This week I was reading about under floor entrances. I think this is a Dartington design, the main advantages been, reduces wind and rain getting in the hive, reduces robbing from bees and wasps. This inspired me to make some and see if they work. Its a very simple design and easy to make, much easier then a conventional floor. There is a short landing board with a vertical climb thought a 8-9mm gap, a mouse guard should not be needed with this small gap. I have made them from new wood, not overly expensive, the mesh flooring is still the most costly item. The landing board is made from recycled pallet wood.
If we have good results I will be making some to sell, so if any one is interested or have a comment, please drop me a line at email@example.com
After a miserable start to the day the sun came out, all the hives are very busy, and the bees are bringing back lots of yellow pollen. Lets hope this nice weather keeps up.
After lunch I went off to the workshop to see what I could build today. I got 4 brood boxes built up ready to go. I then remembered I’d liberated a small sheet of 4mm plywood from a skip a few weeks ago. Too thin to make crown boards but ideal for dummy boards. I found a pack of national brood frames and armed with my air gun, they were quickly assembled. I measured and cut the sheet of plywood and an hour later I am the proud owner of 10 home made dummy boards, all for the sum of £7.50 the price of the frames bought from my local bee club.
I failed to find any good sheets ply wood so I went to the local wood yard and bought an 8×4 sheet of 9mm exterior plywood. A very helpful guy at Merritt and Fryers in Skipton even cut the sheet up into 460mm x 460mm, saved me about an hours works measuring and cutting. We got 10 boards out of it with a little bit left over for me to make a couple of Nuc crown boards. I also bought some thin bits of wood for the edges. I’ve made the board so we have one side 9mm deep with the other side a little deeper so we can use this for treatments & feeding. The deeper side was made with off cuts we found in a skip. The boards have cost me about £3.50 each to make. Ive cut a couple of feeding holes in them too, just another 8 boards to go.
More wood liberated this morning, this was all chunky stuff so decided to make a hive stand. This will take 3 nucs or 3 hives side by side. My logic with the legs in the middle was that it will stand on a 2’x2′ flag stone if needed. I’m sure it will be fine for the nucs but if used as a hive stand it might need a few extra legs.
I now have access to as much wood as I need, namely liberating pallet wood from a friends work, with permission from his kind employer. This year Ive decided I’m just going to buy Brood boxes and make my own roofs, floors and crown boards. I did buy a few metal roof tops when Mann Lake had there sale on at £6 each. I had a play on Saturday and made 1 roof and 2 floors, just another 10 to go.
Taken my hive stands to the next level I made a side table and a couple of stools, very similar designs to my hive stands. The glass table top was an old shelf from a fridge. They just need a coat of paint now. All made from pallet wood.