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I am using Michael Bush's idea of construction shims on covers for a top entrance. A little glue, a few staples and they work just great!

My question is on the reduction of entrances when desired and how he does it? I currently use either duct tape or a wooden piece I cut and put a small brad in for a handle to reduce the space.

Anyone out there using these shims for a top entrance and how do you reduce them when necessary?

kq
 

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I have at times screwed a small board to the side of the top box such that it blocks part of the top entrance.
 

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I cut wood strips the same thickness as the opening and tack them onto the underside of the lid as needed to restrict the entrance size.
 

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My hives are all top entrances with 3/4" shims. I rip a 3/4 board on the table saw to 1" and cut it the width of the opening. Then I cut a section out about 3/4" long halfway through it. Then move down a couple of inches and rotate it 1/4 turn cut out a section 2-3" long halfway through. That gives me 3 options: no reducer, reduced down to about a 2-3" entrance, or turn the reducer 1/4 turn and its reduced to about 2 bee widths. I don't tack or glue anything, just set them in place. The bees will have them glued down by the time I check them again.
 

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On a not-completely-unrelated note, I managed to kill a pair of splits by forgetting to reduce the top entrances/covers that I made like Michael Bush's. At least I'm pretty sure that's what happened. I peeked in and all the capped honey that I had moved over and capped brood had been opened up. I believe they got robbed by a couple of my more well-established hives.

TL;DR - Don't forget your entrance reducers on splits, no matter how excited you are to try Michael Bush-inspired covers/entrances.
 

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When dealing with robbing a screen stapled over all but the last 1/4" to 1/2" works best as the robbers get confused by the screen more so than an entrance block. Any screen from #7 on down will work.
 

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My hives are all top entrances with 3/4" shims. I rip a 3/4 board on the table saw to 1" and cut it the width of the opening. Then I cut a section out about 3/4" long halfway through it. Then move down a couple of inches and rotate it 1/4 turn cut out a section 2-3" long halfway through. That gives me 3 options: no reducer, reduced down to about a 2-3" entrance, or turn the reducer 1/4 turn and its reduced to about 2 bee widths. I don't tack or glue anything, just set them in place. The bees will have them glued down by the time I check them again.
I'd love to see a photo of this if you get a chance. Thanks.
 

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I use #8 hardware cloth on mine. The easiest way is to form it into a wedge shape and stick it in. The length is easily changed by first folding it over.

 

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Is this how you go through winter?
I normally use no entrance reducers in winter on my top entrance hives. The last picture is from last winter. I had a shim on with solid sugar cake and actually had some robbing in January. That is why I reduced the entrance down then.

The top picture is of a hive in summer. I think it was a new hive I was feeding, if memory serves.
 
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