Instructions for assembling The Cathedral Hive Un-assembled Kit.
This page is for the kit assembly, if you are building from the Hive Plans
go here: Building the Cathedral Hive from the hive plans
The Kit comes with detailed schematic plans for putting it together.
The only part to make is the The Gluing Board Jig. It is not part of The Cathedral Hive Un-assembled Kit
Purpose:To hold the 3 Side Panels boards comprising each of the hive halves at an exact angel while the glue dries
* Flat board: of plywood, particle or melamine board Size: 18 ½” wide x 33-36” long x ¾’ thick
NOTE: The 18 ½” width needs to be exact to achieve the correct angle for the sides when held in place while glue dries.
* 2 Side Rails Size: 1 ½ x ¾ “ x 28” length (screw to the sides of jig board)
* 4-5 Scrap Board Lengths Size: (18” lenth aprox.)
* 4 Ratchet Straps NOTE: non-ratcheting rafting straps won’t provide enough pull
* Long Wood or Cardboard Strips Size: 33” long - These create a uniform pressure on the joint when the straps are applied
* Wood Glue – Tight Bond II – Best waterproof and dries slowly
Detail of the Ratchet Strapsand the Scrap Board Lengths which will lay under the 'Flat plywood Board'
Lay 'Flat plywood Board' (which has side rails drilled on) on top of your Scrap Board Lengths and Ratchets
NOTE: The 18 ½” width of the Flat Board, side rail to side rail,needs to be exact to achieve the correct angle when the Side Panels are glued in place.
Detail of the Ratchet Straps laid under the Gluing Boardfirst before setting the 3 hive body 'Side Panel' parts in position on the Gluing Board/Flat Board
Propthe Side Panelsin place as the glue is applied and fully sets. Here we used boxes of nails from the wood shop.
Propthe Side Panelsin place as the glue is applied and fully sets. Here we used boxes of nails from the wood shop to prop the Side Panels in place.
Ensure Side Panels are flush before gluing together
Side Panels - hand planing to make flush
Detail of Side Rails screwed onto Flat Board Jig and Side Panel butted up against Side Rails
Detail of Cardboard or Wood Strips made to even out the pressure from the Ratchet Straps that could mare the Hive Body
STEPS gluing and clamping hive panels
1) Prop up the JIG plywood platform off of the table using scrap wood pieces, so that ratchet
straps can slide under the jig.
2) All 4 hive side panels have tongue and groove on one side and one flat side. Glue only the tongue
and groove edges together to the Hive Bottom and then Hive Top Boards
3) Side Panels are propped up temporarily to hold the boards in place until the straps are secured
and holding the Side Panels together. example: use a box of nails or brick.
4) Set ratchet straps in place under flat plywood platform
5) Another person is helpful for the process the gluing/clamping boards
6) Cardboard strips protect the wood from marring – use heavy strips of cardboard. These 'pressure strips'
also create a uniform pressure on the joint when the straps are applied. put packing tape along
underside of cardboard, so cardboard doesn’t glue to hive boards. rehearse putting the hives boards
into the jig and test putting ratchet straps around boards before putting on the glue.
7) Run glue along 1 tongue side of a hive board
8) Run glue along 2nd tongue of opposite hive board
9) Ratchet one strap first, make sure ratchet buckle meets were cardboard strip is so the buckle does not mare the hive boards. while boards are still movable check that the board ends are all flush. place all 4 ratchet straps in place, then tighten down. The straps should feel solid.
STEPS attaching hive Front and Back boards
Ratchet Straps in place and Front & Back Boards ready for gluing
Cathedral Hive - Front Board - Draw line
Cathedral Hive - Front Board - Glue line
Gluing the Front Board - a bead of glue on the pencil line (see picture above)
STEPS attaching hive Front and Back boards
1) Hive boards need to be flush on ends, if not shave down with hand planer
before glue is applied, the hive Front and Back boards are positioned by measuring 3/4” in on three sides, make a pencil line on Front and Back boards where they intersect with hive body. This allows the correct location of where the glue should be applied and allows the hive Front and Back boards to be positioned and clamped quickly and accurately after the glue is applied.
2) Apply glue inside the pencil line and use bar clamps to hold the hive Front and Back boards in place
3) Dry overnight for a solid hold!
The Cathedral Hive Side Panels and Front & Back Boards drying overnight
Brace Supports - add needed support to the Side Panels for the weight of the honeycomb pressure
Cathedral Hive Hexagonal Honeycombs - Each combs will be 10-15 pounds each x 2-23 bars adding pressure to the Side Panels - so ensure your spline or joint connecting the Side Panels is solid
Brace Supports - around a Front Board engraved panel
Brace Supports - ready for gluing and stapling
Brace Supports -
Brace Supports - Upper Section - all 9 Brace Supports glued and stapled into place
Side Roof Panels - Upper Section - Clamped for glue drying
The Kit parts come with the glass window pre-assembled
Cathedral Hive Window Detail
Cathedral Hive Window Cover Detail
Cathedral Hive - Ready for bees!