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Author Topic: building the comb the wrong way  (Read 2783 times)
Dracono
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« on: April 12, 2010, 01:00:01 AM »

my new swarm is building the comb the wrong way.
How do I get them to build the way of the bar instead of across all of the bars at one time?
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Dracono
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« Reply #1 on: April 12, 2010, 05:34:51 AM »

   Sounds like that swarm needs to go to remedial comb making 101!

...DOUG
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bigbearomaha
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« Reply #2 on: April 12, 2010, 07:59:44 AM »

just curious, do the bars have guides?  if not, maybe try inserting top bars with comb guides on them.

I have always liked the phrase that it seems the bees never read the same books we do.  they just do what they want to do.

Big Bear
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Dracono
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« Reply #3 on: April 12, 2010, 10:18:25 AM »

Yes they are guided and they're still going the wrong way. are these girls just trying to mess with me because there my first swarm I caught and stayed? I don't want to have to break the combs any more then I already had. but if I have too how would I reach them back to the top bars? and its freshly made comb. barley a week old.
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Dracono
irerob
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« Reply #4 on: April 12, 2010, 02:56:13 PM »

   There are others her with more experience, but last year I put a small cut out in a top bar, I took the comb that I saved and attached it with yarn( it was handy)  by punching 2 holes in the comb and tying it around the top bars. the bees reattached it and got rid of about half the yarn when they were ready.
  As far as them building the wrong way I have always been told to nip this in the bud asap.
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David LaFerney
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« Reply #5 on: April 12, 2010, 05:36:40 PM »

nip this in the bud asap.

I second that. 
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« Reply #6 on: April 12, 2010, 06:13:35 PM »

  I'm going to be building a "DavesBees" TBH with that corner molding under the top bar. That kind of guide might help them build alittle straighter so they won't try and do what they are doing in your TBH. What kind of guiding did you use?

...DOUG
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luvin honey
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« Reply #7 on: April 12, 2010, 10:33:08 PM »

What a pain! I agree about correcting it ASAP. Wherever I didn't correct, I regretted it.  rolleyes

I used bars with half-width paint stir sticks glued into the groove the length of the bar.
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Yappy
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« Reply #8 on: April 12, 2010, 11:19:04 PM »

I read a paper by a Dr. forgot his name, huh maybe an old-timer here knows? Any way which way did they build? North-South by the compass was his theory. Something about magnetic lines.

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Dracono
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« Reply #9 on: April 13, 2010, 12:45:13 AM »

I used cotten string and melted beeswax over them while I clamped them after stretching it out first.
well I just may need to get some help fast because I'm not sure what to do as for help. you all say to nip it in the but... BUT HOW? lol
the yarn is a good idea I just wander if there is any thing else.. one guy said put them into frame from an langstroth hive, which medium frames fir my top bar haves just perfectly.
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Dracono
Michael Bush
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« Reply #10 on: April 13, 2010, 01:04:08 AM »

Building a frame that you can tie a comb in (or more than one frame) is the best solution.  You get one straight comb and the rest tend to follow.  Usually they follow a guide... sometimes they don't.  Usually they build on foundation in a typical hive.  Somtimes they don't... about the same rate of failure in my experience...
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Michael Bush
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RayMarler
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« Reply #11 on: April 13, 2010, 03:09:05 AM »

Is it possible, from where the hive is, to turn it so the bars are in the direction the bees are trying to draw the comb?
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luvin honey
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« Reply #12 on: April 13, 2010, 01:01:28 PM »

Is it possible, from where the hive is, to turn it so the bars are in the direction the bees are trying to draw the comb?
I have not seen this to be the case. My hives are not in an exact EW or NS line.

As for HOW, cut off the bad stuff and either tie it on or hope for them to build on the line. Once they get ANY of it right, use those as "guides" by placing future empty bars right next to them.

For some of my mess-ups, they only veered slightly and it was just a matter of smashing the comb at the top to force it onto the guide and thereby gently push the rest of the comb into position. Do you know what I mean?

Once the comb gets older and stronger, you have more options. This winter, I took combs from my dead hives that had fallen off the bars and literally sewed them onto new bars. Fresh wax, though, is so, so soft.

It takes a while and it's a pain, but eventually you will get your hives into shape Smiley
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The pedigree of honey
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Gabect
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« Reply #13 on: April 18, 2010, 03:51:39 PM »

i check my week old hives today and found a similar situation. not sure if its going "the worng way" or not, but the comb seems to be clustered in a mass. would the same protocol that you guys have been describing work? I've heard of people using hair clips to hold the comb until the bees connect it. the yard seems like it would be more flexible though.
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Lunawriter
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« Reply #14 on: June 15, 2010, 12:49:10 PM »

Oh boy that must be frustrating!  I haven't been able to check my hive yet, and my fingers are crossed I have extra smart bees that love following guides--mine are the same type as yours. 

Keep us posted!
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BBees
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« Reply #15 on: July 09, 2010, 10:01:03 PM »

Had the same problem a while ago. I had two TBH's I hived with swarms. One TBH made perfect comb. In the other one along side it, the bees kept cross-combing no matter what I did. Out of sheer desperation, made one last attempt at cutting out the cross-comb and I turned the entire hive 90 degrees (long side turned from north-south to east west.) Problem solved. Have made perfect straight comb on the top bars ever since...go figure!
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #16 on: July 10, 2010, 02:29:23 AM »

>I used cotten string and melted beeswax over them

I would not consider that a guide at all.  At most it is a mild suggestion... I use a triangle of wood 3/4" by 3/4" by 1" (the corner cut off of a one by) or a chamfer molding of similar size.
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Michael Bush
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bigbearomaha
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« Reply #17 on: July 10, 2010, 07:13:16 AM »

 I have one tbh that seems to be having the same problem.

made efforts to fix it twice, both times afterward, they refuse to follow the fix.

Going for strike three here and if they don't take to that, well, I'll give them a shot in a different hive

I use top bars with a 1 inch wide wood strip ( like a paint stick) attached to the bottom now, the first bars in this particular hive had the wax string, which they ignored completely.

to be honest,  I think they were given too much room to start with in this hive, normally, I find that starting them with only like 5 or maybe 7 top bars keeps them close enough, but there were troubles a helper was having when starting this one.  Hey, it happens.  Chalk it up to a learning experience, is what I say.

Big Bear
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