Directions For Making Hives

If hives are not desired of the cheapest possible construction, the

outside may be planed and painted; but it is doubtful whether strict

economy would demand it. Yet a painted hive appears so much better,

that it ought to be done, especially as the paint adds almost enough to

its durability to pay the expense. The color may be whatever fancy

dictates; the moth will not probably be attracted by one color more

than another. White is affected the least by the sun in hot weather.

Lime is put on as white-wash, annually, by many, as a protection

against insects.

When hives are not painted, the grain should never be crosswise, having

the width of boards form the height; not that the bees would have any

dislike to such, but nails will not hold firmly, they draw out in a few

years. The size, shape, materials, and manner of putting together, are

now sufficiently understood, for what I want. Sticks half an inch in

diameter, should cross each way through the centre, to help support the

combs. A hole about an inch diameter in the front side, half way to the

top, is a great convenience for the bees to enter when coming home

heavy laden.

It now remains to make the top, cover, and boxes, (the bottom-board

will be described in another chapter.) The tops should be all alike;

boards fifteen inches square are just the right size; three-fourths of

an inch is the best thickness, (inch will do;) plane the upper side,

rabbet out around the edge of the upper side one inch wide, and

three-eighths deep; this will leave the top inside the rabbeting, just

thirteen inches.

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