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Author Topic: Cut the sides for my first hives today...  (Read 1113 times)
KeyBeeper
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Gender: Male
Posts: 25


Location: Paulding County - GA 20 Miles NW of Atlanta


« on: November 23, 2009, 08:16:29 PM »

They will be loosely based on a Warre design, but I've made some changes for reasons too complicated to go into here.  My internal dimensions will be 9.5 inches square, the boxes will be 11 3/8 tall with a 5/8 rebate (making the comb building area 10.75 inches tall) to hold top bars of the same depth.  The sides will be 1.25 inches thick.  If I get cocky with my woodworking skills I'll attempt windows as well.

This is a big deal for me as it is my first substantial work on the table saw.  Frankly that beast scares me.  I'm not the handiest of handy men but I am a careful and determined and once I had read and followed every possible safety precaution I fired it up and sliced the wood.  Still have 10 fingers and no wood was launched into my body at half light speed.

Right now the only problem I see with this experimental design (I'm sure more will crop up) is the total height of the hive.  4 boxes, without a roof or a raised base will be 45.5 inches tall.  Add a roof and a reasonable base and I'm looking at something potentially 6 to 6.5 feet tall.  

I welcome considerate and respectful advice.  I can think of one guy I don't want to hear from already!  Wink

« Last Edit: November 23, 2009, 08:27:19 PM by KeyBeeper » Logged

Homicidal Mimes: The silent killers
SawBee
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Location: De Soto, KS


« Reply #1 on: December 02, 2009, 11:17:41 PM »

I also built my own hives last spring.  I made horizontal top bar hives with a window.  These were my first hives, and I really liked being able to peek at the bees without disturbing them.  I'm going to build some more hive for next spring, but probably will keep them simpler and not put windows in them.

It sounds like you are already doing the most important step in following all safety precautions.  I made the mistake of leaving the blade guard and splitter off and the result was a board thrown back and a broken finger.  It sure took a lot longer for the surgery and therapy to heal the finger than it would have to just take the time to replace the guard. 

I didn't make the tops of the hive and the covers as tight fitting as I should have.  In the spring a few small gaps didn't seem important.  But now it's December and the gaps seem a lot bigger.

I don't have the experience to comment on the height concerns.  I guess thats why you are trying an experimental design.  You'll find out if the design works or needs modification.  You can build the next batck even better.

Best of luck with your hive building and bees.  I know you will enjoy being able to say "I built them myself"
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KeyBeeper
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Gender: Male
Posts: 25


Location: Paulding County - GA 20 Miles NW of Atlanta


« Reply #2 on: December 03, 2009, 08:34:55 PM »

If you used newly purchased wood it's quite possible that you got some shrinkage.  That could be the problem with the gaps being larger than you remember.   I've been thinking about how to cut the windows safely and I think I've settled on a plan.  Like you, I really want to check on the bee's, but the last thing I want to do is open up the hive letting out the heat and hive scent.  I'm looking forward to my first batch of bee's
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Homicidal Mimes: The silent killers
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