Brian Bales

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since Jan 13, 2011
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Scavenger Hunt
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Recent posts by Brian Bales

The bees instinct to build from the top down is what I am counting on for this to work. The queen not wanting to build in those drawers is also a hope of mine but as you said until its tried we won't know for sure that it works or not. I considered the idea of stacking Perones but as you pointed out the weight is a problem. Supposedly a full Perone hive body can weigh over 200lbs. I cannot imagine a "simple" system for moving such things. I'm hoping to build this hive this year so we will see how it goes.
5 years ago
I did a mock up with google sketch up. I think it gives a decent representation of what I am thinking. Scale is a little off but close enough.
5 years ago
Very good points! I've been reading up a lot more on bee behavior. They are amazingly complex critters. I love the harvest method of the Warre. It allows the bees to act naturally but it has to be disturbed a lot more than I'd like. The Perone allows for the "super hive" which I think is a great concept and allows for a more hands off approach which I also like. There must be a happy medium to be found between the two.

Lets say you have a Perone style hive body at the top with removable comb drawers of similar dimensions to the perone ones under it. Lets make them slide out instead of having to lift the hive body. The bees move thru those drawers drawing out comb, then raising young, then depositing honey. You harvest once a year from the top drawers down and deposite unfinished comb with brood back into the top drawers. They still have the hive body undisturbed and you get to harvest honey from the drawers. What do you think about the feasability of that?
5 years ago
Its been my understanding that hives are built from the top down, isn't that how the Warre is arranged? With hive body on top and comb boxes under it? The Perone uses 4 inch high comb boxes because supposedly the queen doesn't like building in them. Combine both and I would think the queen would prefer staying in the larger have body. Thats kinda the corner stone of the idea.
5 years ago
Was kicking around an idea today. What if you took the extra large Perone hive body, placed it on top instead of on the bottom, had it sit on top of a cabinet style structure with the comb grids situated like removeable drawers. Best of both worlds right? Hive body on top and no need to disturb it to get to the honey. Bees get to build from the top down, as they like to do naturally. And comb is as easy to harvest as pulling out a drawer. I'm not sure if this would exactly be a Warre/Perone hybrid but thats the notion that brought me to this.
5 years ago
Very interesting indeed! Anyone know where I could find more technical data and possibly instructions on making that thing?
5 years ago
Interesting ideas. Its a tricky problem to solve and there doesn't seem to be a lot of information available. I live in a relatively warm climate so my heating needs are minor, I'm in I think a zone 9 so it gets cold enough to freeze but its not a lasting freeze. In the long run what I'd really like to achieve is an aquaponic greenhouse that is mechanical instead of electrical in design. I was thinking maybe wind pumps for moving the water and rocket mass heater for heating but I am far from there. To start with I am going with solar and trying to keep the design to a single pump and an indexing valve. The RMH bench has some interesting possibilities but where I keep getting stuck is on how to implament it. I first considered running the ducts under the grow beds and heating them thus heating the water for the tank and the greenhouse as well but I wonder if it would be sufficient to heat the water. I also worry about the ducts getting to hot and possibly catching the frames of the beds on fire or melting the liner, there is also the chance that the heat might damage the plants in the beds if it gets too hot or the extra heat might dry the beds out too quickly.
5 years ago
I'm in the process of designing an aquaponic greenhouse. I am building it to be an off grid system and use minimal electricity. I want to be able to keep the fish tank warm in winter but an electric heater is not practical for an off grid solar system, not from what I have found so far. I would like to use a rocket mass heater but I am not certain how to best set it up. The tank will be an in ground design measuring 4x6x5. I was thinking of running the ducts under the bottom of the tank or along the sides buried about a foot down. Does anyone here have any advise for how best to arrange such a system and be sure not to cook my fish in the process? Thanks
5 years ago
Green veggies are the easiest to start with. Stinging nettle is a good perennial green veggie. Buckwheat is another nice addition as you can eat the leaves and of course use the seeds as flour. Buckwheat can easily become an annual "weed" if left to flower and set seed. Varieous squash and mellons can be planted as well and grow pretty well so long as they get some light. Other perennials I'd look into would be ground plums, ground nuts, maximillian sunflowers, sunchokes, nine star broccoli (perennial) and kale to name a few, kale can be a semi perennial or you can try tree kale/collards.
6 years ago
It will probably keep them in if set up right. Only problem might be if you have a loss of power.