Bee Hive Shade or Rain Visor Step by Step Tutorial DIY Honey Bee Protection

okay it’s a happy Sunday everyone today
I’m doing a tutorial on how to make these hive visors which are designed to
shade the front of the hive and the landing board as well as keep rain off
some of my early designs were not that great so I’ve arrived at a final product
here and I’m gonna share it with you step by step the reduction in
temperature here if it’s a 90 degree 89 degree day is about 15 to 20 degree drop
in the shade so these hive visors work really well
this white one here a little rough rough cut lumber on the sides I’m gonna
replace it with my final design that works really well and it goes on a 10th
frame or an eighth frame hive so we’re gonna get right into that and as I said
I’m gonna show you all the products they’re gonna be listed down in the
video description everything you need to make it except the wood of course which
you’re gonna have to get locally the bees are Fanning themselves really heavy
right now there’s a lot of nectar going on they’re trying to reduce it
they’re moving air out of there at about 10 miles an hour well these are my three
designs that I’m abandoning and I’m showing you my final one that works the
best here it is all painted up and I showed it in a recent video and several
people asked if I would show step-by-step how to make it and how to
paint it these are the hardware pieces you need quarter twenty thumb screws
quarter twenty receivers stainless steel 2-inch square drive self tapping screws
that’s it we’re using poplar I got this at the local hardware store so I’m
departing from my normal using rough cut lumber that I have here and I have red
oak for the struts because it’s nice and stiff two inches on the struts and of
course a 1 by 8 is actually 3/4 by 7 and a half and here is the red oak and it’s
just under two inches it was actually a four inch piece that I ripped cut and
once the lengths going to be 16 and 3/8 would be good or
you can go down to the sixteenths if you want to and we’re gonna precision cut
this look at that I split the line there when you make these lines and make your
cuts make it a high precision process if you can’t cut like this I mean don’t
be sad I realize I’m like an expert at this watch this one let’s split this line
exactly so perfect cuts every time truth is this is not that critical
look at my dust collection system and knew you wanted to know about it because
there was no dust blowing that’s a feedbag now we got to move this the 30
degrees because we’re gonna cut the struts at 30 degrees and then we’re
gonna put a 30 degree bevel onto the visors themselves 9 to 3/4 inch length
and that’s cut to cut there you go look at that split the line right on that
little point there again you know don’t be hard on yourself if you can’t make
cuts like this it’s no big deal I realize that this is precision work
now of course I made six struts and we have three visors so we’re now we’re
gonna have to put a bevel on the visor so we’re over at the table saw here I’ve
had this table saw for 20 years and I have to shift it to 30 degrees and
remember we also had cut the struts at 30 degrees and we can line it up here I
don’t want to make a sharp corner on that edge there I’m gonna leave it a
little thick because I found that the thin corners don’t last very long so if
you notice I left about a little over an eighth of an inch blunt face on the end
there by the way do not do this without parental supervision follow all safety
guidelines I am NOT demonstrating safety here I’m just showing you how to make my
hive visors and here we are three of them thought I’d make three might as well
just as easy as building one and what size drill bit am I going to use to
pre-drill those struts mmm three hundred thousandths or five
sixteenths highly precise where you put it there somewhere around here is it
wrote there and we’re gonna drill it true it’s helpful if you have a drill
press because you want them to be nice and straight and I put them in
pairs and drill the hole in pairs that way it looks like you knew what you were
doing and if you really have to have a precise location for that hole that I’m
drilling here equidistant from top and bottom and of course from the end so
it’s two inches one inch on center one inch from the end how about that now
we’ve got six of them drilled and we put them in pairs just like this facing each
other you want to make sure to put these receiving quarter twenty threads in
because they’re both can be on the inside if you line them all up wrong you
might end up putting one on the wrong side of the wood then you have to pull
it out and so on not that I would know about that but I’m telling you put it on
a nice firm surface and just hammer them in
it’s that simple these are galvanized so they’re gonna last a long time in the
weather now we’ve got those grommets in and we’re lining everything up looks
good our bevel angles match now what I’m going to do is we’re going to glue it
together first and then we’re going to screw it together to make it really
strong so again red oak struts and we’re using
tight bond to premium wood glue they make a stronger one but this one’s good
enough interior and exterior we are using it as an exterior look at this
precision gluing application here mm-hmm again if you can’t do this I mean I
realize that what I’m demonstrating here is a highly skilled procedure but if
you’re sad about it just wait for the rain and go outside and take a selfie
and you know work it out and come back in and try again
now I slide it back and forward to get the air out creates a nice suction there
it’ll hold them in place if you don’t have clamps you can actually just slide
it back and forth get contact like this walk away and let it dry on its own but
I’m gonna clamp it you know because I’m doing a demo and I want it to be strong
for you So here it is clamped up and look I have an
overhang on the end that’s to accommodate the clamp handle and I’ll
even list these clamps down to the video description if you’re interested in them
and we’re glued up now we have to finish the glue push it into those nice little
cracks and anything left over there just smooth out the glue because we’re gonna
paint it we don’t want that to show and again I’m using precision tools
while doing this and we have all three glued up and then I put them on the
floor you can put you know wax paper under them or something if you don’t
want the glue to stick and now while the glue is drying let’s mix up some paint
this is random pain I have laying around some of it has been here for a while the
black all the way to the right we have Linda Blair green there we’ve got the
nice deep red so if you want to make some gothic colors and stuff with the
black we can do that we’re gonna do a custom paint job on this too so you’re
gonna want to watch that this black has been out in the garage for probably ten
years and I just found it and decided to use it we’re gonna work from dark to
light the only thing that matters is that all the paint is latex so you can
match them up and make them up so if you have oil Base don’t mix that with latex
and now it’s been several hours we’ll pull the clamps off and now here we have
a hive visor ready to go now I used to put these in the bee yard just glued and
thought that would be strong enough but it wasn’t it failed so we have three of
them ready to go the glue is dry but now we’re gonna put those reinforcing screws
in there two-inch self-tapping stainless steel square drive screws and we’re
gonna pre-drill the holes pretty drilling with a 3/32 inch diameter bit
you have to know that and again where do you put the holes it’s not critical just
put a couple in there we’ll put a couple screws in there they’re just from the
top for those you have to see the details and keep in mind we clamp it and
have the glue on there for several hours before we did this plenty strong as a
placeholder now while we reinforce it with these screws the screws are really
taking the tensile load here and we go all the way in again we’ll put the list
of what screws I’m using what materials I’m using down in the video description
and they’re all in so four screws per visor all done ready to go now we have
to paint them since people wanted to see how I do the paint job that I do we’re
going to do that here and you know what when it comes to painting a visor it
really doesn’t matter what you’re doing yeah you can’t be judged this is art you
know this is your expression so do what you want so I’m gonna work from dark to
light here reason that old thick black latex paint that I’ve had laying around
we’re gonna build it up what really matters here is that you’re covering the
wood and you’re preserving it against the weather so how you do that really
doesn’t matter if you want to do some kind of dramatic design to help your
bees find their colony find their hive quicker visually then feel free to do
that bees respond best to high contrast and
bold geometric signs and we’re just gonna build some red in here we’re gonna
fluff it up work it in and of course I’m just following no guidelines whatsoever
I ran out of yellow wish I had some of that and in the previous ones of course
they’ve been green or white you can paint dark colors if you’re trying to
cause the snow to melt off in winter you can have pure white if you just want to
reflect the heat in summertime if you live in a hot region and I’m just
slinging paint with no particular concept in mind
notice that I’m left-handed because it is only left-handed people who are in
the right mind and let’s just smooth it out yeah so I’m taking the cloth here
and I’m pulling paint off so I put it on real thick we’re gonna in it down and
we’re gonna brush work it all in here and create subtle undertones with the
red and the black and then we’re gonna come in with a lighter color right after
that what you’re watching here is happening at 400% or four times normal
speed so even with a lot of coffee in me I don’t paint like this and here comes
the green do to do too just have fun with it put the paint on
any way you like I mean again you can’t go wrong this is just it’s paint if
you’ve got kids and you want to turn them loose on these visors and they can
paint anything they want they can do smiley faces it really doesn’t matter you know
you’re just putting out something in the bee yard that is functional but it’s also an
opportunity to express yourself artistically you want to glue stickers
on it go ahead and I’m just gonna keep that in the green here again what I’ve
called my Linda Blair green put some dabs on here you can’t go wrong let me
just keep just keep putting stuff on here and people gonna say hey what what
kind of plants are those right there well I don’t know it’s just the
contrasting colors so the bees can find their hives here it is all done added a
little white there mess it up so we have completely messed up visors here you
want to face a judgment you want people to look at that and ask you what you
were doing what that’s about now so you just paint the whole thing green so we
just came back and did it all with thin layers of green and wiped it out so now
we’re gonna have to put these in the bee yard now here’s the thing I built
these for ten frame Langstroth hives and we have the quarter 20 thumb screws here
but these will also fit on eight frames and I’m gonna show you how so let’s test
fit it here’s a ten frame medium super I just have sitting around in the shop
there and look that’s what it looks like so there is a little clearance on the
sides and we use the screws to hold it on there and it’s good to go but now
what happens when it’s an eight frame so here’s the a frame box look at all
the space do we have to build another visor for that nooo we can just take some
one-inch wooden shims and take up that space now before I cut the little shim
pieces I drill in a little bit and that’s just so that these things will
hang on the quarter 20 threaded screws and not slide out or fall out when
you’re trying to put them on the hive so they just serve as a placeholder so it
won’t slip out once you put it on in the quarter
these will face the screws you note over here to the cut-off saw cut them all
it’s easier of course to drill them first rather than trying to drill these
little segments and we make a bunch of them and then I’m going to demo how to
attach it so here we go will you that doesn’t matter they’re a little over an
inch thick each and then start the thread through here a little
bit and then put your little block on there put that against one side then the
other side and there you have it so these blocks also serve not to damage
the wood so if you’ve got a fancy beehive use these shims they won’t let
the screws dig in and you can make your hive visor wider even for the ten
frames if you want to put a shim in there and they hold the position great
and get my hands walking by and here we are at the beehives this is the flow
hive two, seven frame ten frame lengths for outsides and these bees really
benefit from number one being in the shade number two having the rain not
fall all over the landing board and get it wet but I have a white early version
of my high visor here and we’re gonna swap that right out and put this new
fancy green one in so just show how easy it is you just it’s all manual you know just
thumb screws take them off put it on here’s the thing too because it’s
adjustable like that you can move it down lower to the landing board you can
raise it higher if you want you just walk out there and make adjustments any
time you’d like to now if you want to make sure that it’s level just look at
the joints on the corners of the box and line this up with either side there
there you go and then just turn the thumbscrews and that thing is on so the
install just a few seconds and as I said before you can move them lower if you need
to if you get a heavy storm coming in a we haven’t tested these in winter time
yeah but of course we’re going to we’re gonna see if it benefits them we’ll
probably move it a little lower to get some snow off again here’s another hive
that we have the white early version on although I do like this one
I’m going to swap it out my final version is better and darker green of
course won’t catch the eye a white visor like that you can
see clear across the field so if you have you’re behive somewhere or you
don’t want people to spot them steal your hives or steal your bees you could
camouflage the whole thing you know paint them darker colors darker greens
and then here you go very easy installation and we’re done how easy is
that so the hive visor to the left and right here are identical so now we just
run down the row show you all the different ones that by the way is a
recent swarm capture these are Saskatraz bees and this one they’re doing
fantastic and the little screen entry reducer there is in this is another
capture of a swarm that was taken out of an old house and this is one of the
earlier visors not so hot but that’s a flow hive 2 seven six frame and
then we have a standard flow hive ten frame there and out here two more the
Saskatraz bees are on the left and weaver bees are here on the right and they are
venting like crazy because we’re in a nectar flow so now early morning you’re
getting the Sun but does the Sun gets up peak day it’s going to pour shade them
as I said brought the temperatures 15 to 20 degrees on that landing board as well as
keep the rain off so they’re dehydrating their honey
they’re moving air at ten miles an hour that’s some recent testing that people
did to see how fast the air was moving out of the hive
and that’s impressive they cycle it through the hive wherever they need
venting and that’s it I hope you appreciate the tutorial thank you for
those of you who asked for it and I hope you are satisfied with the information I
shared here today and I hope you make your own and share about them on YouTube
thanks for watching I hope that you have a fantastic Sunday enjoy the warm weather


  1. “I realize I’m like a professional”. Too funny. Enjoying your videos and that dry sense of humor.

  2. Yay!!! Going to share this on every bee channel I have subbed! Beautiful video Fred, thank you so much!!

  3. Dang Mr. Dunn! You got me again. Following, following, snickering here and there at your sarcasm and sense of humor and then you blasted me with only left handed people are in their right mind! Snorted my coffee!!! Too funny! Thanks for another great video. Great start to my Sunday! Going to go clean out my sinuses now! 🤣

  4. 😂. Love it. Thank you Fred. Most informative and also funny. Ps the robbing has stopped ! 😀👍🇮🇪🍀

  5. Very good tutorial! I believe I will make a few of those for my hives in the near future.

  6. Such precision and specialty tooling is probably too intimidating to all but the consummate professionals…you scare people.👍🏻👍🏻🤓

  7. I was saddened when you repainted those visors. Wanted to see those happy bob ross flowers displayed. This will make it easy to name or number the hives. Enjoyed the video.

  8. If I may, can I suggest a metric translation for those in areas that use those measurements and fastener sizes?
    Please don't regard the mathematical part as condecendng – I intend some of it for those working in more primitive workshops, so if you know all this stuff, just ignore it.

    Thumbscrews would be M6, with pronged nuts to match. Through wood, a 6mm hole would work, but 6.10mm is techically the M6 clearance size. Most bit sets wouldn't have that, so 6.50mm would make for an easier time, and be perfectly adequate.
    Self tapping screws would be more likely hex or philips drive, as square drive is rarer in metric countries outside North America.
    3 or 4x50mm should be fine, with a 2 or 3mm pilot hole, ideally reduced at the tip to 1mm. If you have the choice, a coarser pitch is better for holding in end-grain wood, as in this project.
    Width of the visor may vary according to the hive typically used in your area – in the UK we have our own National Standard hive, for example, and those using end landings on top-bar hives could be almost any width. Side hole top-bar hive are pretty much self-visoring.
    Solution:- just measure the width of your widest hives, add a few mm to allow for different wood expansion rates and paint thicknesses, and shim equally each side for any smaller hives.
    3/4" is 19mm, so 19 or 20mm wide struts, 50mm deep and 50mm longer than the depth of the visor.
    Visor itself would be 190mm in direct conversion, but 200mm may be easer to obtain.
    30° is the same anywhere!
    If all you have is a hand-saw, square and no bevel guides, a suitable angle can be easily marked by measuring width of the wood to be cut, then marking exactly HALF that width along from where the right angle cut would be.

    This is as useful to know as the simple means of obtaining a right angle – a triangle with sides measuring 3 to 4 to 5 in any measurement will give a perfect right angle at the junction opposite the longest side. You can even use this to make a simple carpenter's square if you don't have one.

    I hope that is helpful.

  9. You’re the best! My husband and I started watching you for the bee info…now we watch for the humor 🤣🤣🤣love it!

  10. Yeah, us left-handers have it all……. Good looks, brains and charm……. 🤣🤣🤣

    🇦🇺 🍺🍺

  11. Swapped my entrance reducers to ones made from screen. Seems to reduce bearding. 90 to 100 degrees here is normal in SC.

  12. Great video, Mr Dunn my sa a tras bees are doing great, I got 6 in, they are a laying machine I wish all my bees would be doing as well I want more. I have different breeds to see what does well here in Virginia, so far I have itatian Russian carnies the beeweaver breed and the sas a tras bees and I just received the great northern queen bee bread in the New York everybody is just so different, and that is sort of hard to get use to. I keep books on my hives so I can remember who lives there, Thanks for the videos U always do such a good job with the videos Thank u they are great and I really enjoy them

  13. Quick question Fred. My queen moved up to my flow frames and laid some eggs after my last harvest… So immediately went and added another deep box to the hive. So now I’m waiting for the brood to hatch and clean out their rooms to backfill with honey… My question is, since I’ve added the additional box, will the bees move the queen back down to the lower boxes? Thanks so much!

  14. Yay!! Im making these! Nothing too good for my 🐝 bees! Yes you are like a professional- i have a saw like yours, i like doing baseboards & chair rails… LOL, Linda Blair green!! And the professional wood worker, Beek, & Photog is also a Comedian! Gorgeous!

  15. Great tutorial Fred! And you are correct sir, the right side of the brain controls the left side of the body below the neck.

  16. After a very hard day at work,  I came home to see this!  I haven't laughed this hard in a long, long time!  Once again Mr. Fred another great video, fab. film work.  Thanks for doing this,  I guess some did not hear,  you really did not want to make this one.  Looking forward to seeing you next Friday!  Thanks for all you do and all the time it takes to do what you do.  Till next time , a fellow  "Always right Lefty"

  17. I've found that our local Habitat for Humanity (Columbia, MO) is a beekeeper's friend. I routinely pickup exterior latex paint and lumber for pennies on the dollar for use in the bee yard. I enjoyed the video – thank you.

  18. I need to send a small vid of something I saw . At first I thought just a bigger bee. Upon a closer look it was soothing that I have never seen before. Hoping you have a explanation of what I just saw.

  19. Hey Fred have you heard of this PolyWhey product? It's a non toxic wood finish.

  20. I live in the fingerlakes in NY I have thought about wintering my 2 hives at my daughter's in Winston Salem nc what is your opinion on this as far as worth it Thank you Dan Devaul

  21. I knew when you asked if people would want a video of how to make these they would say yes. I have no bees I'd love to have a hive but I have a very small garden in the UK. I still like watching your videos

  22. Yes, I’m watching these while eating lunch. I do actually do some work but my little minions (3D printers) do the heavy lifting.

    I’ve got a question for you. I went to my local Sherwin Williams store to get some of that Linda Blair color paint and they threatened to call the cops and pointed me to the Pratt and Lambert dealer. Those PL folks had no sense of humor but did suggest that if I did not want my butt kicked, I should go check with Martha Stewart. I tried that, the closest they had was “Martha’s Pea Soup” from her 2015 collection. They actually had 3 pallets of it and said they could cut me a special deal. I passed and decided to see what I could find in my, “I really need to recycle this paint someday cabinet”. It looks promising.

    Now with my paint concerns resolved, I am going to make one of these and also make a modified version that will sit at a right angle to my flowhive body to act as a stand for jars when I harvest. I got the version that does not come with the shelf as part of the package.

    Seriously, thanks for posting this, the thumbscrew approach is great!

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