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Author Topic: Where to buy top bar hives?  (Read 6266 times)
misfyredOhio
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« on: March 08, 2010, 10:20:50 PM »

I see lots of plans for building your own TBHs but I don't have those skills. Is there a company out there that sells them? Thanks.
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annette
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« Reply #1 on: March 08, 2010, 10:22:29 PM »

www.backyardhive.com

They are lovely but so expensive. Perhaps someone else sells them.

I am going to PM you.

Annette
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Lovett
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« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2010, 10:30:10 PM »

 customwoodkitsinternational dot com

they are much more affordable and have a great support forum.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #3 on: March 08, 2010, 10:33:22 PM »

http://www.goldstarhoneybees.com/
http://www.beethinking.com/
http://www.backyardhive.com/General/General/BackYardHive_Beekeeping_Shop/

Buy the bigger ones given a choice... you'll need the space.
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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 #4 on: March 08, 2010, 10:43:24 PM »

There is a lovely top bar observation hive on EBay right now.  Price looks reasonable.

I'm not associated with the seller in any way, shape or form.

SH
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The only thing we have to fear is fear itself - FDR, 1933
Pink Cow
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« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2010, 04:17:03 PM »

Hello,
I'm brand new to the site, but my timing is good because I've just been giving this situation some thought over the last couple of days after building my first hive. Given that my woodworking skills would generously be described as modest, and I'm entirely happy with the result of my labor I started to think that it might be possible to get hives to more people that want them but cannot do the work themselves. I came up with two ideas that might work if someone were to put a bit of effort into a search for a builder. One free, and one much less expensive than buying and shipping a complete hive.

The first would be to settle on one of the many plans available for free on the net, then approach organizations that might be interested in doing the work as a project, possibly as community service. You would provide the necessary supplies of course, so this would be free to the organization and they would benefit from the activity. Two that quickly came to mind were Boy Scouts and 4H. Both are always looking for interesting projects and ways to complete their community service requirements so if you pitched this as a benefit for the bees and the environment, you may get some takers. My family is involved in the 4H and I believe this is something many chapters would be very interested in.

The other would be to present the plans to someone who could build the hive for a reasonable fee for you. You might find someone advertising handyman or light carpentry services and ask for an estimate. Again, you could provide the supplies to save money so the person does not have to spend time acquiring them. I've used a retired gentleman for work around my house that charges what I consider bargain prices just so he can play golf a lot without his wife complaining about him spending money on the game.
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slaphead
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« Reply #6 on: March 19, 2010, 11:21:49 PM »

Hi Pink Cow you're bang on.

We had 5 full hives built for a not-for-profit I work with by a lad trying to become an eagle scout.  Lovely work and a true win-win situation.

SH
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The only thing we have to fear is fear itself - FDR, 1933
bigbearomaha
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« Reply #7 on: March 20, 2010, 08:47:47 AM »

BBE-Tech sells ktbh's and Warre's as well.

Big Bear
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trentfysty
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« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2010, 10:55:34 AM »

Contact Vicki Munroe at to bee or not to bee. She owns a little shop here in Denver and has excellent prices. She also sells many different styles of Top Bar to fit all budgets including some with a copper roof (looks really nice). Her hives are built out of beatle kill wood so it's ecologically responsible as well. I do have to say that I work with her and supply Warre Kits for her store just wanted to put that out there that I am associated with her.

I really like the backyardhive design but I have had a hard time getting them to contact me back...sometimes taking well over a week? Anyone else had these issues?
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bbhb
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« Reply #9 on: May 18, 2010, 02:25:46 PM »

Yes, I own a backyardhive.com hive and have the same trouble getting calls back. My personal feeling is they are more interested in spreading the "bee guardian" word globally than in their own backyard. They'll tell you they've set up hundreds of bee guardians in the metro area, which may be true, but it seems to me that once they've sold you a $300 hive, you're pretty much on your own. They do run bee club meetings, sporadically.

Vicki has also expressed frustration about the backyardhive people not calling her back, or keeping her stocked with their product. BTW, if you want something specific from To Bee or Not To Bee, be VERY specific when you call beforehand. I've driven to her shop and left emtpyhanded twice now, despite calling to check on in-stock availability first.

About your warres, do you supply Vicki w/complete kits only, or is it possible to buy just components, say for example, just a quilt box?
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trentfysty
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« Reply #10 on: May 19, 2010, 12:16:16 PM »

My big frustration with the backyardhive is that they are charging $300 plus for a hive that has maybe $50 of wood. I can build the same hive from cedar, which will last much longer, and could charge $200 and sill make a good profit.
At this point I am only building kits as the demand for the kits has been high enough that it has kept me pretty busy but I am more than happy to do specific parts if you are in need of something. I am not out to make a ton of money on this but to put the tools I have collected to good use and hopefully provide a quality product at a reasonable price.
Are you looking for a specific part? Let me know.
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bbhb
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« Reply #11 on: May 19, 2010, 05:23:57 PM »

The backyardhive carpenter is a perfectionist, and my hive is nicer than most of my furniture. The wood is beetle kill pine, so there is a sustainability story here, too. But if I were to ever buy another hive, it's certainly superfantastic to have local options. I'll PM you if I convert to warré.
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GaryMinckler
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« Reply #12 on: June 09, 2010, 02:11:35 PM »

I built one this past weekend in a couple hours from scrap wood.  If you're ever in the Adirondack Mountains of NY state I'll GIVE you one!


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N.AZ Beekeeper
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« Reply #13 on: February 02, 2013, 01:35:36 PM »

House Mountain Woodworking Studio & Natural Living Store in Sedona, AZ makes and sells two awesome top bar hives!  Both the 18 bar Pentagon hive and 22 bar 1/2 Hexagon hive are made from local Ponderosa Pine and they are painted with non-toxic Real Milk Paint.  These hives are great and really nicely handcrafted.  More info is available at housemountain.org 

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tomofreno
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« Reply #14 on: March 13, 2013, 11:24:38 AM »

I built one this past weekend in a couple hours from scrap wood.  If you're ever in the Adirondack Mountains of NY state I'll GIVE you one!


Uploaded with ImageShack.us
I also built two from scrap wood.  I went to a glass shop and busted up their old shipping crates for the wood. Two 30 bar hives for free!  That is why I went with tbhs.  The wood doesn't have to be dimensioned lumber like that used for Langs. Some boards are thicker than others, some wider, I just cut them on a table saw and pieced them together.  I agree it would be a good project for a group like 4H or boy/girl scouts, including having them scrounge the crate wood.
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AliciaH
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« Reply #15 on: March 13, 2013, 01:01:04 PM »

Beeline Apiaries & Woodenware.  Their east coast facility just moved to Mendon, MI.  You can get the TBH assembled or unassembled.
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