Which budget wood hive

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Big ears 

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It could well be safe, who knows? As they do not say what is in it, let alone that it is safe to use for bees, it is not possible to say. One always has to bear in mind that generally, wood preservative prevents infestation by insects, if it works, by killing them.

If, as has been suggested elsewhere, it contains some mixture of disodium octoborate tetrahydrate / boron / boric acid then it is good for killing termites, powder post beetles and carpenter ants. It is an American product and I suspect may not be licensed for use in Europe (Disodium octaborate tetrahydrate). A European assessment of one of the main consituents merely states:

View attachment 28750

There was a paper published back in 1987 suggesting that the L50 dose (enough to kill 50% of the bees in the experiment) for boric acid was around 362 μg / bee (Atkins EL. Laboratory Bee Adult Toxicity Tests (BATDT) for boric acid, powdered, 100% technical. MRID 40269201. 1987.)

It would be interesting to see how you get on with it. Meanwhile, I may choose to stick with the natural protection afforded by (even UK grown) western red cedar.
If you research it there are some strong beekeeping followers in Canada who swear by it.
I was only ever going to use it in pine if I went down that route but many on here have suggested the English Cedar is a better option. That is unless I get six numbers tomorrow then it’s WRC all the way😂😂
 

Ian123 

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When I see a preservative described as eco it’s a bit like the ice cream brand It’s To Good To Be True. It is indeed and tastes like crap! Preservatives and stains go on the outside of hives, given plenty of time to air I’ve never had any issues even with solvent based complete treatments.!! For the more eco minded there’s some good stains in the sadolin classic range that are about as good as you can get. I would always advise treatments for seconds type WRC there’s often heartwood in the mix and that requires treatment, even manufacturers recommend it! Or at least those who have a clue about timber! In fairness that number is limited😂
 

Wilco 

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I use Danish oil on most of my hives. It's not had any obvious adverse effects to date. Usually get the cheap stuff from Screwfix.
 

Apiarisnt 

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I would always advise treatments for seconds type WRC there’s often heartwood in the mix and that requires treatment, even manufacturers recommend it! Or at least those who have a clue about timber! In fairness that number is limited😂
I use a mixture of ~7% beeswax in raw (not 'boiled') linseed oil on my seconds cedar hives. It has the added advantage to helping retain the original cedar colouring, although I acknowledge that there are some who prefer to see the greying of the cedar with age.
 

Malcolm Stamp 

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I don’t know why people are so fixated on national hives in this country, they are arguably the least well designed, the most likely to rot and the most difficult to construct. conversely a langstroth hive is very easy for any handyman to make and therefore cheap and owing to its easy construct can be made of a wide variety of timber including pallet. Before any body throws up their hands in horror, my Brood boxes are scorched and painted every year but the supers less often and none are showing any sign of wear or decay and a plus side to painting with good old Cuprinol shades is that the woodpeckers ignore them.
 

Amari 

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One advantage of Nats is that a BB or super full of honey is lighter than the equivalent Lang. A WBC is lighter still. Not all of us on here are Tarzans.
 

jenkinsbrynmair 

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I don’t know why people are so fixated on national hives in this country, they are arguably the least well designed, the most likely to rot and the most difficult to construct. conversely a langstroth hive is very easy for any handyman to make and therefore cheap and owing to its easy construct can be made of a wide variety of timber including pallet. Before any body throws up their hands in horror, my Brood boxes are scorched and painted every year but the supers less often and none are showing any sign of wear or decay and a plus side to painting with good old Cuprinol shades is that the woodpeckers ignore them.
On the whole I agree with you, the biggest pity is that nobody saw sense after the war, scrapped the concept of the 'Modified National' which only stemmed from 1930's austerity measures and reverted to the original Standard National - or 'simplicity hive' as it was called (clue is in the name really) But we all know where the driving force in beekeeping came from post 1945 so could we have expected any different?
The simplicity was constructed exactly the same as the Langstroth apart from the fact that two ends were thicker to accommodate our desire for longer lugs
 

Beebe 

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Somehow it's escalated to seven.
On the whole I agree with you, the biggest pity is that nobody saw sense after the war, scrapped the concept of the 'Modified National' which only stemmed from 1930's austerity measures and reverted to the original Standard National - or 'simplicity hive' as it was called (clue is in the name really) But we all know where the driving force in beekeeping came from post 1945 so could we have expected any different?
The simplicity was constructed exactly the same as the Langstroth apart from the fact that two ends were thicker to accommodate our desire for longer lugs
Having seen a few US videos where apparently experienced beeks have struggled and even dropped their short-lugged frames, I'm glad to have something longer to hold. ;) 🤪
 

gmonag 

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I don’t know why people are so fixated on national hives in this country, they are arguably the least well designed, the most likely to rot and the most difficult to construct. conversely a langstroth hive is very easy for any handyman to make and therefore cheap and owing to its easy construct can be made of a wide variety of timber including pallet. Before any body throws up their hands in horror, my Brood boxes are scorched and painted every year but the supers less often and none are showing any sign of wear or decay and a plus side to painting with good old Cuprinol shades is that the woodpeckers ignore them.
It is mostly down to momentum/inertia. "That's what everyone uses so I will too".

If you want a cheap, easily-constructed hive system, consider the Rose Hive. Same footprint as BS National, so uses the same stands, floors, crown boards and roofs. Frames and foundation available from Thornes.
 

Wilco 

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On the whole I agree with you, the biggest pity is that nobody saw sense after the war, scrapped the concept of the 'Modified National' which only stemmed from 1930's austerity measures and reverted to the original Standard National - or 'simplicity hive' as it was called (clue is in the name really) But we all know where the driving force in beekeeping came from post 1945 so could we have expected any different?
The simplicity was constructed exactly the same as the Langstroth apart from the fact that two ends were thicker to accommodate our desire for longer lugs
Of course as its the same footprint and easier to make, apart from the extra wood there's nothing to prevent these being made.
 

Patrick1 

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I don’t know why people are so fixated on national hives in this country, they are arguably the least well designed, the most likely to rot and the most difficult to construct. conversely a langstroth hive is very easy for any handyman to make and therefore cheap and owing to its easy construct can be made of a wide variety of timber including pallet. Before any body throws up their hands in horror, my Brood boxes are scorched and painted every year but the supers less often and none are showing any sign of wear or decay and a plus side to painting with good old Cuprinol shades is that the woodpeckers ignore them.
I agree, I have some pine Langstroth from 19 years ago painted with BQ fence paint the first time I painted them it was 4 coats after that it’s a top up, still look good.
I have Nationals made from WRC and British Cedar from two different UK suppliers, all are showing signs of rot and shrinkage.
It must be a British thing, over engineered by someone with too much time on their hands and the bloody stubbornness not to accept that the job was done a long time ago and works, I am just grateful he never had a go at the wheel :ROFLMAO:
 

Patrick1 

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Having seen a few US videos where apparently experienced beeks have struggled and even dropped their short-lugged frames, I'm glad to have something longer to hold. ;) 🤪
Your finger is only the width of a Langstroth lug, the rest is wasted, we all drop frames at some stage :unsure:you wont see many Langstroth broken lugs either. :ROFLMAO:
 

Boston Bees 

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Having seen a few US videos where apparently experienced beeks have struggled and even dropped their short-lugged frames, I'm glad to have something longer to hold. ;) 🤪
Totally. I have had Smith frames (which are short lugged like Langstroth) and they are much more awkward to manipulate. Repositioning your fingers, should you get a bad grip to start with, is a bit of an art. Long-lugs get my vote.
 
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Erichalfbee 

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I have Nationals made from WRC and British Cedar from two different UK suppliers, all are showing signs of rot and shrinkage.
I’m sure that occasionally happens wherever you buy them from
Equally these same suppliers’ hives may last for decades.
 

Amari 

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Another advantage of Nats over Langs: hand grip when lifting is more secure than the routed groove of the Lang
 

drex 

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I learned on commercials. Did not get on with short lugs so went for National. Now with experience of handling frames I wish I had gone commercial for the brood
 

Patrick1 

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Not round here it can't!
And it's just more bloody plastic!
When are we going to kick our addiction to the stuff!!?
Taking my life in my hands with this response, honest and straightforward is my only approach.
Until people realise they know the price of everything and the value of nothing we cannot move forward, we can easily move to more sustainable products at a price in the short term.
Most small beekeeping plastic can easily be replaced with bamboo, the larger items like hives can be made from sustainable foresting, if insulation is required we have companies in the UK who are world leaders in the construction industry were I come from who really know how to insulate and recycle.
If you can work out how to square this circle we could have a solution, a reality check is coming !
 

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