Late last summer I purchased a 54" KTBH from someone. This hive was completly full of bees and comb. The previous owner didn't take care of business and let the comb form in a crescrent shape, with the outside ends of each comb on one bar and the middle attaching to the next bar. So whenever I pull one bar, it tears the comb apart. I was hoping this was only the honey bars, but yesterday I finally went in to fix things up. I took off 8 bars and finally got into the brood area. It was also bad, but not wanting to do more damage, I stopped there. I took one bar that had just a small amount of correct comb and placed it in hive, then put in a divider frame. I saved all the comb hoping to somehow straighten it out and reattach to the bars.
1. Should I continue going into the brood area, rip it all out and try to reattach that also? I sort of hate to do so much damage to a hive that is thriving.
2. What is the best way to straighten and attach old comb? Tear comb in half and try using rubber gum bands to hold in place?
3. When I do get the comb attached, do I put it all back in at one time, or put in a bar or two at a time?