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Author Topic: Langstroth beehive plan question  (Read 8440 times)
SgtMaj
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« on: June 28, 2008, 10:33:07 PM »

I'm looking at building a langstroth beehive, but have a question about them... namely, what keeps the upper boxes from toppling over besides the simple weight of them?

I ask this because as I'm looking at the plans, I'm seeing a possible simple modification to them that would make them interlock, and possibly even to the point where they could easily screw together or be unscrewed from each other.  I'm wondering if I should build that modification (I would build it without screwing them together, as I think I prefer easier access).
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randydrivesabus
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« Reply #1 on: June 28, 2008, 10:40:55 PM »

the bees will glue them together.
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johnnybigfish
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« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2008, 10:45:56 PM »

The bees will make the boxes stick together with propolis, a sort of glue or like a resin.....To me, this stuff reminds me of the sticky stuff what comes in a little plastic box about 2 inches square  which is used for making your fingers stick to book pages so you can turn the pages faster without your fingers slipping. This is the stuff that makes you use a hive tool (or crow bar) to pry lids off and boxes apart and frames out.
Its really strong! Sometimes I go to lift a 2 box hive and when I lift it I can move it and it all stays together!

your friend,
john
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doak
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« Reply #3 on: June 28, 2008, 10:50:39 PM »

All the same  (width and length) no topple. If you lean them forward not more than 1/3 to 1/2 inch.
Make sure your foundation/hive stand is solid. Never had one to fall over that some one didn't push over. You know how mean kids are, I had a couple of those once.
doak
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SgtMaj
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« Reply #4 on: June 28, 2008, 11:00:23 PM »

Ok, I think I will go ahead and make my modification anyway... as doak mentioned, they can still be toppled, even if it is on purpose.

Thx for the info though, I had wondered why you'd ever need a hive tool since you wouldn't want to nail anything together...
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johnnybigfish
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« Reply #5 on: June 28, 2008, 11:35:42 PM »

 You should always keep a hive tool handy!...It makes it easy to open beer bottles with! grin...Better than using teeth!

your friend,
john
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SgtMaj
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« Reply #6 on: June 28, 2008, 11:40:05 PM »

You should always keep a hive tool handy!...It makes it easy to open beer bottles with! grin...Better than using teeth!

your friend,
john

I LIKE the way you think!   grin
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rast
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« Reply #7 on: June 29, 2008, 08:10:30 AM »

 Yeah, them bottle caps are really rough on dentures grin.
You will appreciate a hive tool more when you are working with glued together frames. Getting them apart to pull and easing them back together when done. I used to use a couple of oyster knives, but it puts your hands right over top of them as you are tearing their house apart.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #8 on: July 03, 2008, 09:30:39 PM »

The problem isn't keeping them together.  It's prying them apart...
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Jerrymac
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« Reply #9 on: July 04, 2008, 12:18:17 PM »

If you modification has something to do with a lip for the box to fit/slide down in, I think you will find it to be a big problem and will do away with it after the first season.

For instance, you can't get the hive tool in there to pry the boxes apart.
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SgtMaj
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« Reply #10 on: July 04, 2008, 12:47:21 PM »

If you modification has something to do with a lip for the box to fit/slide down in, I think you will find it to be a big problem and will do away with it after the first season.

For instance, you can't get the hive tool in there to pry the boxes apart.

Yup, that was it.  Already decided against it though.
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SgtMaj
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« Reply #11 on: August 06, 2008, 12:18:16 AM »

Well, it's been a while, but I've been hard at work... I just finished drying the final coat of paint, so here is the completed hive:



One thing does disappoint me about it though... all that work went into the box joints to make them perfect, and you can't even tell they are there at all.  Oh, I also haven't created an upper entrance yet... I kinda figure, what's the rush?  After all, I doubt I'll need it in the first 3 months anyway.  Now, I could of course just dado the vented inner cover, but I'm not 100% convinced that's the best method yet, and since once done, it's pretty permanent, I want to make absolutely sure before I do that.  BTW, that is an SBB on the bottom there... that front ramp is removable and the board slides out the front... not normally idea, except that where I want to put the hive, I won't have enough space behind the hive to slide the board out.  So that's it.  What do you think?

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rdy-b
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« Reply #12 on: August 06, 2008, 12:35:49 AM »

I think it needs a metal top-cover cheesy  just kidding -I think your bees are lucky to have such a home you must be very proud to have made this accomplishment -fine job indeed-RDY-B
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hankdog1
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« Reply #13 on: August 06, 2008, 02:53:22 AM »

got a good lookin' hive there probably better then most if not all that you can order.  just a thought though you said your joints didn't show up like you liked you may want to try stain and ploy next time.  nobody ever said a hive has to be white besides i have never seen a white one out in nature.  good work though really nice my bees should be so lucky as to have a hive that nice.
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SgtMaj
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« Reply #14 on: August 06, 2008, 03:57:39 AM »

Yeah, I almost left them natural just to show off the box joints, but then I thought I should paint them white to reflect some of the harsh summer sun, even though wood is a great insulator.  The one good thing about those box joints is that I know they are MUCH stronger than just about any other type of joint... between being tight to begin with, then being glued and screwed together... I could drop one of these boxes out of a commercal jet onto pavement and they wouldn't come apart.  That's kinda a good feeling to have about something you'll be lifting about 20,000 bees in.
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charlescfry
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« Reply #15 on: August 06, 2008, 05:14:12 AM »

Nice job! Now think about building 8 more supers for this hive, then 9 more sets of everything as your hobby and skills boom! Probably take you all afternoon some day to build them all!  Wink

I hope you did not try to modify the boxes to lock them together... your bees will glue them together very solidly with propolis. Look at some of the threads on here about folk art and painted hives - you might find their artistic flair a nice match to your construction skills!
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Scadsobees
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« Reply #16 on: August 06, 2008, 08:33:11 AM »

Nice equipment! 

It is nice to label the hives too, that way the returning workers can see the front and think " 'Bees'...oh..thats me...I've got to go back there!!"  grin

It is good that you can't see the box joints, that means that you cut them really well and won't leak water or air!

If you want too, you can varnish the next hive for a nice natural look Wink.

Rick
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SgtMaj
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« Reply #17 on: August 06, 2008, 04:20:26 PM »

I hope you did not try to modify the boxes to lock them together... your bees will glue them together very solidly with propolis. Look at some of the threads on here about folk art and painted hives - you might find their artistic flair a nice match to your construction skills!

No, I abandoned that idea of locking them together... as for art talent, heh, no.  I'm about as much an artist as Davinci was a nascar driver.
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SgtMaj
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« Reply #18 on: August 07, 2008, 11:49:00 AM »

It is nice to label the hives too, that way the returning workers can see the front and think " 'Bees'...oh..thats me...I've got to go back there!!"  grin

Rick

 grin  I actually labelled them bees so that no one could come back to sue me later, saying that they got stung because I didn't post anything stating that they're bees.  Even though I'll be picking up an umbrella policy to cover such liability, it's as the old saying goes, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
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ArmucheeBee
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« Reply #19 on: August 12, 2008, 10:04:03 PM »

Hankdog1, I thought about putting a clearcoat (poly) on my boxes too.  I know the bees probably would not mind the smell on the outside, but can you poly the inside for easy cleaning, perserving the wood, etc?  Will it affect the bees/honey?  I put poly inside a Miller-type top feeder I just made.
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