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I have top bar hives and was wondering about how much a fully drawn and capped 17" top bar would weigh. Trying not to go out and buy a scale for a one time use, but would like to estimate how many bars they need for winter. May need to combine a couple weaker hives.
 

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Since top bar hives aren't standard, it will also depend upon the depth and angle of your sides.

Based on a typical Medium Lang frame holding about 3lbs of honey, and using rough interior dimensions of the frame as 5.625x17, you get an area in that frame of about 95.625 square inches. So, that would be about .031 lbs of honey per square inch ... or about .5 ounces per square inch.

So, figure out the area of your comb and divide by 2 (multiply by .5) to get ounces. Divide again by 16 to convert to pounds (or just divide by 32 to begin with).

Here is a link to a handy little calculator to help figure our the area of your comb, assuming it is a trapezoid shape:

http://www.mathopenref.com/trapezoidarea.html
 

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Using roughly the same dimensions as the Golden Mean Hive bars I get 6-9.5lbs of honey per bar.

6 lbs from old brood comb which was filled with honey, usually a pretty thin comb which I'm rotating out for some reason.

9.5 lbs from the extra thick honey comb. Starts off over an inch wide at the top thins out a bit by the bottom. This is pretty much the max weight my bars will support on virgin comb without ripping off in the summer heat.

For winter stores I usually calculate 8 lbs per bar and 2.5 lbs for the thick band of honey across the top of many of the brood bars.
 

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trapezoid area is easy to figure. At the top and the bottom together length together (the sides parallel to each other), divide by 2, multiply by the height. Just slightly harder to calculate than a rectangle.
 

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What he said.

Also, for those who don't want small scales try this. Weigh yourself on your bathroom scales. Then weigh yourself holding the comb. Subtract the difference.
 

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Another trick is to harvest a bar, then weigh the bar or simply weigh the honey :thumbsup: that you extract from it.

But, y'know, another strategy is just to, every now and again, gently lift-up on one side of the hive an inch or so to get a very-informal notion of how much the thing weighs. Peek inside, at the bars on either end, to see how far the bees have built-out and how much honey those end-bars contain. You'll develop a feel for what's normal and what's not.

I try to do everything that I can toward the end of the season to give the bees an adequate supply of flowers. Grab a sack of flower or clover seed and spread it in the area. And, as the days begin to cool, further honey-harvesting is verboten. As the days begin to approach where the bees are going to need that honey as an over-winter food supply, "it's all theirs." If you are conservative in your predations, the bees will lay-up adequate stores. (I put wine-corks back into two of the three openings, one at a time, to further reduce the heat loss. One season, the bees did it for me, sealing-up openings on their own and fashioning their own "entrance reducers.")
 

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Since top bar hives aren't standard, it will also depend upon the depth and angle of your sides.

Based on a typical Medium Lang frame holding about 3lbs of honey, and using rough interior dimensions of the frame as 5.625x17, you get an area in that frame of about 95.625 square inches. So, that would be about .031 lbs of honey per square inch ... or about .5 ounces per square inch.

So, figure out the area of your comb and divide by 2 (multiply by .5) to get ounces. Divide again by 16 to convert to pounds (or just divide by 32 to begin with).

Here is a link to a handy little calculator to help figure our the area of your comb, assuming it is a trapezoid shape:

http://www.mathopenref.com/trapezoidarea.html
Nice! Thanks!
 
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