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Flow hive wood differences


#1

What is the difference between a flow hive classic cedar and flow hive classic araucaria


#2

The timber…

As I understand it… the Araucaria pine weathers best if you paint it. Cedar as a timber weathers better than pine - if you don’t want to paint and retain the timber look.


#3

Thanks but which do you recommend as a beginner


#4

It’s really personal preference I think. If you intend to paint your hive the Araucaria is cheaper. If you want to oil it and keep the timber look, then I would go with Cedar.

My first hive was Araucaria. I didn’t paint it and now I can see the timber really degrading even 12 months on, despite a good solid oiling when put together.


#5

A better question might be classic vs hybrid… but not a question I can answer for you. I wonder if the hybrid might be a better choice when thinking about hive management in time…


#6

The cedar is much lighter in weight.


#7

Here is the detailed info about the wood types:

https://www.honeyflow.com/about/about-flow/sustainability/western-red-cedar/p/284

WESTERN RED CEDAR - THUJA PLICATA

Western red cedar (Thuja plicata) is a species of Thuja, an evergreen coniferous tree in the cypress family Cupressaceae, native to the northwestern United States and southwestern Canada, from southern Alaska and British Columbia, south to northwest California and inland to western Montana.
Wikipedia

Western red cedar has naturally rich and varied colours
We decided to use Western red cedar (Thuja plicata) in our bee hives as it is a beautiful timber with a remarkably fine and stable grain structure, and is sustainably sourced in North America close to our major customer base, reducing transport mileage.

Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is our preferred wood certification. We are working to make 100% of our hives from FSC sources. If you can help us please get in touch. When FSC isn’t available we have a wood sourcing policy to make sure the forests are being looked after (to be published soon).

FSC is the scheme preferred by organisations like WWF and Greenpeace. The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) was founded in 1993. It aims to support environmentally appropriate, socially beneficial, and economically viable management of the world’s forests. Read more on FSC at https://ic.fsc.org/en

Thuja plicata grows naturally as well as in plantations in USA and Canada

Wood colour may be a yellowish white colour, to pale brown & a richer dark brown
Characteristics of Western Red Cedar
Western red cedar is a standard wood used for hives in the USA, UK and other places. It’s very different from Spanish cedar or other aromatic cedars commonly used to deter moths and other insects. It’s very common to find feral honey bee colonies living inside hollow western red cedar trees.

It has unique fine grain characteristics that minimises shrinkage and swelling, along with being a hard-wearing softwood.

The colour variation of the grain is cedar’s most distinguishing feature and makes it highly sought after as a material for feature joinery. Visually, western red cedar is favoured for its rich and inviting colours. The colour ranges from a yellowish white colour, to pale brown through to a richer dark brown. It has a fine texture and straight grain with growth rings often visible.

Sometimes this will make our hive bodies and supers appear to be made from different woods, however this is normal for this timber.

Western red cedar also has built-in natural preservatives that provide resistance to borers, termites, rot and fungus growth. Its lack of pitch and gum veins allow cedar to readily accept semi-clear and clear finishes, which will accentuate its natural colour variations.

https://www.honeyflow.com/about/about-flow/sustainability/araucaria-hoop-pine/p/285

ARAUCARIA (HOOP PINE) - ARAUCARIA CUNNINGHAMII

Hoop pine grows in the rainforests of northern New South Wales and Queensland and in some mountain regions of Papua New Guinea.
Timber.net.au

Araucaria cunninghamii (hoop pine) is a premium Australian native cabinet timber. It is highly regarded for its stability & durability.

Not to be confused with Radiata pine, which is far softer, has knots and rots easily, Araucaria hoop pine is a first-class softwood, it has very few growth rings, knots or prominent grain.

It varies in colour from white to cream or light brown, is very easy to work with and has almost no odour. Due to its fine, even grain it does not easily warp, and takes well to stains and finishes. Araucaria is now mostly found in timber plantations in Queensland, Australia.

We source our Araucaria (hoop pine) timber from Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified forests in Australia.

FSC is our preferred wood certification. We are working to make 100% of our hives from FSC sources. If you can help us please get in touch. When FSC isn’t available we have a wood sourcing policy to make sure the forests are being looked after (to be published soon).

FSC is the scheme preferred by organisations like WWF and Greenpeace. The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) was founded in 1993. It aims to support environmentally appropriate, socially beneficial, and economically viable management of the world’s forests. Read more on FSC at https://ic.fsc.org/en

Information about how to paint your hive:

https://www.honeyflow.com/resources/faqs/what-paint-or-varnish-is-safe-to-coat-my-flow-hive-with/p/152#a1

We recommend painting the roof with a standard exterior-grade paint
Many beekeepers use oils such as Tung oil or Linseed oil, however we have found when finishing with oils in wet climates, that mildew (black mould) can grow on the surface of your hive. While this will not effect the structural integrity of your hive and should not have any impact on your bees, this may not be the look you were anticipating.

It can be a challenge keeping wood outdoors looking like new, especially in wetter climates. If you wish for your hive to stay mould free and to maintain the natural timber look for as long as possible, we suggest you go to your local paint store and ask for a finish that will last outdoors.

When choosing a finish you will be faced with the choice of natural or non natural finishes. If you go with a less natural finish we recommend you leave the inside of the timber boxes unfinished to keep the internal wood natural for the bees. However, it is advisable to coat the inside of the window covers to stop these from expanding excessively in wet weather. If the finish has a strong smell it is recommended to leave it a few days before installing your bees.

Aside from mildew, wood outdoors will naturally turn to grey. If you want to prevent your hive from greying, paint stores will recommend a finish with a tint. The tint helps shield the wood from UV which is what turns the wood to grey.

If you want to paint your hive with an outdoor paint, this is a great option for protecting your hive from the weather. This will also give you the opportunity to get creative with your designs.

Some commercial beekeepers recommend dipping your hive boxes in copper Naphthalate, then painting inside and out with several coats. While this has proven to make bee boxes last a long time, we like to recommend you use a more natural finish.


#8

Thanks for information