Slatted Racks?

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by Indiana Dave, Feb 26, 2012.

  1. Indiana Dave

    Indiana Dave New Member

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    I've heard a few good things about slatted racks (lessens swarming tendancies, promotes air circulation w/o draft on brood and makes the lower deep more attractive to the laying queen). I found a few plans for making them but wanted to find out what some of you think about slatted racks first.
    Anyone actively using slatted racks or have used them in the past? Pros? Cons?
    Thanks!
     
  2. Murrell

    Murrell New Member

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    I use slatted racks on my 7 hives, I personally like them.

    You'll find pros & cons.

    Murrell
     

  3. jim314

    jim314 New Member

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    Is a slatted rack placed above a screened bottom board? I've seen pictures of them but never new exactly what the purpose was.
     
  4. Indiana Dave

    Indiana Dave New Member

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    Yes, they are placed directly above the bottom board, screened or solid.
     
  5. Omie

    Omie New Member

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    I use them and like them, but i can't compare to having not used them. I do know my hives don't beard very much in the summer, and I can see the rack space above the bottom screen chock full of thousands of bees 'hanging out' underneath the frames during hot days and evenings.
     
  6. Indiana Dave

    Indiana Dave New Member

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  7. Joseph Clemens

    Joseph Clemens New Member

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    Slatted Racks can be built-in to a screened bottom board, as I have done. I also use vertical slatted racks on the inside walls of my brood supers. I have tried several variations, especially of the bottom board racks.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  8. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    hello joseph clemens..

    I am guessing that the second drawing is a clustering frame??? even a really bad idea resurrects itself every 30 years or so.. this may be the only predictable characteristic of beekeeping.

    as my old and very much commercial mentor told me long ago when I enquired about slatted racks and to how well they performed their stated objectives he informed me based on using these 30 years prior that... 'well they did work.. after a fashion'. at about the same time (as I was having this conversation with him) clustering frames were shown (via some bee journal experiement) to not work at all... no matter what your fashion taste might encompass.
     
  9. Indiana Dave

    Indiana Dave New Member

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    Well, I made 4 slatted racks yesterday. I would have posted a picture but they are not painted yet. I'm anxious to try them out.
     
  10. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Why would you paint them? Or do you mean only the outer edge?
     
  11. Indiana Dave

    Indiana Dave New Member

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    Yeah, only the outer edges. My OCD won't let me go without painting them! LOL
     
  12. barry42001

    barry42001 New Member

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    Hello,
    Though my experience might not be shared by everyone else, I noted that if you provide adequate supering space, and enough brood rearing space, that very little bearding occurs, as there is sufficient ventilation and space for the colony to " spread out " in. likewise upper entrances go hand in hand with that ventilation issue. There are several other things that can be done to get adequate ventilation as well., if clustering space is what your looking for then why not simply add a super to give the bees something to do, and spread into. Just my thinking.
    Barry
     
  13. Omie

    Omie New Member

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    One minor but important detail to remember when making slatted racks is that you need to maintain proper 'bee space' (about 3/8", no more) between the slats and the bottoms of the frames above them, so that the bees will not build comb connecting the two surfaces. The 'lounging' space for the workers should be below the slats, they will not likely build comb there if the slats are perceived as the bottom of the available brood area.
     
  14. Indiana Dave

    Indiana Dave New Member

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    :) Thank you. I did use a 3/8" shim as a spacer for maintaining 3/8" between the slats when I stapled them into the kerf (slot) I cut into the sides of the rack. That kerf was 1/4" from the top of the sides of the rack to allow for bee space between the frames and the surface of the slats. Hope I did it right. I guess the bees will let me know by either building burr comb or not....
     
  15. PeeVee

    PeeVee New Member

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    A couple years ago I built a couple slatted racks. Orienting the slats so that they parallel the frames above. I installed on one colony. I really don't have good information as to whether that colony did better. Although that colony has always seemed to be heavier than colonies on either side I can't say the slatted rack is a factor.
     
  16. Joseph Clemens

    Joseph Clemens New Member

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    Nope, not a clustering frame. This is actually the first I've heard of anything called a "clustering frame". These vertical racks are built into the side-walls of the brood supers. Perhaps it has little positive purpose in a beehive, but it certainly gives me something to do with scrap lumber and my hands when I'm not busy with anything else.
     
  17. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    perhaps mid 1980 someone manufactured a plastic 'following board' (they were not built in as yours seem to be) that looked something like your drawing. the manufacturer made large claims that they did all kinds of wonderful things.. but I think they were primarily promoted as swarm control devices. someone in someway connected to the ABJ did a little experimenting and that was the end of clustering frames.