Top bar Beehives for the Backyard

Pollination for your garden and honey for your toast


Hive body - the box where the bees live

Size - inside 1050mm long x 366mm at top tapering down to 115mm at bottom
Standard top bars have a wax filled groove to guide the bees
Hives made with: New macrocarpa, Stainless steel screws, Galvanized nails and Stainless steel mesh

Legs - to support the body off the ground

Material - H3 treated pine bolted to the body with zinc plated bolts

Roof - to keep the rain out

Material - New macrocarpa and treated ply. Undercoated only, it will need a couple of coats of exterior house paint, coloured to suit your environment.


Please allow up to 3 weeks for delivery. Deposit 50% with order, balance paid prior to collection/shipping.

Hives are completely assembled (the legs are easily removed) and are usually collected from my Levin workshop.
Shipping by Mainfreight - I can put the hive on a pallet and get it to their Paraparaumu depot. Estimate the cost on their website Mainfreight     Size and weight:- 120cm x 63cm x 65cm, 60kg.


Hive with pitched roof - $360
   - includes 1 pair of division boards, a
   set of flat top bars and legs
Additional for window $35
Additional top bars $2 each
Triangular top bars $3 each
Additional for framed top bars $4 each
Additional for framed top bars with foundation $6 each


A top bar hive with a window is the most popular.
If you're new to beekeeping I recommend 5 framed bars for your first hive.
Other options are shown below.

Standard hive

The hive has a pitched, lift off roof, complete with a set of 29 flat top bars.


An observation window is great to check on the bees without disturbing them. Friends and family that are less confident around bees can see the bees at work. The window is 440 x 160 mm and is covered (removable, not shown) to keep the warmth in and the light out.


Framed Bar

There has been some concern that top bar hives are difficult to inspect for American Foolbrood (AFB). So I developed both "Framed top bars" and "Framed top bars with foundation" (pictured). These provide the bees guidance when building comb, support for the comb and can easily be removed for inspection. 5 - 10 per hive should be plenty.

Triangular top bar

Without foundation the bees can please themselves where to hang the comb despite our efforts to guide them with a bead of wax in the bar. This can be a problem when inspecting the brood and removing honey. The best way I have found to guide the bees in straight lines on the bars are these triangular bars.