These are a method of assembling bee hive frames using snap
on plastic corners that will fit on to wooden parts that are simple
in design and easy to machine compared with conventional wooden
frames. The design was by Richard Alabone.
His design is an attempt to reduce the contact between parts
so as to reduce propolising. (The standard wooden Hoffman frame has a
contact length of 585 mm (23") that will attract propolis.
Moulded plastic corner pieces
are shown in
this diagram... the top right corner is in cross section.
The plastic corner pieces are designed for assembling into
frames to suit all hive types, in deep and shallow versions, and
provide features impractical using wood. The "clip on" corners
incorporate the lugs, frame spacing, and frame joints, as well as
making all the contact with the hive and adjacent frames, using point
contact, rather than contact along lines or between flat faces, which
would be readily propolised.
The wooden parts are straight and simple they plug into the
corners to make a frame with woodwork that is 25.4 mm (1") wide in all
Crossed "V"s ensure that frame spacing is at contact points,
not line contact minimalising propolis attraction. The spacing occurs
on every corner avoiding uneven comb width at the bottom of deep
frames by ensuring that frames are held vertical.
The lugs are tapered to allow room for the finger tips
between lugs. The spacing at the lug ends is greater than a bee space,
but they do not normally build brace comb in this position.
A small lip around the top edge of the lug gives adequate
purchase when lifting out a heavy frame with gloved fingers.
Assembly is made easy by sprung tongues that snap-in to
grooves in the wooden top and side parts. Assembly simply involves
pushing parts together with glue in the top bar joints.
National, Commercial, Smith or Langstroth types are made
using mouldings suited to each, the ones illustrated being National.
The ones that I have used (about 200) were all National and
I have nothing adverse to report about them. I used to sell them when
I was in business, but they were not as popular as I believed they
deserved to be.
I have no connection with the "Beesy" business.
Written... 17 February 2002,
Transferred to New Domain... 16 June 2004,