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Author Topic: 8 frame or 10?  (Read 764 times)

Offline Leather Jim

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8 frame or 10?
« on: February 15, 2014, 11:45:38 PM »
I seen it said on numerous occasions that in a 10 frame box bees tend to not use the outer two frames much. Would anyone like to weigh in on that? I'm planning an expansion over the next three years and can't decide which would be best, 8 or 10 frame equipment.

Also I've been considering going to all medium boxes due the reduced weight as I get older. My main concern with that is whether the brood nest will jump the bar from a lower to the next box or two ok. Any input would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks Jim

Offline 10framer

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Re: 8 frame or 10?
« Reply #1 on: February 16, 2014, 12:11:00 AM »
i've never had any trouble with bees not using all ten frames.  if weight is a factor 8 frame makes more sense.  i've run all mediums and deep with medium brood chambers and my experience is that the queen will cross over just fine.  after saying all that i'm trying to work all my stuff into ten frame double deep brood chambers mostly because that's the way i learned it.  most of my trips into the brood chambers will happen over the next 6 weeks so i won't really handle the deeps that much except for during swarm/split season and when i see a problem.

Offline Joe D

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Re: 8 frame or 10?
« Reply #2 on: February 16, 2014, 01:06:11 AM »
I have never run 8 frames, only 10 so can't say which is better.  On the outside frames being worked, on a new super or brood chamber when they get the ones next to it mostly done you just switch them out and after that no problem.  I use double deeps for brood and either mediums or shallows for supers, most are shallow, because of the weight.  I have run 9 in a 10 frame super.  Good luck.



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Re: 8 frame or 10?
« Reply #3 on: February 16, 2014, 08:52:02 AM »
Leather Jim,
I'm just a little over a year in and run all 8 frame medium equipment, a decision that I've been very happy with.  But in all fairness, I really have nothing to compare it too.  I think there are a couple advantages and disadvantages concerning 8 frame medium equipment which are unarguable.

Advantage:  Weight savings, making the task of having to lift and move boxes a lot easier and pleasant task.

Disadvantage: Drives up equipment cost...Both more frames and boxes are required to accommodate the same number of bees.

That being said, I do believe it makes it easier for them to fill out the end frames.  But there are 10 framers who will argue they have no problem, or their problem is "simply" solved by moving these frames inward.
I've also heard heard numerous claims of of the things 8 frame mediums can't do, or don't do as well...but this seems to be mostly hearsay. 

Have you read what Michael Bush has to say on this topic?  He's got quite a bit of experience and is a pretty big advocate for 8 frame mediums. 

Here's a link to his site, where his entire book is available!

Offline Steel Tiger

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Re: 8 frame or 10?
« Reply #4 on: February 16, 2014, 01:15:31 PM »
 I've been watching Michael Palmer videos on wintering bees in the cold north as well as building a sustainable apiary. It appears he uses 9 frames in 10 frame equipment. Even the brood box is 9 frame. You can find his videos on youtube.

Offline Michael Bush

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Re: 8 frame or 10?
« Reply #5 on: February 16, 2014, 02:52:31 PM »
I ran ten frame deeps and shallows from 1974 until 2002.  I ran all mediums from 2002 to 2004.  I cut them all down to 8 frames in 2004 and have run all eight frame mediums for the last decade.  I have never regretted the decision to go with all mediums nor the decision to go with eight frames.


My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm en espanol: bushfarms.com/es_bees.htm  auf deutsche: bushfarms.com/de_bees.htm
My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
"Everything works if you let it."--James "Big Boy" Medlin

Offline stanisr

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Re: 8 frame or 10?
« Reply #6 on: February 16, 2014, 05:03:22 PM »
I am considering going to 8 frame equipment. In fact I am down now with back issues. I wanted to go through my hives today but can't due to lifting.

Offline GSF

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Re: 8 frame or 10?
« Reply #7 on: February 16, 2014, 10:50:17 PM »
Stanisr, you could always lift one frame at a time and put it in an empty super. Then reverse when you are putting it back together.
When the law no longer protects you from the corrupt, but protects the corrupt from you - then you know your nation is doomed.

Offline sterling

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Re: 8 frame or 10?
« Reply #8 on: February 17, 2014, 11:41:01 AM »
I have some eight frame hives and some ten frame hives and like both and the bees seem to like both. And both work very well. If I was just going to run 2 or 3 hives they would be all mediums either eight or ten. Probably eight.