not primed and painted first. Plywood is ok for swarm traps and temporary housing, I would never use plywood for long term bee hives.
 

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I believe Advantech also manufactures a sheathing called Zip System that is 3/8 or 1/2 inch thick. It looks like the same thing.
I use Advantech for bottom boards and telescoping covers. It adds some weight to the tops. They don't get blown off.
I took extra care to seal the edges on the first batch I made. They are holding up very well. The ones I didn't seal are beginning to show the effects of the weather at three seasons, but still not bad.

Alex
 

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Sob, is not the greatest, nor the worst. As stated below, advance does offer some advantages to sob. But, back to osb... prime it well, caulk it well, and put 3 coats on all inner and outer surfaces. It will last well for several years. It must be sealed well, and decorated periodically. Just as any product you may use. If it gets wet for any period, it will get you. So, if using it because it's cheap or free, I'd say burn it up. Knowing that you will be upgrading your equipment in a couple years anyway. A few pieces i did when starting out 3 seasons are still looking fairly new. Good luck... rich
 
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