>I am wondering how you guys go about getting down to the bottom deep.
Who goes down to the bottom box in the middle of the flow? I don't want to lift all those full supers!
>I went out for an inspection this past Saturday - and when I was finished inspecting the top deep - which was mostly honey - with some brood but not much, I went to try and remove the whole (top)deep to expose the bottom deep - I nearly broke my back - this thing was so heavy I could hardly lift it.
90 pounds. That's why I cut ALL my deeps down to mediums. A full ten frame medium only weighs 60 pounds. No one should be lifting 90 pounds. And to make it worse you need to set it down GENTLY so you don't squish bees. You can't even lift it let ALONE set it down gently. My hives are ALL mediums. NO deeps.http://www.bushfarms.com/images/TypicalHiveMyHive.JPG
In the picture, on the left is a "typical" hive as recommended in the books. From bottom to top it is: a bottom board, two deep boxes for the brood, a queen excluder, two shallow supers an inner cover and a telescopic cover. This is NOT what I typically run. A ten frame deep full of honey weighs 90 pounds. A medium full of honey weights 60 pounds. An eight frame medium full of honey weighs 48 pounds. The one on the right is one of my typical vertical hives. It's a slatted rack with some #8 hardware cloth for a bottom, four medium boxes for brood and honey (no excluder) and a migratory top with a shim on both sides to make a top entrance. Using all the same size frames greatly simplifies management as any honey can be used for winter feed and any brood found in the supers can be moved back down since the frames are all interchangeable. Leaving out the excluder helps prevent a honey bound brood nest and doesn't restrict the bees working the supers. It also saves having to have a bottom entrance because the drones can get out the top (no excluder to stop them).
>When I did get it removed the bees were in a pretty bad mood - and they were in such great numbers flying and hitting my veil - that I just put it back on top (barely making it) and didn't inspect the brood box. Not to mention the sweat dripping down and my clothes soaked you could wring them out.
Try a Golden Products bee suit. :) It's ventilated all over. :)
>Can Any of you give me some help on making this inspection easier?
Wait until the honey flow is over. Change over to all mediums. Better yet all EIGHT FRAME mediums (48 pounds full of honey).http://www.bushfarms.com/images/EightTenEightHives.jpghttp://www.bushfarms.com/images/TenFrameToEight.JPG
Cut down all your deeps. Boxes and frames.http://www.bushfarms.com/images/DeepCutToMedium2.JPG
Better yet build a long hive:http://www.bushfarms.com/images/LongHive1.JPGhttp://www.bushfarms.com/images/LongHiveFront.JPG
And stop lifting boxes altogether.
>Please!.... also do any of you know of a video or DVD that shows hive inspections?
I don't think they will show much different than you tried to do. But yes, you can buy some nice videos on managing bees from www.beeworks.com