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Sealing in the flow frames


#1

Got my FullFlow hive built and am going to transfer bees in next weekend. Question before I do that.

In the instructions, it says to have no gap greater than 2mm around the back of the Flow Frames. Mine were less than that but a couple of places looked close.
As I want my daughter to get involved I thought I would perfectly seal the Flow Frames but didn’t have the right extra wood with me. What I did have and it perfectly sealed the gaps around the Flow Frames and between the Queen Extruder and Super was this window sealing PVC sponge strip.
https://www.mitre10.co.nz/shop/raven-door-window-weather-strip-9mm-x-5mm-x-5m-white/p/212123

My question is whether the PVC sponge will be ok for the bees and the honey?
From some quick online research it appears bees can chew through plastic? And there is concern about plastic with bees but the frames and Queen Extruder are BPA free whereas I am not sure re the PVC.

I would think they only chew through when really wanting to escape. Which makes me think my PVC sponge seal should be ok?
Or should I spend some time shaping some wood this week and use that?

Thoughts?


#2

Paul,

Did you say you’ll add your bees too the hive this weekend ?? Where are you located ? Little location info help us give you a better idea …

Also if this is your first hive n bees it’s too early for the QE or Flow-super. Are starting with a Nuc or just bees with a queen ?

I’ve gotten back into beekeeping after 55 year break. I raised bees for an agriculture project back then for about 7 or 8 years before I was off in the Army to Nam.

That foam tape won’t bother the bees much. They usually seal cracks n seams with propolis so may or may not chew that stuff up. I really don’t worry myself with small cracks as those bees are going to use that bee glue sealant n fill those cracks n more. After you’ve worked with bees a tad you’ll know just what I mean. Don’t sweat the small stuff.


Sharing a couple pix’s for you to see.

Welcome abroad n good luck sir.

Cheers,
Gerald

P.S. I’m glad your getting your daughter involved too. She should enjoy the experience.


#3

I’m not sure I’d be too greatly concerned about the toxicity of the strip, but my suspicion is that the bees will chew up the foam/strip they have access to and leave it out the front of the hive because it’s foreign, nothing to do with wanting to escape.

The concerns about the gaps is probably overblown, as smaller gaps of the size you’re talking will be quickly filled with propolis by the bees.


#4

Hi there and thanks heaps for responding. Great to be involved.
Since posting I decided it’s probably a bad idea. It works really well and is super simple as a solution, but I think it’s adding synthetics and glue into the environment. I think I’m better to muck around making some wood to fit.
I am in New Zealand. Summer but before the main heat which is Feb/Mar.
I have a traditional hive and about to get 6 more sharing with a friend. We are going to transfer the first hive to the Full Flow.
I’m also going to make an entrance reducer at the same time - felt like it was less disruptive to make it before introducing the bees.
Great photos from you. I notice you have weights on the roof and a skyscraper hive going on. I was also going to put some brackets around the brood box (not screwed in but up against it so it can’t move easily) and then put some swivel hooks between the brood and super so the hive wouldn’t topple in winds as whilst the hive is in ok shelter it seems top heavy.
What’s the smaller box with the three holes in the side that you have in your flow hive?
Paul