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PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 12:57 am    Post subject: Quadratic hive

I have just built my first quadratic hive. Since I am in the US if have built it to quarter Langstroth dimensions. I oriented my frames length wise as in a normal Lanstroth hive but I suspect that they maybe should be across. I am wondering about making them 10 inches by 10 inches square and clamp on some strips to fill the overhang when they interface with a Langstroth hive. With the 8" x 10" size I can squeeze in 5 frames with 1 1/4 inch spacing. With a 10" x 10" hive I could fit 6 frames easily and I think the bees would appreciate the extra volume. I am looking forward to giving them a try this spring.
PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2018 8:15 am    Post subject:

Here's my latest Quad hive video:
PostPosted: Sun Sep 10, 2017 11:31 am    Post subject:

I suspect that queen mating is always going to be a tricky business on a windy island that far north.

Black bees have the advantage that they often mate close to the apiary and will do so in lower temperatures than Italians, but you still need a good number of viable drones flying. Co-operation with other beekeepers is likely to get the best results, I think.
L Plates
PostPosted: Sat Sep 09, 2017 10:43 pm    Post subject:

I was hoping that you would think it worth a try. Interesting that you have not had much luck with your Warres, I have always thought that they would be the bees' choice.
Next year I will be ready with 2 or 3 htbh, 2 or 3 Warres and some quadratic sized Warreish hives. I imagine the bees don't mind the dimensions after all nature rarely provide hollow trees with Smith or National dimensions. I will start off with boxes 150mm deep to suit my available timber, but it would not be too difficult to extend the depth if necessary.
I will try to raise some queens as well because this year I made several splits, each produced virgin queens, but so far no success with mating. I fed them every week with fresh brood, but there is only so long before the hives that are having the brood taken start to suffer.
I have toyed with the idea of making a very long hive with small frames in an attempt to have brood on more frames. This would be managed in the style of your htbh using followers.
Aghhh! So many possibilities
I will let you know how it goes.
PostPosted: Sat Sep 09, 2017 9:44 am    Post subject:

The need far a smaller version of the Warré was indeed in my mind when I was working on this. I have run three colonies like that over the summer, one of which was later transferred into a TBH and two are still working, one with combs in 5 boxes.

I have made a number of attempts to establish Warré hives during the last 10 years, which have mostly ended in failure. the stop/start flows in my area do not seem to encourage rapid, downward development and I have never managed to get them established in the third box before they swarmed. Often, they ddn't even make it to box 2.

I have seen Warré hives working very well elsewhere, and we do have one in our group apiary that seems to be doing OK, but my mostly black/near-native bees are more restrained in their expansion than Italians and I think this may also be a factor. I remember reading on David Heaf's site that Italians were the best bees for a Warré.
L Plates
PostPosted: Fri Sep 08, 2017 10:50 pm    Post subject:

Hi Phil,
Interesting stuff, I was wondering if you think that your quadratic hive might work using the same management system as Warre.
I am based on a remote island in Orkney and have been keeping bees here for 4 years. My bees are mostly in Smiths because that is what other beekeepers here reccomend. I have one horizontal top bar hive (your design) and a Warre, neither of which are occupied yet. I have built them both with extra thick timber.
My intention is to build more hives that I hope are better suited to the Orcadian winter ie very windy, fairly wet and dark, though not so cold. I want to try a mix of htbh and Warres because I want to avoid too much invasive inspections in the future. However, I have been toying with the idea of a smaller version of the Warre so that a smaller colony could be comfortable and nadiring would be a swift solution to expansion. If I do add your quadratic hive to the mix, it will probably be restricted to 150mm deep, since I have a pile of rough sawn larch about 22mm by 150mm left over from cladding our house. I anticipate this would need a little more watching than a Warre because of the smaller volumes.
Next year I hope to run a 2 queen htbh (as described in your book) to see if I can get some honey for myself. In 4 years I have only had a few jars. We have no trees therefore forrage is limited. Beekeeping here is never going to make you rich, but it is none the less a satisfying pursuit.
Thanks for the videos, I like the idea.
PostPosted: Fri Sep 08, 2017 11:45 am    Post subject: NEW Quadratic Hive videos

I have just posted a couple of videos of my experimental Quadratic Hive.

The idea was to design a hive that is truly universal, with an easy transfer route to ALL other hive types, including all frame and top bar hives, both horizontal and vertical.

Let me know what you think.

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