Yes, exactly. If you run single brood boxes then this is the preferred method to cope with spring build up and swarm management. I run single brood with double supers throughout the year, the difference being that during winter the top super (2nd super) is empty and sealed off from the bees. The middle box (1st super) is winter storage (at least 1 frame of honey to 1 frame of brood). So back to the Flow hive, the Flow super is being treated as winter storage so come spring we need to move honey and advanced brood frames up to create space for the queen to lay, this cannot be achieved with a Flow super. So the method is under-super the Flow with a full depth box (which will sit directly above the brood) fill this box with either empty drawn comb, foundation frames or starter strip frames. Then move 2-3 frames up into the middle then checker board the brood box with new frames to create the new space. You will need to do this every 2-3 weeks for at least 2 months (the swarm season).
Yes, this is how this is done, and once the brood has emerged you can remove these frames altogether.
Yes, the queen excluder remains in the same place above the 1st brood box.[quote=“Semaphore, post:14, topic:7847”]
expand the single brood box to a double over spring? Then what: remove that second brood box before next winter?
I don’t remove the box over winter although this is what many beekeepers do. I seal it off with vinyl mats (same material you use to place over your brood as a winter mat (stops condensation from dripping on bees/brood and keeps the warmth in brood box) after freezing the empty frames to kill off any wax moth or SHB eggs).
The queen excluder never moves, once you expand to double brood its a bit of a pain to shrink back to single. Just keep it as a single. Once the swarm season is over, Nov-Dec, you can leave the 1st super below the Flow super or move it to above. Its up to you, bear in mind these boxes are heavy, I would just leave as-is with the Flow super as box no.3
My method is all about colony build up and swarm management, this is the commercial way and is endorsed by our primary industries department of Ag and NSW Apiarist Assoc. Not everyone agrees but I have been operating this way for a few years now and it works. Adding to this is the chance of you rolling your queen is minimised as she is only every in the bottom box out of harms way.
Apologies, I get a bit carried away, but the winter preparation and the spring management is the most important time for beekeepers in caring for your bees.