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Author Topic: Dadant 12 or 13 Frame Deep Hive  (Read 6158 times)
rail
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« on: October 12, 2011, 10:27:07 PM »

What are the dimensions of the Dadant 12 or 13 frame deep brood chamber?
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Sirach
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« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2011, 01:49:33 AM »

A Dadant hive is 19 7/8" x 19 7/8" Outside if made of 3/4" lumber.  It's square.  It holds 11 frames if you do it Dadant's way, which is 1 1/2" spacing.  It holds 12 if you use standard width frames and it holds 13 if you shave them down to 1 1/4".
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Michael Bush
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rail
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« Reply #2 on: October 13, 2011, 07:32:44 PM »

11 5/8" hive body depth?

11 1/4" frame depth?
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Sirach
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« Reply #3 on: October 14, 2011, 01:00:29 AM »

Yes. 11 5/8" body, 11 1/4" frame.  I mistyped above, if you space them 1 1/2" you fit 11 frames in it.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #4 on: October 14, 2011, 02:51:40 PM »

Rail, are you going to build a Dadant hive?

Michael Bush, have you tried 1 1/2” spacing in a Dadant vs 1 3/8” vs 1 ¼” spacing?  Notice any differences in wintering success?  Dadant seemed to think 1.5” space was important.

According to page 22 of Dadant System of Beekeeping 1920:

“This (1.5” spacing) gives a larger amount of honey than in narrow combs; the bees congregate there in greater number and thus winter better.  They are more powerful in the spring and the cycle of year is reached with better success.”

I’ve been experimenting with narrow frames this summer and find they’re much easier for me (the bee keeper) to manipulate, but I haven’t wintered in them yet.
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rail
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« Reply #5 on: October 14, 2011, 04:02:17 PM »

Rail, are you going to build a Dadant hive?

BlueBee,

Yes, planning to build two Dadant hives and use 13 frames (1 1/4" spacing). I like the single brood chamber practice!

Michael,

Would there be any benefits to a deeper frame, 12" or greater?
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Sirach
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« Reply #6 on: October 14, 2011, 05:53:46 PM »

Rail, are you going to make the brood boxes out of solid wood?  Plywood?  Other?

What are you planning to use for frames and foundation?
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rail
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« Reply #7 on: October 14, 2011, 06:46:13 PM »

Rail, are you going to make the brood boxes out of solid wood?  Plywood?  Other?

What are you planning to use for frames and foundation?

BlueBee,

Solid red oak, 3/4" thick for the brood boxes. Cypress medium supers with standard Hoffman-Langstroth frames.

Brood frames - fabricating foundationless frames (having great success with foundationless deep Langs) with wooden dowels at the top and bottom of the frames for 1 1/4" spacing.

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Sirach
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« Reply #8 on: October 14, 2011, 07:01:16 PM »

Wow, red oak!  You’ve got some upscale bees down there Smiley  How are you planning to join the boards together to get a box that is 11 5/8” deep?  Biscuits?  Are you going to polyurethane for a finish or paint? 

So you’re going to with medium supers.  Are they going to be 19 7/8” x 19 7/8” boxes too?  Why mediums as opposed to shallow supers?  Just wondering from a weight perspective.  I like the idea of a stationary brood chamber for lighter beekeeping, but would sense some of that advantage would be lost when going with medium sized supers?  Yes?  No?

Are you wiring your deep and Dadant sized frames? 
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rail
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« Reply #9 on: October 14, 2011, 10:41:41 PM »

The local lumber seller has red oak boards up to 16" in width. Just received a keg of pine rosin from Mann Lake for the hive coating.

The medium supers will be 19 7/8" x 19 7/8", I already have medium frames. Also on page 42 of Dadant's book they recommend medium depth supers. I agree with you about the shallow suppers and should consider them.

I don't want to wire the frames, but that size probably needs the support of the wire.

I look forward to a single chamber brood nest and believe the Dadant deep has other advantages.

What are your thoughts about the Dadant hive?


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Sirach
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« Reply #10 on: October 14, 2011, 10:59:54 PM »

>have you tried 1 1/2” spacing in a Dadant vs 1 3/8” vs 1 ¼” spacing?

I have tried all of those spacings, but not all of them in a Dadant deep.  I did not like the 1 1/2" as they build very uneven comb and you are more likely to roll the bees because of the protruding honey comb, and it takes more bees to cover the brood.

http://www.bushfarms.com/beesfaqs.htm#framespacing
http://www.bushfarms.com/beesframewidth.htm

> Notice any differences in wintering success?

The 1 1/4" will build up faster in the spring.  I don't see any significant difference in survival.

>  Dadant seemed to think 1.5” space was important.

He thought it would prevent swarming.  I don't believe it does.

>According to page 22 of Dadant System of Beekeeping 1920:
“This (1.5” spacing) gives a larger amount of honey than in narrow combs;

Yes, the honey comb will be thicker, but the brood comb is not, so the surface is very uneven.

>the bees congregate there in greater number and thus winter better.

I don't agree.

> They are more powerful in the spring and the cycle of year is reached with better success.”

That was Dadant's opinion, yes.

>I’ve been experimenting with narrow frames this summer and find they’re much easier for me (the bee keeper) to manipulate

exactly.

> but I haven’t wintered in them yet.

"Frame.--As before mentioned, each stock hive has ten of these frames, each 13 inches long by 7 1/4 inches high, with a 5/8 inch projection either back or front. The width both of the bar and frame is 7/8 of an inch; this is less by 1/4 of an inch than the bar recommended by the older apiarians. Mr.Woodbury,--whose authority on the modern plans for keeping bees is of great weight,--finds the 7/8 of an inch bar an improvement, because with them the combs are closer together, and require fewer bees to cover the brood. Then too, in the same space that eight old fashioned bars occupied the narrower frames admit of an additional bar, so that, by using these, increased accommodation is afforded for breeding and storing of honey."-- Alfred Neighbour, The Apiary, or, Bees, Bee Hives, and Bee Culture...

>Would there be any benefits to a deeper frame, 12" or greater?

I tried deeps for 26 years.  Dadant deeps for three or four years.  Mediums for the last 10 years. (there is some overlap on these as I've only been beekeeping for 37 years).  Now all mine are mediums.  No, I didn't see any benefit.  I do see a benefit of Dadant deeps over deeps as they will build a taller brood nest (they tend to stay on one deep and hesitate to expand past it).  But with mediums they don't hesitate to expand the brood nest into other boxes.  They winter better in eight frames, in my observation, because the box fits the cluster; and they winter better in mediums because of better communication and transportation between the frames because the cluster usually spans more than one box so the cluster can easily expand and contract without having to risk getting stuck when the cluster contracts.

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Michael Bush
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« Reply #11 on: October 15, 2011, 01:49:43 AM »

What are your thoughts about the Dadant hive?

Switched 3 hives over to large combs this summer.  10,000 cells per frame, 10 frames per brood box.  33mm frame spacing.  Bees boomed, but we had a good year in general in Michigan so it’s too early to draw many conclusions.  Used Medium honey supers this year, will be switching to shallows next year.  (Photo of a frame in August)



I make my frames using Pierco plastic foundation.  They are about 1.5 langs in depth.  The plastic core gives good support to such large combs and my bees build on the Pierco before they will touch foundationless frames.  Pretty strange, I will admit, but bees will be bees sometimes.

I’ve read Dadant’s old book a couple of times.  I haven’t read Brother Adams book and views on large combs yet.  Hope to do that this winter to gather some more insights.  I would also like to read MB’s book this winter too.  
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rail
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« Reply #12 on: October 15, 2011, 04:05:12 AM »

BlueBee,

Wow!  Smiley

Have you read Frank Pellet's book, "A Living From Bees"?

What is the title of Brother Adams book?
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Sirach
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« Reply #13 on: October 16, 2011, 03:58:31 PM »

Brother Adams book is called “Beekeeping at Buckfast Abbey”

Nope, never heard of “A living from bees” until now.  I checked the review on Amazon and it sounds like he’s a proponent of the larger comb brood nest style too.  Interesting.  

I’ve tried many hive configurations now and most of them work, but I haven’t found one that I thought was perfect for me until this summer.  So far I really like my larger comb, single brood nest hives, but I need more time in them to uncover any unforeseen problems.  With bee keeping, there's always some unforeseen problem grin
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« Reply #14 on: October 19, 2011, 07:52:46 AM »

BlueBee,

I'm enjoying reading Frank Pellett's book about the Dadant advantages.

Have you read Moses Quinby's books? He advocates deep framed hives with success!
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« Reply #15 on: May 14, 2012, 01:08:46 PM »

What are your thoughts about the Dadant hive?

Switched 3 hives over to large combs this summer.  10,000 cells per frame, 10 frames per brood box.  33mm frame spacing.  Bees boomed, but we had a good year in general in Michigan so it’s too early to draw many conclusions.  Used Medium honey supers this year, will be switching to shallows next year.  (Photo of a frame in August)



I make my frames using Pierco plastic foundation.  They are about 1.5 langs in depth.  The plastic core gives good support to such large combs and my bees build on the Pierco before they will touch foundationless frames.  Pretty strange, I will admit, but bees will be bees sometimes.

I’ve read Dadant’s old book a couple of times.  I haven’t read Brother Adams book and views on large combs yet.  Hope to do that this winter to gather some more insights.  I would also like to read MB’s book this winter too.  


BlueBee,

How are these deep hives doing this spring?
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Sirach
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« Reply #16 on: May 14, 2012, 11:52:01 PM »

Rail my extra deep hives came into spring overflowing with bees.  By far my strongest spring hives.  In March there was as many bees in them as my deeps have in July.  They wintered very well in a single box (basically 1.5 deeps worth of space) with no candy boards or anything.  I had 10 frames in the boxes over winter. 

I decided to rework my extra deep boxes over winter and expanded them to hold 11 14.5” frames instead of 10.  That’s 110,000 cells in the area I would like to call the “brood nest”.  In March I moved the frames and bees over to the new 11 frame boxes and made sure they had 2 frames of foundation in an effort to prevent swarming.

The population of the hives kept exploding as each 10,000 cell frame of brood hatched out.  The hives got ahead of me and generated some massive swarms.  However they’re still leading in honey and bee population even after the swarms.  Still too early to predict how they will compare to deeps in making honey over the full summer.

I’m still analyzing how many frames to really use in these designs.  I’m at 11 now, but would 12 be better, or maybe go back to 10?  Then there is also the issue of dealing with the honey frames at the edges of the brood box.  They basically require crush and stain since they’re too big for an extractor.  Is that worth the effort?  Still analyzing. 

On the positive side, it is a joy inspecting a hive with big frames.  No more pulling apart 2, 3 or 4 boxes looking for the queen or queen cells.  You just have to pull the inner 9 frames and you almost always find the queen and any queen cells.  Makes inspecting a hive much easier IMO.   
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CVinc5
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« Reply #17 on: May 25, 2012, 11:54:43 AM »

I like the looks and idea of this over using a double deep brood chamber.....Where can I get the plans?
Probably too late for this year but I'd love to have four ready for next season.
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« Reply #18 on: May 25, 2012, 10:40:33 PM »

CV, one of the compromises in my jumbo frame experiments is the need for custom woodworking.  My frames are a full 14.5” deep and have beefier top bar than a normal frame.  Basically a deep and a medium worth of comb space per frame.  My version is deeper than a real Dadant jumbo frame. 

If you want to experiment with jumbo frames, you might be able to buy the smaller Dadant frames somewhere on the web.  That would be easier than making your own frames.  For various reasons I decided I wanted to experiment with frames that are about 1.5 langs in depth.  I then rounded off the size of my frames so each one would have 10,000 cells (piecro).  That makes it easier for me to estimate brood numbers per frame.  75% full = 7500 bees on that frame, etc.   

As noted in the various remarks in this thread, there are definitely some negatives with jumbo sized frames, but there are also some real positives.  Like most everything with bees; it’s a compromise.   

CV, if you have bees now and you want to experiment with jumbo frames, I would think now would be a good time to start transitioning bees from deep frames to the jumbo frames.  That process takes some time and if you really want to get next year running full speed on jumbo frames, you kind of have to start the transition now.

I need to try to get some more photos snapped the next time I make an inspection.   
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CVinc5
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« Reply #19 on: May 26, 2012, 12:37:57 AM »

The problem I would have doing this now is I lost 12 of my 16 hives last year due to the extreme heat we had here in Texas last year.
I have built the apiary back to the same size but the new colonies are only 6 weeks to 1 week old. (I didn't have the funds to purchase all
12 packages at one shot so I had to spread it out.) So my thinking is I would pick up 4 new packages or possibly a swarm or two next year and start them out in the larger hive. Between my father and an uncle, I have access to basically a full wood shop so making my own components wouldn't be an issue as long as I had some good idea of what to do..   i.e. plans, drawings, dimensions....
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