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B+. 

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I am in Welling in Kent? I would love the chance to get up close to a hive!
It's a good idea to put that on your profile. It helps when people offer advice if they know the approximate area you live in. Conditions can vary between regions quite a bit.
 

ericbeaumont 

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let them do their thing and help the environment
Plenty of more constructive options - plant trees for pollinators, sow wildflowers, talk to your local council and persuade them to delay the mowers and allow dandelions to flower, vote for those who act to improve the environment...
 

Mick Greenwich 

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Hi Sammo I've been a beekeeper for over 12 year, live in Greenwich and have had a flow hive for the last 3 years. I should be able to help you with all your problems please send me a pm with your
phone no and I'll give you a call.
 

Erichalfbee 

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Hi Sammo I've been a beekeeper for over 12 year, live in Greenwich and have had a flow hive for the last 3 years. I should be able to help you with all your problems please send me a pm with your
phone no and I'll give you a call.
Do you think your 9 years of experience stood you in good stead for your Flow management?
 

Hachi 

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Damn! A lot more than I ever thought I'd have
If your plan is still to put the bees in a hive and let them "do their Thing" is NOT the way to go and will certainly not help the poor bees nor your neighbours.
 

Mick Greenwich 

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Do you think your 9 years of experience stood you in good stead for your Flow management?
My whole 12 years has held me in very good stead for flow management.
I have 10 commercial hives and 1 Flow Hive. When any of us look at all the equipment we need to extract honey plus the time it takes and the cleaning there must be a better way. Extracting has been around roughly 150 years and has evolved but is still a slow process. The flow hive isn't perfect but has come on a long way in 10 years I got one to encourage the evolution of beekeeping, maybe in 150 years people will be staggered that we spent so much time processing our honey.
 

Erichalfbee 

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My whole 12 years has held me in very good stead for flow management.
I have 10 commercial hives and 1 Flow Hive. When any of us look at all the equipment we need to extract honey plus the time it takes and the cleaning there must be a better way. Extracting has been around roughly 150 years and has evolved but is still a slow process. The flow hive isn't perfect but has come on a long way in 10 years I got one to encourage the evolution of beekeeping, maybe in 150 years people will be staggered that we spent so much time processing our honey.
Which is why I asked. My point was .... is it something that a beginner sensibly can manage or would you think that learning how a colony works on a more traditional system is a better way to start?
By the way, the Anderson’s launched the Flow in 2015 ...... not 10 years ago.....with their now famous crowd funding campaign.
 

Mick Greenwich 

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What about Ling heather?
or OSR?
I live in London so I couldn't tell you. Why don't you buy a flow hive yourself and extract honey the same time you extract it to prevent it from settings in your wax super frames and help the evolution of beekeeping
 

Mick Greenwich 

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Which is why I asked. My point was .... is it something that a beginner sensibly can manage or would you think that learning how a colony works on a more traditional system is a better way to start?
By the way, the Anderson’s launched the Flow in 2015 ...... not 10 years ago.....with their now famous crowd funding campaign.
I agree not the best hive to start with but not a disaster either if Sam is given encouragement and help from experience beekeepers on this forum.
 

Erichalfbee 

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I live in London so I couldn't tell you. Why don't you buy a flow hive yourself and extract honey the same time you extract it to prevent it from settings in your wax super frames and help the evolution of beekeeping
No you don’t do that. 1. You don’t put on the Flow frames till OSR is finished and 2 you don’t take Flow colonies to the heather. A beginner might not know whether either of those are within foraging distance however. Same with Ivy and raspberry. Get those in the frames and it’s a lot of work to clean them.
 

Erichalfbee 

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So were you trialling a Flow hive five years before they were crowdfunded?
 

jenkinsbrynmair 

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I live in London so I couldn't tell you.
Exactly, if you knew about the two honeys you would know that the flow hive is pretty useless for harvesting them, so no, not the tool for the future. So stop pontificating from your little bubble.
As far as I'm concerned it's nothing but a gimicky toy for the dilettante
 

Mick Greenwich 

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Exactly, if you knew about the two honeys you would know that the flow hive is pretty useless for harvesting them, so no, not the tool for the future. So stop pontificating from your little bubble.
As far as I'm concerned it's nothing but a gimicky toy for the dilettante
So your not going to get one then, oh well each to their own . In this great craft of beekeeping there are so many interesting ways to enjoy the company of the honey bee and evolution of the craft interests me.
 

B+. 

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So your not going to get one then, oh well each to their own . In this great craft of beekeeping there are so many interesting ways to enjoy the company of the honey bee and evolution of the craft interests me.
I would have thought the answer was in the name "FlowHive" i.e. it is not suitable if the honey doesn't flow.
Heather honey is thixotropic, so doesn't flow
OSR is a member of the brassica family and sets rock solid in no time, so it doesn't flow.

JBM and Erichalfbee have correctly identified the flaw. It has been discussed in some depth on here already.
 

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Yes. That would work but you'd have to modify the National frames slightly (take a little off their length). They don't quite fit inside a Langstroth frame otherwise.
It really depends on which direction you want your beekeeping to go. There are advocates of Langstroth and National who will advise you to choose their approach. The one thing that most agree on is the FlowHive (or, I suppose, the autoHive equivalent) is a bad idea in this country. The reason for that is that yellow stuff you see growing in farmers fields each spring (although a lot less in my area this year) - Oil Seed Rape (OSR) is a member of the brassica family and sets very hard in the comb. The FlowHive depends on the honey remaining liquid so it wouldn't be my choice.
One of the advantages of a Flow Frame, as used in a Flow Hive, is that the Flow Frame is fairly easy to take it apart. Once apart the crystallised honey or heather honey can simply be scraped off. There's a bit of a technique to re-assembling the Flow Frame, but once mastered, its easy enough. Unlike the liquid honey from a Flow Frame, it does need to be filtered.
 

Erichalfbee 

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It is after all just a super. Learn to manage the bees and it doesn’t really make any difference. Hence the exhortations to learn that first.
 

MonicaB 

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Hi everyone, I am just starting out on my beekeeping journey, I have the hive, and I have ordered my Nuc, but there is still so much that I don't understand, I have been reading the books, and watching YouTube videos, but I figured that here would probably be the best place to get help.
Hi Sam,
Welcome, I’m also a beginner. I can’t thank this forum enough for all the help they gave me when I started out. You’re in the right place. I also found out the hive I bought wasn’t suitable, the frames didn’t fit correctly - they were foundationless and the bees were building everywhere. On the advice of everyone here I went back in with foundation in every other frame and ultimately bought a proper National and it’s been so much easier and I’m enjoying it. Good luck 😊
 

jenkinsbrynmair 

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One of the advantages of a Flow Frame, as used in a Flow Hive, is that the Flow Frame is fairly easy to take it apart. Once apart the crystallised honey or heather honey can simply be scraped off.
Sounds to me a lot more faff than extracting it like grownups do.
 

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