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Flow frame cell configuration


#1

In taking a closer look at my flow frames, I notice that each 1/2 of each cell seems to be set at a different height. Is that normal? I was wondering this because I saw my girls doing a lot of exploring but didn’t seem to be using the flow frames. The hexagon of the cell lines up ok, it’s just that one side of each cell is set deeper than the other. In looking at the frame straight on the difference in the height of the two sides of each cell creates a somewhat “striped” appearance.

Since I was quite concerned about this, I just dug into the hive. To my delight, I found that the girls had started to draw out some of the flow cells and there is even nectar inside some. So, I am somewhat relieved that they are just slow in using them. But I would like some confirmation that all is well with the frames. This is a regular Flow Hive.

I have another hive with flow frames (3) and standard frames with plastic foundation (4, 2 on each side of the flows). The bees are drawing out the plastic foundation fairly well, but don’t seem to have started yet on the flow frames, although they do seem to have sealed the cracks within each cell. They do seem to be more attracted, at least initially, to the plastic foundation as opposed to the flow frames. Perhaps once they have used them this will not be the case.


#2

Yes, normal. It is part of the design which lets the wax cappings remain in a sheet when you turn the key. The offset creates a shear plane, and this keeps the honey behind the cappings so that it goes into your jar and not back into the hive.


#3

Once again, thanks Dawn…for putting my mind at ease. I was sooooo excited to see a couple of the internal Flow frames starting to be used. And once they build them out they just look normal. I’m glad you understand the mechanics of it all. Not my strong suit!

Louise


#4

I’ll put mine in action next season 2017 I think. It a little late as the girls have only acquired their new “DIGs” 7 days ago. I was able to start with six full frames of near solid brood capped n larva with some eggs n the super is near 3/4’s full as I transferred a rather large 3 box frame wide Nuc I had caught as a swarm 6 weeks or so ago.

I’m told that patience is a virtue ! Gaining that patience is not easy ! :wink::+1:

Gerald


#5

Hi Louise, your Flow Frames sound perfectly normal. The bees take a while to fill in all the little gaps with wax and then fill with honey.

If you would like some more info on how to encourage your bees to use your Flow Frames you can check out this info here - http://www.honeyflow.com/faqs/why-arent-my-bees-filling-the-flow-frames/p/194#a1


#6

Patience is the WORD! nd it is NOT easy sometimes. I was an initial Flow Frame supporter, so I had 3 frames last year and put them in a hive. Some filling in of the cracks was done but nothing more before I lost the entire hive. One thing that I learned the hard way is correct sizing of the hive for the bee population. Don’t give them too much space or they can’t protect it from invaders such as hive beetles; or as the weather cools down, they can’t keep temperature regulated. I failed as a manager on that one; but learned a valuable lesson. Your plan for starting with the Flow frames next season seems a good one to me.

Louise