Making a change from Commercials to Nationals

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Mabee

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Location
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National
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I started with Nationals, then bought some unusual hives (I no longer have) which were compatible with commercials so now most of my bees in commercial bb, I still have some nationals. I’d really like to go back to only nationals as I find them easier to manage and split vertically. So i’m trying to think of the best way to do this. I have nucs that when I make up to overwinter can add a national brood box on top but is there a quicker way to change my main brood boxes? Any suggestions? I’ve thought about putting new national frames into the commercial boxes when replacing frames but assume they will just build brace comb.
 
I started with Nationals, then bought some unusual hives (I no longer have) which were compatible with commercials so now most of my bees in commercial bb, I still have some nationals. I’d really like to go back to only nationals as I find them easier to manage and split vertically. So i’m trying to think of the best way to do this. I have nucs that when I make up to overwinter can add a national brood box on top but is there a quicker way to change my main brood boxes? Any suggestions? I’ve thought about putting new national frames into the commercial boxes when replacing frames but assume they will just build brace comb.
Swapping frame sizes is always a pita imho.
I think in retrospect I'd have saved a lot of faff if each time I'd have bit the bullet and shook swarmed them onto the new equipment rather than a bit by bit approach or waiting for brood to hatch out etc.
 
I started with Nationals, then bought some unusual hives (I no longer have) which were compatible with commercials so now most of my bees in commercial bb, I still have some nationals. I’d really like to go back to only nationals as I find them easier to manage and split vertically. So i’m trying to think of the best way to do this. I have nucs that when I make up to overwinter can add a national brood box on top but is there a quicker way to change my main brood boxes? Any suggestions? I’ve thought about putting new national frames into the commercial boxes when replacing frames but assume they will just build brace comb.o
Well they probably would but if you start by replacing frames at the back of the hive and pack the space between the bottom of the new frames and the floor of the hive with a piece of timber or some PIR insulation (after sealing the edges with aluminium tape) you could stop them from building brace comb. Alternatively, accept that it's going to happen and when you transfer to national boxes, cut the brace comb off ..it will either be full of stores or more likely drone comb.
 
Swapping frame sizes is always a pita imho.
I think in retrospect I'd have saved a lot of faff if each time I'd have bit the bullet and shook swarmed them onto the new equipment rather than a bit by bit approach or waiting for brood to hatch out etc.
I know, it would be quicker but I was hoping to avoid doing that. I like to do things quickly, if I make up my mind to do it, I just go ahead and do it, but beekeeping is certainly teaching me to step back and have patience, whether I like it or not. It's not the bees' fault in this instance, completely mine, so I should be the one that should suffer the consequences! 😂
 
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Well they probably would but if you start by replacing frames at the back of the hive and pack the space between the bottom of the new frames and the floor of the hive with a piece of timber or some PIR insulation (after sealing the edges with aluminium tape) you could stop them from building brace comb. Alternatively, accept that it's going to happen and when you transfer to national boxes, cut the brace comb off ..it will either be full of stores or more likely drone comb.
That sounds like lots of hard work! Would this work? If I put a national brood box on top of the commercial, then when drawn and filled swap it with the commercial with a QE between. Once all brood emerged, remove the frames of mostly stores and extract for Spring feed? If I wait till Autumn, might be better? So many different ideas going through my head on how to do this!
 
That sounds like lots of hard work! Would this work? If I put a national brood box on top of the commercial, then when drawn and filled swap it with the commercial with a QE between. Once all brood emerged, remove the frames of mostly stores and extract for Spring feed? If I wait till Autumn, might be better? So many different ideas going through my head on how to do this!
What you are now talking about is effectively is a Bailey comb change .. it will work but you are talking about just the same amount of work but in a different way ... needs to be done soon and hopefully when there is a good flow on.

https://sheffieldbeekeepers.org.uk/blog/how-to-perform-a-bailey-comb-change/
 
Or feed feed feed
Trouble is either route is going to kill any chance of a crop ....using the flow to build comb or feeding and feeding and then you have the risk of syrup in the honey.

I know it's a bit of a faff bugt I'd still go with post #3 above as you would still be able to super them, get them onto the right frames without feeding and by the end of summer you get a crop as well with a bit of luck ...
 
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Trouble either route is going to kill any chance of a crop ....using the flow to build comb or feeding and feeding and then you have the risk of syrup in the honey.

I know it's a bit of a faff bugt I'd still go with post #3 above as you would still be able to super them, get them onto the right frames without feeding and by the end of summer you get a crop as well with a bit of luck ...
I think I might go down that route, more the stick some national frames in the commercials then clean up later approach.
 

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