Warre Hive Components

Warre Hive Roof

Warre Hive Roof

Quilt (Sits under Roof)

Assembled Hive Quilt (Sits under Roof)

Hive Box

Assembled Hive Box

Floor or Bottom Board

Assembled Hive Floor

Assembled Warre Hive – Ready to Finish

Assembled Hive Ready to Paint or Stain

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19 responses to “Warre Hive Components

  1. Looks great but how does the “quilt” box fit under the roof and is it open to the top or sealed, and how do they stack without sliding off, say in a high wind gust ?

    • Will – The quilt is shorter than the roof, so it fits nicely up under the roof. The sides of the hive roof extend down outside the sides of the uppermost hive box. It is a good fit and the roof does not blow off. My hives have survived gusts over 65-75mph…of course I am roughly guessing here, but it was high wind approaching that intensity.

    • Just to add to Nicks response, there is a “top” to the quilt but it is actually incorporated into the roof, not the quilt box. Check the page where Nick shows you how to build the roof and you will see what I’m talking about…

  2. I keep reading about how easy it is to just “slip” a new hive box in under the existing setup. Given how heavy everything is, especially if the hives are full how the heck is an average person, and in particular, a woman, supposed to manage this?
    I would love to try a Warre hive but this is an issue for me.

  3. First, a few langoliers are subbing (nadiring) as opposed to supering. Second, as they may do, you could pick up the entire hive with a fellow beek and set it aside, briefly.

    Or do this 1 box at a time, or, there are some designs for what is essentially a cross between a hand truck and a forklift, that is homemade.
    May you be so fortunate as to need one!

    However, that may take a season, so you have some time. And 2 last things; each box is about 1/2 the weight of a full Lang deep, perhaps similar to a Lang shallow… And lastly (I thiMk,) you will likely start with 2 boxes. Putting a third underneath requires only that you set the top 2 aside.

    If you change out the old brood comb every 5 years, as is typical in a Lang, you must do the same thing, and each Lang deep is probably twice as heavy as Warré box.


  4. I have just had a local woodworker make me a Warre hive in cedar wood, it looks stunning. How and when is the feeder box used.

  5. is there a need for any special wood? what do you water proof the wood with?


  6. I am wondering if cedar wood is too aromatic for bees? What wood is suggested. I am going to make
    the Warre Hive in a few days

  7. Cedar wood is spot on as long as it is dried and there is no need to treat Cedar wood as it will last for ages. You would need to treat Pine, and the suggested mixture is Linseed Oil and Beeswax.

    • I have to disagree with this. I set out two untreated hives in the Sierra foothills (empty) to see how they would stand up and check the wind factor, and there was dry rot on one of the cedar boxes at the end of the first year. I now use pine, coated on the exterior with semi-gloss low-voc white house paint, which seems to reflect the most heat. The cedar also didn’t prevent bugs on its own – a mess of earwigs moved into one of the quilts – so as far as I can tell, using cedar is an unwarranted waste of money.

      Regarding whether they fall down in high winds, I also had two occurrences of the unfilled stack getting knocked apart, and the high wind for the year was only 26mph. It could have been deer knocking into them, but both were after windy days, so I just put a couple of staples between each box when they’re used. The hive tool can easily pop them out when it’s time, and it’s a bit of insurance after putting in a new package when the weight is low.

  8. Hello my name is William and I am interested in building a warre- hive, I have a langstroth hive and want to try something new, plus I like the naturalness of the warre- hive. but I do have a question though. I don’t understand how the roof sits on the quilt box, all of the plans I’ve seen shows the roof having a solid board running on the inside of it even with the vents. So does the solid board sit on top of the quilt box, I hope I’m making since with this, how do the bees get ventilation if the roof has a solid piece of wood on it? any advice would be greatly appreciated. Sorry again if I am confusing you.

  9. The Quilt Box has a fabric top not a wood top the, quilt box is filled with saw dust as insulating but allows the hive to ventilate and the bees to keep warm

  10. Hey Nick! I have a couple questions.
    1. FL law requires that the slats/frames not be nailed for inspection purposes, and I was wondering: for that purpose, can I build the top bars with only 3 sides (no bottom) so they can slide in and out for inspection purpose and the combs not be affected?

    2. What difference is it if the top bars are 3/4″ wide verses 1″ wide? I did my layout and with 3/4″ wide frames, I would be able to have 10 frames, but will I have more wax, less honey per frame, and poor production? From my understanding, the smaller the cells, the less opportunity for disease to creep in. Is this correct or is this a non-issue? The hive will have more 1 more frame for a comb, but what effect would this be on the bees, honey, wax, and queen?

    Thank you!

    • Hi Erez. sure you can build half frames to make them removable. You will still get burr comb connecting the frames but the half frames with a wax starter strip will help keep the comb straight.

      I think 3/4 in top bars will be too thin. You need to give the bees enough room to build comb as well as leave a bee space between frames. I’ve never tried adding an extra frame like that but I’m guessing they won’t have enough room to build and you’ll end up with comb where it’s not supposed to be. Remember bee’s don’t follow the rules so they will build comb as they see fit and not necessarily how you would like them too. Oh and bees don’t create cell size based on how much room they have, they make them as big as they need them (anywhere from 4.6mm to 5.1mm). With natural comb there is not a way to influence cell size. These conversations are usually associated with foundation.

      Hope that helps!

  11. How much space is enough? I’ve read 3/8″ some 1/2″. . .

    • Hi Erez, the proper bee space between 2 planes (comb to comb or comb to wall) is around 3/8″ or 7.5mm. In the bee world 1/8″ is nothing so 3/8″ to 1/2″ is fine.

  12. What suggestions do you have to harvest propolis?

    • Hi Erez, I can’t say that I know much about that, I read about a simple technique where someone placed a crumpled towel over the top bars. The bees cover it with propolis then the towel is frozen. The propolis will crumble off of the frozen towel. I’ve never tried it so not sure if it would work.

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