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Building Beehives For Dummies


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Table of Contents

Introduction 1 About This Book 1 Conventions Used in This Book 2 What You're Not to Read 3 Foolish Assumptions 3 How This Book Is Organized 3 Part 1: The Buzz on Beehives 4 Part 2: The World's Most Popular Beehive Designs 4 Part 3: Sweet Beehive Accessories 4 Part 4: The Part of Tens 5 Icons Used in This Book 5 Beyond the Book 5 Where to Go from Here 6 Part 1: The Buzz on Beehives 7 Chapter 1: Getting Sweet on Building Your Own Beehives 9 Bee-ing in the Know about Bees 10 Honeybees' most important job: Pollination 10 The products of the honeybee 11 The main players in a beehive 12 Appreciating the Benefits of Building a Beehive Rather than Buying One 14 Have fun and feel self-satisfaction 14 Enhance your commitment to beekeeping, and better understand your bees' home 14 Modify designs to better meet your needs 14 Enjoy better quality than store-bought kits 15 Go green and recycle 15 Make building a family affair 15 Sell your handiwork 15 Making Plans for Your Own Beehive 15 Setting Up Your Workshop 16 Assembling Tools and Materials 16 Getting a Handle on Carpentry Skills 17 Constructing Hives and Accessories 17 Chapter 2: Comb Sweet Comb: Beehive Basics 21 Knowing What Bees Need in a Hive 21 Shelter and safety 21 The ability to expand 22 Dry and well-ventilated conditions 22 A nearby source of water 22 Understanding the Anatomy of a Beehive 23 Elevated hive stand 24 Bottom board 25 Entrance reducer 25 Deep hive bodies 25 Honey super 25 Frames 26 Inner cover 27 Outer cover 27 Looking at Locale 28 Following regional laws and requirements 28 Bee-ing sweet to your neighbors 28 Picking the perfect location 29 Making a Beeline to the Hive That's Best for Your Needs 31 A hive for learning and teaching 32 Hives for pollinating your garden 32 A hive for harvesting honey 32 Hives to match your building skills 32 Hives for selling 33 A handy table to help you decide the hive to build 33 Chapter 3: Gathering Basic Tools and Materials 35 Bee-ing Safe Before You Begin 35 Protecting yourself with safety gear 36 Following safety practices 38 Oops! Planning for emergencies 38 Talking about Tools 39 A few essential hand tools 39 The right saws and blades 42 Gadgets that are nice to have but not essential 43 Looking at Lumber 45 Choosing lumber 45 Sizing up lumber 47 Getting the scoop on plywood 48 The Buzz on Other Building Materials 49 Fixating on fasteners 49 Rifling through roofing materials 50 Selecting screening materials 51 Protecting Your Beehives with Paint and More 51 Estimating the Amounts and Costs of Materials 52 Chapter 4: Fine-Tuning Your Carpentry Skills 55 Always Adhering to the "Bee Space" 55 Measuring and Marking Lumber 56 Cutting Lumber 58 What's Up with This Joint? 59 Butt joints 59 Rabbet cuts and dado joints 60 Finger joints 61 Working with Flashing and Wire 63 Cutting and bending metal flashing 63 Cutting and shaping wire hardware cloth 64 Assembling the Parts of Your Hive 65 Going with glue 65 Being square 65 Nailing and screwing everything together 66 Part 2: The World's Most Popular Beehive Designs 67 Chapter 5: The Kenya Top Bar Hive 69 Vital Stats 71 Materials List 72 Cut List 72 Elevated hive stand 73 Hive body 74 Top bars 75 Ventilated roof 76 Assembling the Hive 77 Chapter 6: The Five-Frame Nuc Hive 81 Vital Stats 82 Materials List 83 Cut List 83 Bottom board 84 Hive body 85 Inner hive cover 86 Outer hive cover 88 Assembling the Hive 89 Chapter 7: The Four-Frame Observation Hive 95 Vital Stats 97 Materials List 97 Cut List 98 Hive body and top 98 Bottom board 100 Assembling the Hive 100 Chapter 8: The Warre Hive 105 Vital Stats 107 Materials List 107 Cut List 108 Hive bottom and stand 109 Hive boxes 110 Top bars 111 Quilt box 112 Ventilated roof 112 Assembling the Hive 114 Chapter 9: The British National Hive 119 Vital Stats 120 Materials List 121 Cut List 122 Floor 122 Brood chamber 124 Shallow honey supers 125 Making tricky cuts for hand and drip rails 126 Deep and shallow frames 127 Making tricky cuts for side bars 130 Making tricky cuts for top bars 130 Crown board 131 Roof 132 Assembling the Hive 134 Chapter 10: The Langstroth Hive 141 Vital Stats 142 Materials List 143 Cut List 144 Bottom board (ten-frame version) 145 Bottom board (eight-frame version) 147 Deep hive bodies (ten-frame version) 147 Deep hive bodies (eight-frame version) 149 Medium super (ten-frame version) 149 Medium super (eight-frame version) 150 Inner hive cover (ten-frame version) 151 Inner hive cover (eight-frame version) 153 Outer hive cover (ten-frame version) 153 Outer hive cover (eight-frame version) 155 Assembling the Hive 156 Part 3: Sweet Beehive Accessories 161 Chapter 11: The Frame Jig 163 Vital Stats 164 Materials List 164 Cut List 165 Assembling the Frame Jig 166 Chapter 12: The Double Screened Inner Cover 169 Vital Stats 170 Materials List 171 Cut List 171 Double screened inner cover for the ten-frame Langstroth hive 172 Double screened inner cover for the eight-frame Langstroth hive 174 Double screened inner cover for the nuc hive 175 Double screened inner cover for the British National hive 175 Assembling the Inner Cover 176 Chapter 13: The Elevated Hive Stand 179 Vital Stats 180 Materials List 180 Cut List 181 Assembling the Elevated Hive Stand 182 Chapter 14: The IPM Screened Bottom Board 185 Vital Stats 186 Materials List 187 Cut List 188 Assembling the IPM Screened Bottom Board 190 Chapter 15: The Hive-Top Feeder 193 Vital Stats 194 Materials List 195 Cut List 195 Feeder for a ten-frame Langstroth hive 196 Feeder for an eight-frame Langstroth hive 198 Assembling the Hive-Top Feeder 199 Chapter 16: The Solar Wax Melter 203 Vital Stats 204 Materials List 204 Cut List 205 Floor assembly 205 Inclined side panels 206 Glazed top assembly 207 Assembling the Solar Wax Melter 208 Chapter 17: Langstroth Frames 213 Vital Stats 214 Materials List 215 Cut List 216 Deep frames 216 Medium frames 217 Shallow frames 217 Making tricky cuts for side bars 219 Making tricky cuts for top bars 220 Assembling Langstroth Frames 222 Part 4: The Part of Tens 225 Chapter 18: Ten (Or So) Tips for Extending the Life of Your Equipment 227 Don't Go Cheap on Materials 227 Keep a Build Log 228 Establish an Inspection Routine 228 Prepare Your Hives for Winter 229 Do Some Spring Cleaning 229 Make Yearly Exterior Touch-Ups 230 Repair the Roof 231 Replace Rotting Wood 231 Elevate Your Hives 231 Provide Proper Ventilation 232 Guard against Bears with an Electric Fence 233 Chapter 19: Ten (Or So) Ways to Trick Out Your Hives 235 Use Decorative Handles and Embellishments 236 Add Metal Frame Rests 237 Employ Exotic Woods 238 Paint Creatively 239 Shingle the Sides 240 Add a Front Porch 241 Make Your Inner Cover Transparent 241 Cut an Observation Window in the Hive Body 242 Use Alternate Roof Materials 243 Make Architectural Alterations to Your Roof 243 Mount a Webcam to Your Hive 243 Chapter 20: Ten Fun Facts about Beehives 245 Discovering the First Recorded Depiction of a Beehive 245 Unearthing the World's Oldest Beehives 246 Recounting a Brief History of Beehives around the Globe 246 Bee-ing the Beehive State 247 Studying Beehives in Outer Space 247 Finding the Largest Beehive in the World 248 Using Beehives for Design Inspiration 248 Creating Beehives for Bumblebees 248 Moving a Beehive without Confusing Your Bees 249 Transporting Migratory Beehives 249 Index 251

About the Author

Howland Blackiston has been a backyard beekeeper since 1984. He's appeared on dozens of television and radio programs, and he's a business professional who turned his passion into a thriving business. He also served as President of Connecticut's Back Yard Beekeepers Association, one of the nation's largest regional clubs for the hobbyist beekeeper.

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