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Author Topic: Long Hives  (Read 2568 times)
BoBn
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« on: February 25, 2010, 09:03:10 PM »

I have an old 1923 edition of ABC and XYZ . .
It is no longer in copyright, and is an interesting read.
It seem that the horizontal vs. vertical bee hive issue goes back more than 100 years.
(since in 1923 they are talking about "50 years ago")


Quote from: ABC and XYZ of BEE CULTURE
Excerpt from "The ABC and XYZ of BEE CULTURE"
By A.I and E.R. Root
1923
page 449-51


LONG-IDEA HIVES.
Some 50 years ago the long-idea hives -- that is, 30 and 35 frame hives all in one brood-nest--were advocated by various bee-keepers in the United States.  Many at the time were very enthusiastic in praise of this hive; but when comb foundation and one-pound section honey-box came to the front these hives were dropped by nearly every one because they were not adapted to the production of comb honey.  In latter years, especially during and following the period of the Great War, extracted honey was produced almost exclusively.  During this time, attention was once again directed to the Dadant-Quinby hive, the ten-frame Jumbo, practically the same thing, and the twelve and thirteen frame hives.  The last two mentioned, it was argued, would not have to be tiered so high, because three thirteen-frame hives for example, would be the approximate equivalent of five eight-frame hives that would be so top-heavy and tall that they would require rails or props to keep them from being blown over.  The ten-frame Jumbo requires two sizes of frames--one for the brood-nest and one for the extracting-supers.

While quite a number were favoring the larger hives of the styles mentioned, there were a few going back to the old long-idea hive containing all the way from 25 to 35 frames.  The dimensions of these hives would be more like that of a coffin or of a trunk.  The advocates of these hives, particularly O. O. Poppleton of Florida, who has always used them, claim that they are large enough so that no tiering up is required--no lifting on or off of upper stories, no manipulation of brood-combs from the lower to the upper story to hold back swarming--in short, nothing heavier to lift than a single brood-frame.  They also claim almost entire immunity from swarming.

The usual practice with such a long hive is to have the entrance on the side, the long way and place the brood-nest in the center of the hive.  This leaves room for ten or twelve frames capacity for more brood on either side.  Mr. Poppleton argued that a queen would move sidewise from one brood-frame to another more readily than from one brood-frame in a lower hive-body to a brood-frame in the hive above, and he was undoubtedly right.  The argument was briefly this:  That the average Langstroth frame will have a circle of brood running within about two inches of the top-bar.  The general reason for this is because the comb will stretch near the top, making neither worker nor drone comb.  The queen avoids this, and the bees fill it with honey.  In a hive of two stories the queen is apparently slow about getting over this two inches of honey, 7/8 inch of a top-bar, 3/8 inch of a bee-space, 1/4 inch of a bottom-bar and another bee-space before she reaches the comb proper in the upper hive.  In the long-idea hive it is claimed that the queen can move from comb to comb on a horizontal line, because the brood surfaces are within 3/8 inch apart, the space between being filled with bees.  When the queen expands the brood-chamber in the natural way she moves from comb to comb.  If the worker-cells are not stretched, and there are not obstructions, she will move vertically as well as horizontally;  but in the modern tiered-up hive she may not move up-ward unless the brood is carried upstairs by the apiarist himself.  It is for this reason that the old long-idea hive has been revived.

Another advantage claimed for the long single-story hive is that it is adapted to the use of old men, and women, young and old, or anyone else who, for physical reasons, can not lift the weight of a filled super of 40 or 50 pounds, but who can handle individual units of one comb at a time.  Finally, it is argued that during winter or cool weather the brood-nests can be confined down to about twelve of fifteen frames, and the space on either end filled with packing material.  If the cover of the long-idea hive is about three or four inches deep,  and telescoping, additional packing can be put on top.  The hive is, therefore, adapted for wintering as well as for summering bees.

This hive is especially adapted to the use of beginners who either will not learn how to handle swarms in standard hives or have not the time to do so.  A colony in such a large brood-chamber that can expand laterally will require less attention than any other hive here shown.  However, in localities where brood diseases are prevalent, neither this hive nor any other should be left to itself without frequent examination during the breeding season.

It should be understood, also, that the same objections that apply to especially large brood-chambers apply to this one.  As a general rule, the ordinary beekeeper would do well to have everything standard.  The Langstroth ten-frame hives described in these pages are more standard than any other hive in the United States if not in the whole world.  None of these big hives are adapted to the production of comb honey in sections, and none of the advocates make any claims for them along this line.  There are times when comb honey brings such good prices that it is advantageous to change over from the production of extracted honey to honey in sections, and this is entirely practicable with the standard hives.

Last, but not least, if one wishes to sell his apiary at any time he can get the best price for it, if it is in standard Langstroth hives.

The author does not advocate the general adoption of any of these special hives in a large way.  If the reader is interested, let him experiment with half a dozen or a dozen hives; and if tests of the few are satisfactory he can use more.  It is usually a safe policy for the average reader of this work, especially if he is somewhat a beginner, to follow in the beaten paths, or, more exactly, use standard ten-frame Langstroth hives and equipment.  As a rule, bees will sell at a higher price in these hives than when they are in something that is odd-sized or irregular.  Moreover, the average dealer or beehive manufacturer always has standard equipment in stock.  While the regular Langstroth may require extra manipulation and extra lifting (if they be compared to with the long-idea hive), it would be wise to use these hives until the general public has proved that what some call "freaks" are better than the standards.


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"Millions of innocent men, women, and children, since the introduction of Christianity, have been burnt, tortured, fined, and imprisoned; yet we have not advanced one inch toward uniformity. What has been the effect of coercion? To make one-half the world fools and the other half hypocrites."
--Thomas Jefferson
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« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2010, 10:53:11 AM »

I had no idea their history was so long in the US.  Just goes to show good ideas never die  Smiley

Thank you for posting this.

SH
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Finski
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« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2010, 10:54:51 AM »

.
When i started 47 y ago beekeeping, my first hives were long hives. Half  of hives in Finland were such and I have not seen them any more. The colony size was in those days  1/3 compared to nowadays.

Even migrative beekeeping was made with those hives.

.
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.
Language barrier NOT included
Buzzen
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« Reply #3 on: May 03, 2010, 08:55:21 PM »

Interesting read.....thanks BoBn.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #4 on: May 03, 2010, 11:09:44 PM »

According to Eva Crane the majority of the hives in all climates in the world are now and always have been horizontal hives.  Not only are they not a new idea, they are now and always have been the "norm" throughout most of the world.
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Michael Bush
My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm
My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
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"Everything works if you let it."--Rick Nielsen
slaphead
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« Reply #5 on: May 06, 2010, 10:05:57 PM »

I finally bit the bullet and started a TBH this year.  It had a rocky start, the package installed in it 2 1/2 weeks ago bolted after a week, apparently when the comb they had built fell off the top bar.  Installed a second package and they are building comb like crazy, had to expand the nest by 3 bars after a week.  Beautiful white, heart shape combs.  I hadn't appreciated how awesome it is to look down a growing nest in a TBH.  Wish now I'd trusted my carpentry and built this as an observation hive.  Still, can't complain, the girls seem happy and the colony is expanding at an amazing (for me) speed.  Can see why some of us become addicted to the TBH.

SH
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FRAMEshift
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« Reply #6 on: June 22, 2010, 02:21:24 PM »

According to Eva Crane the majority of the hives in all climates in the world are now and always have been horizontal hives.  Not only are they not a new idea, they are now and always have been the "norm" throughout most of the world.

MB,  On your website you say that there are some different requirements for managing a horizontal hive.  What are the most important differences compared to a Langstroth?

Edit:  nevermind, I found it.   grin
Question: What is different about the management of a top bar hive or long hive?

Answer:

    * The need for frequent harvesting to keep space in the honey area open.
    * The need for empty bars in the brood nest during prime "reproductive" swarm season to expand the brood nest more and prevent swarming.
    * The need to have the cluster at one end of the hive at the beginning of winter (at least in Northern climates) so they don't work their way to one end and subsequently starve while leaving stores at the opposite end because of indecision. This is easily done by simply moving the bars containing the cluster to one end and putting the bars they replaced at the other.
    * The need to handle combs more carefully. You need to be aware of the angle of the comb with the earth. Anytime you get flatways with a comb that is very heavy it's likely to break. Keep the combs "hanging" in tune with gravity. You can flip them over but you have to rotate them with the flat of the comb vertical and not horizontal. You also need to check for attachments to walls, floor and other combs before you pull a comb out. Cut these attachments first if they are there.



 Last weekend I built a four foot horizontal hive compatible with standard deep frames.  It's at my daughter's house.  She did a split from her Langstroth into the horizontal hive.  She moved the queen and 5 frames (3 of brood, two of pollen/honey) into the horizontal.  We included 5 more foundationless frames.  We will be gradually moving more pollen and honey from the Langstroth since it has all the foragers now.  Any suggestions about how to arrange the honey and pollen around the brood nest?  
« Last Edit: June 22, 2010, 06:16:26 PM by FRAMEshift » Logged

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