Just over one gallon top feeders.

Discussion in 'Building plans, blueprints, and finished projects' started by alleyyooper, Mar 27, 2010.

  1. alleyyooper

    alleyyooper New Member

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    I seen these with floats at bee conferance. But they ran the access the long way so the floats were different.
    Way I see it ALLfeeders have a draw back of one sort or another. Boardman feeders are to small and are sticking out in front of the whole world inviteing robbing and vandels.

    Frame feeders never had any kind of float for the bees to get on and many drown. They also force you take a frame out and tend to bulge. I have modified some of those with floats screens for the girls to climb on and braceing so they don't bulge. Still have to open the hive up completely to fill.

    One gallon jars and two gallon pails are OK as long as you have extra boxes you can surround them with. They are also harder to clean out when finished feeding. The glass jars are harder to store and fragle.

    Top feeder I have seen leave a bunch to be desired. They also allowed many bees to drown if feeding syrup. I have one with just one end open for the bees to feed a bunch drown unless you float straw in the space. Plus it has to be on a slant to keep the syrup where the bees can get to it. Another one I have had the center chimmny thing with a bit of screen angled away from it for the bees to stand on. Crazy bees don't put on life jackets but still think they can wade out and get syrup making room for more on the screen, they DROWN.

    So here is what I built from memory.

    [​IMG]

    :mrgreen: Al
     
  2. alleyyooper

    alleyyooper New Member

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    My hives are 19 7/8" long, so I cut the side rails that size.
    [​IMG]

    Since I wanted some extra glue up area and some thing to help keep the feeders stable I cut the end bars and centers to 15 1/4.

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    With all the dados on the ends and centers 3/8" deep it gives me the over all width of 16 1/4.

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    Of course 3/4" wide dados allow a perfect fit of the end bars in them.

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    You can have the center bars as far apart as you wish and as close as 3/8" but I feel that is to close. I chose a inch. Find the center of the box measure a 1/2 inch on both sides of center for that inch.

    [​IMG]

    Once you have that inch measurement you can set the fence on the table saw to cut the dados. Do one side rotate ends and do the other. Then you reset the fence to do the centers the very same way, one side then the other. I measured so I don't have to do the figureing out every time any longer.

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    I used construction glue (locktite grab it) to glue the bottom on as well as staple it with 7/8" crown staples.

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    When that is done you can measure the area for the float. Just make sure you leave some clearance. I left about 3/16" on the sides and ends.
    I made the floats out of 1/2x3/4 inch rails and the cross ties are 1/8"x 3/4" , didn't soak these but will all the rest as it tends to stop splitting. I replaced several that did split.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    :mrgreen: Al
     

  3. alleyyooper

    alleyyooper New Member

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    I had a horriable elder moment when I was cutting out the 1/8 float slats. Being safe I was useing a push block to push the wood thru the saw and I also made sure I had the zero clearance insert in place. Some would still shoot out the back of the saw so I had to chase them down. Tried the jig saw way to slow. the band saw has a cross cut blade on and just didn't want to rip the block. I decided to built floats with a frame center bar and vynal screen.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    It works with the screen up but they will need life jackets if down as there is a half inch of syrup above the screen.

    I also figured out how to cut the 1/8 slats on the table saw with out a problem. Just push a wide board thru that is a couple of feet long then cut the size you need.

    I do have those elder moments a lot more lately for some reason.

    :mrgreen: Al
     
  4. rast

    rast New Member

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    I like what I'm seeing, but being a dumb Fl. cracker, I have a question. It looks to me that the bees come up through the center slot from the hive. If they do and the center bars are flush with ends, with a migratory cover on, how do they get to the syrup?
     
  5. alleyyooper

    alleyyooper New Member

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    Up here in Santa Claus land we use a intercover and a telscoping cover. If I were building for a migratory cover I would leave the centers 3/8" shorter.

    By the way I ruled the screen float out as not do able.

    :mrgreen: Al
     
  6. rast

    rast New Member

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    Gotcha, thanks.

    "By the way I ruled the screen float out as not do able."
    I really liked that part of it.
     
  7. alleyyooper

    alleyyooper New Member

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    The screen float was rulled out because the screen was underwater if the screen is down. With the screen up when the bees couldn't reach any more syrup you would have about half an inch left in the feeder.

    :mrgreen: Al