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Author Topic: 2 mediums vs 1 deep question  (Read 1312 times)
malabarchillin
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« on: September 29, 2007, 11:54:30 AM »

Hello more noob questions,
I am interested in the versatility of using all mediums for brood and supers.
I am not concerned with the deeps being too heavy, but like the idea of being able to transfer smaller amounts of brood and stores between hives. I thought for a long time on how to make the conversion between deeps and mediums then it dawned on me that deep frames would fit inside two meds and once established I could swap the deep frames for med frames.
My question is : Is it not a pain to have to lift off the upper medium box every time you want to inspect the
lower frames instead of just pulling the deep frames directly out ?
Also does using meds and having the queen move between boxes encourage her to go up further into the honey supers ?
Thanks
Mike
East Central Florida
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CBEE
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« Reply #1 on: September 29, 2007, 01:15:23 PM »

I have been kicking this around too. I was thinking on taking a medium and stick inbetween my hive with 2 deeps. Then when it is being worked with brood and bees split it off. If this wont work so well, Someone tell me.. I have had more than one stupid idea you know grin
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #2 on: September 29, 2007, 01:19:30 PM »

>Hello more noob questions,
I am interested in the versatility of using all mediums for brood and supers.
I am not concerned with the deeps being too heavy

If you don't think 90 pounds is too heavy then you are either a weight lifter or you think you won't ever get older...

> but like the idea of being able to transfer smaller amounts of brood and stores between hives. I thought for a long time on how to make the conversion between deeps and mediums then it dawned on me that deep frames would fit inside two meds and once established I could swap the deep frames for med frames.

Sort of.  A deep in two medium boxes will have an  excess of more than 3 1/2 inches at the bottom.  An easier solution is to make a shim that is 3" with a frame rest on both ends (like a five frame nuc cut down to 3" deep).  That way the deeps can fit correctly and you can fill the rest of the box out with mediums.  A board on the side will cover the gap.

>My question is : Is it not a pain to have to lift off the upper medium box every time you want to inspect the
lower frames instead of just pulling the deep frames directly out ?

I don't understand the question exactly.  Are we talking about with deep frames in a double medium box?  It's always going to be a pain but the only reasonable way to manage it would be to pull the deeps (and the 3 1/2" of extra comb on the bottom of them that probably is all crosscombed) out through the top and set them in another box while inspecting.

>Also does using meds and having the queen move between boxes encourage her to go up further into the honey supers ?

Anytime the queen has the freedom to go between boxes (which is any hive with no excluder) she may spread out more in either width or height.  It doesn't encourage her to do anything.
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Michael Bush
My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm
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"Everything works if you let it."--Rick Nielsen
Understudy
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« Reply #3 on: September 29, 2007, 02:31:43 PM »

I use all mediums. I have a two hives that still have one deep in them from way back when. Outside of those I use all mediums nine frames each.
1. Deeps are heavy.

2. I limit my hives to no more than 7 mediums in a stack. So that I can look though my hives when I need to . You don't normally need to go through each frame in each box but about twice a year maybe a bit more you will want to. Limiting the stack size makes that job a little easier.

3. I do not use excluders. The queen is free to roam in my hives where she wants. Good queens lay in a pattern. So you will generally not have brood just here and there. If you do it is a sign of a bad queen. However the queen may lay from the top box down depending on the temprature and other important factors in the hive. So your honey may end up at the bottom. This for me is not an issue. I use top entrances it can end up at the bottom. Generally though since you add boxes to the top the top box gets filled with honey. You pull and replace with an empty and they go back to work on filling it. If you add a box and the queen turns it into brood let her, she knows what she is doing.

3. A queen will lay drone in a honey frame. They are small tight sections usually on the outside of one frame. This happens more when I have wood frames in the hives. My permacomb hives allow for the building of drone come between the bottom of the frame and top of the frame below it. I allow this because than I can inspect for varroa.

4. Simple math 3 mediums is equal to two deeps.

5. Deeps are heavy. Mike has a quote somewhere on his website that says:
"Friends don't let friends lift deeps."

Sincerely,
Brendhan

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UtahBees
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« Reply #4 on: September 29, 2007, 03:16:42 PM »

I also use all mediums. I don't use excluders, and the honey that I've wanted to harvest out side of the 3 mediums (which Understudy has pointed out, equals 2 deeps) has had no drones laid in the cells.

http://flickr.com/photos/barl0w/936346013/

I think MB has on his website that a full medium (honey) weighs 60 pounds. That's enough for me. I can only carry 1 to my car, and not overexert myself. I did carry 2 once, and I don't think I'd like to try that again. Talk about 'feel the burn'!

UtahBees
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malabarchillin
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« Reply #5 on: September 29, 2007, 04:15:12 PM »

Thanks for the replies guys.
I never move my deep hive body and the rest are mediums (do not lift deep).
I am sorry if I do not get it or the question is redundant. If I have a deep hive body and want to make a split to a medium hive body and I have no drawn medium comb (crush and strained) how do I do it ?
If I put a 5 frame deep nuc over the medium body will the queen continue to lay in the deep nuc ?
If she would move down I would put on excluder and let them hatch and remove the nuc, but with no drawn
mediums she will continue to lay in the deep and the workers will continue to fill the nuc as well ?
Should I just leave nuc on top until they eventually draw out bottom mediums and chase her down and add excluder.
Thanks again.
Mike
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #6 on: September 29, 2007, 09:49:16 PM »

>If I have a deep hive body and want to make a split to a medium hive body and I have no drawn medium comb (crush and strained) how do I do it ?

Exactly why you want all mediums.

Your choices are cut the brood comb out of the deep frame and tie it into a medium frame, or make a shim as I described.

>If I put a 5 frame deep nuc over the medium body will the queen continue to lay in the deep nuc ?

Until she runs out of room, yes.

>If she would move down I would put on excluder and let them hatch and remove the nuc, but with no drawn
mediums she will continue to lay in the deep and the workers will continue to fill the nuc as well ?

If you cut one frame of open brood out and tie it into a medium and put it below an excluder with some undrawn frames the bees will draw the frames if they can.  This is not the right time of year for this kind of manipulation, but it would work fine in late spring when the nights aren't too cold.

>Should I just leave nuc on top until they eventually draw out bottom mediums and chase her down and add excluder.

That can work.  Probably next spring.
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Michael Bush
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Brian D. Bray
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« Reply #7 on: September 30, 2007, 01:54:23 AM »

I have a couple of old 5 frame deep nuc boxes I haven't cut down yet.  I use it to hold my emergency queen.  I can catch her to put in another hive and let the nuc raise another queen or I can put medium nuc supers on it to have the bees draw out for making splits. 
But to tell the truth if I didn't have plastic frames in that nuc I would have already cut it down to a medium.

When you deal with supers from a wheelchair you KNOW the value of a medium over a deep.
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Old Timer
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« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2007, 05:48:50 PM »

i'm thinking about just going to regular supers for everything. or better yet some medium nucs. when you get older you'll appreciate something a little lighter to lift. i would go with nothing but nucs, but i'm scared they'd get too tall for me.
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Brian D. Bray
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« Reply #9 on: September 30, 2007, 08:31:18 PM »

I have a neighbor who is in his 90's and still keeping bees--belongs to the same association I do.  He keeps his bees in a 3 medium nuc hive then 2 more for surplus.  5 mediums has about the same wind profile as 3 deeps.  Anything higher and it starts to get awkward.  He harvests about once a month over the summer.  Building a wider bottom board helps with stability--just measure and cut 2X4's so that they lay wide side down and the bottom opening is the same diamentions as the inside of the super.
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Life is a school.  What have you learned?   Brian      The greatest danger to our society is apathy, vote in every election!
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