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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I built this top bar hive last year and wanted to run a couple of ideas by you all.

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(1) Feeder - I made a feeder that is just like a top feed on a langstroth hive. I have have a bar with a 3/4" slot throughout the middle, have a pins for alignment. Modified from bee keeping for dummies top feeder plan. There are screen inside to ack as ladders. When I'm done feeding, I remove the bar and insert a regular bar. All fits under the closed lid. Location of feeder is adjustable betweens bars 7-23 image.jpg image.jpg

(2) Ventilation - I have heard a lot about venting the hive in the middle of summer. I made a roller board with a vent in the top of it that vents into the attic. In the eaves are two 1 1/2" round screened holes that can be opened or closed. My thought is the air will come in through the entrance of the hive, work it's way to the back of the hive, heat rises so it should go up the vent, and if I have the eave vent opposite the entrance I should get so venting to prevent condensation.

(3)Patty feeder - don't know if I'll use this but wanted to built it before the bees went in. I can fill the screened cavity with patties and drop it in where I need to.
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Disclaimer: bee kind, I know nothing about bees except what I have read, I plan on doing it natural and only plan to feed to get them started. I love wood working and that's why all the extras. I look forward to your kind feed back.

Blessing

Eric
 

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great craftsmanship.

Im not sure how well the patty feedy will work. Hive beetles may be able to take advantage of the screen and run a muck.
 

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That sure is a beautiful hive!
I just hope you aren't disappointed a year from now when the bees turn that beautiful work ugly with propolis, pollen stains, bee poop, wax, etc.
 

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Your design is pretty nice. I absolutely LOVE the idea of putting on the hive top feeder. So many starters actually want to use a boardman type which is ok, but in the sense of ease, Hive top is the way to go, just remember that to keep the bees down out of the top, you need to make sure your feeder is either completely screened in or a FBM (Fat Bee Man) style. Check him out on Youtube. Now for the pollen pattie feeder - You should only need this idealy in the early spring to get them brooded up - make sure you use a screen that is large enough to let the bees pass through it, 1/4 inch #4 hardware cloth will be fine. I think you're ready for some bees. On your bar design did you make them pointed or just flat. Proven fact that having a pointed bar will keep the bees on track better.
 

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I made a vented bar last year. I had a hive that in the heat it seemed like there was enough bees hanging out front to make a strong package. It did reduce the bearding tremendously, but I don't know if that was just better for me or for the bees.
 

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Your design is pretty nice. I absolutely LOVE the idea of putting on the hive top feeder. So many starters actually want to use a boardman type which is ok, but in the sense of ease, Hive top is the way to go, just remember that to keep the bees down out of the top, you need to make sure your feeder is either completely screened in or a FBM (Fat Bee Man) style. Check him out on Youtube. Now for the pollen pattie feeder - You should only need this idealy in the early spring to get them brooded up - make sure you use a screen that is large enough to let the bees pass through it, 1/4 inch #4 hardware cloth will be fine. I think you're ready for some bees. On your bar design did you make them pointed or just flat. Proven fact that having a pointed bar will keep the bees on track better.
Will the bees build crazy comb on the bar that leads to the feeder?
 

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Assuming the bars are 1 3/8's and are wedge style you could rip off one bar by 3/16 on one side and another bar by 3/16 and face them towards each other. Have the space to the top be 3/8's of an inch and they shouldn't mess up the comb at all. The real issue is that you have all these independent pieces of wood that will expand and contract at different rates and directions. That 3/8's opening may grow or shrink, not to mention everything around it.
 

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It looks like the feeder contains them, so that when you put the feeder on top they can only go into the feeder. Similar to a hive top feeder on a lang. At least that is what I think it is.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
That is correct, the bees are contained in the feeder.
The bar for the feeder is the 1 3/8".
I made a 3/4" slot in the center of a single bar that is about 12" long, the bottom side of this feeder bar is flat. The bees go up throughout the center and there are two resovours.

There are not a lot of pieces of wood to do this, I don't see a shrinkage issue, I modified one bar

Thank you all for you responses, I truly appreciate them.
 

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A very nice build, really pretty and I really like you hive feeder.
I would only say that it may be difficult to get your top bars out with them recessed like that. My top bars sit on top of the hive and then the roof covers over the top. This let you get your fingers under each end and have more control when moving them about so you don't squash bees. Propolysed in they may be difficult to lift too.
 

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Very beautiful hive! I'm of the same mind as AugustC. Having the bars recessed in the rim will limit several comb manipulations. The main one is after going through a hive inspection you will only be able to replace one bar at a time back into its original position. With the ends exposed you have the opportunity to move up to four bars of comb at a time back into position.
 

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That is correct, the bees are contained in the feeder.
The bar for the feeder is the 1 3/8".
I made a 3/4" slot in the center of a single bar that is about 12" long, the bottom side of this feeder bar is flat. The bees go up throughout the center and there are two resovours.

There are not a lot of pieces of wood to do this, I don't see a shrinkage issue, I modified one bar

Thank you all for you responses, I truly appreciate them.
Do you have a screen over the feeder as well to keep out bees that can sneak under your lid from outside?
 

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Looks to me that if there is screen at the bottom where they go down to get the syrup the bees shouldn't be able to get out. You can't tell from the picture.
 
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