Cross Comb on my ideal super

Hi there,
First up - I’m based in Australia (NSW, Katoomba).
I have only kept bees for 2 years, (this being my third summer now). I have just expanded my apiary to 2 hives :slight_smile: My original is a Flow hive and my new one is a Langstroth. This is because I love it so much I wanted to have both versions to learn from.

This spring (3 months ago) I added a foundation less ideal super in-between my Flow Frame super and my Brood box in my original hive. It’s a strong colony. I did this because I was keen to experiment with honeycomb, and also with foundationless. I have only done a couple of inspections since installing and have now discovered there appears to be cross comb between every frame. (pics attached). The hive is level and the frames are together.

I was going to inspect the ideal today - but as I couldn’t even pull one out without feeling like I was ripping the comb, I needed to come back and do some research on the best approach from here. My thinking is a sharp knife and carefully slice between - separating each one as I go, and trying to straighten each one up.

Advice and recommendations very much appreciated.

Thank you


That sounds like the right way to me. It may be that you will find the comb is mostly “bridge comb” across the gap between the frame tops. the lower parts may be OK. Let’s hope so. If the comb is a bit unstable, it would help to hold it in the new position with rubber bands. I would also suggest taking a ziplock bag with you, in case you have to carve off some extra comb. It gives you somewhere to put it during the inspection, and you can then either eat it later, crush and strain, or freeze it for rendering. :wink:


Fantastic. Thanks Dawn.

1 Like

Flip the box upside down. Remove the box from the frames (lifting it off of the mass of frames). Then you can work from one end to the other and get to the comb. It will make a lot less mess than trying to cut it all and then lift it out.


wow - that’s just great advice Michael and makes complete sense. Will do that. appreciated very much.

hello there,

I too am using ideals just like you are. By the photo- it might be that there is only some bridging towards the tops of the frames. When you prise them up you may get some rupturing on a few parts of the comb face but not as much as you might think. If you are making cut comb you can place the slightly damaged pieces damaged side down in your containers and no-one will be any wiser…

It may be a little uglier than that- but mine looked similar to yours and in the end it was mostly (over 80%) fine. The damaged bits can also be used for ‘chunk honey’.

Thanks Jack - appreciate the advice.


Hi Katie, how about an update on what you found and did? Do you feel the experiment of foundationless comb gave a positive or a negative result for you?

1 Like