Honeyflow.com | FAQ's | Community |

Made an entrance reducer


#62

I read a very amusing science fiction novel once, where very advanced aliens came across humans. They were not very forthcoming with their technology, but the one thing they wanted was “Universal Fixing Substance”. After a lot of head-scratching, it turned out that this was duct tape. :smile: They had seen it in use to repair space ships, human beings etc, and they wanted it! Hilarious.

Maybe you could replace your space age packing paper with Universal Fixing Substance if needed? I would put a thin strip of tape on the back to stop bees from sticking to it, though. :joy:


#63

I just need it too look sad enough long enough that it motivates @Gerald_Nickel to finish his production model Flow Hive reducer lol


#64

Just got too busy with caring for Vera n then got the "Bees are HERE message. I picked up the mailers today. Please send addresses again privately. Vera was cleaning and a cusently tossed the paper I had yours n Dawns adrdreses on ! Sorry ! :wink::+1:. Gerald


#65

So the entrance of the hive bodies that came with the full kit is very short.
Store-bought reducers don’t fit. I imagine mouse excluders won’t either.

What do Flow folks do?

Thank you.


#66

Are you referring to 10 frame equipment not fitting the 8 frame box? If so, your only real option is to cut it down, or purchase 8 frame equipment.


#67

Height issue for the entrance.
This is my only example so far…

…so now I’m wondering about…

…and…


#68

Yep the flow entrance is significantly narrower in height than a standard 8-frame langstroth entrance. What I used after reading a tip from someone on here was 3 of the starter strips that came with the kit glued together and cut to length, they fit perfectly in the entrance.


#69

Jstrano,

Yes, the flow-hive is unique n height very narrow as well as slopes even narrower front to back. I’ve had to make mine … I have a one inch width one n four inch with Entrance reducer. Because the have the unique slope I was unable to make both offset like normal reducers. … This subject has been kicked around some here so additional comments n thread should be searchable. Anything jammed in will make a temperRy reducer like rope, cord, wood shim, etc.

Good luck.


#70

This one looks the best option to me, but I haven’t tried it myself. I might get one at some point to try it out.

The other 3 products that you linked won’t work. The beethinking one is too thick (tall), and the larger Brushy mountain one doesn’t line up properly on the Flow entrance (I have one, so I know from direct experience). The smaller Brushy Mountain one is designed to attach to an existing wood entrance reducer, so that won’t work either - it won’t be big enough.

If you have any ability with wood, I would suggest getting a 1x1" wood trim strip from a local hardware store. You can sand this to size to fit into the entrance, then cut a slot in it so that it looks like a standard entrance reducer. Jerry started one for me, and I shaped it to fit like this, using a sander and a jigsaw to widen the entrance:


I found that the wood needed to be 9mm deep at the inside of the hive, and 10.5 to 11mm deep at the outside. It took a few tries to get the fit snug - if you don’t get it right, the bees can push it out!

It works very well. The entrance is too small for mice, but large enough for drones.

The alternative would be to buy the Bee Thinking model, and sand it down, but you will need to sand the long flat side only, so that you don’t mess up the bee space of the entrance. Also, if the wood gets very thin along the entrance, the reducer may snap.


#71

Thank you all for these responses.

It all puzzles me that the Flow entrance was designed this way in the first place.
Who are the Flow reps monitoring this board?
Just want to call their attention to it for the next generation of hives from Flow.


#72

I did the same as @Gerald_Nickel . I had some cedar boards left over from the hive bodies I made. I made two. One with a small entrance and the other with a wide one. Was not difficult at all as long as you have a few simple tools.


#73

John,

Awesome !! I find few things in beekeeping can be overcome or worked thru usually.

I prime goal in beekeeping is to try n keep healthy bees so I n my neighbors can benefit from their existence ! Pollination is the PRIME !

Glad you worked out the entrance reducers ! Congrats !

Cheers,
Gerald


#74

If you know someone with a table saw that has a locking bar on it you can set the width on it and then push the 1" by thru it to get it to the exact width you need. Have to be careful and use something to push it thru the blade. Too thin to have your fingers anywhere near that blade.


#75

I don’t, so the sander and jigsaw were a safer option for me! :wink:


#76

A simple solution if you need one sooner than you can get around to making a custom one is two paint stir sticks - they fit height-wise & leave about one bee sized opening on one side. You can cut or break them to make a wider opening.

And you’re right - a standard mouse guard won’t work either. The angle is wrong & even if you tack it onto the wood the holes don’t align with the opening. Since the Flow opening is already skinnier, I’m thinking it would be effective in keeping mice out. I know they flatten themselves considerably, but their skulls still have to fit! Only concern would be if they managed to chew it - anyone had this happen?


#77

Good advice. A reducer is just that, not a work of art. You can even use some grass stuffed into the entrance at a pinch.

Cheers
Rob.


#78

Hre-s one I made so I can flip it therefore having the option of 2 sizes (1 is 15mm wide for winter and when I flip it it is 100mm wide)

As per other comments it doesn’t have to be a work of art!


#79

I don’t think it matter much HOW you reduce the entrance. I’m a newbee (last March) but my consensuses is the girls definitely like a small gate to guard. Here’s what I’ve done until I can get my table saw out of the garage, and it’s been like this awhile:


#80

It’s no problem to make an entrance reducer out of a bit of scrap ply or wood. All you need is a hand saw to cut it to length & an orbital sander to dress it down to the required thickness.

You’ll often see bits of unwanted wood sitting in skips. I got a lot of wood out of a skip once. I asked the builders permission to take it. He said yes & was pleasantly surprised when I came back with a nice bottle of honey for him.


#81

Recommend you slide that block over next to the boardman feeder so the entrance is on the far side away from the entrance feeder, helps reduce the risk of robbing (which is significant with this type of feeder).