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What is the better angle for the walls of a TBH?

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  • Andy Holcomb
    OK, I have looked at many different designs outthere and like a few details of many different TBHs. My plan is to complile all the details I like and combine
    Message 1 of 12 , Nov 30, 2008
      OK, I have looked at many different designs outthere and like a few
      details of many different TBHs. My plan is to complile all the
      details I like and combine into one hive design. My big question is
      concerning the angle of the sides. What angle makes best for least
      amount of attachments? Years ago I deciced to build the Hardison
      Hive, but things came up and plans have been pushed out a few years.
      Now that I am ready to follow through I pulled out all the files I
      collected years ago and began doing new research. What I found is
      the website of Marty Hardison is no longer live and I cannot remember
      what his thought were on his design wall angle (102-103 degree). I
      see the backyard hives from backyardhive.com have 120 degree for one
      design and 130 degree for another. I am remembering Marty claiming
      the angle on his hive produced less attachments, but I think this may
      have been in regards to the 90 TBHs. Backyardhive claim the 130
      degree angle produces less than the 120... I am confused... I read
      this as the greater the angle the less attachments. Is this true, or
      have I mislead myself in the research somewhere. Any help would be
      greatly appreciated.

      Regards,
      Andy
      Fairmont WV
    • Michael Vanecek
      I ve found that sloped sides don t mean a hill of beans to the bees, they ll still attach. So in retrospect, I d go with vertical sides big enough to put a
      Message 2 of 12 , Dec 1, 2008
        I've found that sloped sides don't mean a hill of beans to the bees,
        they'll still attach. So in retrospect, I'd go with vertical sides big
        enough to put a deep frame in, so if you do nucs for queen raising and
        whatnot you can easily slip a frame in there - save you from having to
        cut-out and tie to a top-bar.

        Be well,
        Mike

        --
        Zone 8, Texas
        http://www.taroandti.com/ Exotic Plant Info and More...



        Andy Holcomb wrote:
        > OK, I have looked at many different designs outthere and like a few
        > details of many different TBHs. My plan is to complile all the
        > details I like and combine into one hive design. My big question is
        > concerning the angle of the sides. What angle makes best for least
        > amount of attachments? Years ago I deciced to build the Hardison
        > Hive, but things came up and plans have been pushed out a few years.
        > Now that I am ready to follow through I pulled out all the files I
        > collected years ago and began doing new research. What I found is
        > the website of Marty Hardison is no longer live and I cannot remember
        > what his thought were on his design wall angle (102-103 degree). I
        > see the backyard hives from backyardhive.com have 120 degree for one
        > design and 130 degree for another. I am remembering Marty claiming
        > the angle on his hive produced less attachments, but I think this may
        > have been in regards to the 90 TBHs. Backyardhive claim the 130
        > degree angle produces less than the 120... I am confused... I read
        > this as the greater the angle the less attachments. Is this true, or
        > have I mislead myself in the research somewhere. Any help would be
        > greatly appreciated.
        >
        > Regards,
        > Andy
        > Fairmont WV
        >
        >
        >
      • Andrew Holcomb
        THANKS FOR THE REPLY THIS IS WHAT I WAS LOOKING FOR. GREAT IDEA! MY PLAN IS YET MORPHING AGAIN... BEST REGARDS,ANDY ... From: Michael Vanecek To:
        Message 3 of 12 , Dec 1, 2008
          THANKS FOR THE REPLY THIS IS WHAT I WAS LOOKING FOR. GREAT IDEA! MY
          PLAN IS YET MORPHING AGAIN... BEST REGARDS,ANDY

          ----- Original Message -----
          From: "Michael Vanecek"
          To: TopHive@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: Re: [TopHive] What is the better angle for the walls of a
          TBH?
          Date: Mon, 01 Dec 2008 08:37:32 -0600


          I've found that sloped sides don't mean a hill of beans to the bees,
          they'll still attach. So in retrospect, I'd go with vertical sides
          big
          enough to put a deep frame in, so if you do nucs for queen raising
          and
          whatnot you can easily slip a frame in there - save you from having
          to
          cut-out and tie to a top-bar.

          Be well,
          Mike

          --
          Zone 8, Texas
          http://www.taroandti.com/ Exotic Plant Info and More...



          Andy Holcomb wrote:
          > OK, I have looked at many different designs outthere and like a
          > few details of many different TBHs. My plan is to complile all
          > the details I like and combine into one hive design. My big
          > question is concerning the angle of the sides. What angle makes
          > best for least amount of attachments? Years ago I deciced to
          > build the Hardison Hive, but things came up and plans have been
          > pushed out a few years. Now that I am ready to follow through I
          > pulled out all the files I collected years ago and began doing
          > new research. What I found is the website of Marty Hardison is
          > no longer live and I cannot remember what his thought were on his
          > design wall angle (102-103 degree). I see the backyard hives
          > from backyardhive.com have 120 degree for one design and 130
          > degree for another. I am remembering Marty claiming the angle on
          > his hive produced less attachments, but I think this may have
          > been in regards to the 90 TBHs. Backyardhive claim the 130
          > degree angle produces less than the 120... I am confused... I
          > read this as the greater the angle the less attachments. Is this
          > true, or have I mislead myself in the research somewhere. Any
          > help would be greatly appreciated. Regards,
          > Andy Fairmont WV
          >
          >
          >

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        • dplatnyc@aol.com
          One advantage of sloping sides which I have not seen addressed is that you increase the ration of top-bar attachment to overall size of comb, meaning that a
          Message 4 of 12 , Dec 1, 2008
            One advantage of sloping sides which I have not seen addressed is that you
            increase the ration of top-bar attachment to overall size of comb, meaning that
            a full comb will not weigh as much when lifted. This can reduce the
            likelihood of the comb falling off the top bar when lifted out.

            Tom



            In a message dated 12/1/2008 10:31:39 A.M. Eastern Standard Time,
            andyholcomb@... writes:

            THANKS FOR THE REPLY THIS IS WHAT I WAS LOOKING FOR. GREAT IDEA! MY
            PLAN IS YET MORPHING AGAIN... BEST REGARDS,ANDY

            ----- Original Message -----
            From: "Michael Vanecek"
            To: TopHive@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: Re: [TopHive] What is the better angle for the walls of a
            TBH?
            Date: Mon, 01 Dec 2008 08:37:32 -0600


            I've found that sloped sides don't mean a hill of beans to the bees,
            they'll still attach. So in retrospect, I'd go with vertical sides
            big
            enough to put a deep frame in, so if you do nucs for queen raising
            and
            whatnot you can easily slip a frame in there - save you from having
            to
            cut-out and tie to a top-bar.

            Be well,
            Mike

            --
            Zone 8, Texas
            http://www.taroandti.com/ Exotic Plant Info and More...



            Andy Holcomb wrote:
            > OK, I have looked at many different designs outthere and like a
            > few details of many different TBHs. My plan is to complile all
            > the details I like and combine into one hive design. My big
            > question is concerning the angle of the sides. What angle makes
            > best for least amount of attachments? Years ago I deciced to
            > build the Hardison Hive, but things came up and plans have been
            > pushed out a few years. Now that I am ready to follow through I
            > pulled out all the files I collected years ago and began doing
            > new research. What I found is the website of Marty Hardison is
            > no longer live and I cannot remember what his thought were on his
            > design wall angle (102-103 degree). I see the backyard hives
            > from backyardhive.com have 120 degree for one design and 130
            > degree for another. I am remembering Marty claiming the angle on
            > his hive produced less attachments, but I think this may have
            > been in regards to the 90 TBHs. Backyardhive claim the 130
            > degree angle produces less than the 120... I am confused... I
            > read this as the greater the angle the less attachments. Is this
            > true, or have I mislead myself in the research somewhere. Any
            > help would be greatly appreciated. Regards,
            > Andy Fairmont WV
            >
            >
            >

            ------------------------------------

            The group archive and other pages can be accessed at
            http://groups.yahoo.com/group/TopHive
            Yahoo! Groups Links



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            Storage!

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            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


            ------------------------------------

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            http://groups.yahoo.com/group/TopHive
            Yahoo! Groups Links






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            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • permie_bird
            I have a slope sided TBH, built on the Hardison design. I find when the combs are soft the bees attach to them to the walls to keep the comb from breaking and
            Message 5 of 12 , Dec 1, 2008
              I have a slope sided TBH, built on the Hardison design. I find when the combs are soft the
              bees attach to them to the walls to keep the comb from breaking and falling on warm
              days. After the comb firms up and I cut them loose for inspection, the bees don't reattach
              to the sloped side TBH. I have never worked with vertical sides, but I thought I would
              mention my expierence, just to add to the confusion. ;-)

              Moera

              --- In TopHive@yahoogroups.com, Michael Vanecek <mike@...> wrote:
              >
              > I've found that sloped sides don't mean a hill of beans to the bees,
              > they'll still attach. So in retrospect, I'd go with vertical sides big
              > enough to put a deep frame in, so if you do nucs for queen raising and
              > whatnot you can easily slip a frame in there - save you from having to
              > cut-out and tie to a top-bar.
              >
              > Be well,
              > Mike
              >
              > --
              > Zone 8, Texas
              > http://www.taroandti.com/ Exotic Plant Info and More...
              >
              >
              >
              > Andy Holcomb wrote:
              > > OK, I have looked at many different designs outthere and like a few
              > > details of many different TBHs. My plan is to complile all the
              > > details I like and combine into one hive design. My big question is
              > > concerning the angle of the sides. What angle makes best for least
              > > amount of attachments? Years ago I deciced to build the Hardison
              > > Hive, but things came up and plans have been pushed out a few years.
              > > Now that I am ready to follow through I pulled out all the files I
              > > collected years ago and began doing new research. What I found is
              > > the website of Marty Hardison is no longer live and I cannot remember
              > > what his thought were on his design wall angle (102-103 degree). I
              > > see the backyard hives from backyardhive.com have 120 degree for one
              > > design and 130 degree for another. I am remembering Marty claiming
              > > the angle on his hive produced less attachments, but I think this may
              > > have been in regards to the 90 TBHs. Backyardhive claim the 130
              > > degree angle produces less than the 120... I am confused... I read
              > > this as the greater the angle the less attachments. Is this true, or
              > > have I mislead myself in the research somewhere. Any help would be
              > > greatly appreciated.
              > >
              > > Regards,
              > > Andy
              > > Fairmont WV
              > >
              > >
              > >
              >
            • Michael Vanecek
              True. On the 19 top-bars I ve seen for the Tanzanian TBH, I often see a single vertical support - usually a dowel - that the bees attach comb to so that it s
              Message 6 of 12 , Dec 1, 2008
                True. On the 19" top-bars I've seen for the Tanzanian TBH, I often see a
                single vertical support - usually a dowel - that the bees attach comb to
                so that it's better supported.

                Be well,
                Mike

                --
                Zone 8, Texas
                http://www.taroandti.com/ Exotic Plant Info and More...



                dplatnyc@... wrote:
                > One advantage of sloping sides which I have not seen addressed is that you
                > increase the ration of top-bar attachment to overall size of comb, meaning that
                > a full comb will not weigh as much when lifted. This can reduce the
                > likelihood of the comb falling off the top bar when lifted out.
                >
                > Tom
                >
                >
              • Gary
                The great mystery behind the angled sides of a KTBH! The angled sides were the earlier versions when TBH beekeeping became popular and the sole idea behind it
                Message 7 of 12 , Dec 2, 2008
                  The great mystery behind the angled sides of a KTBH! The angled sides
                  were the earlier versions when TBH beekeeping became popular and the
                  sole idea behind it was to follow the shape of a fallen hollow tree
                  that the original builder was looking at a picture of BUT, He, not
                  living in a poor third world country had access to plywood! THUS the
                  angled sides. Everything else is pure speculation that became fact thru
                  repetition.
                  It does not matter at all if you use an angle or not is purely a matter
                  of aesthetics and personal preference. There are a couple of good
                  advantages to sloped sides; The shape allows the construction of a
                  natural nest which is cantenary until it hits something that blocks it.
                  When lifting the bar out of the hive the clearance between the side of
                  the hive and comb becomes greater faster making handling easier. I just
                  like the way they look myself!
                • Gary
                  Andy, When experimenting with cavity size I first picked the overall TB length and then chose a depth and then an entrance length. I pulled my depth measurment
                  Message 8 of 12 , Dec 2, 2008
                    Andy,
                    When experimenting with cavity size I first picked the overall TB
                    length and then chose a depth and then an entrance length. I pulled my
                    depth measurment down from the middle of the TB and centered the
                    entrance at the bottom(I find it real easy to cut 1/4 inch off the
                    bottom of the front plate and there you have an end entrance) making
                    this " T " now connect the ends of the lines at the side and you have
                    your front and back plate. The depth of your sides is the same as the
                    depth you chose at the beginning and the last thing is to decide the
                    length based on total bars you wish to use.
                    "Didn't need to figure any angle" Too many people rack thier brain over
                    this angle thing!
                  • OOWONBS@Netscape.net
                    I felt 1 guy had it about right. He curved wood slats, v thin, into the sides-btm of a TB, none-top pieces, forming a frame. ok... it was sorta a frame. The
                    Message 9 of 12 , Dec 2, 2008
                      I felt 1 guy had it about right.
                      He curved wood slats, v thin, into the sides-btm of a TB,
                      none-top pieces, forming a frame. ok... it was sorta a frame.
                      The point it, the curve was not a semi circle, but roughly
                      approximates what I see combs do in pics. A half barrel
                      isn't too off. It's sorta nice too. I bet angles shed mites
                      through the btm screen, better though.

                      Back to angles... depth (height) of the comb, plays here.
                      If you use an equilateral triangle, (60-60-60) the TB cab
                      be wider. if the comb is tio be long, you may wish to
                      narrow it a bit. Throw all that out if you don't mind more
                      attachment. Handling a TB full of comb is more iffy if the
                      comb is wide, or long, IOW, heavy. I thiMk bees sense this.

                      And all THAT said, 30 degrees off of vertical ought to get
                      you perfect comb, I would *assume,* if your bees deisre
                      to follow the rules. If they were fish in a previous incarnation,
                      they've been to school. If not, well...

                      It's interesting that the first row of comb may be, from
                      one end of the TB to the other, off from horizontal
                      by 1-5 cells. Apparently Noah couldn't teach them a
                      thing, in a whole 40 days, about level, but they seem
                      to have plumb, down pat. Only a few bees went on
                      to become carpenters, and they are mostly into demo.

                      A runner or sq end will help your experiments not tip
                      over due to your narrow bottom, regardless of angle.
                      Now, if you use 1/4" thk plywood in 3 layers, and glue
                      it together, you can warp it from nearly vertical to 45
                      degrees, and tell us the results. As you glue each layer
                      on, you will temporarily want at least 1 center triangle
                      to gradually continue the shape. Maybe 2. once all 3
                      layers are glued, (1 at a time) and set up, remove the
                      intermediate shape-spacers. of course, this is an experiment.
                      It would make follower boards a pain to make, many
                      being required... unless a simple TB & cardboard was
                      used, or you had a couple wooden ones, and worked
                      from wide to narrow, shaving 1 follower each time,
                      while slipping in a backup follower, pre cut for the day.

                      Just musings... Happy Holidays.
                      BillSF9c
                    • OOWONBS@Netscape.net
                      Regarding a Lang deep frame in a TB... Sounds smart. But remove the frame and in a hot area you might get some weak comb... once you have converted to all TBs.
                      Message 10 of 12 , Dec 2, 2008
                        Regarding a Lang deep frame in a TB...
                        Sounds smart. But remove the frame and in a hot area
                        you might get some weak comb... once you have converted
                        to all TBs.

                        To discuss shape AND size... Some thoughts...
                        A Warre' TB is about 12 In internally, width wise.
                        With 3/4 lumber the TB will be 12 + 1 1/2... 13 1/2".

                        Warre's were ~ 17" tall, until halved to ~ 8+"
                        This is *Only* to consider comb shape... 12" W x 16" tall,
                        but admittedly, in France, where heat is a smalll issue, (I believe...)

                        And this may be a comb size in a tree cavity.
                        Now, let's look at weight and a triangle.
                        And let's use very simple numbers to illustrate the point.

                        Say we have a comb with an AVERAGE width of 12".
                        That could be 18" at the top, and 12" in the middle,
                        and 6" wide at the bottom. This comb might be this
                        "dimension-set," no matter if 12" tall, or 2 feet tall.

                        If it's cold where you are, you might make a vertical side
                        hive, and add sloping sides, inside that, to offer an air
                        void for insulation. (Just ideas. Not saying I believe
                        they are ultra valid. ;>)

                        If these angle pieces are not full height, you end up with
                        an angled lower half, and vertical upper half, almost like a
                        cross section of a half barrel, in angled format. (An angled
                        semi-circle, or parabola.)

                        Now if a Lang frame is width-right, you might trim the comb
                        into an acceptable TB shape, and cut off the sides and btm
                        of the comb, and approximate the comb-shape to fit your
                        hive shape. you trim comb during a cutout anyway.

                        A wooden frame is about $2. A plastic one could be
                        permanently trimmed, with a hot wire, or ahead of time,
                        put into a Lang for pre-populating it.

                        Just nutty ideas, as food for thought. It may germinate
                        an idea in yourself, twisting and warping one or two of
                        these..
                        BillSF9c
                      • howard pirtle
                        WOW...????   lol HHH ... From: OOWONBS@Netscape.net Subject: [TopHive] What is the better angle for the walls of a TBH? To:
                        Message 11 of 12 , Dec 3, 2008
                          WOW...????   lol HHH

                          --- On Tue, 12/2/08, OOWONBS@... <OOWONBS@...> wrote:

                          From: OOWONBS@... <OOWONBS@...>
                          Subject: [TopHive] What is the better angle for the walls of a TBH?
                          To: TopHive@yahoogroups.com
                          Date: Tuesday, December 2, 2008, 11:01 PM







                          I felt 1 guy had it about right.
                          He curved wood slats, v thin, into the sides-btm of a TB,
                          none-top pieces, forming a frame. ok... it was sorta a frame.
                          The point it, the curve was not a semi circle, but roughly
                          approximates what I see combs do in pics. A half barrel
                          isn't too off. It's sorta nice too. I bet angles shed mites
                          through the btm screen, better though.

                          Back to angles... depth (height) of the comb, plays here.
                          If you use an equilateral triangle, (60-60-60) the TB cab
                          be wider. if the comb is tio be long, you may wish to
                          narrow it a bit. Throw all that out if you don't mind more
                          attachment. Handling a TB full of comb is more iffy if the
                          comb is wide, or long, IOW, heavy. I thiMk bees sense this.

                          And all THAT said, 30 degrees off of vertical ought to get
                          you perfect comb, I would *assume,* if your bees deisre
                          to follow the rules. If they were fish in a previous incarnation,
                          they've been to school. If not, well...

                          It's interesting that the first row of comb may be, from
                          one end of the TB to the other, off from horizontal
                          by 1-5 cells. Apparently Noah couldn't teach them a
                          thing, in a whole 40 days, about level, but they seem
                          to have plumb, down pat. Only a few bees went on
                          to become carpenters, and they are mostly into demo.

                          A runner or sq end will help your experiments not tip
                          over due to your narrow bottom, regardless of angle.
                          Now, if you use 1/4" thk plywood in 3 layers, and glue
                          it together, you can warp it from nearly vertical to 45
                          degrees, and tell us the results. As you glue each layer
                          on, you will temporarily want at least 1 center triangle
                          to gradually continue the shape. Maybe 2. once all 3
                          layers are glued, (1 at a time) and set up, remove the
                          intermediate shape-spacers. of course, this is an experiment.
                          It would make follower boards a pain to make, many
                          being required... unless a simple TB & cardboard was
                          used, or you had a couple wooden ones, and worked
                          from wide to narrow, shaving 1 follower each time,
                          while slipping in a backup follower, pre cut for the day.

                          Just musings... Happy Holidays.
                          BillSF9c

















                          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                        • Marty Hardison
                          Andy, I d like to chime in on the discussion of the best angle for a topbar hive. The most widely accepted angle is the 120 degree that you mentioned. More
                          Message 12 of 12 , Mar 5, 2009
                            Andy,
                            I'd like to chime in on the discussion of the best angle for a topbar hive. The most widely accepted angle is the 120 degree that you mentioned. More hives around the world are built with this degree of slope than any other. Early on in my experiments I decided to make a hive that was more compact with less angle - 103 degrees. The combs in these hives were easier to manage. I did notice more attachments on the sides but these incresed the strength of the combs in hot weather or when hives were being moved. Either 120 or 103 gives the bees a space that more naturally contains the bee cluster. This trapezoidal shape helps bees tolerate winter. If I were in a climate that allowed the bees to survive year round over an open screened bottom I would be inclined to adopt the 120 degree slope to minimize the bottom opening.

                            As far as my website, you are correct. It crashed and I have not gotten it back up. For now if you or anyone else would like to receive some of my material complete with "Hardison Hive" specifications just e-mail me at Marty.Hardison@... and I will send a pdf file.

                            Have a good bee season,
                            Marty Hardison

                            --- In TopHive@yahoogroups.com, "Andy Holcomb" <andyholcomb@...> wrote:
                            >
                            > OK, I have looked at many different designs outthere and like a few
                            > details of many different TBHs. My plan is to complile all the
                            > details I like and combine into one hive design. My big question is
                            > concerning the angle of the sides. What angle makes best for least
                            > amount of attachments? Years ago I deciced to build the Hardison
                            > Hive, but things came up and plans have been pushed out a few years.
                            > Now that I am ready to follow through I pulled out all the files I
                            > collected years ago and began doing new research. What I found is
                            > the website of Marty Hardison is no longer live and I cannot remember
                            > what his thought were on his design wall angle (102-103 degree). I
                            > see the backyard hives from backyardhive.com have 120 degree for one
                            > design and 130 degree for another. I am remembering Marty claiming
                            > the angle on his hive produced less attachments, but I think this may
                            > have been in regards to the 90 TBHs. Backyardhive claim the 130
                            > degree angle produces less than the 120... I am confused... I read
                            > this as the greater the angle the less attachments. Is this true, or
                            > have I mislead myself in the research somewhere. Any help would be
                            > greatly appreciated.
                            >
                            > Regards,
                            > Andy
                            > Fairmont WV
                            >
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