Experienced beekeepers are constantly looking for more efficient ways to work in the apiary. The hive lounger makes it possible to facilitate the hard work of the beekeeper. It is especially convenient for those new to this type of business. Simple structure for the beneficial development of bee colonies.
The simplest and most common type of hives, often designed for 24 frames, less often for 16 or another number. Such a structure as a sunbed hive does not foresee complex structures, is easy to maintain, and provides a large free space for the prosperous development of families. It looks like a rectangular case, inside of which there are:
- stationary bottom;
- roof liner;
- frames for queens.
A spacious, simple hive that favorably influences the development of offspring and a solid harvest. Close nests oppress families and reduce their efficiency. Therefore, many beekeepers prefer to equip apiaries with sun loungers.
According to many professionals, the 24-frame lounger hive is a comfortable home for the development of families, for service. The appearance of such a hive is a small box with dimensions of 450×390 mm. Inside the hive there is a blank bottom, on which two protruding bars are nailed, serving as a support for the landing area. There are other types, designed for 16, 20 frames.
There are two folds in the upper part of the body. Frames are attached to one. The other is used for mounting ceiling planks. There are several dividing boards, with which the space is divided into several compartments. The roof is gable, it is simply put on the body. Having a little carpentry experience, it is not difficult to make such a hive yourself. The presented image makes it possible to understand the structure of the lounger hive.
Choice of materials
Prepare the necessary materials in advance. For this you will need:
- plywood or pine boards treated with an antiseptic;
Choose well-dried boards without traces of knots for the body. During service, they will not deform. Some beekeepers use polymer materials, but bees don’t always like this.
In nature, bees create spacious dwellings. The collected honey is stored in the upper part of the natural nest, and the brood cells are created below. Below there are free honeycombs, where bees carry nectar and keep it just in case. Creating hives for apiaries, people have always tried to make them as close as possible to natural nests. Has advantages:
- the ability to keep two families in one hive;
- does not provide difficulties in care and harvesting;
- large internal space allows bees to work more productively and actively develop families, create large reserves of food for the wintering period;
- the space stimulates the uterus to a high level of oviposition;
- serves as a reliable home in adverse weather conditions.
Caring for the hive, the owner must promptly replace the full frames with empty ones.
Minimal human intervention in the life of a bee colony favorably affects their productivity. The hive lounger limits the need for beekeepers to penetrate inside.
Disadvantages of a hive lounger
Analyzing all the advantages of a sunbed hive, it is worth noting the negative aspects. Disadvantages, albeit minor, but there are:
- insufficient air flow;
- large dimensions, requiring a certain place in the winter road;
- the heavy weight of the filled hive, which complicates its transportation, movement;
- the need for frequent pumping of honey due to the impossibility of placing more frames.
The professionals do not even consider these minor shortcomings as such, given the high productivity of families in such dwellings. Therefore, they are actively developing the apiary, creating new beehives on their own.
How to make a 16-frame beehive lounger with your own hands
If you do not want to do it yourself, you can buy such sun loungers in specialized stores. But caring owners prefer to create them on their own. The drawing is taken as a basis.
Using the provided drawing, cut out the details of the lounger hive. The sizes depend on the number of frames. The assembly sequence is the same for all types. Pre-treat the tree with an antiseptic. Carry out painting already assembled.
It is important to strictly adhere to the parameters so as not to create difficulties during assembly.
- Fix the sides on the prepared bottom.
- Install the front and back walls using nails or self-tapping screws.
- Cut the tap holes in the lower part.
- Attach the entrance board to the taphole, make a valve.
- In the upper part, think over the stoppers for the cover, which should be freely put on the structure.
- Cover the lid with insulation and roofing material.
- Cover ventilation openings with mesh material.
After assembling the structure, it can be coated with linseed oil, painted, allowed to dry, colonized after complete drying in the absence of a paint smell.
The dimensions of the lounger hive depend on the number of frames. A dwelling designed for 20 frames is considered a standard one. Dimensions are calculated as follows:
- the number of frames is multiplied by the width and side part;
- the result obtained must be divided by “37”;
- to the number that turned out as a result of arithmetic operations, add 1,5 cm (thickness) and 6 mm (streets)
Drawing of a sunbed for 16 frames
The presented drawing is the standard for a lounger hive, designed for 16 frames.
Many beekeepers doubt that the hive lounger can be left outside for the winter, if the insulation is carried out correctly. It is necessary to insulate the hive immediately after the last bribe.
- Conduct a thorough audit for the presence of the queen and the amount of feed.
- The optimal number of frames for a strong family is 8-10 pieces.
- Superfluous ones are easy to remove.
- Place the nest in the middle of the hive.
- Install special insulation (foam sheets) around the edges of the hives.
- Lay insulation material over the ceiling boards. It is best to use hay that does not obstruct air movement.
- Install barriers to prevent the entry of mice and birds (shields for the front walls). If the hives will be in the winter house, this can be omitted.
- In winter, once a month, clean the entrances, remove the pore.
It is not advisable to feed with syrup in winter, so as not to provoke diarrhea. This is done after the first flight.
To create a food reserve on wooden blocks, put the sealed at the bottom of the hive.
How to make a 20-frame beehive lounger with your own hands
Such a beehive lounger is considered universal, therefore it is most often used by beekeepers. The assembly process does not differ from the assembly of the beehive for 16, 24 frames.
Lounger size for 20 frames
The dimensions are shown in the drawing. The bottom is assembled from boards in the form of a shield, on which two support bars and an arrival board are fixed.
The presented drawing will help you to assemble a sunbed by yourself.
Stages of work
The assembly of the hive must be started from the bottom. This is the base of the hive on which the rest of the parts are attached:
- collect the bottom using the diagrams in the drawing;
- fix two bars at the edges;
- fix the side walls (recommended thickness 4 cm);
- check walls with a level;
- equip the entrance, fixing it at the bottom;
- assemble the roof, it should fit freely on the body.
It remains to fix the framework and populate the family.
Insulation of a sunbed
The process of warming is simple, but quite important.
- The slot must be delimited on both sides by a plug-in board of suitable size.
- A foam sheet is inserted into the resulting space.
- Lay a layer of hay on the ceiling boards.
How to make a beehive sunbed for 24 frames with your own hands
The scheme of work is not much different from the creation of sun lounger hives, designed for a different number of frames.
- Assemble the bottom corresponding to the dimensions shown in the diagram.
- Attach walls made in accordance with the dimensions shown in the drawing. In the front wall, at a distance of 3,5 cm, make a tap hole and fix the arrival board.
- Assemble the roof, insulate and sheathe it with roofing material.
After that, process the hive lounger outside and after drying, insert the frames and populate the families. The video presented will help you figure it out if questions arise during assembly.
Frame size 24
It is desirable to maintain the dimensions of the lounger for 24 frames according to the parameters that are presented in the drawings.
Drawing 24 frame lounger
Stages of work
When manufacturing parts, it is necessary to strictly adhere to the recommended dimensions in order to exclude possible misalignment. Perform the work in stages:
- assemble the bottom using slats, nails or screws;
- fix the walls;
- prepare grooves in the walls where the frames will be attached;
- at a short distance from the bottom edge, cut out the entrances and fix the arrival board;
- assemble the roof, cover it with roofing material;
- process the outer walls with linseed oil, paint.
It is desirable that the lounger has legs on the outside of the hive. This is to exclude contact with the ground in order to avoid dampness.
On the side of the hive, it is advisable to attach handles that will help when moving and transporting
Insulation of a sunbed for 24 frames
Many beekeepers install additional planks around the edges of the hive to create space between the walls. Styrofoam sheets are placed in this container. The roof is insulated with hay spread out on the ceiling boards. If there are two families in the hive, they must be protected with dividing boards.
How to make a beehive sunbed for 32 frames with your own hands
Using the proposed scheme and the stages of work that have already been proposed, you can assemble your own hive lounger on 32 frames.
Dimensions and Drawings
It is advantageous to use such a beehive lounger for 32 frames for two families or for keeping bees of the Central Russian breed. It is also called the Vladimir hive. The frame is the basis. It is better to equip the roof of such a sunbed with awnings. It is large enough and tearing off the roof on the curtains makes maintenance a little easier. Using the drawing, carry out the collection in stages, as was done with other hives.
Maintenance and development of bees in sun loungers hives
Professionals argue that strong, healthy families can be created in volumetric hives that are designed for 20-24 frames. That is why sun loungers are the most promising in this direction.
If the hive contains more than one colony, non-swarming methods should be used. One of the most effective is the expansion of the nests, the normalization of the natural ventilation system. Well, in general, keeping bees in sunbeds is not difficult to care for.
Families are separated by sheets of plywood. Each slot must be inserted with a dividing grid., Dividing the space into two parts of different sizes. The smaller one is located next to the entrance, the larger one is a little further. At the will of the lattice, there are frames with larvae, then they go with an open brood. Further – with eggs and then with foundation. The uterus is in a small compartment. The grates can be moved up to the first bribe.