Hi, just setting up our flow hive 2. Is it recommended that I paint it? If so then what type of paint is best to use? We have not put bees in it yet and thought we should sort this out first. Thanks
I would paint the hive but others would go for an oil treatment like tung oil and others would go for a clear epoxy paint. The choice is yours to make. Painting a hive is probably the easiest way to go and I use water based paint, I do 3 heavy coats a day apart and wait a few days before introducing bees into the hive, or a couple of days after the paint is dry, so there is no odor which can upset the bees.
Painting the hive will give excellent protection for years without repainting. Tung oil keeps a natural timber look but mould might be an issue in your climate.
Listen to Peter, his advice is sound.
basically what Peter said- but if your hive is made of Cedar you can get away with just Tung oil- but not on a pine hive- no way. You just need to reapply oil ever year or so- and you can do this on site very easily. Also on a cedar hive I would heavily paint the base and the roof- only oiling the boxes. The base and roof cop more weather and water. I would also consider insulating the roof.
Lastly: I feel the #1 best solution is to hot wax dip and paint. This is difficult unless you can find a commercial beekeeper/hive maker who has a dipping tank.
I hot wax dip all my hives now. Treat once and your good to go for up to 20years. Any other treatment, oil or paint will need regular refinishing, some more than others. You might have a commercial beekeeper that will do yours for a small fee. I built my own gear and do other people’s hives. Once the wax is up to temperature, I can do a full Flow Hive in 30 minutes and it’s cooled down enough in 15minutes ready to use straight away.
I’m building a second vat for my new Long Langstroth hives.