Adventures in Beekeeping: Warre Hive Assembly

Posted by on May 8, 2013 at 7:04 am.

A few weeks ago, my Warre hive arrived (in pieces.)

Warre Hive - Closed observation Window

Unassembled Warre Hive – That’s the observation window you see. Those side slats help keep the board in place when you don’t want to observe the honeybees.

 

I was really impressed with the craftsmanship of the hive but not so thrilled that there weren’t any instructions or screws to assemble the hive. I was able to figure it out on my own. Also I have the tools (screws, drill, and wood glue) needed to complete this project. But, I  couldn’t help but think there might be others not good with these type of things  that were in for an unpleasant surprise once their unassembled hive arrived!

Warre Hive - Unassembled

Unassembled Warre Hive – Open observation window

 

Since my nephew was visiting, I didn’t assemble it on the Saturday that it was received. And although I was planning on putting it together last Saturday, I decided to hold off until later. You see, there were a few things that I needed to do before I started assembling my beehive.

In order to make the honeybees home more “bee friendly” I’ve opted not to paint the hive with ordinary paint. It seems that’s done more for the beekeepers benefit than the bees.  Instead I’ll be “painting” my hive with a combination of Linseed oil and natural bees wax. Linseed oil is a natural preservative and will increase the longevity of the hive.

Efficacy of hot wax dipping
“Robinson and French (1984) indicated that some apiarists found that hot wax dipped treatments lasted in excess of 15 years before retreatment of the material became necessary. Some beekeepers have indicated that well-treated boxes will last for more than 20 years before further treatment is required.

Additionally, the inclusion of beeswax makes the hive more friendly to honeybees since they already know what that smells like, I’m hoping it’ll convince them to stay in their brand-new home.  I thought I had natural beeswax laying around. I use it in soaps, butters, and lip balms but I completely forgot that I gave about three pounds of it away to someone new to making skin care products. No worries, I ordered more. That along with the linseed oil is enough I need to “paint” the hive this weekend. One day next week, I’ll assemble my Warre beehive.

I did find a site that has a  Warre Hive pictorial guide, I found it helpful for a few things I questioned.

 

ResourceHow to preserve hives naturally

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