I will grab one of those clip cages too, I was wondering what the liklihood of crushing the queen might be and knowing my luck I would be about a 1 in 1 chance. ;)
In my experience my first question would be what is the likelihood of actually finding the Queen... i've done a few comb removals - some large, some small, and only once have i ever actually found the queen and that's because i stumbled across her walking around on a leaf! what will complicate the matter even more is if you're eyes aren't accustomed to spotting a queen. You might spend more time looking for her (running the risk of her dropping off, or you dropping the comb) than you otherwise need to...
My suggestion would be this:
- Cut the comb one leaf at a time - carefully!
- Carry it in it's original orientation
- Put the box that you will be putting the frames in to close to the location you will be cutting the comb
- when tying the comb in to the frames work over the box - if she falls off she will fall, hopefully, in to the box
- after you have tied all the comb in to the frames and gotten the majority of the bees in to the box set the box as close to the location of the comb as possible and then watch!
What you will be looking for is bees in the box sitting at the entrance or at a lid opening and pointing their abdomens out and fanning - you should, over time, see the bees start orienting to the box rather than where the comb was. I find giving the original comb location a good smoking gets any bees stuck there mobile - once you see that then you know your queen is in the box - if you see the bees start to orient to another location then the likelihood is that the queen is there. IN a few days check to make sure you have eggs - don't be hell bent on finding the queen though - leave that for later
just my 2c worth