The Bee Space

Construction Tips – Warre Hive Construction Guide


Here are some tips that might be helpful to keep in mind as we build a Warre hive.


Here is a quick way to measure and cut wood using a measuring tape, a hand saw and a pencil.

Draw a mark with your pencil where you want to cut the board.  Be sure to place a mark at each edge of the board.  Take your handsaw and set the handle at the base of the board, as in the picture below.  Align the spine of the saw to the pencil marks.

While holding the saw with one hand, use your pencil to draw a line down the board along the spine of your saw as in the picture below.

The marked board is ready to cut.


Whether you are using nails or screws, it is important to remember that fasteners can split your wood.  Here are some ways to prevent your wood from splitting.

Choose the right size of fastener

If your fastener is too wide for the width of board you are using, the wood may split apart as you install the fastener.  A good rule of thumb is to use fasteners whose diameter is one third to one half the width of the board you are fastening.  For instance, if you are fastening wood with a 1 inch width, then use a nail or screw whose diameter is 1/3 inch to 1/2 inch.

Fasten away from edges

Position your nails or screws away from the edges of the board.  Your wood can split if the fasteners are installed right at the edge of the board.  Make sure that the fastener is centered when fastening straight into the edge of a board.  Also, watch that the fastener is vertical as it goes into the wood.  This will help to keep your wood from splitting.

Pre-drill holes

In some cases you may need to pre-drill holes for your fasteners.  Use a drill bit with a diameter a little smaller than that of the the nail or screw you will use.  Drill a hole into the wood, then install your fastener into this hole.  Pre-drilling is especially helpful for wood with knots, or for places in the board which could split easily.


Bee Safe!

Working with wood can be dangerous.  Always be sure to read and understand the user manuals that came with your tools.   Use your tools, chemicals and finishes in accordance with their respective user manuals and the instructions that were provided with them.  Always wear protective equipment and be sure to employ all of the safety features that came with your tools.

This safety warning does not address all of the potential dangers that could arise from using this construction guide or building a Warre hive.  It is up to you to read and understand your user manuals and instructions for all of your tools, chemicals and finishes.  Be smart with your tools, and use your common sense.  Bee Safe!

In the next section, we will start assembling the Warre Hive Quilt…

Go on to the Warre Hive Quilt →