I have used several techniques to move slowly from a Dadant frame to
a Langstroth :
I will try to post photos later:
I have added a small wood frame at the bottom of my Langstroth Flow hive
brood box to raise it so a Dadant frame can fit in, height wise.
The length of the frames was just enough to fit (a couple of cm each side)
but with propolis they stayed there even loaded with bees and honey.Just
need to be careful when taking them out or putting them back in...
I started with only a 5 frame Dadant hive so I had space to add some
Langstroth frames from the start, a bit more to the center....
Once a Dadant frame was only loaded with honey, I was removing it and then
replacing it with a Langstroth frame. (see option 3 that I am currently
using as it could help speed up the process tremendously)
As the Langstroth are shorter (in height) than the Dadant frames and my
brood box was raised, the bees were creating some cells below the
Langstroth frames. I used those cells (cutting them from the outside base
of the Langstroth frame with either a knife or the a basic hive tool) by
putting them in a Langstroth frame empty, holding it in place between 3
elastic bands (very easy to find and slide the cells without damaging them
between the bands). I tried putting the cells at the bottom or at the top
of the frame. Gravity showed me that bottom is better.. :o)
Obviously the challenge with this option is that the bees might be quicker
to build below the Langstroth frame than to prevent breeding on the dadant
frame and you might end up with too many frames... For me it worked as I
created a second hive like this with young eggs...
The elastic bands are getting cut by the bees and fall by themselves. Even
if they are not biodegradable or healthy for the bees, I haven't had any
3 (my recommended option with the 1 year experience that I have..).
When weather permits it, like Spring/Summer (i.e. now in Northern
hemisphere), what I did is put an empty Langstroth broodbox at the bottom
with Langstroth empty frames (or some from Option 1 or 2 if you have). A
Queen excluder on top, then on top
either the wood frame to raise a second Langstroth brood box with my Dadant
or just put a Langstroth brood box with the Dadant frames in with the Flow
hive roof on top. The frames can not fall due to the queen excluder and the
height of the roof allow the extra height...
Put all my bees and my queen in the bottom empty brood box (especially the
queen) and wait... The top Dadant frames which might have some eggs, and
brood + honey + pollen etc. will be taken care of by the workers at the
bottom.After some time as the Queen is not laying at the top, the Dadant
frames will be empty of any brood or eggs, I will just wait for sufficient
reserve in the bottom part for removing the frames in the top one.
I have personally combined 1, 2, 3 and after starting in July last year
with no bee keeping experience beyond a few youtube videos and this forum,
and I have now 2 healthy 99% Langstroth hives and looking forward to my
first harvest (once the flowhive frame are filling up but that's another
Hope this helps.