12 Frames Crossway in an 8 Frame Lang Box

Well Spring has sprung here…apparently. The wattles are in full bloom but no one has told the weather man. Nice day here after gales and rain last night. Enough of the small talk.

As I have written a lot on the handling or rather my poor handling of a full deep frames of honey. I endeavoured to make frame holding jigs, however they were never really good at what they were supposed to do for me. So I have now put smaller frames sideways so that I might better handle the full frames.

The first two photos show the size comparison with a standard deep frame.

I toyed with the idea of making two frames across which would give a frame size of roughly half that of a standard frame. I settled on the simpler and easier single frame across or KISS option.

The next photo shows a full box of 12 frames.

Oh dear the sloppy paint drips showing.
Theoretically 13 frames should fit but decided to go with 12 which fill the space nicely.
I cut the rabbit with a sled on my table saw. A router would have avoided the cut right through and crudely plugged holes you will see in this picture.

The last photo shows the box in situ.

I thought about putting the Flow Frames on first and the second brood box after the Flow harvest but have gone with the notion a big strong hive will fill the Flow Super quicker than a small strong hive.
Additionally if this is successful I will change over the bottom box to the small frames as well.
Potential for splitting hives and more Flow frames, crickey, my imagination is running away with me.
Excusee for not cropping the photos.

The only thing I regret is that I didn’t hold true to that old maxim: “Always start a project with an aspect in it, which will result in the need purchase a new piece of equipment” :wink:



Good to see you up n at something new ! Not sure if I’d have gone as unconventional but what the HECK ! It will be interesting to see how well this works for you ! Not sure I’m
quite ready for making my own frames. The hive body would be easy enough.

Welcome back to another bee season DownUnder ! Keep us posted !

Ta ta,

I did a quick search, what’s the issue exactly with holding regular frames?

Lovely job. You obviously like making things. Me? I’d just turn the box around and change the entrance


Sort of covers it.
But hey at my age easy is good. And I’m old and crochety…ask my wife.

Luckily there were only 13 to make (only used 12 in the end) I used a radial arm saw to do all the notches in the top and bottom arms. Was easier than the bench saw, to saw, measure, change, saw, measure, change etc in less than a thousand of an inch to get the right width/depth. Once the saw was set I did a run at that with 6 at a time. Then on to the next notch.

The sides were done with a sled on the bench saw, notched with same, then the waist taper was sanded out with a linisher. Used a metal template which started to spark when I reached the edge. Pretty rough way of doing it but sanding machines can easily eat thin wood in a flash. Mind you the last ones may have had a little more taper than the first ones.LOL

I suppose all up, a days work over about 3 days.

More mouths to feed also busso.
Do more bees in a colony hoard more surplus honey?

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In Pasadena CA last month we had a Natural Beekeeping Conference, where I ended up purchasing a hive from this company to try out. http://ecobeebox.net/

My plans are to use it for queen rearing next spring.

Yes I did see that on Youtube. The frames are roughly half a full deep. Just added complexity in having a support down the middle of the box and twice the frames to make. How ever I did make a couple when exploring alternatives and they are extremely strong and rigid at that size.

Hi skeggley. Have come back to this after a lot of hunting and would seem it’s one of those “all depends” things. I thought a bigger workforce would store honey for a bigger workforce.
However that’s not the only reason. My intention is to switch the original brood box over to small frames once both the second brood box and the Flow are full. Just a matter of finding the queen in the small frame box then the old switch.
Hope to have a peek in the small frames box Wednesday to see how it going.

I didn’t do any math here, just eyeballing, but that it looks to me as if the small frame set up, while having the obvious advantages you mention, would have the disadvantage of having more of the box filled with wood and bee space, and less with wax and honey.

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You are absolutely right. However the loss wax, brood and honey is all in the brood box’s and having two broods will certainly compensate. The real honey space in the Flow frames is unchanged.

I will be having a peek on Wednesday, a week after they went on the hive. I will take some pics if there is anything to see and find out if the are really easier to handle. :relaxed:

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Gidday busso, hope you had a good holiday. Is it general practice down there to use 2 brood boxes? I’ve been thinking about doing the same and might get a wsp to try. I’ve put the Flow frames on my one remaining colony. After rolling some of the wax from the failed hives onto the frames a couple of days later the Flow frames are packed full of bees working the frames. Hooray. Not having been able to open up the hive due to the cool temps it’s great to be able to open the windows to do mini inspections. Unfortunately this means I’m going to have to build a real observation hive… Something right down your alley I reckon. :wink:

Yeah great holiday, bit of a swan song for OS holidays so made a pig of it.
The one beekeeper (have only one) in these parts, I have spoken to prefers single 10 frame brood and 2 or 3 supers.

The weather has certainly been colder and windier this start of spring and while we have had a bit of sun that wind has been bitter. I reckon straight off the South pole. Makes opening the hive risky.

Maybe one day I’ll make an observation hive but my present intention is to limit myself to two hives. Whilst I would love to go bigger I don’t want to make a rod for my back. Work is getting harder and harder. The 20 kg bags weigh 30 Kg and the time between meals gets shorter and shorter so just don’t get the time to do things.
Crickey, I’m starting to sound morbid…but far from it, life for us now is the best it’s been.



I hear ya. Thing is, keeping bees here in the lower west is possibly the best and easiest place in the world at the moment so personally I’d like to take advantage of it before things change.
It’s been cold and wet here too and would like to have a warm weekend so I can get into the hive and have a proper looksy.
Hope all goes well on Wednesday.

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Just had a look in the new brood box and zilch, nix, nothing.
I didn’t want to take it off and check the bottom box to see if they had refilled the out frames which had been emptied by the bees over winter. The hive is noisy and looking from the top packed with bees. Maybe they are still working on the bottom box.
Mind you it doesn’t surprise me. there has only been 3 or 4 days in the last 2 weeks which you could say was Spring weather. Must be patient, good weather must come soon.

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