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Author Topic: Commercial Top Bar Hives  (Read 788 times)

Online CoolBees

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Re: Commercial Top Bar Hives
« Reply #20 on: August 16, 2019, 12:38:54 pm »
...  I assume one could go foundationless in a long Lang.

Sorry if my questions are elementary.  It has been a long time since I had bees.

Your questions are not elementary at all - to me. I began phasing over to all foundationless at the beginning of 2018. I can tell you this - foundationless mediums are a different breed from foundationless deep frames.

I haven't had much trouble with the foundationless mediums, even running them in the extractor  (as long as they are attached on 4 sides).  However, as I phased out my deep boxes (not quite done with this process yet) - I added foundationless frames to the deeps also.

Last week I split the queen and some brood out of a strong 2nd-yr hive with a deep brood box, into a Nuc. I was able to cut 5 frames for QC's in the remaining hive. About 2 hrs later, I walked by the Queens Nuc and saw honey pouring out of the front entrance, and all over the ground. Apparently the deep frame of stores I put in there collapsed. Lots of dead and dying bees. What a mess.

This is an example of how much less stable foundationless deep frames are.

... just something for your thoughts.
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Offline FatherMichael

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Re: Commercial Top Bar Hives
« Reply #21 on: August 18, 2019, 05:13:05 pm »

... just something for your thoughts.

Here's a thought.

Say a man had medium frames (or shallow) in which he put thin foundation and placed them in a long Lang.  Would the bees fill the supplied frames and then build foundationless below that, either of honey, brood, or queen cells?

Offline FloridaGardener

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Re: Commercial Top Bar Hives
« Reply #22 on: August 18, 2019, 07:04:36 pm »
If you want something where you dump it in, turn it on, and put it in a bottle, look at a bladder press for wine or cider. I?ve got a 40lt press for winemaking and use it for cappings from my frame hives and comb from topbars. Drop it all in inside a stained bag, turn on the tap to inflate the bladder and you can run it straight into your bottles. Plus the wax is pretty much dry.
Awesome.  I read some instructions at https://www.midwestsupplies.com/media/pdf-printouts/how_do_i_use_a_bladder_press.pdf
"Pressing is a messy business...Don't wear nice clothes." LOL, too true!  I'm always washing off sticky, gummy, smoky, sooty, sweaty, sawdusty...and a few bugs live or dead too.

Online cao

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Re: Commercial Top Bar Hives
« Reply #23 on: August 18, 2019, 10:16:14 pm »
Here's a thought.

Say a man had medium frames (or shallow) in which he put thin foundation and placed them in a long Lang.  Would the bees fill the supplied frames and then build foundationless below that, either of honey, brood, or queen cells?
Here's a thought.  You can make a long lang that takes medium frames.  2 of the 5 of mine are. 

As to your question, yes they would fill the extra space.  Probably would be a lot of brood.  One thing to think about with a long lang is that the brood nest is usually on the bottom 2/3 of the frames with a honey band on the top 1/3.  And it can stretch across twenty or more frames.

Online sawdstmakr

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Re: Commercial Top Bar Hives
« Reply #24 on: August 18, 2019, 10:37:19 pm »
What CAO said.
If there?s space in the hive and enough bees and food available, the bees will fill the void with comb. If you give them even a short strip of wax in the top of the frame, it helps to proved a guide that the bees will follow and fill the frame.
Jim Altmiller


Offline FatherMichael

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Re: Commercial Top Bar Hives
« Reply #25 on: August 19, 2019, 09:27:37 am »
One thing to think about with a long lang is that the brood nest is usually on the bottom 2/3 of the frames with a honey band on the top 1/3.  And it can stretch across twenty or more frames.

Hmmm, I see now why you need a four-foot hive.

Offline FloridaGardener

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Re: Commercial Top Bar Hives
« Reply #26 on: August 20, 2019, 01:58:01 pm »
And you will end up with many honey bars like this one: a brood frame converted to capped honey on top with pollen below...exactly what the bees need for late winter buildup.
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« Last Edit: August 20, 2019, 02:15:35 pm by FloridaGardener »

Offline FatherMichael

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Re: Commercial Top Bar Hives
« Reply #27 on: August 24, 2019, 04:08:34 pm »
Do bees have trouble in winter getting cut off from honey reserves in long Langs or top bar hives?

Offline Dallasbeek

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Re: Commercial Top Bar Hives
« Reply #28 on: August 24, 2019, 08:17:34 pm »
Do bees have trouble in winter getting cut off from honey reserves in long Langs or top bar hives?

Your question suggests another related one: Are top bar hives more suited to more temperate/tropical locations than those in colder climates?
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Online sawdstmakr

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Re: Commercial Top Bar Hives
« Reply #29 on: August 24, 2019, 08:46:59 pm »
Do bees have trouble in winter getting cut off from honey reserves in long Langs or top bar hives?

Your question suggests another related one: Are top bar hives more suited to more temperate/tropical locations than those in colder climates?
They were designed for tropical areas.
Bees do know how to move horizontally in mild winters.
Jim Altmiller

Offline FatherMichael

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Re: Commercial Top Bar Hives
« Reply #30 on: August 25, 2019, 07:51:19 pm »
Thank you, Dallas and Jim.

We're Zone 7 here but can experience extremes.  I've been Bass fishing when it was 105 and Pheasant hunting at 5 below.  But the cold spells do not last long at a time.

Offline Anonimo22

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Re: Commercial Top Bar Hives
« Reply #31 on: August 26, 2019, 06:02:53 am »
Thank yous for all the posts on this thread! This is such a wonderful opportunity to learn from all of you experts!  :happy:

Online sawdstmakr

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Re: Commercial Top Bar Hives
« Reply #32 on: August 26, 2019, 07:04:11 am »
Bees will move honey around in the hive when it isn?t too cold to break cluster. As long as the temperatures are going up and down they can move the cluster or move the honey. If you had solid -5 degree temperatures for long periods I would be concerned. Wyatt Magnum kept his bees I top bar hives in North Carolina. His migratory hives were a lot shorter than his stationary hives but I do not think he switched the bees back and forth between hives for winter.
Jim Altmiller
« Last Edit: August 26, 2019, 11:07:43 pm by sawdstmakr »

Online Michael Bush

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Re: Commercial Top Bar Hives
« Reply #33 on: August 26, 2019, 06:18:04 pm »
>Does anyone do this on a commercial scale?

Les Crowder has done it for a long time in New Mexico and I think he's now in Texas.

If lifting is the issue another solution is a long langstroth so you can still extract and you don't have to lift boxes.
http://bushfarms.com/beeshorizontalhives.htm
My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm en espanol: bushfarms.com/es_bees.htm  auf deutsche: bushfarms.com/de_bees.htm  em portugues:  bushfarms.com/pt_bees.htm
My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
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Offline Anonimo22

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Re: Commercial Top Bar Hives
« Reply #34 on: August 27, 2019, 10:57:48 am »
>Does anyone do this on a commercial scale?

Les Crowder has done it for a long time in New Mexico and I think he's now in Texas.

If lifting is the issue another solution is a long langstroth so you can still extract and you don't have to lift boxes.
http://bushfarms.com/beeshorizontalhives.htm

Like the pics! Thanks.

Its neat to be able to learn from people.

Offline FatherMichael

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Re: Commercial Top Bar Hives
« Reply #35 on: August 28, 2019, 03:21:38 pm »
>Does anyone do this on a commercial scale?

Les Crowder has done it for a long time in New Mexico and I think he's now in Texas.

If lifting is the issue another solution is a long langstroth so you can still extract and you don't have to lift boxes.
http://bushfarms.com/beeshorizontalhives.htm

Good stuff, Michael.  Thank you!

Offline Ben Framed

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Re: Commercial Top Bar Hives
« Reply #36 on: August 29, 2019, 01:15:42 am »
>Does anyone do this on a commercial scale?

Les Crowder has done it for a long time in New Mexico and I think he's now in Texas.

If lifting is the issue another solution is a long langstroth so you can still extract and you don't have to lift boxes.
http://bushfarms.com/beeshorizontalhives.htm

Mr Bush, Before I became a beekeeper and use to visit here over 10 years ago, I was amazed at the knowledge that you have concerning the bee. I still am amazed. Also I am just and grateful as amazed, that you freely share the same knowledge. Thanks, and God Bless You.
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Online Michael Bush

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Re: Commercial Top Bar Hives
« Reply #37 on: August 29, 2019, 11:47:26 am »
The big advantage to a long Langstroth over a top bar hive is being able to extract.  The next advantage is that you have better support for the combs.  The disadvantage is it will cost you more than a top bar hive made from scraps.  If you use foundationless you'll get natural comb as you would with a top bar hive.
My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm en espanol: bushfarms.com/es_bees.htm  auf deutsche: bushfarms.com/de_bees.htm  em portugues:  bushfarms.com/pt_bees.htm
My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
-------------------
"Everything works if you let it."--James "Big Boy" Medlin