I just installed the very first super duper to my hive! It seems like it’ll work really well. My bees have been flourishing for the past 3 years and they’ve filled up the hive so quickly that I’ve always wanted to give them the option of a little extra space.
Corwin has experimented with all sorts of different designs to add a bit more space for the top bar hives including adding a traditional langstroth super to it. None of the designs have worked as hoped and the bees haven’t really taken to the space. One sunny spring day, he described his new thought about a design for the super duper that the bees would go for and would be easy to work with. After our conversation, I went home, found some scrap paper and then I created a model of what I thought he meant which turned out to be a bit different then how he’d envisioned it but still similar to the main idea of how it could work. Dave Sugar one of the local woodworkers who builds the hives just built this new prototype super duper custom built for my hive!
It is basically a bottomless golden mean hive with rain awnings near the bottom and is slightly smaller lengthwise then the traditional golden mean hive so that it fits perfectly in between the handles of the original hive. I’m really excited about it and I think it’ll work really well! This year I may have installed it a bit late to demonstrate it’s full potential but I definitely wanted to try it anyway and then this next spring put it on super early so that the bees realize it is there before they determine their set space for the year.
I transferred 3 nectar combs to the super duper with bees on them to encourage the bees to utilize the new space.
Adding the super duper! Before I did this, I took out the spacers and falseback to leave a little more space so that the bees would naturally climb up as they approached their honey stores. This also serves as a natural queen excluder since the queen doesn’t visit the honey stores and where the spacers are is all honey.
Looking down between the bars and through the window into the super duper. Access to main hive is through the cracks beneath the combs.