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Author Topic: Building a hive body  (Read 2862 times)

Offline johnwm73

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Building a hive body
« on: February 19, 2008, 11:28:54 PM »
Has anyone here built a hive body? If so what tools did you use? I am thinking of getting a router and building a few this year and just wanted some input.

Offline Brian D. Bray

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Re: Building a hive body
« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2008, 12:06:07 AM »
A router works wonders for cutting the rabbet, a dado blade helps in cutting the box ends unless you create a jig, otherwise just a good table or radial saw.  With a radial all of the necessary cuts can be made without changing blades but it does require re-aligning the board or arm a lot.
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Offline Jerrymac

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Re: Building a hive body
« Reply #2 on: February 20, 2008, 12:14:39 AM »
Skill saw to cut the boards. Dado blade on the table saw to make the box joints and frame rest. What do you call those clamps to hold two pieces at 90 degree angle? A few of those. Air nailer. 
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Offline mlewis48

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Re: Building a hive body
« Reply #3 on: February 20, 2008, 01:27:06 AM »
  I use a table saw to cut box joints and to rip boards. Just got a dove tail jig for my router, but have not had time to figure it out. Cant wait until I do, makes both cuts without resetting jig. You can get one off E-Bay for 50 bucks. I use glue, screws, and a nail gun whenever possible. There is a posting, on this site that will show you how to cut box joints and how to cut handles on boxes. After a little trial and error, you will save a lot of money and get a better quailty hive than what you can but from a supplier. I have made 25 complete hives, over the winter for a fraction of the cost of a supplier.
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Offline Sean Kelly

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Re: Building a hive body
« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2008, 06:20:09 AM »
You also don't have to pay those huge shipping charges when you make the stuff yourself.  I just bought 5 Deeps w/frames from W.T. Kelley and paid $75 in shipping from Kentucky to Washington.  I need to get me a table saw...  :-)

Sean Kelly
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Offline randydrivesabus

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Re: Building a hive body
« Reply #5 on: February 20, 2008, 06:42:42 AM »
i use the SCMS, TS and router and pneumatic stapler. the table saw is the most valuable.

Offline CBEE

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Re: Building a hive body
« Reply #6 on: February 20, 2008, 08:58:25 AM »
You don't need a lot of expensive equipment. You are only building a box... But it is a good excuse to buy some more toys to play with in the bee yard  :-D

Offline mgates61

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Re: Building a hive body
« Reply #7 on: February 20, 2008, 08:50:58 PM »
I am building my own hives....



I use the table saw to cut the boards to length, dado blade in the table saw for the box joints and rabbit.

Joiner is nice for getting a nice square edge.
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Offline bassman1977

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Re: Building a hive body
« Reply #8 on: February 20, 2008, 10:39:16 PM »
I built a "prototype" last week.  I did it with a table saw and a standard blade.  No fancy cuts, no fancy tools.  It came out great.  I modeled it off of a box I bought commerically.  It uses rabbet joints like a lot of people here use.  I think the box joints are too difficult and too time consuming for someone like me, with minimal wood building skills.  I'm going to be doing some more real soon and if you want, I can take pictures of what I am doing and post them in the building section of the forums.  It might be a week or two until I get to that though.  I will be building nucs, migratory covers and MAYBE screened bottom boards as well.
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Offline mgates61

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Re: Building a hive body
« Reply #9 on: February 20, 2008, 11:11:41 PM »
I built screened bottom boards and slatted boards also.  They are not difficult.  I have to agree about the box joints, i built a jig but still have them come out just a bit off sometimes.  I am through with them.  It is so much cheaper to build the basics and buy the frames.


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Offline catfishbill

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Re: Building a hive body
« Reply #10 on: February 21, 2008, 12:30:04 PM »
I did both kinds,dove tails and finger joints.used router jig from sears for the dove tails(dont forget to change measurements for dove tails or boxes will be to big) and dato on table saw with homade jig for finger joints.also made screened bottom boards.thanks to plans on beesource for all of it.i'm just about out of scrap lumber,but i think i have enough to build one miller type top feeder.then will have to find more wood.

Offline danno

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Re: Building a hive body
« Reply #11 on: February 21, 2008, 02:18:02 PM »
A Table saw w/ a dado balde for box joints and rabbits and a regular blade for cross cutting and hand holds

Offline Michael Bush

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Re: Building a hive body
« Reply #12 on: February 22, 2008, 07:29:32 PM »
I like to use my computer to order them....

But I've made them with just a skil saw.  A skil saw and a router.  Just a table saw.  I prefer the table saw.  You can cut frame rests with two cuts on a table saw and you can just use cleats for hand holds (they work better anyway if you screw and glue them well).
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Offline Sean Kelly

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Re: Building a hive body
« Reply #13 on: February 25, 2008, 05:52:09 AM »
You guys got me thinking and I've been looking at table saws on craigs list.  What should I be looking for?  There are lots of saws out there that wont take dado blades and others that will only take dado's up to some size specified.  And of course there's the saws that'll do everything except make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, but I'm not about to spend that kind of money.  What size dado would I need for the joints?  I think making the boxes would definately save me some big bucks on shipping alone.  Frames look like too much work and are pretty cheap to ship anyway unassembeled.

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Offline CapeCod

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Re: Building a hive body
« Reply #14 on: February 25, 2008, 06:31:26 AM »
If you are new to the hobby and have low funds for the dado equipment and carpentry skills this is the site for you.

http://www.damoc.com/beekeeper/beebox/beebox.html

The boxes wont last as long but should last with a little maintance.
There is a Beekeeper here on Cape Cod where the air is very salty and wet and his hives have been constucted as this and have been maintance free in his beeyard for the last 11 years.

I built one of these and I have very little carpentry skills and found them rather easy to build.,
Make sure you glue all joints!!!

Hope this helps

Offline Michael Bush

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Re: Building a hive body
« Reply #15 on: February 25, 2008, 08:17:08 AM »
It's NICE to have one with a big table and that will take stacked Dado blades etc.  I only have a cheap $69 from Home Depot.  It works fine.  It would be nice to be able to set up a fence at 19 7/8" for sides etc. but the cost of a saw that size is far more expensive.  But, if you can find one used...
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Offline danno

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Re: Building a hive body
« Reply #16 on: February 25, 2008, 08:57:49 AM »
I only have two suggestions  Get a saw with a cast table be it steel, cast iron or aluminum.  2. get a saw the is will cut out to 24".  Most this size will take a dado but ask.  I use 3/4" box joints.  I buy cull lumber from Lowe's at 50-75% off.  This weekend I made 11- ten frame mediums for 23.00

Offline poka-bee

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Re: Building a hive body
« Reply #17 on: February 25, 2008, 02:01:25 PM »
With 2 little ones you will apprecitate the one that makes sandwiches for you, now if you can find one that sweepe & mops too..hee hee  :evil:
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