How many frames ?

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I also only run nine frames in the brood boxes. It makes manipulation a lot quicker and reduces the risk of squashing the Queen. I hate inspecting hives with plastic frames or 10 frames to the box.
I have said this before. The old time beekeepers weren't stupid and if they did something they had a good reason to do it. Every time I have tried to improve on their methods I have found that they were right and I was wrong.
 
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Mummzie

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I would value the opinions / reasons / methods running brood boxes with 9 or 10 frames.
I can see the merit of having extra space in a 9 frame setup as described above, but how do you prevent burr comb on the walls?
How do you stop the end bars being propolised?- or under this setup is that even a problem?

I'm sure there are many different opinions- and they will all be right for some reason.
 
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couple of issues with 9's in brood boxes. one is simply burr comb or that end frames gets filled with honey right out to the box. that then creates issues if you need to move it and kinda defeats the point of having 9.

the other is if you remove 1 frame you remove 1/10th of the lay space. with single FD your a bit undersized to start with and loosing lay space simply makes it worse. that adds to swarming pressures and slow build up.
 

Alastair

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9 frame brood boxes were popular when 2 box brood nests were popular, cos the queen still had all the room she needed. Now with most running singles you need to get all the comb room in there you can, so 10 is the norm. Which normally is not quite enough for many queens.

End bars tended to be universally 35 mm way back and by the time they got propolised 9 frames fitted fine with a bit of a gap at each side of the box. Some American research found that swarming was reduced by brood frames spaced a bit wider than natural.

Other advantage, in those low pathogen days frames could be kept many years, cocoons built up on the cell bottoms but because the frames were spaced widely the bees could just build out a bit.
 
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I also only run nine frames in the brood boxes. It makes manipulation a lot quicker and reduces the risk of squashing the Queen. I hate inspecting hives with plastic frames or 10 frames to the box.
I have said this before. The old time beekeepers weren't stupid and if they did something they had a good reason to do it. Every time I have tried to improve on their methods I have found that they were right and I was wrong.
I concur with all this
9 frame setup as described above, but how do you prevent burr comb on the walls?
Spaced properly, not generally an issue. Likewise 8 frames in honey supers, generally not an issue
 

NickWallingford

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One method that I never much cared for, but have used, had 9 frames/box for brood. But the middle 7 would be squashed together as tight as if they were at 10/box, and the two outside frames were spread between those two outside gaps. It kept down the wax buildup on the shoulders of the frames caused by spacing out the frames. But still gave some ease of manipulation with just the 9 frames.

But that also raises the issues of the widths of endbars. In the middle/late 1970s there was quite an uptake of narrower endbars. This article puts it into pretty good context, and certainly bears some consideration...
 

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NickWallingford

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And I've worked with concrete floors. Even with the no-rot aspects, they were never very nice. Cold, wet. And not migratory. But for permanent yards in high moisture areas where the floors would rot out? I guess I can see why they were made.
 
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Spaced properly, not generally an issue. Likewise 8 frames in honey supers, generally not an issue
trouble is you can say that about every frame arrangement known to man kind.
there is a lot of caveats that come with all that.
the main one is if your a decent beekeeper your in there enough that you keep it clean.

with 8 frame supers, if you harvest early they don't get a chance to do much bridging.
however i guarantee you that if the honey ls left to be capped properly they will bridge and burr comb a lot of it. the thousands of 8 frame supers i extract every year testify to that.

any time a box has excess space the bees will use it if given time and conditions to do so.
 
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Other than the ‘plastic’ I really rate plastic frames and happily use 10 frames per BB. Of course, I have plenty of wooden frames, but find just as many frustrations with them as plastic.

Also, I love innovation and there are plenty of improvements on the “old days”
 
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bee wise, wooden frames always seam to work best. which is why we still have them.
however cost, assembly problems, the amount that break every year, plastics win out in that respect. bees use them fine once they get drawn out well.
 

kaihoka

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bee wise, wooden frames always seam to work best. which is why we still have them.
however cost, assembly problems, the amount that break every year, plastics win out in that respect. bees use them fine once they get drawn out well.
Do you think bees do not build so much drone comb with plastic.
A commercial beek friend said he thought there were not so many drones around and maybe wide use of plastic frames was causing it .
 
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Do you think bees do not build so much drone comb with plastic.
A commercial beek friend said he thought there were not so many drones around and maybe wide use of plastic frames was causing it .
i think there is some truth to that. but not because of the plastic.
its simply that there is typically less damaged comb with plastics that gets turned into drone comb.
also in some areas there is so many new beeks who are all on new gear. no manky old brood frames the bees fill with drone comb.

edit: also many commercial beeks get rid of all drone comb. especially when they have mated queens on tap.
 

kaihoka

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i think there is some truth to that. but not because of the plastic.
its simply that there is typically less damaged comb with plastics that gets turned into drone comb.
also in some areas there is so many new beeks who are all on new gear. no manky old brood frames the bees fill with drone comb.

edit: also many commercial beeks get rid of all drone comb. especially when they have mated queens on tap.
I have noticed that all damaged and not correctly drawn frames are filled with drone comb .
It would not be good for the health of the bee species if drone populations drop away .
Beeks may see them as unproductive but a strong vigorous population is very important for successful matings .
 

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