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Author Topic: Bushkill 4-way Mating Nuc  (Read 21274 times)
Robo
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« on: July 07, 2008, 08:24:48 AM »

Since the demand for my feral stock queens has taken off, I have decided to expand production a bit.  Here are some new 2 frame mating nucs I just finished.  I can make 4 boxes (16 nucs) from one sheet of 3/4" ply, one 1x8x8, and less than a sheet of luan.  Plus a bunch of coroplast election signs and aluminum flashing. These babies should last for years Smiley The way things are going, I'll be building plenty more this winter.



Complete plans can be found here -> http://robo.bushkillfarms.com/beekeeping/downloads/
« Last Edit: February 04, 2012, 05:18:28 PM by Robo » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2008, 08:55:26 AM »

OH yea, those are awesome, thanks for the pics. Do you have an explanation of how you use those mating nucs on your site? I get the basic idea, but could certainly use a couple of pages of explanation. As I said before, nobody here is selling nucs or queens that I can find. I would like to approach that for next spring. Those look really good. What is the small hole at the bottom for I see only one. It looks like you have a top entrance and a vent hole that is screened, and then a little tiny hole at the bottome as well? Just wondered what that one is for.
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« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2008, 10:13:50 AM »

Hmmm, how interesting. I had a thought..shhhh, don't tell anyone! cool They don't look all that hard to do..thinking ahead to next year. Not handy about building  but can Micky mouse...maneuvering a full size piece of plywood & power tools is too much of a challenge by myself BUT may be able to use regular supers, divide & just have to cut the pieces for the inner covers?  So you used the plastic stuff they make signs out of for dividers?  We will have tons free to choose from soon!!..will have to see how the new bees differ..red or blue! evil  Jody
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« Reply #3 on: July 07, 2008, 12:30:38 PM »

The only difference I would have made is the location of the entrances.  I would have one on each end and one on easch side so the queen could orientate on a single opening.  I did notice though that you put entrances on both ends so you can block or open a entrance depending on what you wanted to do.
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Robo
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« Reply #4 on: July 07, 2008, 03:57:24 PM »

The only difference I would have made is the location of the entrances.  I would have one on each end and one on easch side so the queen could orientate on a single opening.


The entrances are on each side and at the bottom.  The 2 center nucs enter on opposite sides and the outer 2 nucs enter on the other sides.  If you look close at the last picture you can see the center 2 entrances. The top holes are screened vent holes.  They do an amazing job of deceiving robbers,  which is a big problem here in the Fall after the flow.

Quote from: Frantz
Do you have an explanation of how you use those mating nucs on your site?


They are used just like any other mating nuc.  The cells are placed in the nuc a couple of days before hatching,  checked a few days after hatch date, and then in 2 weeks for mated queens.

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So you used the plastic stuff they make signs out of for dividers?

yup, I use a lot of coroplast in my beekeeping.   Makes great starter strips too.
http://forum.beemaster.com/index.php/topic,16357.msg118739.html#msg118739
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BenC
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« Reply #5 on: July 07, 2008, 05:26:03 PM »

Aside from the fact that mine are green and blue, those look exactly like what I built.  Oh, I put cleat handles on the sides.  I used 3/16 masonite for the dividers.  Did you dado the dividers into the bottom as well or just into the sides?  I saw the picture in Brushy Mt and went from that with a few mods.  Was able to build four at the same price they want for one, and that was buying materials.  Of course free construction scraps would bring that price down even more but I've got that cut up for other equipment  grin  I think for the next few I'll try building them to take med frames, should be big enough for mating nucs
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« Reply #6 on: July 07, 2008, 05:50:06 PM »

i like those rob...you need to make the name Mating Manor your brand.
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Robo
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« Reply #7 on: July 09, 2008, 09:01:55 PM »

Did you dado the dividers into the bottom as well or just into the sides? 

No, the bottom is just a recessed piece of 1/4 luan.  Between the dadoes in the sides, the solidness of the indivdual tops,  and the corrugation in the coropast,  they stay pretty straight.

Quote from: radydrivesabus
i like those rob...you need to make the name Mating Manor your brand.

Thanks Randy grin
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« Reply #8 on: July 12, 2008, 09:11:33 AM »

Robo,  How will you get feed to these bees if they need feeding?  I like the Idea of staying with standard frames for nucs.  Why did you go with this design instead of individual 2 to 5 frame nucs?

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« Reply #9 on: July 12, 2008, 09:34:09 AM »

Robo,  How will you get feed to these bees if they need feeding?
I have a few that I cut holes in the inner covers to fit mason jar lids with #8 hardware cloth on the bottom.  Then just put an empty deep on top.   If you do this,  put the feeder on the end of the inner cover, and away from the entrance hole.   But I usually just pour syrup into empty comb if they don't have enough stores.  I  start then with a frame of brood and a frame of honey and usually don't have to feed.

Quote
I like the Idea of staying with standard frames for nucs.  Why did you go with this design instead of individual 2 to 5 frame nucs?

Yes, standard frames are nice,  makes it easy to put them together in the spring and easy to put back into hives or nucs in the fall when done.

I do have a few double three frame nucs as well.  The quad 2 framers require less space and less "stuff"  to move around. The logistics just seem to be easier. You just have to watch the 2 framers a little closer and make sure they don't get too strong.
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« Reply #10 on: November 27, 2008, 12:49:28 AM »

great post gives me some excellent ideas for next season
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« Reply #11 on: December 07, 2008, 03:13:13 PM »

I've been building with plastic signs for a while (for outside bodies as well) and not all signs are created equal.  For dividers I like the kind that have the cells running vertically.  Why?  use one for a while and then repeat the measurements.  If you cut carefully things will be fine.  If you use horizontal cels in a divider and don't trim carefully along the edges, you'll wind up with a partial cell.  Ok, so far, so good, right?  Fast forward a few months - those edges will fold down and your divider will be less tall than it was.  For standard height cells it's no big deal so long as only one edge is like that.

If you cut the sign using one with veritical cells (that's all the ones on wire H stands) they will not collapse downward.

Horizontal cells make much better side walls for nucs and cut right form a nice flap/lid.

Political Sign Nucs

Frankenhive sans skin

Now with signs added.
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« Reply #12 on: December 07, 2008, 07:31:58 PM »

It is definitely a give and take when using coroplast.  The problem I have had with vertical cell dividers is that unless you put a dado in the floor, they will warp to one side and in some cases touch the adjacent frame and cut off access to the bees. If you do go with dados, you can forget about easily removing the dividers once the bee propolize them. Sad  With horizontal cell dividers the dado is not needed to prevent warping.  I get around the half cell cuts by extending the divider past the tops (individual tops for each nuc).

Even though there are pitfalls with the coroplast that need to be designed around,  the price is right  Wink
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« Reply #13 on: December 08, 2008, 03:28:29 AM »

I have seen this thread pop up to the top of the list several times and I have wanted to jump in and post this link (but I was unable to find it), well finally, here it is: http://www.wiltshirebeekeepers.org.uk/Downloads/BeeLines%20April%202007.pdf
scroll down to page 7, you will see some pretty cool combined tbh mating nucs.  now these I would certainly call a mating manor!

robo- q's if I may: how do you like the ply inner covers as opposed to other options- how easy is it to inspect a "middle" colony?  very good idea it seems I tried using various "cloth"/ grain bag type inner covers stapled to dividers and didn't like result.  with this setup do you consider telescoping tops necessary or could a slightly larger (say 2" overhang) ply top, weighed down work?  is your (outer) top made of the luan ? or do you have bottoms on the boxes? can't see anywhere else it is used in your design.


what is it that makes one coroplast better than another? do you have a favorite? grin
(ie can't horizontal be turned 90 degrees to become "vertical coroplast"

thank you
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« Reply #14 on: December 08, 2008, 09:55:23 AM »

I have seen this thread pop up to the top of the list several times and I have wanted to jump in and post this link (but I was unable to find it), well finally, here it is: http://www.wiltshirebeekeepers.org.uk/Downloads/BeeLines%20April%202007.pdf
scroll down to page 7, you will see some pretty cool combined tbh mating nucs.  now these I would certainly call a mating manor!

Very interesting.  Looks a bit complicated with all those internal hoses and such.  Looks like something from outer space with all those cans and soda bottles on it.
I did learn something though - use of Carniolan bees which are well known for their ability for precise orientation.  So I guess they are only good for rearing Carniolans huh


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how do you like the ply inner covers as opposed to other options- how easy is it to inspect a "middle" colony?  very good idea it seems I tried using various "cloth"/ grain bag type inner covers stapled to dividers and didn't like result. 

I like them a lot,  They are rigid enough that they don't sag or warp. The middle ones easily pry up with the hive tool and all the propolis sticks to the wood and not the coroplast,  so once off, a quick scrap and they can go back on.  I tried coroplast covers, but they tend to warp and don't seal well with the outer cover removed,  so you get bees escaping from previous inspected units while your going through the adjacent units.   I used 3/4" ply scraps from building the boxes, thinner stuff would work equally as well.

Quote
with this setup do you consider telescoping tops necessary or could a slightly larger (say 2" overhang) ply top, weighed down work?

Telescoping cover are by no means necessary.  I've used sheets of coroplast with a overhang with to problem.
Quote
  is your (outer) top made of the luan ? or do you have bottoms on the boxes? can't see anywhere else it is used in your design.

Yes the top covers and bottoms are Luan.   

Quote
what is it that makes one coroplast better than another? do you have a favorite? grin

It all seems to be pretty much the same around here.  The FREE ones are my favorite Wink  Especially the ones that only have printing on one side Wink
Quote
(ie can't horizontal be turned 90 degrees to become "vertical coroplast"

Yes, but you must turn it BEFORE cutting it to size tongue  (unless you are cutting squares,  but that doesn't seem to happen with Langstroth hives)
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« Reply #15 on: December 17, 2008, 10:12:22 PM »

Rob

I just picked up 4 of those a couple months back.  One was slightly used and the rest pretty clean.  Almost the same exact design.  I took a hole saw to the lids on each section to place a pint feeder jar.

I'll take a picture sometime soon.
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« Reply #16 on: January 31, 2011, 02:07:05 PM »

how tall did you make them Robo?
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Robo
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« Reply #17 on: January 31, 2011, 02:36:05 PM »

how tall did you make them Robo?

10-1/8"
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« Reply #18 on: January 31, 2011, 06:34:22 PM »

did you use 3/4" for the bottom as well?
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Robo
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« Reply #19 on: February 01, 2011, 10:22:49 AM »

Complete plans can be found here -> http://robo.bushkillfarms.com/beekeeping/downloads/
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