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mocko 

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Hi All,

Saw the lovely sunny weather in Manchester this morning and thought I would do the oxalic acid treatment for two of my colonies. Seems to be a main cluster with lots of bees between the other frames. Still the odd drone or two though?

6/7 frames of fully capped stores still in the hive, very happy!
 

Into the lions den 

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Very nice colony. If mines were all that size I would be a happy man.

Not really clear how much sealed honey/syrup there is in the middle seams, it *looks* a little short there, but the photo maybe does not show it up well. I would tend to be thinking of a cake of fondant spanning the centre frames to be sure they have enough.
 

alexander 

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Very nice colony. If mines were all that size I would be a happy man.

Not really clear how much sealed honey/syrup there is in the middle seams, it *looks* a little short there, but the photo maybe does not show it up well. I would tend to be thinking of a cake of fondant spanning the centre frames to be sure they have enough.

do you tell by just looking down into the frames, with a torch maybe? (first winter)
 

gavin 

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In the second photo, third and fourth bar up from the bottom (counting the dummy board), you can see sealed cells which will have stores. Peering down and perhaps inbetween the bees on the busier frames you can get an idea whether or not you still have sealed stores high on the frames anyway. A cluster up at the top of the bars has probably already used much of stores on those frames.
 

alexander 

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In the second photo, third and fourth bar up from the bottom (counting the dummy board), you can see sealed cells which will have stores. Peering down and perhaps inbetween the bees on the busier frames you can get an idea whether or not you still have sealed stores high on the frames anyway. A cluster up at the top of the bars has probably already used much of stores on those frames.

thanks
 

gavin 

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.... and Mocko knows beekeeping better than his/her mentor, because the six frames in the middle (presumably from a nuc) have plastic ends set at the wide spacing (oops) and the additional frames are Hoffman self-spacing (good!).

Bailey Comb Change in the spring would get them all onto better frames. You'd probably get 12 in that box if you wish.
 
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Meg 

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....err Gavin - have you been drinking again? Maybe you have misplaced your glasses?

Plastic spacers look normal brood spacing to me.

Meg
 

gavin 

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Yes they do, don't they?! Oh well ....
 

RoofTops 

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Plastic ends, castellations, there is no hope for UK beekeeping...

Why bother with them? Who else in the World does?
 

hemo 

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Catellations did you not know. Authority on Beeking R.P of Wisboro.:banghead:
 

Arfermo 

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Plastic ends, castellations, there is no hope for UK beekeeping...

Why bother with them? Who else in the World does?
:iagree: Castellations make life simple as spacing is predetermined. For a National box 11 spaces is normal but one can get 10 or 9 spaces if one wishes. One has to start off with 11 spaces but one can change the bees onto 10 or 9 space castellations. That then allows for the bees to draw the comb out deeper and thus more honey to extract. However, that would mean unshipping the colony into another box or messing them around whilst changing the castellation which is not recommended. Best to use drone foundation in the supers from the outset but definitely not in the BBs, particularly on brood and a half.
 

mocko 

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Gavin, it was only a 4 frame NUC. When doing the change would I just leave the hoffmans in the current single brood and replace the shitty DN1's with hoffmanns giving me a double brood for next year? Thanks
 

iand 

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Or you could use a hoffman converter. Not the best but a decent interim measure while you get some replacements drawn and a bit of a life from your dn1's. I tried my own version pin/gluing a short batten on each side. Again ok to a point but propolis is a terrific glue. So I'am now on my last 2-3 supers which should have spacers. Replacement in the the shed ready to be made up. All now spaced by eye even the hoffman supers with one or two frames less than a full box. Help set up maybe 3-4000 langstroth supers each year by eye no problem.
I had cause to handle some mt National supers with castellations this summer, result lacerated hand ?!%^*!?!!!".
 

gavin 

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I'm surprised that you are asking me after my faux-pas :blush5:

With an early Bailey Comb Change you can use dummy boards (or pieces of polystyrene) to restrict the brood nest to the frames they are on, then they will work up into a new box of foundation. Once the queen is up there, with an arrangement of wooden strips to make a new entrance and a queen excluder to keep her upstairs you then leave them until the brood in the lower box has hatched (three weeks). After that you can take away the lower box so you still have your colony in one box. It is your choice after that whether you want to go to double brood or whatever - be guided by the strength of the colony.

You could transfer any existing Hoffmans into the upper box once your dummies are in place, or fill the box above with foundation.

This explains well:

www.wimbledonbeekeepers.co.uk/Bailey Comb Change.pdf

Some might advocate a shook swarm instead - a little later once the colony is stronger - but it seems a rather invasive procedure for my liking.

G.
 

gavin 

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Castellations make life simple as spacing is predetermined.
This could be almost as much fun as debating oxalic strengths! Detest them myself ...
 

Hebeegeebee 

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In National supers I use castellations and 10 frames, except where I don't. (Mainly new foundation/frames are SN1's with plastic ends until extracted. Then into castellations).

The plastic spacers are 38 mm whereas hoffman spacing is 35 which is why you (Gavin) can see a bigger gap.
 

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