Top Bar Hive


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We used customer suggestions and feedback, our own experience working with top bar hives, and the advice of master beekeepers to redesign from the ground up.

Our top bar hives are all crafted using FSC Certified®, sustainable, clear-grain, local Douglas Fir or #2 Sugar Pine. 

Clear grain Douglas Fir offers exceptional toughness, beauty, and value and its strength is a benefit to the top bar hive’s longer sideboards, and sizable shingles. Since Douglas Fir is among the heaviest and hardest softwoods, its dense composition compliments the light lifting of single bars of honeycomb (5-7lbs), versus the heavy boxes of the Langstroth and Warre hives.

Sugar Pine is our value wood option. Still FSC Certified®, sustainable, but lighter and with tight knots allowed. Pine top bar hives should be sealed with tung oil, or painted on the exterior. Note that the legs are always douglas fir due to its strength.

Some Improvements to include: 

  • FSC certified sustainable, clear Douglas Fir or #2 Sugar Pine
  • Moulded legs can easily be installed and leveled and support 300+ lbs
  • A roof that can hinge either direction
  • CNC cut ends with ventilation
  • Oval-shaped side + end entrances cut to the same volume as a standard Warre entrance
  • Black walnut entrance covers + window handle
  • 28 19" douglas fir top bars match the length of a standard Langstroth frame
  • 40" long hive body (all parts pre-drilled)
  • 45" long hinged roof with a shingled design for optimal rain runoff
  • 1 full-length viewing window lets you see the bees throughout the entire hive
  • Solid bottom board
  • Stainless steel screws


      • Drill or screwdriver with Phillips bit
      • Approximate assembly time: 60 minutes

      Read more about our new top bar hives on our Top Bar Hive Frequently Asked Questions page.

      Customer Reviews

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      • Reviews (10)
      • Questions (4)

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      Raoul C.

      Very Good Hive

      Very good overall. Assembly was very easy. Roof ridge board was warped, but a replacement board arrived within 4 days. Shipping was unbelievably fast. I did,however, reinforced the roof with a 1 x 2in straps in the middle. I also replaced the hinge pins with machine screws and nuts for sturdier operation. Overall, everything looks works great!


      Wanted: Horizontal Langstroth Hive

      We purchased one of the original Bee Thinking TBHs. It has been going strong for 7 years and we have been very happy with it. What we are looking for in our next hive is a horizontal Langstroth with cavity dimensions that will accommodate Flow frames for easy honey extraction. Please consider building a horizontal hive that will accommodate foundationless Langstroth frames and Flow frames... It would combine the best of what top-bar and Langstroth hives each have to offer!

      Lois D.
      United States

      Top Bar Hive

      The hive is beautiful, looks lovely. It was easy to put together. Leveling was a breeze. Although, it would be nice if the veiwing window was optional.

      Laura M.
      United States

      A Perfect Start

      The top bar hive is very well made and went together very easily. This kit had everything I needed to get started.

      Laura M. verified customer review of Top Bar HiveLaura M. verified customer review of Top Bar Hive
      A Bee Built Customer
      Fort Smith, AR

      Great Hive!

      This hive is amazing. It is really well constructed and very easy to assemble. I (and my bees) love how versatile it.