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Author Topic: 8 Frames System or Illinois Med. Supers  (Read 1062 times)
House Bee
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Location: Pullman, Washington

"The Morning Breaks, The Shadows Flee.....

« on: July 07, 2009, 12:55:54 PM »

I've been giving some thought to moving to either the small 8 frames system of conventional brood box, super, etc.  or  just using  Illinois 6 5/8" supers entirely, for everything.  My intent is to get away from the heavier 10 frame standard brood boxes if possible.

Has anyone made this transition and what do you think of the move?  Did it work out for you?


He who would gather honey must bear the sting of the bees.
Super Bee
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Location: Edgefield, SC

« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2009, 03:43:25 PM »

I haven't made the move but...... if I were to start over I would do 8 frame mediums. It makes everything interchangeable. No trips to the yard with the wrong equipment and it makes brood manipulations easier.

Downside is if you want nucs.... hard to find medium nucs without special order!!!

John 3:16
Super Bee
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Location: Hanson, MA and Lebanon, ME

« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2009, 08:25:46 PM »

We run 10 frame mediums for all the hives, but woodchopper just purchased 15 8 frame mediums from a friend who is getting out of bees.  I don't know where he plans to use them, but he will, someday...

- Ann, A Gardening Beek -  ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ

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Michael Bush
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« Reply #3 on: July 07, 2009, 09:45:26 PM »

Michael Bush
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New Bee
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« Reply #4 on: July 07, 2009, 11:12:47 PM »

I use 8 frame Mediums for everything and really appreciate the weight factor and the convenience of having everything the same size.  The only down side is if you buy nucs they most always come in deeps and take some work to transition them to the mediums.  It would be nice if all the major suppliers included 8 frame hardware in their inventory but at least Brushy mtn and Miller take care of us weirdos.
Just my $.02 worth.

House Bee
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Location: Whitewater, Wisconsin

« Reply #5 on: July 08, 2009, 11:28:16 AM »

what is an "illinois 6 5/8" . . . how does it differ from a regular medium
House Bee
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« Reply #6 on: July 08, 2009, 01:51:44 PM »

I believe that is what most people refer to as a regular medium honey super...aka Dadent Medium. 

Brian D. Bray
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« Reply #7 on: July 08, 2009, 07:37:03 PM »

The sizes of supers used in beekeeping these days often are called different names in different areas and are generally as follows:
1. Dadant Deep -- is any box deeper than the 9 7/8 box, they are rarely used in the US but some areas of Europe use them.
2. Standard Deep -- is the common 9 7/8 deep box, at 9 7/8  it is called a deep regardless of frame count.
3. Western/medium -- is 7 7/8 deep and was once very popular west of the Rockies, hence its name.  It is still available through Mann Lake Ltd. It is usually called a Western.
4. Illinois/medium -- 6 7/8 deep is what is commonly a Medium.  Medium and Illinois can safely be said to be the same thing.
5. Shallow -- 5 5/8 deep, is usually used for cut comb or ease of lifting and 2 shallows can be extracted in the same space as 1 deep.
6. Comb -- Supers designed specifically for comb honey, such as Ross Rounds, are 4 15/16 deep and can be converted to a shallow by adding a 3/4 shim along the bottom.

If confused about super size just give the depth.  But 99% if the time the word Medium is referring to an Illinois sized super.

Life is a school.  What have you learned?   Brian      The greatest danger to our society is apathy, vote in every election!
Queen Bee
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Location: Weymouth, Massachusetts

« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2009, 09:10:52 PM »

I run all 8 frame mediums and have been very happy with it.
I love that I only have one size box and frames for all the hives.
I have been able to pull frames of brood from one hive and add it to another because of them being all one size.
As far as nucs I have been able to get medium sized nucs from a few different suppliers.
Its not all that hard to transition from deeps frames in a nuc to mediums either if you are only dealing with a 5 frame nuc and not switching over established hives.
Brushy Mountain, Betterbee and Rossmans all sell 8 frame equipment, I have had no problems getting all the equipment I need in 8 frame medium size.
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