Plastic Frames? Poly Hives?

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House Bee
Dec 30, 2009
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Hive Type
Number of Hives
3 14x12
Hi All
I was intrested to find out whats your thoughts and pratical knowledge on plastic frames I am also so intrested on how you cover in wax.
Poly Hives look intresting had a look on the web site, my only concern is damp with condensation ?? and life expectancy ?
Any advice appreciated good and bad I should imagine thats what makes The Forum real:)

Grub (getting bigger each day LOL)
Zero condensation especially if left with floor open, i.e no varroa tray, except perhaps in the spring in very cold conditions. Condensation is a diesease of wooden hives in my experience which is why my last wooden hive was chopped up for firewood a few weeks ago. I could have sold it but am not that heartless.

Longevity - 30 plus years if made from high density polystyrene. Check for the latter with the supplier. Anything less than 100kg per cubic metre or 100 g per litre is insufficient in my view and I've kept bees in polyhives for over 5 years now and the original hives are still in fine fettle - and can be repaired with a suitable filler if required.
I think he means how do go on with levering frames against the sides of a poly-hive ( as opposed to a wooden hive)

Ok. You put a knife against two frame and twist them apart. Don't push them firts against the sidewall. Mostly the side frame is locked with burr to wall.

Bigger problem is when you twist two boxes and thaey are tight sealed with burr. But after 20 years twisting, surfaces are oK.
Poly hives do NOT suffer from condensation.

Opening frames up? Insert hive tool and twist.
Anything else please ask.

Always use a "J" tool for removing frames in a poly hive. That way you never touch the hive with the tool, especially when lifting out the first frame or dummy board.
I lift my frames out with a 'J' type hive levering each frame against the top bar of the next frame. Doing it this way is going to push the frame down against the frame runners - unless I'm doing it wrong or there is a better way?

Lifting a frame vertically to break any propolis bond can need to be quite forceful. However, you could lever the frame sideways , thereby only having the levering forces acting between the two frames. This may help to reduce the loads on the hive material as these forces are always perpendicular to the hive surfaces and will have no resultanrt force on that part. There will always be the adhesion which will need some force to break.

The first frame will always present more of a problem. Perhaps that is why dummy frames are such a good idea in some circumstances.

Hope this helps.

regards, RAB

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