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*ZhG*StGeorge 

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Hello all, I am going to get started on this ‘Bee thingy’ next year and am reading everything I can get to make up my mind on equipment to buy. The area seems to use nationals with 14 x 12 BB and I am minded to go along with that. It must look right in the garden or she who must be obeyed will not be happy so gabled roof. Even got the supplier sorted, I think.

My main problem is Frames and when to buy them and on the supers, which ones to buy. I know everyone has their own ideas but it would be great if you could tell me the reasoning behind it. I will get the DN4 frames for the BB but there is a choice of SN1 or SN4 or SN5? for the supers. Am I right in thinking that the DN4 frames in the BB don’t need spacers but the SN1 frames do and if that is the case shouldn’t I go for the SN4 frames and save money on not requiring spacers. Also, what are SN5 frames?

Next question, should I get all the frames now with foundation or should I get the frames now and wait to get the foundation later because it loses it’s smell? If I do get the foundation now, how should I store it?

Thanks for your help, it’s a steep learning curve but I hope to get there eventually.
Alan
 
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Important to have a slide arrangement for your frames in the brood box, and personally I think castillated are better for supers.

If using a 14x12 BB then you'll need 14x12 size frames. DN4 are for standard Nationals.

SN1 should be fine for the supers if you are using castillated (ie fixed) spacing. SN5 is simply a stronger version of the SN4(like DN4/5)

You can get the foundation now, and I dont think it will do any harm to make up the frames if stored in a dry protected manner over winter (others more knowledgable may correct me)
 

Moggs 

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Many prefer non-castellated for supers as it provides the flexibility to encourage the bees to draw out the comb proud of the frame edges (easier uncapping and more weight per frame).

Horses for courses....

Good luck, whatever you choose. Might I suggest a winter training course to get you up to speed? It certainly worked for me (though my bees may disagree)!
 
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You can buy foundation now, and store flat, cool and dark. Don't actually place the foundation in whichever frames you decide, as it will lose colour and smell as you say.

Wish I could help with frames, but they always confuse the hell out of me!!
 

beebreeder 

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PM hivemaker he does the best hives in both sizes and can give advice based on experience, I use some 14x12 but you have to be careful in summer when the wax is soft they can collapse unless handled correctly, Hivemaker can supply frames as well
kev
 
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they can collapse unless handled correctly

Oooohh, BB you've got me worried now, I was thinking of moving to 14x12 next season!!!
 
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Black Comb 

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Hofmann in brood chamber and Manley in supers.

Large brood frames can be horizontally reinforced with stainless steel wire.
Brass eyelets in the side bar help.

I put 2 across my Dadants and "melt them in " with battery charger.
 

*ZhG*StGeorge 

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Thanks nice people, already talking to hivemaker but as we know there are so many different opinions out there and I have been told today, from a source in 'geocaching' that I need to make the right choices now when it comes to equipment.

I now realise that I should have said Hoffman frames, I think, when I said I was going for a 14 x 12 not DN4.(Easy mistake to make) it was just when to buy and what to put in the supers that is the main question and of course why!

Thanks for you replies so far

Peters, thanks for that but why MAnley?
 

Black Comb 

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Peters, thanks for that but why MAnley?
To quote Hooper
"the frames are held quite rigidly and the spacing of 1 5/8" is designed so that the minimum no. of frames is used consistent with a distance apart which is not too great when using foundation"

So you don't need as many frames in the super and they are easier to uncap as the side bars are straight.

This has been discussed on here many times and if you do a search you will get a variety of answers.
 
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How does the battery charger bit work Peter??
 

Poly Hive 

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FWIW

I use a battery charger set to motorcycle.

I have a board which I made years ago out of floor chipboard and routed out the frame sizes I was am using. Namely National deep and shallow and same for Langstroth.

I have my wire on a spool and feed it through the eyelets then get it tight tight by using the spool as a "lever".

I lift out the wired frame and put the foundation into it as per normal then...

I then use the crocodile clips on the charger to work along the wire three or four inches at a time pressing the wire into the foundation, and by the way this is wired foundation so that on the heather the brood combs are well re-inforced for extraction. ;)

Why use Manley? Two very good reasons I do.

One is that in a wooden super as Manley intended, the sides act as an inner wall. More warmth and believe me, bees love, just love to be cosy.

2nd is they make splendid cut comb frames.

PH

PH
 

drstitson 

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"in a wooden super as Manley intended, the sides act as an inner wall. More warmth and believe me, bees love, just love to be cosy."

Noted. obviously anything that helps the bees keep warm whilst emptying the super over winter must be a help. what about using manleys in the brood for similar reason????
 

OXFORDBEE 

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Not a good idea, you can't get them apart easily. They are ideal for supers where you get the frames out once or twice a year but will get well and truly gunged up in the brood nest....
 

*ZhG*StGeorge 

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Poly, thanks for that, unhappily as a nube the first lines starting with 'I' don't make a lot of sense. I ride a Harley but..............................

Perhaps we should have a new beeks area.

Your last staemant about heat make me wonder why the inside of a super does not have a coating of silver foil that will reflect heat from both sides. They might not be able to stick on it but is that not a good thing?

Sorry if I am asking questions that have been asked before, but I wasn't here then
 
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Bees can stick wax to foil. I made a TBH out of Kingspan (foil covered rigid insulation) once and that is exactly what they did. Ignored the top bars and built the comb from the bottom up, with the comb on the foil.
 

victor meldrew 

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battery charger will supply something like 14V DC (so not much different to 12V car battery).
Voltage will vary with amperage, amperage will vary with resistance , reststance will vary with wire length /diameter/ material :D.
Ohms' Law.
A battery charger set at motorcycle will take its' supply off a tapping on the transformer secondary ,nominally 6 volts plus ;).

John Wilkinson
 
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Sorry VM got lost at 'with'...
 

Poly Hive 

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yes 6V John.

I set out to be able to heat the whole wire but rapidly found for various reasons it was not a good idea.

So now I do it a few inches at a time and for all the time that takes it makes no odds.

PH
 

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