Author Topic: Portable Obsevation Hive  (Read 220 times)

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Offline tedh

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Portable Obsevation Hive
« on: March 08, 2017, 08:41:51 AM »
Hi Everyone,
   Brother is going to build an observation hive for us to use at a few honey bee presentations here locally.  Is there an optimum size, 1 frame, 2 frame, 3 frame, etc..  Should it be be build so the frames rest side by side as in a typical hive or should the frames (2 frames) be placed end to end?  Side by side would give the girls a place to get out of the light but end to end would allow people to see both sides of each of two frames. I can't imagine the bees would be in there more than 3 hours and that would be a stretch.  Probably closer to 2 hours.  Other things to keep in mind or any added amenities to the OB hive?  Ventilation comes to mind.  Others?  Thanks, Ted
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Offline Perry

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Re: Portable Obsevation Hive
« Reply #1 on: March 08, 2017, 11:20:44 AM »
Mine is 3 deep frames high, could probably have gotten away with just 2 deep high. I don't think you want anything wider than a single frame, people hope and hunt for the queen. With a 3 framer you have the choice of leaving them in there for longer, easily several days if needed.
I have lots of ventilation in mine and the bees can propolize the screens if they choose.
OB hives are one of the best ways to grab and keep kids attention! :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:






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Offline tedh

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Re: Portable Obsevation Hive
« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2017, 11:32:15 AM »
THAT'S nice Perry!  Could you post some more pics, closeups of the venting, and construction details?  Never thought of the frames on top of each other.  Can the frames be observed from both sides?  It appears in one of the pics the OB hive has at least one side covered with something white?  How do you install the frames?  More man, more!  Ted
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Offline Perry

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Re: Portable Obsevation Hive
« Reply #3 on: March 08, 2017, 04:33:43 PM »
There's not a lot to it. The glass is actually 2 sheets of Lexan (one for each side) and they just slide down into slots on the sides when the lid is up. Those white pieces you mentioned are just cloroplast (real esate sign) material that slide into another slot next to the Lexan to protect and darken the hive. On the one end I have a feeder jar with a tunnel built to it to give bees access, and on the other end just a 1" hole for the bees to come and go if I let them. Plenty of screened vent holes on top and down each side (I have wooden plugs to block them off if needed).
If you wanted a good Ob. hive to buy though, I would go for one of those Ulster OB hives. :)






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Offline neillsayers

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Re: Portable Obsevation Hive
« Reply #4 on: March 08, 2017, 04:40:18 PM »
That is really cool, Perry. Those kids will never forget that.

Good on you Ted for giving beekeeping the good PR! :)
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Offline LazyBkpr

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Re: Portable Obsevation Hive
« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2017, 01:56:21 PM »

   So, does this mean I do not have to clean up mine?   C:-)
   Last time I used it was two years ago for a speach at the library for kids, so it has about an inch of dust on it.   ;D
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Offline Robo

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Re: Portable Obsevation Hive
« Reply #7 on: March 09, 2017, 04:23:17 PM »
I'd suggest an Ulster hive.   Easy to move around and has plenty of support bees to keep things in check.

http://www.worldwidebeekeeping.com/forum/index.php/topic,5889.msg75725.html#msg75725

I usually just use a 5 frame nuc to fill it the night before and fill the empty frame space with a comb filled with water.
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Offline Wandering Man

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Re: Portable Obsevation Hive
« Reply #8 on: March 09, 2017, 06:00:48 PM »
For those of us with improper training in carpentry:

http://www.brushymountainbeefarm.com/Ulster-Observation-Hive/productinfo/U501/

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Offline tedh

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Re: Portable Obsevation Hive
« Reply #9 on: Yesterday at 06:42:19 PM »
Dang!  I LOVE my family!








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Offline Wandering Man

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Re: Portable Obsevation Hive
« Reply #10 on: Yesterday at 06:57:30 PM »
Absolutely Gorgeous!

It is not the road that is hard. 
The road just sits ...
It is how we approach the road that makes it hard.


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Offline Perry

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Re: Portable Obsevation Hive
« Reply #11 on: Yesterday at 08:35:47 PM »
Did you build  :o or buy that? I see it sitting on a work bench.
Beauty! :)
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Online Jen

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Re: Portable Obsevation Hive
« Reply #12 on: Yesterday at 08:52:30 PM »
Very cool Ted! So how does this work? How many frames fit in there? How do you know the if the queen is upstairs in viewing or down stairs in the other frames?
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Offline tedh

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Re: Portable Obsevation Hive
« Reply #13 on: Yesterday at 09:40:13 PM »
No Perry, I didn't build it, MY BROTHER DID!
Jen, the bottom is a 5 frame nuc.  We can move the frame with the queen into the upper, viewing portion as needed. The upper observation unit will have a plastic queen excluder that keeps queen in place.  The observation portion can be removed and we'll use the bottom as a nuc and manage the colony accordingly.  I was concerned about leaving such a nice piece out in the weather but brother said he put 5 coats of marine varnish on and it should be fine.  Can't wait to get it in my hot little hands.  That'll happen next weekend.  Ted
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Re: Portable Obsevation Hive
« Reply #14 on: Yesterday at 10:13:46 PM »
Lucky dog! Very nice and presentable piece of equipment  ;D 8)
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Offline neillsayers

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Re: Portable Obsevation Hive
« Reply #15 on: Yesterday at 10:46:37 PM »
A thing of beauty!  :)
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