View Full Version : FYI- Instructables, DIY Bee Hive

04-07-2011, 04:23 PM
Yeah I know, I get these every couple of days, but as the discussion has been discussing bee's latey, thought I would toss this out.

04-07-2011, 09:50 PM
There is one major flaw in using top-bar beehives, and that is that you lose all your comb when you harvest the honey. It takes about 8 pounds of honey for bees to make a pound of wax, so this is a MAJOR setback every year for the bees, because they will have to draw new comb before they can fill it with honey again.

There were a few guys in my bee class that were wanting to use that method and one of the teachers explained it to us like that. I'm fairly certain that one of the guys is going to try it anyway, as it's a lot less labor intensive than the Langstroth hive I built. The advantage is that I will only be uncapping to extract the honey next year, so the following year, they'll have empty DRAWN comb that they only have to fill. Then I'll be in honey and wax.

Another method one might research is the Warre hive.

Consider, always, how much of the bees resources are going to be used (or destroyed) in the process, versus how much work YOU want to put into it.
Are you growing bees, or growing honey, that is the question...
If I were to use a top-bar hive, I would only consider it a bee-growing hive, and would wait for it to swarm every year, then introduce the swarm into a Langstroth hive. If one only wants to help the bee population, the top-bar is the easiest, most efficient hive, and is far more natural.

I'm speaking from what I was told and have researched, not from experience, because as you all know, this is my first year as a beekeeper and I've only used the Langstroth.

Great link and easy instructions. Thanks H.

04-07-2011, 10:27 PM
As YCC said, with that type of hive you not only lose your comb, creating more work for the bees, but you also run the risk of destroying a lot of bees. They are great and inexpensive hives if your goal is to increase pollination in an area and are not concerned with harvesting honey.

The really interesting thing about the Langstroth hives that are in use today is that they were developed about 160 years ago and have gone through very little change since. I guess when you find something that works, you stick with it.

Good post H63,

04-08-2011, 08:30 PM
What kind of structure goes inside the Langstroth box? It looks easy to build, but are there some sort of frames I would need as well for the bee's to build their combs on?

04-08-2011, 08:49 PM
JP - Here's a thread that YCC did on building your own. http://www.wilderness-survival.net/forums/showthread.php?15100-Oh-beehive! It's a fairly labor intensive build.

I buy my supplies from Mann Lake. Here is a link to the frames they have. http://www.mannlakeltd.com/ListProduct.asp?idCategory=27

04-08-2011, 09:01 PM
Crash, Remember though, I'm a carpenter and have table saws and dado blades, and air guns, etc, so building things from wood is easy. I'm sure i've made things as complicated before. I appreciate the heads up though. And you answered the question about what goes in it with the link to the frames, so thanks again.. lol