Complete Beehive Made From Scrap Pallet Wood | Full Picture Tutorial
Higher R- Value than your typical hive - Keeping the bees warm in the winter and cool in the summer.
Insulated Warre Top - Helping with insulation and removing any moisture from the hive.
Sturdy Construction - This hive will last for years to come.
Custom entrance reducer - To allow us to better control the ventilation depending on weather.
as well as a list of other things you will see as we go along
Curious if building with pallets is safe? Check out this article for more information.
- Warre Hive Body w/8 frames x 2 - $178.00
- Hivetop Feeder - $69.00
- Warre Bottom Board - $54.00
- Warre Hive Top - $109.00
Total = $410.00
Includes the following pieces;
- Warre Style Hive Top
- Hive Box Body w/10 frames
- Hivetop Feeder
- Warre Style Bottom Board
- Set of 20 Frames
Total = $15.00 per hive
The goal was not only to save money, but to produce a higher quality product than what is available on the market...and I think we did just that. Let us show you how!
When making your own beehive out of pallet wood here are a few things to consider:
- You will need access to a table saw, 12" jointer or planer and several clamps to complete this project.
- Avoid hardwood for this project due to its low R value and for the additional weight that it adds.
- This hive will fit standard langstroth frames, but the exterior dimensions will be larger due to increased wall thickness for insulation purposes.
- Langstroth hives are typically made with finger joints but because of the added thickness rabbet joints work perfectly for this project and make it a bit easier.
- We are choosing to make our hives out of pallets for many reasons. If you don't want to use pallets, you can simply skip to Step Four and use 2"x 12" material instead to build this hive.
- Typical beehives are made of 3/4" softwood which has an R value of roughly 1 (1.4 R value per inch), this hive measures out to be 1 1/2" thick giving you an R value of 2.1
First Things First | Processing The Pallet Wood
- The first thing we need to do is remove the long boards from the pallet itself. We did so my using a reciprocating saw and cutting through the nails, allowing each board to be removed with out breaking.
- Once we have our boards removed, we run those through the planer and table saw until we have smooth surfaces.
- Then we take our now smooth boards and glue and clamp them together.
After a few hours we can remove clamps, but make sure to let them dry overnight before working with them.
The Beehive Top
We first cut down on one layered lumber from above to the following dimensions.
(2) - 19 5/8” x 2 ¾” x 1 ½”
(2) - 24” x 12” x ½”
(2) - 16 7/8” x 6 ½” x 1 ½”
Then we make a few simple cuts (found in the full tutorial) and glue the pieces together.
The Hive Box
(2) - 9 9/16" x 1 1/2" x 15 3/8"
(2) - 9 9/16" x 1 1/2" x 21 1/8
Then we use a dado blade to make our joints and glue/clamp the pieces together to make our hive box. We then finish off using a brad gun along the joints to help strengthen it overall. We made two of these for each hive, adding the second to the hive later in the season.
We will start by cutting our single layer lumber that we made into the following dimensions;
(1) 19" x 1" x 1/2"
(1) 17 3/4" x 3/4" x 1/2"
(2) 9 1/8" x 1 3/8" x 1/2"
We then simply join the pieces together using glue and clamps to secure until dry.
The Bottom Board
We start with the 3 layer lumber we made for the base and and cut the lumber to the following dimensions;
Base x 2 (24” x 8 7/16” x 1 ½”)
Spline x 1 (24” x 1 ½” x 1/2”)
Perimeter Side x 2 (19 ¾” x 1 ½” x ¾”)
Perimeter Back x 1 (16 7/8” x 1 ½” x ¾”)
Entrance Reducer x 1 (13 7/8” X ¾” x ¾”)
Then we simply glue and clamp the perimeter pieces to the base and its ready for the hive box.
The Hivetop Feeder
We start with single layer lumber cut into the following dimensions;
19 5/8" x 2
16 7/8" x 2
15" x 2 1/4" x 1/2" x 2
We then secure the pieces using wood glue and a brad nailer, then add in some recycled screen material to allow the bees to access the food without getting trapped in the liquid. Allowing you to give your bees access to the necessary food and water without them having to leave the hive.
The Complete Hive