Opinions on Warre hives

Discussion in 'Top Bar & other Alternative Hives' started by BjornBee, Feb 6, 2011.

  1. BjornBee

    BjornBee New Member

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  2. cacklewack

    cacklewack New Member

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    Good, reasonable reviews, Bjorn! I would note, however, that "there are no readily available supply for Warre hives," isn't entirely accurate. It was a couple years ago, but at this point between our business and some others specializing in Warre and Horizontal Top Bar hives, these hives are readily available. We can supply them as quickly as our mill can build them.

    Best,
    Matt
     

  3. BjornBee

    BjornBee New Member

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    Just be glad you got the plug... ;)

    I guess "readily available" is a much looser term for those actually selling them. I base my definition on the following:

    I have never seen them yet at a conference or bee club meeting. Making for those that can not afford shipping, it not readily available.

    I have never seen it offered in any major bee supply catalog, which makes combining orders, taking advantage of free shipping offers, and other options not possible.

    Now if you get right down to it, I have seen TBH and Warre hive offered on Ebay and a FEW suppliers like yourself. You actually have one of the better prices for your Warre hives. But prices in the 300, 400, and 500 dollar range is common. Making this marketing idea that
    Warre hives (and TBHs) being cheaper a real crock.

    I can go to 7 major bee equipment suppliers within a two hour drive. I can buy a standard hive setup for HALF price of what almost ANYONE selling warre hives or TBH. (I actually know one operation selling nice TBHs for $100.00 But that does not make them readily available)

    Yes, as long as you are willing to pay the shipping, and have unlimited funds, then anything from anywhere in the world can be called "readily available". Unfortunately, that meaning is not reality.

    If you can't find it local.....not readily available.

    If you have to add 30-50% shipping...not readily available.

    If you are being charged two times the price of other hives....not readily available.
     
  4. M88A1

    M88A1 New Member

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    I built a TBH and Warre hive from plans off the net. I was unsure which was better so what the heck. This spring each hive received a 3 lbs package. So far the TBH seems to be the better choice between the two. The Warre hive is in multipul layers one on top of the other, just more work. The TBH all I do is remove the roof section and I have easy access to all the bars. It was cheap and a good family project to build.
     
  5. Big Bear

    Big Bear New Member

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    I agree with Mike that most Warre and TBH hive equipment isn't quite the commercial darling that Langstroth equipment is.

    At the same time, I don't know that it could be, should be or ever will be.

    The principles behind these hives is self sufficiency and simplicity. They are designed with the person who is handy or can become handy with basic tools and has the ability to find some simple lumber around them.

    Mass production for a commercial market isn't really the intended destination for these hives and I don't see the industry adopting them enough to make it seem worth their while to mass produce parts for them.

    having said all that, I love these hives and they are all I personally use now with some modifications and caveats. It just means I get to keep up on my "how not to cut off a finger" skills.
     
  6. 2kooldad

    2kooldad New Member

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    i chose not to have them ( TBH ) because the inspector in my part of Florida wont touch them....the inspector himself said to me that he will not be responcible for tearing up comb in the top bar hives....i saw a warre hive in a pic once....looked like alot of work for a hot summer day in my neck of the woods....another thing...an this is only my opinion....the TBH hives have seemed to become attached to the ''organic'' / ''all natural'' fad thats going on now....i like to grow my own veggies an build stuff on my own....nothing wrong with the idea of it all...but buisness people have caught on to the fact that anything labled ''organic'' an ''natural'' adds a good bit to the price tag on these products....i love ''mother of earth'' magazine but you have to be rich to buy anything they sell in it...which to me is the oppisite of the point of it all...self reliant living shouldnt cost you 500 dollars for a beehive that has 30 bucks worth of wood in it...or if your like me you collect the wood for free....if i built a top bar hive with free wood an sold it for 500 bucks i wouldnt be able to sleep at night...not saying that Cacklewack is doing that...ive never see their stuff...but like Bjorn said...alot of people are....just my 2 cents....sorry if i made anybody mad...didnt meant to offend anyone....lol....im sure Bjorn will yell me later for anything i soulda said but didnt....right Bjorn :)
     
  7. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    There are two types of beekeeper.

    The Micheal Bush type, "using MB because he's about as good a beek as you will find", that is always looking for an improvement.

    The Iddee type, who may or may not be worth a darn, that firmly believes the old saying "Don't fix what ain't broke".

    There are plenty of space in the bee world for both, and I think both are equally needed.
     
  8. BjornBee

    BjornBee New Member

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    Who is this "Michael Bush type" you speak of?

    I have scanned the members listing of this forum. There is a MichaelB from Texas, but I could be wrong, this is not the Michael Bush mentioned. Did I miss his membership listing?
     
  9. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    He said he had too many forums to post in, but would come by when he had time and take a look. So I guess he's just going to miss the best part of beekeeping.
     
  10. 2kooldad

    2kooldad New Member

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    oooooOOOOOoooooo....theres gonna be a rumble in da bee yard......Iddee...tsk tsk tsk
     
  11. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    nice post Big Bear...

    bjorn writes:

    If you can't find it local.....not readily available.

    If you have to add 30-50% shipping...not readily available.

    If you are being charged two times the price of other hives....not readily available.

    tecumseh:
    I am thinking you are reinforcing the thought that alternative hives are often time sold as less expensive, but when you buy such 'alternative hives' (which almost by definition are very low volume manufactured items) they are somewhat expensive? I would guess it is a matter of definition but all these ARE AVAILABLE but just not what some of would consider a reasonable total cost (cost + shipping + assembly + finishing).

    I do applaud folks in our bee club who attempt these alternative hives but typically encourage them to begin with a lang.
     
  12. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    I am often dumbfounded as to how some will buy 10.00 worth of supplies, then spend 10 hours making something, and brag that it only cost them 10.00.

    Then those same ones will say they aren't being paid enough at work. 20 or 25 an hour just isn't enough.
     
  13. BjornBee

    BjornBee New Member

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    I would not care less about cost, other than the fact that for years, and most today who push nothing but these type hives, almost always list "less expensive" as a benefit to these hives. Then they equate making a TBH as a simple task, then compare it to some concept of a Langstroth and the idea that all of a sudden, making standard woodenware is beyond comprehension.

    If you can make a TBH and have the tools, you also have the tools to make a Langstroth (perhaps not frames). Both can be low cost if your inclined to make them. You use just as much wood and skill making a TBH as you do making a Langstroth.

    I will not point out the sites, but you do not need to look far, for sites promoting TBH listing them as "low cost" in the advantages column, then later in the material, offering them at prices much higher than any comparablre Langstroth. Go on Ebay. TBH are oftentimes priced 3-5 hundred dollars. Makes you wonder if those promoting them do so for reasons other than selling them. ;)

    I'm just pointing out the obvious double speak and some information to consider.
     
  14. Big Bear

    Big Bear New Member

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    well iddee, think about. most people, when they think of "cost" think firstly of cash. so for them, what they spent on parts is what they think of as cost.

    Time at home is not necessarily viewed or valued as the same as what they do on the job, where they get paid to do something. especially if it's a skilled or trained position.

    people in skilled/trained positions tend to value their time higher because it is often also a job they can do on the side in their own time.

    People who don't see their job as such, usually seem to look at their free time as time they have to kill which has no real dollar value associated with it. Thus they won't think to do so.

    If it pleases them to think thusly, it's no skin off my nose. If they ask me how I value, I will explain as I see fit. (which like you, is my time as well as materials, I do retail these things so I will often also include the cost of transporting them too.)
     
  15. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    You hit it, Big Bear. I have been a mechanic all my life.

    My time has a value, no matter what I am doing.

    But to me, it is like some who will drive 10 mile, one way, to buy something 25 cent cheaper. It just don't make sense to me.


    Yep, BJ, bait and switch has worked for many years. Make them think they are getting out cheap, then SOCK IT TO'EM.

    EDIT: Nothing personal, Big Bear, I didn't realize you sold them until I had posted.
     
  16. Marbees

    Marbees Member

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    Well said Bj :thumbsup:
     
  17. Big Bear

    Big Bear New Member

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    lol. no problem iddee. I always try to keep a fair price.

    I have to make a living, but I don't intend to do it on one persons purchase.

    I will admit, there are some out there who ihave thought "wow, that must be made out of gold". and others I have thought "wow, they must be awful proud of that."

    no, tbh and warre is not something that should be forced to others, it should be an individual beekeepers choice for their own reasons wether other beekeepers in the area like it, agree with it or not.
     
  18. BjornBee

    BjornBee New Member

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    Last year, I was at a yard sale of a friend. A women who had spent considerable time looking through every box on and under the tables finally came forward with a couple small nicknacks. Perhaps a piece of fake jewelry. I can not remember. She asked how much. The lady said 25 cents. She came back and offered 10 cents. When the lady said no, she put the item back on the table and walked away.

    I was perplexed. At 10 cents, it was worth the effort. At 25 cents, it was not worth the effort. She probably spend a half hour looking through the boxes. And the difference of 15 cents kept her from taking home something she wanted. A dime was worth buying someone elses "stuff" but 25 cents was paying too much. I wonder what she valued her time at, spending all that time, to walk away from a quarter deal.

    I always find people so interesting. :D
     
  19. Marbees

    Marbees Member

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    That's smart business approach BB. Like your signature line :thumbsup:
     
  20. jb63

    jb63 New Member

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    Bjorn,that kind of g-sale people watching is priceless it cracks me up.Back on topic I stopped by B-thinking yesterday.They advertise on this site and I noticed they have a Portland address.The wife was working there and she was very friendly and helpful. I gave the forum a plug and told her I saw her add on Beekeeping forums,that way she'll know the add brought someone into the store. Any way the warre hives look like med. langs,but have top bars instead of frames.My question is can you put warre bars and roof system on a lang. medium?That way they would become interchangable.My other question is She said you have to add new boxes from the bottom and that sounds like more work.How do you inspect for like swam controll ,or any other health? I'm thinking about trying one out but I'd like some more good reasons.
    Also the honey supers don't have frames so you do the crush and strain method.The good news is you don't need an extractor,the bad news is you don't get to reuse drawn wax.