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Building Beehives For Dummies


The easy way to build your own beehives and beekeeping equipment

Building Beehives For Dummies is the follow-up book to the bestselling Beekeeping For Dummies. It provides everything you need to learn how to build some of the world's most popular hives and beekeeping accessories. For each design the book includes a detailed materials list (what lumber, hardware and fasteners you'll need), step-by-step building instructions, and illustrative drawings that show how the components ...

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Building Beehives For Dummies

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The easy way to build your own beehives and beekeeping equipment

Building Beehives For Dummies is the follow-up book to the bestselling Beekeeping For Dummies. It provides everything you need to learn how to build some of the world's most popular hives and beekeeping accessories. For each design the book includes a detailed materials list (what lumber, hardware and fasteners you'll need), step-by-step building instructions, and illustrative drawings that show how the components all fit together. There are over a dozen plans in all, including the traditional Langstroth hive, the eight frame garden hive, designs for elevated hive stands, the Warre hive, screened bottom board, the Kenya top-bar hive, four-frame observation hive, hive top feeders, and more. The book contains introductory chapters that teach you the basic carpentry skills necessary to build any of the plans in the book.

Whether you are a new beekeeper or a seasoned ol’timer, Building Beehives for Dummies provides you with the information you need to plan and succeed at building beehives (and other cool accessories). You'll discover what type of hive to build, hints on how to maintain your equipment, what bees need to stay happy and healthy, where to locate your hive, and much more.

  • Covers "bee space," the critical technical measurement within a beehive that's crucial for easy inspection of your colonies
  • Offers guidance on keeping both urban and suburban neighbors happy, getting proper permissions, and understanding regional laws and regulations
  • Provides creative ideas for dressing up hives for fun and profit

In today’s world of self-sufficiency, back-to-basics and sustainability, building beehives is a fun hobby that both you and your bees will appreciate and benefit from.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781118312940
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 1/4/2013
  • Series: For Dummies Series
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 196,690
  • Product dimensions: 7.90 (w) x 9.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Howland Blackiston has been a backyard beekeeper since 1984. He has appeared on dozens of television and radio programs, including the Discovery Channel, CNBC, CNN, and NPR. He is the author of Beekeeping 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 I The Buzz on Beehives 3

Part II The World's Most Popular Beehive Designs 4

Part III Sweet Beehive Accessories 4

Part IV The Part of Tens 4

Icons Used in This Book 5

Where to Go from Here 5

Part 1 The Buzz on Beehives 7

Chapter 1 Getting Sweet on Building Your Own Beehives 9

Bee-ing in the Know about Bees 9

Honeybees' most important job: Pollination 10

The products of the honeybee 10

The main players in a beehive 12

Appreciating the Benefits of Building a Beehive Rather than Buying One 13

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 14

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 26

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 32

A hive for learning and teaching 32

Hives for pollinating your garden 32

A hive for harvesting honey 33

Hives to match your building skills 33

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 35

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 44

Looking at Lumber 46

Choosing lumber 46

Sizing up lumber 48

Getting the scoop on plywood 49

The Buzz on Other Building Materials 50

Fixating on fasteners 50

Rifling through roofing materials 51

Selecting screening materials 52

Protecting Your Beehives with Paint and More 52

Estimating the Amounts and Costs of Materials 53

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 60

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 II The World's Most Popular Beehive Designs 67

Chapter 5 The Kenya Top Bar Hive 69

Vital Stats 71

Materials List 72

Cut List 73

Elevated hive stand 73

Hive body 74

Top bars 76

Ventilated roof 77

Assembling the Hive 78

Chapter 6 The Five-Frame Nuc Hive 83

Vital Stats 84

Materials List 84

Cut List 85

Bottom board 86

Hive body 87

Inner hive cover 88

Outer hive cover 90

Assembling the Hive 91

Chapter 7 The Four-Frame Observation Hive 97

Vital Stats 99

Materials List 99

Cut List 101

Hive body and top 101

Bottom board 103

Assembling the Hive 104

Chapter 8 The Warré Hive 109

Vital Stats 110

Materials List 111

Cut List 112

Hive bottom and stand 112

Hive boxes 113

Top bars 115

Quilt box 115

Ventilated roof 116

Assembling the Hive 118

Chapter 9 The British National Hive 123

Vital Stats 124

Materials List 125

Cut List 127

Floor 127

Brood chamber 129

Shallow honey supers 130

Making tricky cuts for hand and drip rails 131

Deep and shallow frames 132

Making tricky cuts for side bars 135

Making tricky cuts for top bars 135

Crown board 136

Roof 137

Assembling the Hive 139

Chapter 10 The Langstroth Hive 145

Vital Stats 146

Materials List 147

Cut List 148

Bottom board (ten-frame version) 149

Bottom board (eight-frame version) 151

Deep hive bodies (ten-frame version) 151

Deep hive bodies (eight-frame version) 153

Medium super (ten-frame version) 153

Medium super (eight-frame version) 154

Inner hive cover (ten-frame version) 155

Inner hive cover (eight-frame version) 157

Outer hive cover (ten-frame version) 157

Outer hive cover (eight-frame version) 159

Assembling the Hive 160

Part III Sweet Beehive Accessories 165

Chapter 11 The Frame Jig 167

Vital Stats 168

Materials List 168

Cut List 168

Assembling the Frame Jig 170

Chapter 12 The Double Screened Inner Cover 173

Vital Stats 174

Materials List 175

Cut List 175

Double screened inner cover for the ten-frame Langstroth hive 176

Double screened inner cover for the eight-frame Langstroth hive 178

Double screened inner cover for the nuc hive 179

Double screened inner cover for the British National hive 179

Assembling the Inner Cover 180

Chapter 13 The Elevated Hive Stand 183

Vital Stats 184

Materials List 184

Cut List 185

Assembling the Elevated Hive Stand 186

Chapter 14 The IPM Screened Bottom Board 189

Vital Stats 190

Materials List 191

Cut List 192

Assembling the IPM Screened Bottom Board 194

Chapter 15 The Hive-Top Feeder 197

Vital Stats 198

Materials List 199

Cut List 199

Feeder for a ten-frame Langstroth hive 200

Feeder for an eight-frame Langstroth hive 202

Assembling the Hive-Top Feeder 203

Chapter 16 The Solar Wax Melter 207

Vital Stats 208

Materials List 208

Cut List 209

Floor assembly 209

Inclined side panels 210

Glazed top assembly 211

Assembling the Solar Wax Melter 212

Chapter 17 Langstroth Frames 217

Vital Stats 218

Materials List 219

Cut List 220

Deep frames 220

Medium frames 221

Shallow frames 221

Making tricky cuts for side bars 223

Making tricky cuts for top bars 224

Assembling Langstroth Frames 226

Part IV The Part of Tens 229

Chapter 18 Ten (Or So) Tips for Extending the Life of Your Equipment 231

Don't Go Cheap on Materials 231

Keep a Build Log 231

Establish an Inspection Routine 232

Prepare Your Hives for Winter 233

Do Some Spring Cleaning 233

Make Yearly Exterior Touch-Ups 234

Repair the Roof 234

Replace Rooting Wood 235

Elevate Your Hives 235

Provide Proper Ventilation 236

Guard against Bears with an Electric Fence 236

Chapter 19 Ten (Or So) Ways to Trick Out Your Hives 239

Use Decorative Handles and Embellishments 240

Add Metal Frame Rests 241

Employ Exotic Woods 242

Paint Creatively 243

Shingle the Sides 244

Add a Front Porch 245

Make Your Inner Cover Transparent 245

Cut an Observation Window in the Hive Body 246

Use Alternate Roof Materials 247

Make Architectural Alterations to Your Roof 247

Mount a Webcam to Your Hive 247

Chapter 20 Ten Fun Facts about Beehives 249

Discovering the First Recorded Depiction of a Beehive 249

Unearthing the World's Oldest Beehives 249

Recounting a Brief History of Beehives around the Globe 250

Bee-ing the Beehive State 251

Studying Beehives in Outer Space 251

Finding the Largest Beehive in the World 251

Using Beehives for Design Inspiration 252

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