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Plywood use in HTB

 
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Oakfield Bees
New Bee


Joined: 09 Aug 2015
Posts: 4
Location: Cheltenham

PostPosted: Wed Aug 12, 2015 7:24 am    Post subject: Plywood use in HTB Reply with quote

Hi, has anyone a view on the use of plywood in the making of a HTB, I assume it is used for the sides. A local bee keeper is selling 3 very cheap as he has moved to nationals but he has made them with ply and I always understood the glue used was toxic? Thank you, Peter
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Adam Rose
Silver Bee


Joined: 09 Oct 2011
Posts: 586
Location: Manchester, UK

PostPosted: Wed Aug 12, 2015 9:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Plywood is OK for bait hives, where you'll have bees for at most a couple of months in the summer. But I wouldn't use it for a permanent hive. It's not properly insulated and it won't last very long.

If you use marine plywood, then you can use that for the roof of a permanent hive. Marine plywood will last, and you can put plenty of insulation between the top bars and the roof.
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Barbara
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Joined: 27 Jul 2011
Posts: 1581
Location: England/Co.Durham/Ebchester

PostPosted: Wed Aug 12, 2015 10:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've used plywood, sterling boards, veneered chip board and MDF in my hive bodies but it was all stuff that had been sitting around for many years so any off gassing of solvents from glues was finished long ago. (I'm an enthusiastic recycler) I have not had a problem. I usually seal any surfaces that I am concerned about with molten beeswax.... rub it with a warm wax block and then blow torch it so that it gets absorbed into the wood.

Scorching a used hive with a blow torch is a good practice anyway to sterilise it before hiving new bees.

The only problem you may find with the ply hive is that it will usually warp more than timber and if not Marine ply, it will start to delaminate with the moist atmosphere over time but you should still get several (5 or more) years out of it. Having a good overhanging roof will make it last longer.
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Adam Rose
Silver Bee


Joined: 09 Oct 2011
Posts: 586
Location: Manchester, UK

PostPosted: Wed Aug 12, 2015 10:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Barbara wrote:
I've used plywood, sterling boards, veneered chip board and MDF in my hive bodies but it was all stuff that had been sitting around for many years


Ha - You're a better recycler than me ! In my house, that kind of stuff is thrown out straight away !
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Oakfield Bees
New Bee


Joined: 09 Aug 2015
Posts: 4
Location: Cheltenham

PostPosted: Wed Aug 12, 2015 11:10 am    Post subject: using ply wood Reply with quote

Barbara & Adam thank you very much for your input. The hive owner is calling me later so I can ask lots of questions and then go and view them on Friday.
Peter Very Happy
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