Building the Hive – specs

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If you have a yen for specs: The inner dimensions of the trapezoidal cross section are about 16 1⁄2 for the top, 6 1⁄4 for the bottom, and 10 3⁄8 for the height. The bar length of 18 spans the top plus side walls. The long axis of the chamber is 38. The hive's volume comes to about 2.5 cubic feet. The legs are 36 long and lift the top of the chamber to about 34 above the ground for a comfortable working height. The body, top bars, and lid's frame are constructed from pine boards (3⁄4 thick, no. 2, S4S). The legs are off-the-shelf mitered balusters made of treated pine (1 3⁄8-square). The lid's roof is cut from birch-veneer plywood (3⁄8 thick). The square dowels for the splines are either basswood or poplar (1⁄4). Most fasteners—screws, nuts, washers, bolts—are stainless steel, but the lid has deck screws made of polymer-coated steel. Joints are also reinforced with weatherproof wood glue. The outside of the hive is finished with exterior latex paint; the inside is unpainted. The cost of materials totaled about $130.