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Author Topic: Useing oak lumber  (Read 1984 times)
danno
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« on: December 04, 2007, 03:46:07 PM »

I am new to bee keeping and will be starting out in spring with 5 hives.  I have a complete wood working shop in my barn along with several thousand feet of 1 1/8" seasoned rough sawn white oak in widths from 4" to 12" and lengths from 8' to 12'.  This is new wood cut in the fall of 2005.  These boards are easily plained down to 3/4".    I would like to use this lumber for everything except frames.  ( It was free)  I know the boxes will be heavier than pine however with proper sealing they should last for a very long time.  My question is does any see a problem with this and does anyone else use hardwood of any kind
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randydrivesabus
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« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2007, 04:18:07 PM »

white oak is a good outdoor lumber but it will be very heavy as compared to pine...but you already know that. i don't see any other downside.
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« Reply #2 on: December 04, 2007, 11:20:24 PM »

since oak cost more you might could find someone around you that has a small saw mill and swap it out for pine, you could get some money to boot or extra pine!!!! just a idea unless you want them high dollar oak hives  Wink
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #3 on: December 05, 2007, 06:38:31 AM »

Sell the oak to a woodworker and buy ten times as much pine.  Smiley

Oak will work fine, expect that it is a waste of good cabinet wood and it's too heavy.  If you glue and screw they will probably last the rest of your life and your grandkids lives.

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Michael Bush
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Hopeful
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« Reply #4 on: December 05, 2007, 07:13:27 AM »

Furnitue grade beehives? Hmmmmm.  Maybe you could stain tem in "honey ok", varnish them,  and sell them to beeks as furniture or file cabinets, making each box into a drawer. Don't laugh, I am serious. They would sell if you advertized in a bee mag.I bet you could sell half a dozen her laone.

As for anything else, way too heavy b the time you add frames, comb ,honey and bees, hard to nail (Michael is right that screws would be better). I have pine boxes that are over 40 years old and still work fine.
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Cindi
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« Reply #5 on: December 05, 2007, 08:56:54 AM »

Danno, welcome to our forum.  A great place to spend some quality time.  YOu should change your profile so we know what area you are in , that helps with answers to any questions.  Have a wonderful day. Cindi
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« Reply #6 on: December 05, 2007, 10:35:38 AM »

Green oak will shrink appreciably as it cures - this has had two years to dry so depending on how it was stacked (single layers with dryers) it probably is OK.  If it's in a large pile with little air circulation you may want to do a moisture test.  Interior dimentions are pretty exacting so if the hives have to start to shrink you may have problems.  Would make some unique hives, though. 
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danno
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« Reply #7 on: December 05, 2007, 12:36:45 PM »

Thanks for all your replies. As for the moisture content T-Bone 369 and the way I stacked it.  I stacked it in single layers on pallets that I leveled with 1/2" OSB stickers every 18".  I tested the moisture content last winter and it was perfect.  Last winter I built a 1000 bottle wine cellar in my basement with it and a large fruit press this past summer.  I plan on making one hive to perfection that I can stain and seal and set out in veiw of our decks in the back field.  I have 4 acres of clover and 30+ mostly apple but also peaches, plums, pairs and cherries trees to keep them busy
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Scadsobees
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« Reply #8 on: December 05, 2007, 01:31:08 PM »

It would work fine other than the weight.

I have some cedar boxes, and they work fine too, other than being a bit weaker.

Your 1000 bottle wine cellar is making me mucho jealous!!!! rolleyes  Not to mention fruit press!  Did you have plans for those or just figure it out?

Rick
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danno
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« Reply #9 on: December 05, 2007, 02:10:00 PM »

I had plans for the fruit press but the cellar is my own creation.  I built this house 3 yrs ago and we had a 6' X 15" underground room added off our basement just for this purpass.  It stays between 55 and 60 yr round without a cooling unit.  My wife and I make wine and mead and also collect alot  along with ample sampling.  It now has about 400 bottles and growing
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Carriage House Farm
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« Reply #10 on: December 06, 2007, 08:37:00 AM »

It now has about 400 bottles and growing

Hehehe that's a good solid week's worth of drinking.  grin

I have my own band mill and a large piece of land and mill my own wood quite often.  I cut some scraps to match the dimensions (no finishing or joints cut or anything and the weight of the White Oak was right around 3 times as much.  Its simply SO much denser than the pine.

If you want to make a nice display hive though, I'd go for it. I'd just stain and wax it or dip it in wax/paraffin and put a garden or "English" style top on it with copper.  If you go one way you might as well do it right.

Probably a better "cheap" wood would be a river (silver) maple or a cotton wood.  I have milled and used both.  Neither is a truly fantastic wood, but both if painted and prevented from contacting the ground will last about as long as any of the one stuff.  I've used it for barn siding and I am going 10 years strong right now.  I have massive quantities of the stuff here on my property.  It grows fast and reaches 100' high with about 3 to 5 ft ini diameter....and its light weight.  Smiley
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Richard Stewart
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randydrivesabus
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« Reply #11 on: December 06, 2007, 09:05:51 AM »

Richard-what kind of band saw mill do you have?
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Carriage House Farm
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« Reply #12 on: December 06, 2007, 09:26:27 AM »

I don't want to hijack this thread with Saw Mill talk...I'll start a new thread about it...give me a sec.


OK, here it is:  http://forum.beemaster.com/index.php?topic=12265.0

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Richard Stewart
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« Reply #13 on: December 06, 2007, 10:52:38 PM »

It would work fine other than the weight.

Go for medium boxes, it will help reduce the weight.

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I have some cedar boxes, and they work fine too, other than being a bit weaker.

I prefer cedar whenever I can get it.

Quote
Your 1000 bottle wine cellar is making me mucho jealous!!!! rolleyes  Not to mention fruit press!  Did you have plans for those or just figure it out?

Rick

I could use a good food storage locker--not being a wine, beer, or alcohol of any kind drinker.  I do, however, occasionally embibe in a good mint or herb tea.
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danno
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« Reply #14 on: December 07, 2007, 08:25:36 AM »

We also cut some cedar.  We get old cedar power poles from the local power company.  We spend a good share of time digging out stones and useing a metal detector to find nails and staples.  They are bone dry so we saw them to 7/8 or 1 ".   You dont get many boards out of a pole  but it is nice wood. 
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beeginner
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« Reply #15 on: December 09, 2007, 07:55:55 PM »

Im 10 miles out of town but maybe 4 miles from town theres a of omesh or w/e lol. Well 4 of them are really good freind with me. Well they all found out Im keeping bees. Well the other day I come home and there about 10 wagons in my yard and about 20 people unloading some stuff. I get out of the truck and ask what are you all doing well they gave me 5 wagons full of oak and cedar wood!!  Most of the boards are wide as supers and other boards not so much but ones that are short I can make sbb out of them.  I just can't get over that they all gave me what boards they did not want. 

I guess me going over to there land to help them with ever thing payed off! 
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asprince
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« Reply #16 on: December 09, 2007, 08:49:47 PM »

It is hard to beat a GOOD neighbor! I thank God for mine. We don't spend a lot of time together but it is comforting to know that they are there if and when you need them......without asking!

Steve
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