Need Bees Removed?
International
Beekeeping Forums
December 21, 2014, 11:03:23 AM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length
News: 24/7 Ventrilo Voice chat -click for instructions and free software here
 
   Home   Help Search Calendar bee removal Login Register Chat  

Pages: [1]   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Plastic TOP feeder for a top-bar hive  (Read 1575 times)
Hoosier
New Bee
*
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 34

Location: Johnson County, Indiana


« on: February 23, 2012, 02:59:30 PM »

TOP BAR HIVE PLASTIC TOP FEEDER
I recently finished building five tbh, one for my son and four for me. I will be starting with two packages of bees in April.
I bought five of the following plastic top feeders from Brushy Mountain http://www.brushymountainbeefarm.com/Plastic-10-Frame-Hive-Top-Feeder/productinfo/423/ that I intend to jury-rig with a 2x4 frame with a cover on the outside top. To provide for the bees' entrance, there will be a separate three-inch-wide top bar w/follower board that has a half-inch wide x 10-inch ong hole in the extra 1 1/2-inch side of the follower board. Of course the bees will only use one of the two entrances on the feeder. I will be able to feed two gallons of sugar water at a time using this. I haven't checked it out yet, but I might be able to change one of the ends so that it can be used as an access for candy, fondue, or plain sugar.
*************************************************************************************************************************

UPS delivered the five top feeders about an hour ago. This is going to be MUCH easier than what I thought it would be. The measurements are almost perfect for my tbh.
What I will consider the LENGTH is 19 3/4 inches, but of course that would be the WIDTH if it were sitting on a regular hive. That 19 3/4 inches include a 1" edge on each end. Inside those two edges is a length of 17 3/4 inches with two white, plastic covers over the "stairs" that the bees walk down to access the honey in the 14 1/8" X 17 3/4" well for sugar water. The well is 2" high.
What I will consider the WIDTH 16 1/4" including the two 3/4" edges, but of course that would be the LENGTH on a regular hive. Inside the two 3/4" edges is the 14 1/8 width of the well. I could not have asked for a much better size for my width; it will fit my tbh almost perfectly, and I can make the frame for top with 3/4" X 3" wood to hold up the cover instead of 2" X 4" wood as I said in the post above.
One last thing about the post above where I said, "I haven't checked it out yet, but I might be able to change one of the ends so that it can be used as an access for candy, fondue, or plain sugar"; that will be no problem whatsoever; all I'll have to do is lift off one of the white-plastic-end covers so that the bees can just walk down the steps to get to the candy, fondue, or plain sugar.
As you've probably surmised... I'm a happy camper right now.
BTW Those white-plastic ends are only the top and front to cover the wide tunnel that the bees come up to be able to go down the stairs to the top level of the sugar water behind and in front of the white plastic piece.

ETA Rather than making the 3" wide follow board as described above, I'm just going to use my regular follow board(s) and a 1 1/2" top bar in which I'll cut the 1/2" X 10" hole to put under the feeder's tunnel to the sugar water/white-plastic end.

Logged
BlueBee
Galactic Bee
******
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 4498

Location: Mid Michigan


« Reply #1 on: February 23, 2012, 07:05:24 PM »

I’ve used about 5 of those feeders on some nucs (the smaller nuc version of your feeder).  I liked them, but did eventually find some complaints.  My number one complaint was the opaqueness of the plastic bee covers.  They make it hard to see how many bees are feeding (or not feeding) and how many might be dead.  I didn’t have many bees drown, but when they do, popping off those plastic covers was a bit of a challenge.  They’re also a little wobbly if you ever have to lift them off the hive when they’re full of syrup.  Something to avoid! 

As for feeding dry sugar, that might work.  I tried something similar with mixed results.  When I opened an end for the bees to access the feeder, the bees poured in but didn’t necessarily seem bright enough to figure out how to get out.

I like these feeders, but I always find something to complain about no matter what  Smiley
Logged
Michael Bush
Universal Bee
*******
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 13967


Location: Nehawka, NE


WWW
« Reply #2 on: February 24, 2012, 12:09:12 AM »

I hadn't really though of it, but I suppose if one built their top bar hive 16 1/4" wide (or 19" wide) one could use a hive top feeder for a Langstroth on top and then make just enough gap somewhere to let the bees up to the feeder.
Logged

Michael Bush
My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm
My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
-------------------
"Everything works if you let it."--Rick Nielsen
Hoosier
New Bee
*
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 34

Location: Johnson County, Indiana


« Reply #3 on: February 24, 2012, 09:23:26 AM »

I’ve used about 5 of those feeders on some nucs (the smaller nuc version of your feeder).  I liked them, but did eventually find some complaints.  My number one complaint was the opaqueness of the plastic bee covers.  They make it hard to see how many bees are feeding (or not feeding) and how many might be dead.  I didn’t have many bees drown, but when they do, popping off those plastic covers was a bit of a challenge.  They’re also a little wobbly if you ever have to lift them off the hive when they’re full of syrup.  Something to avoid!  
As for feeding dry sugar, that might work.  I tried something similar with mixed results.  When I opened an end for the bees to access the feeder, the bees poured in but didn’t necessarily seem bright enough to figure out how to get out.
I like these feeders, but I always find something to complain about no matter what  Smiley

BlueBee, thanks much (very much) for your candid reply.  I had not thought of those problems.  I did try to remove one of the white ends, and I ended up breaking two of those long, tight pins trying to pry it off.  DANG!  Until you mentioned it, I'd never thought of what one's supposed to do to remove dead bees... DUH!  There's just no getting around it; those long, tight pins have to go.  What do you think about removing all the pens entirely and taping the white covers down on each side?  Or...?
Also, something that I DID think of is the fact that there's a tunnel all the way around the well that the bees could use to travel from one end to the other.  I had already thought about putting some caulk on each side of the two ends... leaving them movement space only in the end and to/through the top bar with the hole cut into it.  What do you think?


**************************
BlueBee, I used my Dremel with the grinding/cutting tool and cut the long, tight pins down to a little less than 1/2 inch.  They now go in tightly, BUT they can be removed easily by running a knife blade or screwdriver point under the back edge and lifting... with no problem.  I ruined three of the white ends before I learned what to do, so I called Brushy Mountain and ordered two sets of two for about $5 + about $5 s&h.  I also suggested to Brushy Mountain that they make the manufacturer aware of their need to make those white ends EASY to remove because of possibly/probably having some dead bees like you said. 
« Last Edit: February 24, 2012, 02:20:37 PM by Hoosier » Logged
Hoosier
New Bee
*
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 34

Location: Johnson County, Indiana


« Reply #4 on: February 24, 2012, 09:27:38 AM »

I hadn't really though of it, but I suppose if one built their top bar hive 16 1/4" wide (or 19" wide) one could use a hive top feeder for a Langstroth on top and then make just enough gap somewhere to let the bees up to the feeder.

Mike, my top bars are 15 3/4 inches long. 
Logged
Pages: [1]   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Beemaster's Beekeeping Ring
Previous | Home | Join | Random | Next
Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.20 | SMF © 2013, Simple Machines | Sitemap Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
Page created in 0.312 seconds with 21 queries.

Google visited last this page December 15, 2014, 10:52:20 AM
anything