Who sells poly hives?

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House Bee
Mar 16, 2009
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Shropshire, UK
Hive Type
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I have been doing a bit of research on this?
Modern beekeeping do them in Langstroth but you can't get the Jumbo brood body. Swienty do a Langstroth with a Jumbo body but you have to buy from Denmark and their VAT rate looks horrendous. Wynne Jones only sells National poly hives from i think, Swienty. Anyone know of anyone else?
I moved some hives up to the farm because the beans are in flower. Even using a trolley it was hard work getting wooden hives over some rough ground - don't want them too accessible.
Swienty are actually reasonable.

There are a limited number of hive sizes in Poly. Namely.

Langstroth as in standard Langstroth.

National that thakes (for some daft reason) 10 frames.

Smith that takes (I believe) 11 frames.

Struan Apiaries sell poly. No I don't have the number to hand but google does.

I wonder why jumbo frames? It makes boxes heavy.
I cannot see any advantage in bigger frame than langtroth. When it is full of honey the weight is 3 kg.

In Finland professionals keep brood in one box with excluder. Some lift all brood over excluder and put the queen again lay empty combs of foundations. So brood area is more than one box.

This summer couple of mine hives had 3 langstroth boxes quite full of brood.

Professionals overwinter colonies in one box. My experience is that such hives does not get surplus in early yield like you have winter rape. Big hives bring swarming problems.
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I know this might sound silly but do the poly hives come with a poly crown board? or do you need a wooden one. Also are you able to pop a wooden super on top of the poly ones if your needing to super up?
I know this might sound silly but do the poly hives come with a poly crown board?

Thast is a good question.

I have used 22 years polyboxes for brood.
For honey I use my 43 years ago self made wooden boxes.

The upper cover and the bottom board I have made from wood. As poly material they are expencive. D

In the picture I have splitted the hive for tranporting.

1)Left you see that I like to use raincover as basis of boxes when I nurse bees. It is board and aluminium sheet or steel.

2) The middle cover is 7 cm high wooden box. So 7 cm for insulation.
The board is 10 mm x 50 mm wooden slices. You may make them with table saw.

Insulation must be good because otherwise the ceiling is cold and collect condensation water and rain onto bees.

3) Bottom board must be cleaned often. That is why it is good to be wooden.

You may clean poly bottom with lye water too.

For migrative beekeeping and for tieing hard wooven parts are essential.

Stamfordham do National Polystyrene hives which are reasonably priced - They used to have the details online, but now you have to send off for a catalogue:


I've got 2 Poly hives and am very happy with them. You have to paint them up before putting them outside (or they get covered in algae and the sunlight can damage the polystyrene). I find the bees in them come to swarming a few weeks earlier, as they stay warmer over the winter, and seem to need less feeding and get going sooner.

The only thing thats different is that the warmest place in a poly hive is against the walls, not in the centre, so in spring you need to move the frames around to put the brood back in the centre or they end up restricting their laying space up against a wall.
Stamfordham have stopped doing them now. The weak £ makes them expensive to import.
"they end up restricting their laying space up against a wall."

That's a new one. I cannot understand this comment at all. It may be an example of knowing what is meant but not getting it across.

Colonies in poly often have brood against the walls but that in no way restricts them.

It is sure that hottest place in the hive is brood area because bees product heat and keep it steady. Foam wall just hinder the heat to move outside.
The most importan is that box is light with its insulation values.
"they end up restricting their laying space up against a wall."

Sorry - I'll try and make myself clearer!

I had a problem this year where the queen started laying in the outermost frame, only for a spring flow to encourage the bees to start storing lots of honey in the 3rd frame along. This meant that she filled 2 frames with brood, hit a wall of honey and refused to cross it and stopped laying. When I rejigged the hive so that the brood frames were central with empty frames either side and honey right at the edge, normal laying resumed.

Hope this makes sense!