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Author Topic: New Hive Technology  (Read 4048 times)
Tucker1
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« on: September 22, 2009, 12:23:12 PM »

I was wondering if there is any new technology being introduced into fundamental bee hive construction or design?  I'm aware of Styrofoam hives and some rather expensive looking plastic hives found in Europe. On the surface, it appears that Nuc's are taking on new construction techniques and materials......but not the basic hive.

Regards,
Tucker1 
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #1 on: September 22, 2009, 09:09:41 PM »

Bees only need a hollow space.  How do you make that high tech?
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #2 on: September 22, 2009, 10:50:35 PM »

MB quote: "How do you make that high tech?"
Simple! Find someone with a modern education, no common sense, and 5 minutes of idle brain time and they will complicate a marble.
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« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2009, 01:26:06 AM »

I was wondering if there is any new technology being introduced into fundamental bee hive construction or design?  I'm aware of Styrofoam hives and some rather expensive looking plastic hives found in Europe. On the surface, it appears that Nuc's are taking on new construction techniques and materials......but not the basic hive.

Regards,
Tucker1 


Hey Tucker

I have looked around, thought about ways to improve and it seems impossible to improve the standard equipment we use in USA.  I have looked at other designs and for a brief moment thought, hey this is cool, but then after you think about it for a minute they all have more parts or something.  The National be hive box for example when I first saw the design I though, hey this seems easier to build but soon came to my senses.  What is more simple then four pieces.  You could make a box with a hundred pieces to accomplish the same thing.  I still would like to try some different styles just to see and use them myself.

Here is a link you might find interesting.

http://www.dave-cushman.net/bee/britparts.html

All this said, there probably is a better way or design for some aspects, but whatever they are, if there are, it has been a long time for someone to miss them.  Anything that would make working a hive easier (say having a hive like a chest of drawers) would only end up making it all more complicated to build maintain and cost more.  Who knows though, maybe someday someone will create something that changes everything.
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deknow
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« Reply #4 on: September 23, 2009, 06:02:06 AM »

Bees only need a hollow space.  How do you make that high tech?


i tried to make a hive out of a klein bottle, but the bees inside had trouble getting out, and the bees outside had trouble getting in Smiley

i had a similar problem with the mobius strip frame, i couldn't figure out which side to extract first!

deknow
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« Reply #5 on: September 23, 2009, 08:06:17 AM »

There's a few things here and there, like you mentioned: styrofoam hives, all plastic frames, all plastic drawn frame, all plastic drawn frames small cell, screened bottom boards, vented covers, special smokers, shb traps,  and all that.  There are some things I'm sure in the aspect of  queen rearing and package raising that makes it easier for the industry, (like the nucs you mentioned), but not a lot of that makes it over to the hobby small scale side.

Nothing really takes off too much because it is hard to beat the versatility and price of plain old wood and wax.  And there usually isn't high enough volumes to bring the prices down.
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Tucker1
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« Reply #6 on: September 23, 2009, 03:02:45 PM »

Thanks for the replies. It's very interesting to see how people have modified their hives or provided special functions. Using night lights to help keep the hive a bit warmer, using insulation between the top and inner covers, making condensation diverters, using different winter ventilation schemes, etc. I find a lot of the material shared on this section of the forum helpful. The ideas shared are appreciated.

Regards,
Tucker1
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« Reply #7 on: September 23, 2009, 04:03:06 PM »

Tucker, I have just taken delivery of the latest hive design in the UK, the Omlet BeeHaus (omlet.co.uk.)

It is a Plastic vac formed long deep hive. No bees in it as yet as it is the Autumn/Fall here, but will be running it alongside my conventional colonies next spring. It uses 14x12 frames.

regards

Stephen
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« Reply #8 on: September 23, 2009, 04:17:18 PM »

an image of the beehaus. more can be seen at the omletwebsite

img97.imageshack.us/img97/8020/psbeehausingardenlargep.th.gif
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Tucker1
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« Reply #9 on: September 23, 2009, 06:33:06 PM »

Somerford: Thanks for sending the link.  It's a neat looking hive/bee keeping system. It seems to have some really nice features. I'm curious to learn about your experiences with it.  You'll have to post some pictures of it, once it's up and full of bees.  The producer does a nice job of showing you all of the fundamental details of design.  It has to be easy on the back. Thanks again for providing the link.

Regards,
Tucker1
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David LaFerney
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« Reply #10 on: September 23, 2009, 06:59:03 PM »

Bees only need a hollow space.  How do you make that high tech?


I don't know - I keep thinking about one of those giant igloo coolers fitted with top bars.  That would be pretty high tech for a nest cavity.

It would make a great stealth hive if you lived in a community that didn't like bees.  Just set it on a little picnic table...
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« Reply #11 on: September 23, 2009, 07:31:03 PM »

I don't know - I keep thinking about one of those giant igloo coolers fitted with top bars.  That would be pretty high tech for a nest cavity.


Like this


For the price though,  I prefer the Betterbee polystyrene nucs
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #12 on: September 23, 2009, 08:17:15 PM »

>i tried to make a hive out of a klein bottle, but the bees inside had trouble getting out, and the bees outside had trouble getting in

But how could you tell the ones inside from the ones outside?
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Michael Bush
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David LaFerney
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« Reply #13 on: September 23, 2009, 10:31:32 PM »


For the price though,  I prefer the Betterbee polystyrene nucs

Maybe, but do they have those handy carrying handles?  Seriously, I wonder how well that worked?
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« Reply #14 on: September 24, 2009, 08:07:56 AM »

Seriously, I wonder how well that worked?

I'm sure it worked OK.   But, keep in mind, the cheap or "affordable" coolers I've looked at all seem to just use an air space between the inner and outer plastic shells,  and not insulation material.   So although an air space does provide some insulation value,  it is probably not as good as one would think.
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« Reply #15 on: September 26, 2009, 12:26:34 PM »

You have to admit the cooler is a quick and easy starter. It looks like it's bigest limitation is it would not provide much room to grow after it is filled. You would almost have to create a frame to be able to stack and it would be hard to make water tight and mess up bee space. The insulation may be able to be overcome by drilling holes and using the expanding foam. The window frame formula. This would start to add up quickly in cost.
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David LaFerney
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« Reply #16 on: September 26, 2009, 02:32:31 PM »

You have to admit the cooler is a quick and easy starter. It looks like it's bigest limitation is it would not provide much room to grow after it is filled. You would almost have to create a frame to be able to stack and it would be hard to make water tight and mess up bee space. The insulation may be able to be overcome by drilling holes and using the expanding foam. The window frame formula. This would start to add up quickly in cost.

Yeah, doing all that would kind of defeat the intent.  But, every once in a while you run across one of the really huge ones - around 50 quart I think - for cheap.  We have one (igloo brand) that I measured just now that is (inside) 34"l x 14 1/2"w x 11"d (almost exactly the volume of 2 deeps) and already has a 3/8" ledge along the sides that are perfect for bar rests - $49 new price.  The way the lid is it wouldn't actually keep out rain though without an additional top of some kind.  Almost perfect for a top bar hive as is. 

Of course it sounds like something that would end up on one of those lists of redneck innovations.

P.S. I just looked at Betterbee, and I could get a double deep styrofoam beemax  hive setup for about $72 with shipping.  So I guess if you want to try insulated hives the re-purposed igloo cooler isn't really a very good deal - unless you dumpster dive it.
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« Reply #17 on: September 26, 2009, 08:50:37 PM »


For the price though,  I prefer the Betterbee polystyrene nucs

I believe the betterbee one you mentioned is the one I saw somewhere; it looked like a white pvc injection molded box for standard langstroth dimensions.
 If I had some mad money kicking around I'd probably grab a couple of those suitcase style nucs - can't remember the brand name of those either.
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