Author Topic: DIY Nuc Boxes  (Read 54497 times)

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Offline Perry

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DIY Nuc Boxes
« on: January 16, 2014, 10:42:11 am »
With all respect and credit to D. Coates who came up with this simple plan to make 4 five frame nuc boxes out of a single sheet of plywood, using only straight cuts, no dado's or rabbets anywhere.
Sorry I don't have a bunch of pictures showing the step by step, next time I make more I will take pics.



Get your sheet of 1/2" plywood and make your four long cuts first, and them make your cross cuts to create the pieces you will need. There is very little waste.
I use a quality wood glue and 1 1/4" x 1/4"crown staples to put it all together.

The end results are great! I will add step by step pics as I find them.



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Offline brooksbeefarm

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Re: DIY Nuc Boxes
« Reply #1 on: January 16, 2014, 11:14:38 am »
Those are nice looking nucs buddy, i'm still buying 3/4 and 7/8 plywood in 4x4 ft. squares for $5.00 ea. with laminate on one side, i'm going to make some nucs out of some of them and bottom boards and migratory lids. My big concern is how are they going to weather? is a coat of primer and a coat of good paint enough? Jack
PS. the edges that are exposed is the big worry, if water gets in there? enough said.

Offline Robo

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Re: DIY Nuc Boxes
« Reply #2 on: January 16, 2014, 11:26:13 am »
I have detailed plans for 5-frame deep and 8-frame medium Coates nucs here -> http://robo.bushkillfarms.com/beekeeping/downloads/
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Offline DLMKA

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Re: DIY Nuc Boxes
« Reply #3 on: January 16, 2014, 02:00:50 pm »
I have a bunch of these. Make excellent boxes to take for catching swarms. Light enough to take up on a ladder and you avoid having to transfer them. Drop some frames in and let them have at it for a few weeks then put in a full size box.  I have my swarm catching lid with a big hole in it and a screen stapled in place so they don't overheat in the car on the way home.

Offline Perry

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Re: DIY Nuc Boxes
« Reply #4 on: January 16, 2014, 02:49:32 pm »
Good to sit on too when working on a hive at the end of a long day.  ;)
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Offline Yankee11

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Re: DIY Nuc Boxes
« Reply #5 on: February 08, 2014, 11:53:15 pm »
Also help in leveling a ladder on stairs when painting a stair well.  :o




Offline Finally Home

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Re: DIY Nuc Boxes
« Reply #6 on: February 16, 2014, 08:14:11 pm »
Whipped out 8 of these this afternoon.  Started painting.  Still have to put the lips on the lids.  Was a pleasure ripping the plywood on the Radial Arm Saw.  Did a nice job.

Offline blueblood

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Re: DIY Nuc Boxes
« Reply #7 on: February 24, 2014, 08:44:54 am »
Does anybody have plans already on paper for a 8-frame version of Coates?  It would be nice to have one for larger swarm calls.  I can sit down and figure it out but didn't want to re-invent the wheel.

Offline G3farms

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Re: DIY Nuc Boxes
« Reply #8 on: February 24, 2014, 08:53:59 am »
Dave you read my mind.
Looking for the same thing myself.
Bees are bees and do as they please!

.... --- -   -... . . ...   .-- .. .-.. .-..   .... .- ...- .   -.-- --- ..-   ... - . .--. .--. .. -. --.   .- -. -..   ..-. . - -.-. .... .. -. --.   .-.. .. -.- .   -.-- --- ..- .-.   .... . .- -..   .. ...   --- -.   ..-. .. .-. .   .- -. -..   -.-- --- ..- .-.   .- ... ...   .. ...   -.-. .- - -.-. .... .. -. --.

Offline blueblood

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Re: DIY Nuc Boxes
« Reply #9 on: February 24, 2014, 08:05:03 pm »
Great minds think alike G!  8)  Anyway, I think they would also be good for swarm traps.  I guess I will start measuring and packing in as many parts in one sheet of wood as I can.  Whoever gets around to doing it first could start a fresh thread for it.

Offline G3farms

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Re: DIY Nuc Boxes
« Reply #10 on: February 24, 2014, 08:12:20 pm »
Yep swarm traps is what I was thinking of also.
Bees are bees and do as they please!

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Offline DLMKA

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Re: DIY Nuc Boxes
« Reply #11 on: February 24, 2014, 09:53:32 pm »
Ask and ye shall receive. I triple-checked Rob's downloads website and came up blank for me too. Rob did the hard work, I just modified the dimensions. Not much more internal volume than a 5-frame deep and only slightly more comb area.  The lids on these warp worse than the 5-frame and aren't as easy to flex back flat.

http://hoibees.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/Coates8FrameMediumNucPlans.pdf

Offline blueblood

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Re: DIY Nuc Boxes
« Reply #12 on: February 24, 2014, 10:00:47 pm »
Thanks DLMKA! I started a new thread the 8-frame also: http://www.worldwidebeekeeping.com/forum/index.php/topic,964.0/topicseen.html

Have you thought of anything that could be modified to avoid the warping?  Different material, supporting strips/rails of wood along the two long sides of the lid, etc.?

Offline brooksbeefarm

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Re: DIY Nuc Boxes
« Reply #13 on: February 24, 2014, 11:35:05 pm »
Dave, that's what i do,i use cca 2x4's and rip them 1"1/2" for both long sides and screw them on from the bottom.I run the strips edge wise ,like the 2x4 was standing on edge (the 1 1/2 end) i think it's stronger that way. Been doing it for 3 yrs. now and no warping yet. Jack

Offline G3farms

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Re: DIY Nuc Boxes
« Reply #14 on: February 25, 2014, 12:00:03 am »
Is that on the tops you do this for?

Jack when you going to post some pics?
Bees are bees and do as they please!

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Offline blueblood

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Re: DIY Nuc Boxes
« Reply #15 on: February 25, 2014, 06:01:23 am »
Now our brain cylinders are moving in sync.  Thanks Jack, and yes, pics would be great~

Offline brooksbeefarm

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Re: DIY Nuc Boxes
« Reply #16 on: February 25, 2014, 09:09:24 am »
Yes, i run them on top and on the long sides,i also run a bead of silicone on the bottom of them. Jack

Offline LazyBkpr

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Re: DIY Nuc Boxes
« Reply #17 on: February 27, 2014, 10:41:19 pm »



   Mine are 8 frame Mediums, but I use 1x8's for the sides without cutting them down to 6 5/8. Nail/ glue the bottoms and use deck screws in the top to keep it flat. Plywood top and bottom.  Work pretty slick, looking forward to getting VIDS this year!!
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Offline brooksbeefarm

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Re: DIY Nuc Boxes
« Reply #18 on: February 27, 2014, 11:36:25 pm »
Sorry, haven't been able to to get together with my computer mentors (to show me how to post pictures) with all the high school ball games (our grandchildren) and keeping livestock alive. Got another bad ice and snow storm coming in this weekend. :o Jack

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Re: DIY Nuc Boxes/Modifying with 3/4" Pine Boards
« Reply #19 on: March 05, 2014, 10:53:13 pm »
I spent the better half of the afternoon whipping up a prototype for this 5-frame nuc with 3/4" pine boards.  I didn't have any 1"-12" lumber.  So, I busted out the Kreg pocket hole jig and laminated some board to the widths I needed.  I will modify the lid on the next one to attach the lid end on the bottom of the lid like you would see on the plywood version.  I have found that the best way to position/fix the ends on bottom of the lid is to place is to attach all four side of box, place the lid upside down on work space and then the box on top.  I then affix the ends to the lid aligning them ever so slightly away from the box end to allow for some expansion (maybe 1/32") but remain snug enough also.

I basically completed the box minus aluminum flashing on the lid and painting it.  Next, I brought it in and remeasured it to better allow for frame placement including bee space at the bottom of the frames.  I drew simple sketches of the parts along with the measurements. 

Jury is out on this one.  It was awkward compared to the more flexible plywood and loses it affordable margin.  You really need a 1"x12"-10ft board to complete one box.  You will have a little scrap left over.  As of 3/5/2014, the board is $19.46 at Home Depot and $14.69 (on sale) at Menards for #2 pine or white board.  The 1/2" (15/32) plywood is still around the $16 range and you can get four nice nucs out it.

I placed a thin coat of Titebond glue on the exposed plywood grain last season before painting and let it dry overnight to assist in keeping the water out of the end grain.  I have used the boxes for swarm catching but plan on using them for splits and wintering over this season.  If the plywood nucs decay, I will just build more.