Author Topic: Horizontal hive and Ben Hardin Method  (Read 4364 times)

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Offline Lburou

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Horizontal hive and Ben Hardin Method
« on: February 09, 2015, 12:16:31 pm »
Last year I started grafting and growing queens using my adaption of the Ben Harden Method of queen rearing. Here is Another page about the Ben Harden Method.

I don't make many queens, so I go slow with this method using a queen right colony to start the cells after grafting.  Here is a picture of the horizontal Hive fashioned after these plans....Note the follower boards for movable colony space. 





Here is the horizontal hive with a deep super on top.....Note the deep super I plan to use and the wide dummy frame, four frames and a feeder in that super.  I put the frame with cell bars on top of the super so you can see where I put it after grafting.  Also shown are two Michael Palmer style NUC boxes, illustrating the flexibility of the horizontal hive.



These pictures show how I will configure the horizontal hive for making queens.  I plan to use one or two colonies along side the first colony to finish the cells before placing them in NUCs for mating.  Note the addition of a tall surrounding enclosure.




Here it is with the top.  Any ideas to weatherproof this large top?



One of my first grafting attempts.


Lee_Burough

Offline Perry

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Re: Horizontal hive and Ben Hardin Method
« Reply #1 on: February 09, 2015, 04:15:42 pm »
Wow, when you get something in your head you don't fool around! All of this done on a nice stand to minimize bending and everything. My eyes are no good for grafting but you seem to have pretty good results with what looks like only one dud out of 14.To weather proof the top and keep it light I would find a piece of that corrugated plastic (political sign).
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Offline LazyBkpr

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Re: Horizontal hive and Ben Hardin Method
« Reply #2 on: February 09, 2015, 11:13:46 pm »
I'm looking forward to seeing that thing full of bees. great set up, I cant wait to find out what you like or dont like about it.

   I might make a top cover out of Luan with some cross braces, and then paint it with a good epoxy paint.  Or like Perry said, the Coroplast would make it quite water resistant.
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Offline Lburou

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Re: Horizontal hive and Ben Hardin Method
« Reply #3 on: February 10, 2015, 12:22:44 am »
Thanks for the input Perry and Lazy, its still a work in progress.  :)

I think it would be okay for a few months with a good primer and two coats of paint, but would like something more permanent. 

The upside for grafting will be that two or more colonies are right there in easy reach -no bending.  It is amazingly simple to do the queen rearing over a queen excluder.  There are two of these horizontal hives, will use one for NUCs, possibly mating NUCs and the other for growing the queen cells.

The way I designed the rims and enclosures will be a downside Lazy because it will be hard to get a hive tool in except from the front, but we'll see how much I regret the design real soon.  Wanting to get bees in there within a week or two.  Thinking about some preliminary grafts to harvest the royal jelly in readiness for the serious grafts as soon as one can see pink-eyed drones in the brood nest. 

Perry, I'm wanting to improve the quality of cells and will work on conditions that produce well nourished queens.  Randy Oliver recommends one of THESE lighted magnifiers.  Visibility is really good using these and the built-in light has promise.

:)
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Offline LazyBkpr

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Re: Horizontal hive and Ben Hardin Method
« Reply #4 on: February 10, 2015, 08:22:38 am »
I have a lighted magnifier quite similar to that with interchangeable lenses for different magnification.  They make finding eggs and larvae WAY easier.
   Snow still on the ground, the pond is frozen over, ALMOST thick enough to ice skate on, and you have me thinking about making queens..  keep the pics coming!
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Offline Lburou

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Re: Horizontal hive and Ben Hardin Method
« Reply #5 on: February 10, 2015, 09:21:05 am »

For you Lazy....This is a pic of the same frame shown above that shows the Ben Harden setup again.  Its easy and it works for a hobby beekeepers!  Did I mention that I use 8 frame boxes?   :)

P.S.  FWIW, I have two sizes of dummy frames, that allows use of either four or five frames plus the feeder in the super over the excluder.
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Offline LazyBkpr

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Re: Horizontal hive and Ben Hardin Method
« Reply #6 on: February 10, 2015, 08:57:53 pm »
heheh.. I think I should give you a Kiss...
   I often argue that my 5 frame nucs will raise a few queen cells.. I advocate ten or so...   and here you are, with what appears to be a dummy board, a feeder, and 5 frames, raising thirteen queen cells.. is that thirteen? How many took?  Over a queen right colony?   Lee, you CANT just post a picture like that and NOT say anything about the setup!!   Your bringing TEARS to my eyes!!!!
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Offline Lburou

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Re: Horizontal hive and Ben Hardin Method
« Reply #7 on: February 11, 2015, 12:04:48 am »
Lazy, the explanation of the method is in the links of the OP.  In a nutshell, the function of the dummy, frames of pollen, brood, honey, and the feeder serve to provide nutrition and nurse bees for the queen cells while forcing the nurse bees to congregate near the cell bars containing grafts.  All this over a queen right colony.  Keep adding a frame of open  brood and adhering bees to that slot and you get a lot of help raising those queen cells.  Mind you, keep an eye out for wild queen cells on those brood frames over the excluder, they will surprise you and ruin all those cells. 

Have never had all the cells take at the same time, but 14 works pretty well during a honey flow....Maybe even more.  Doesn't work without a honey flow.  :)

The diagrams in the OP links show how to use the BH method in a ten frame hive.  I just use one dummy, four or five frames and a wide feeder in an 8 frame hive to accomplish the same high nurse bee population around the cell bars.  HTH   :)
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Offline LogicalBee

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Re: Horizontal hive and Ben Hardin Method
« Reply #8 on: February 11, 2015, 12:19:41 am »
Interesting.  Nice setup and thanks for posting.   :eusa_clap:

Like Lazy, I was wondering about the queen status of the box as I was reading the thread.  So queen right with an excluder works.  That's good to know!

Offline Lburou

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Re: Horizontal hive and Ben Hardin Method
« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2015, 08:01:04 am »
Yes Logical, we don't think much about the pheromones of the queen bee and how they (among other things) deter development of queen cells.  All of her pheromones are fleeting, some last only minutes and some just days or maybe a week.  Keeping the queen out of the area above the excluder reduces her pheromones to the extent that growing queen cells is possible there.  That is one aspect of the Ben Hardin method anyway.  :)

I had never thought about this pheromone business until I found unexpected queen cells in brood I'd placed above an excluder a couple years ago.  They hatched and  one of them mated through the vent hole in inner cover.  :)
Lee_Burough