Frames, not seeming to fit

We had a swarm last year and wound up getting a brood box from the hardware store. We wound up maybe with some frames that are slightly different sizes winding up in our flow hive brood boxes. I have a brood box that 8 frames seems to leave way too much space, yet if I squeeze in the ninth frame, I really have to work to get it in there. Would it be better to leave the extra space or jam the frame in?

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Don’t put the extra frame in, just push the 8 frames together in the middle of the box, and leave the 1cm or so of extra space at the outside edges. As the bees wax and propolize the frames over time, most of that gap will disappear and the frames will be a better fit. :wink:

Thanks. I think that would be better than one side or the other with a huge gap.

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You are correct. If the bees have too much space, they will start to build crazy comb. They often do anyway, but that is just in the nature of bees! If you even out the space, it doesn’t happen as often :blush:

Having said that, spacing out the frames evenly in the brood box messes with the “bee space”, and you may end up with more drones and less worker brood than you should have. So just leave the gaps at the outside edges, and then that should encourage them to behave constructively

My strategy has always been to evenly space the frames right across, including the sides which works well for me. I always use 9 frames in 10 frame supers, regardless of whether it’s the brood box or honey super. The frames MUST be evenly spaced in order to avoid crazy comb.

A big advantage I believe with evenly spacing the frames is that it gives the bees more room to chase hive beetles, when & if necessary.

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Ask a forum of 9,300 users a beekeeping question, and you will get >10,000 answers!!!

Just teasing you, @JeffH! You know that I love and respect you, always. Hope Wilma is doing well.


@Michael_Bush goes the other way, and shaves down the frames to get 9 into an 8 frame box. There are so many ways to do this right, all we can hope for is to work out what is best for us with our climate and management practices! :blush:

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