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Monk hive

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Now, this is a very original setup (patented in Russia).
The hive is to be kept at ~30% angle to allow the bees natural movement along the seems (reminds me one German hive - but not the same).
The design inventor is a monk.

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11,346 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Seen the pics I think I get the idea, what does the 30 degree incline do?

I don't think it needs be strictly 30 degrees.
Could be 45% just as well.
But the larger the angle - harder it is to keep the hive stable and the construction needs to be stronger/heavier.
Too low of an angle - the effect of a vertical hive is being lost.
I suspect the inventor just picked a nominal angle of 30% as a convenient, comprimise number (probably took some testing).

Envision a regular vertical hive made up of 3 boxes.
Now lean to some tree, so it is tilting at some angle (scaffold the boxes together, so they hold).
Now modify the rig so that you can access the lower boxes without taking the upper boxes off (basically, make one of the walls to be the service panel).

And there you have it - a hybrid of horizontal and vertical hives.
  • has the easy access to any part of the hive (just like a horizontal hive)
  • has the warmer part of the hive where the warm air rises (the upper portion - great during the cold spring build-up)
  • has the cooler part of the hive (the lower portion - is needed in hot summer)
  • has the frames lined up along the long axis - so that the bees flow easily up and down - because the frame seams match in ALL three compartments (there are three compartments; each compartment up to 12 frames); this is where the "monk hive" is better than a traditional long hive and similar to a traditional vertical hive (LJ spoke about this in detail)
The bees normally winter in the middle compartment (easily insulated).
You have service space all over to feed, store stuff, etc.

So now the bees work more like in the vertical hive - the honey is stored in the "upper" chamber (just like a super).
The brood tends to be in the "lower" chambers.
You can prompt the bees to move up/down by opening/closing the entrances too.
They bees themselves will move up/down per the season.
Basically, all up/down moves are done at angle - which is totally fine.

  • takes two people to move (like with the long hives).
  • foot print is large (same as the long hives).
  • looks strange to most people (which kinda expect "neat little houses", not some coffins tossed around) - this is a perception issue, but no more

11,346 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Actually, you may modify these "coffins" to be wheelbarrow-like (makes them more complicated thou).
Then you alone can move them around and setup.

5 ,8 ,10 frame, and long Lang
5,545 Posts
Ok then,

Not sure they would be "better" than the regular Lang.
IF the heat rising was important I would think just go vertical.
vertical has seems as well.

I guess if I could convince my self to build this contraption, it would have triangle sides and recycled bicycle wheels on the big end and handles on the little end.

seems a 1/3 way choice, just go all in,, :)

ok so I at least understand the design goals, thanks

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