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To sand or not to sand?

 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    beekeeping forum -> Horizontal top bar hives
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meant2bee
Nurse Bee


Joined: 28 Aug 2014
Posts: 27
Location: Hawai'i, Kaua'i, Lawai

PostPosted: Tue Sep 02, 2014 8:02 am    Post subject: To sand or not to sand? Reply with quote

My apologies for bringing up a possibly old question; search turns up related topics but of course "The topic or post you requested does not exist".

I recently made myself some new top bars for my hive because the girls had run out of room and I didn't want to wait to get more from the guy who set me up. I was very pleased with the results of my first attempt at making some of those nifty beveled top bars but when I was done my dad asked "Why did you sand them?" I wanted to make them pretty of course! Didn't even think about what would work best for the bees; would it have been better to leave them rough? Now I'm wondering if this will affect the bond of the wax or not...

...please advise!
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Barbara
Site Admin


Joined: 27 Jul 2011
Posts: 1567
Location: England/Co.Durham/Ebchester

PostPosted: Tue Sep 02, 2014 8:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi

In my opinion the simple answer is yes it will and assuming you have a reasonably hot climate in Hawaii, I would be inclined to undo your over enthusiastic work and rough them up a bit with a wire brush or something to give them a better adhering surface. It's so easy to get carried away, making things look pretty or smooth or perfect (I've done it myself) and forget that bees have different needs and perspective.

Sorry to burst your bubble.

Regards

Barbara
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trekmate
Golden Bee


Joined: 30 Nov 2009
Posts: 1123
Location: UK, North Yorkshire, Bentham

PostPosted: Tue Sep 02, 2014 10:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I plane or sand the edges of the top-bars so that they fit together well, but the comb guide I leave "as sawn". A wire brush as suggested by Barbara or dragging the teeth of a saw over the guide will do the trick.
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Houstonbees
Guard Bee


Joined: 25 Jul 2012
Posts: 81
Location: Houston Tx, USA

PostPosted: Tue Sep 02, 2014 5:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd be willing to bet that you won't notice one bit an "as sawn" look when that top bar is drawn with comb and packed full of honey!
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MikeRobinson
Foraging Bee


Joined: 01 Apr 2012
Posts: 200
Location: Upper Northwest Georgia, USA

PostPosted: Tue Sep 02, 2014 9:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yup ... the natural compounds that bees use are incredibly sticky. So, in the end, "the quality of your woodworking" (or, the lack thereof) will not make the slightest bit of difference.
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rmcpb
Scout Bee


Joined: 17 Jul 2011
Posts: 447
Location: Blue Mountains, NSW, Australia

PostPosted: Tue Sep 02, 2014 10:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

All said above. Don't get too carried away with finishes as the bees will always set it up how they want. If you want to see some "rough" work that is successful do a search for Sam Comfort he makes successful hives out of scrap.

Cheers
Rob.
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meant2bee
Nurse Bee


Joined: 28 Aug 2014
Posts: 27
Location: Hawai'i, Kaua'i, Lawai

PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2014 11:21 pm    Post subject: ...lesson learned... Reply with quote

Thanks guys; as I feared, I'd gotten a bit carried away with my perfectionist tendencies.
A good lesson on thinking of the girls before I impose my own preferences...
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MikeRobinson
Foraging Bee


Joined: 01 Apr 2012
Posts: 200
Location: Upper Northwest Georgia, USA

PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2014 3:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

rmcpb wrote:
All said above. Don't get too carried away with finishes as the bees will always set it up how they want. If you want to see some "rough" work that is successful do a search for Sam Comfort he makes successful hives out of scrap.

Heh... (no claims to fame here but ...) "and so do I."

Let's face it, folks: "we do 'tend to over-cerebralize this thing.'" (Say hey, partly because it's fun.) We forget that honeybees are insects, designed to survive and even to thrive in the most gosh-darndest of places: trees, eaves, walls ... All (gosh, darn it, how dare they!!) without(!) our "help.™"

If you happen to be "a fantastic woodworker," then, well, "fantastic!" On the other hand, if you are not, then, well, "fantastic, too!" The bees will adapt.
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