OATH Internal Volume

Because a lot of box designs use the same outside measurements of 200mm x 280mm and then use different thicknesses of wood, it changes the internal volume.

 

If you’re using thicker than 35mm you should probably increase the outside dimensions to try keep the volume of each frame above 2 – 2.5 litres to give the bees some room to develop the colony. Also remembering that bees can fit their colony in to tiny spaces like little ground cavities and tree hollows that are only 2 litres total volume, so you’d get away with a 1 litre frame, but it’s thought that the bigger volumes like 2 to 3 litres frames could provide space to grow a stronger colony. In total you might be looking to achieve a 5 to 10 litre box. (two frames and a super)

If the box volume is too large, the bees may block off areas and only use a small section of the box. If the height of each frame is too high then the brood might only be contained in one of the frames and when it comes time to split your hive you might not be able to split the brood as it will only be in one frame.

 

Single Frame

Here’s some examples of internal volumes of a single frame with the common dimensions of 280mm x 200mm x 90mm height

  • 20mm thick timber: each frame might be around 3.4 litres
  • 25mm thick timber: each frame might be around 3 litres
  • 35mm thick timber: each frame might be around 2.4 litres
  • 45mm thick timber: each frame might be around 1.8 litres
  • 50mm thick timber: each frame might be around 1.6 litres

 

Honey Super Frame

Internal volumes of a Honey Super with the common dimensions of 280mm x 200mm x 70mm height

  • 20mm thick timber:  2.6 litres
  • 25mm thick timber:  2.4 litres
  • 35mm thick timber:  1.9 litres
  • 45mm thick timber: 1.4 litres
  • 50mm thick timber:  1.2 litres

 

Total Box Volume

The standard box design of 2 frames and a honey super total box volume

  • 20mm timber: 9.4 litres
  • 25mm timber 8.4 litres
  • 35mm timber 6.7 litres
  • 45mm timber 5 litres
  • 50mm timber 4.4 litres