Langstroth equipment accounts for about 75% of worldwide
beekeeping kit, within that term 'Langstroth standard' there are about
ninety sub species, some of which are totally incompatible with each
Some of the Imperial dimensions for the height of a brood
box that I have found, have given 9 7/16" (1930 Hooper & Morse),
Wedmore stated 9 1/2" in 1932, and yet others at 9 9/16"
(New Zealand 1990). The 9 5/8" measure must be recent due to the
use of timber that is still 'green'. The older the information the
shorter the box which suggests that the timber was progressively
better seasoned the further we go back in time. Or perhaps the bees of
yesteryear required a smaller bee space???
Some of the information for the following table has come
from a Nick Wallingford's website. Values rounded to nearest integer.
|American Langstroth (from imperial measurements)|
|Californian Langstroth (from imperial measurements)|
|Australian Langstroth (from imperial measurements)|
|British Langstroth (APEX Enterprises Metricated dimensions)|
|9 Frame British Langstroth (APEX Enterprises Metricated dimensions)|
|11 Frame British Langstroth (APEX Enterprises Metricated dimensions)|
|New Zealand Langstroth (from imperial measurements)|
|New Zealand Langstroth (New Metric Standard)|
|8 Frame New Zealand Langstroth (New Metric Standard)|
|French Langstroth (Metric from inception)|
|Danish 10 frame Langstroth (Swienty styropor)|
|Danish 13 frame Langstroth (Rea-dan Skinned polyurethane foam)|
|Greek Langstroth (Metric from inception)|
|Mexican Langstroth (Metric from inception)|
|12 frame type used by Erik Osterlund|
Notes... Hoffman spacing is 35 mm except Greece which
is 36 mm and New Zealand which is 33 mm (older NZ was
33.4 mm) and Mexico was/is 33 mm. Some deep frames made by
APEX were 37 mm wide and some shallow frames made by APEX were
38 mm wide.
?? = Unknown at present. Should you know any of these dimensions please use the Email facility at the bottom of the page so that I can update
* = requires confirmation from original data when found.
There is some variation in the depth of seating of the
frames in different standards, But I only know the APEX details which
were 9 mm above the lug, 9 mm lug, 6 mm under the lug,
giving a 1 mm clearance under the frames.
Links to other sites that give specific details of particular
There is another issue here as well... In the UK we work to
fine tolerances of 0.1 mm (0.004") using well seasoned, selected
timber. In USA the timber is not seasoned so much and will thus 'move'
a little in service, also the manufacturing tolerance used in USA can
be as high as 1/16" (1.5875 mm) and this means that 3/8" bee
space, or larger, will be commonly used by manufacturers simply to
accommodate these discrepancies.
Additional Danish information from... Thor Bue Hansen.
more to come when time permits
Written... summer 2000, Revised... 26 August 2001
Revised... 18 May 2002