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How do stop the queen from laying in my deeps so that I can replace them (with mediums)? She is currently in the bottom, with 2 more boxes (mediums) of brood above her. If I move her up and put a queen excluder on between her and the bottom box, will the bees still cluster below until all the brood has hatched out? Or should I start sticking medium foundation into my deep box and shifting the frames around (seems like a lot of work and probably a big mess)? I guess I could also just sacrifice some brood, . . .
 

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Depends on how big of a hurry you're in. One way is just flip the bottom deeps upside down. She won't lay in cells that slope down and will probably move up but the brood that is there won't die and will continue to hatch.

If you're in more of a hurry you could take a couple of frames of open brood and cut them off so they are 6 5/8" but don't have a bottom bar and put them in the medium box with the queen and an excluder so the queen can't get back to the brood nest. You can cut some brood comb out and tie it in a medium frame and put a couple of frames of open brood and the queen in the medium.

DON'T put the queen in a box seperated by an excluder without some brood with her or the bees will abandon her. Even WITH some brood they MAY just raise a new queen in the brood box because the queen doesn't appear to be doing her job.
Then you'll have a two queen hive.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Michael, is there an easy way to flip frames or do I need to chopsaw the ends off? I've actually got a hive with brood in a deep, a medium AND a shallow - what a nightmare!
 

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>Michael, is there an easy way to flip frames or do I need to chopsaw the ends off?

I assume you mean convertinge them from deeps to mediums? The only method I've found for converting a deeper frame to a shallower is to cut the bottoms off the end bars and put an bottom bar between the shorter ends. You can cut the bottom bar at the end bars. So that now the bottom bar is 3/4" shorter and goes BETWEEN the end bars and the end bars have a square bottom on them. Watch out for long nails through the bottom bar if you are cutting, say a medium down to a shallow, but from a deep to a medium it's not usually a problem.
I've actually got a hive with brood in a deep, a medium AND a shallow - what a nightmare!

I don't know of any easy way to convert a shallow to a medium though. I suppose you could add something to the bottom just to maintain beespace, like a one by cut to about an inch. But I've never messed with it.

Of course I have converted shallow BOXES to mediums by adding some on to the bottom and converted deeps by cutting them of on the bottom.
 

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Louise;

You are about to get into a big mess. If you do not want deeps, do as Michael first suggested and encourage the bees to leave the bottoms and lay in the mediums you want.

You can do this either by turning the deeps upside down as mentioned, or you can place them on a bottom board with no entrance. You then put an inner cover over them and then stack your "new" hive bodies of mediums over the inner cover. You must use a spacer here so that the entrance to the hive is now above the inner cover that is over the old brood nest. Queens really do not like laying below the main entrance, and they will move up. If the brood nest is well propolized so that that it can be safely placed upside down so much the better. Turn it upside down, but place a couple of spacer strips across the bottom board because the frames will eventually come down.

When the brood nest is perfectly empty you can either scrap the comb, chop it off as suggested or use it in nucs. I always advise against chopping up frames for modifications. Better to make new ones than wind up with cobbled-up frames.

Deep boxes are another matter, If you will pull any nails that are in the line-of-cut you can put a box on a table saw, run it against the rip fence and cut it to any dimension you want.
Ox
 

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I, too, want to eliminate my deep hive bodies. Generally the main honey flows around here are in April and June. Would it be a good idea to flip the box(es) now before the June flow begins? Is 3 weeks about how long it will take the bees to evacuate the overturned box? Is there any need to find the queen and place her in a box that is not being overturned?
Thanks
George
 

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>I, too, want to eliminate my deep hive bodies. Generally the main honey flows around here are in April and June. Would it be a good idea to flip the box(es) now before the June flow begins?

Probably.

>Is 3 weeks about how long it will take the bees to evacuate the overturned box?

The brood all has to emerge and that will take 24 days for the drone eggs.

>Is there any need to find the queen and place her in a box that is not being overturned?

It's helpful, but not necessary. She won't want to lay in the cells because they are slanted the wrong way, but if you can put the queen in the medium and cut one frame of open brood out of the deep frame and tie it in a medium frame to give the nurse bees a reason to stay with the queen it would be more of a sure thing that they will occupy the medium.
 

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Okay, I flipped one of the boxes today. Now I'll hold my breath until the end of the month when I can check to see if it worked. I hope I still have some bees, then.

George
 
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