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Alignment of flow cells


Hya, i’m getting my bees from the apiary next weekend - i’m not sure if it’s too late for them to start putting honey in the flow frames now (the weather in the uk will be getting colder by the day now!)

However i want the opportunity to get them started, so they have honey over the winter rather than just feed. The flow cells don’t look aligned to me - how do i make sure they are in the right place before I put the bees in?

thanks so much - i am a complete beginner btw, i have done a course and a few practical sessions but that is all! :slight_smile:


Too late to be adding flow supers here in the uk in my opinion. You can’t leave them on over winter anyway. The bees wil be storing nectar they collect and syrup you give around the ever decreasing brood nest for winter. The cells are misaligned on purpose. The bees fill the gaps in.


Hi Dee thanks - but they look off centre, i.e. once the gaps are filled in, the hexagons wont be straight if that makes sense…

thanks for the tip, so do you think it would be better to just feed and leave the frames in the brood box?


Yes too late for honey. What size brood box have you got? And post is a close up of the flow frames. There’s plenty here I’ll see if I can find you a thread


Yes as Dee says you will be better off waiting until next year to add your frames. The bees can store honey on the traditional frames they have in the brood box. If you add the flow frames now- the bees won’t finish capping them before winter- and then they will be harder to remove and store if they are partially filled with nectar.

As for checking the cell alignment: if you look at the frame front on and with the frame a little tilted away from you at the bottom- you should be able to see the face of the comb structure well and all the hexagonal shapes aligned if you see columns they are not quite aligned- if you take the key and work it in the top slot several times- at each side of the slot- and in the center- all the cell rows should align. Work the key in the bottom and top slot alternately a few times first to see how the frames work and the action of opening and closing. Then make sure they are well closed before installation.


ok when i get home i will take a picture of what they look like - it might just be me! really appreciate your help guys!


if you could find a picture of what it should look like i would be very grateful - have been trying to find one!