So...this weekend I went to the bee supply store in Saluda and bought frames and foundation for a second deep on each hive. I already had the deep boxes, bought in Florida, put together by a friend and painted a lovely light teal.
The frames came already assembled, which saves me a few steps. But the foundation came separately. The foundation is a sheet of beeswax with little bee comb shapes for the bees to build their comb upon.
I figured that it would be self explanatory, putting the foundation in the frames. But, nope, I had to consult my bee books and the internet. First you have to crack a piece of wood out of the top of the frame, using your handy hive tool. As I worked through this, I discovered that the short end of the hive tool was best for popping out the wood, and then the exposed metal end was best for chipping away any extra slivers of wood left behind.
You then put the end of the foundation with no wires sticking out in between the crack at the bottom of the frame, and put the little 90 degree sticking outish wires in the spot where you just chipped out the piece of wood.
Pop that wedge of wood over the wires and whack it a few times with a nail (staple) gun holding 5/8 inch brads, and TA DA! Finished product. I put five brad nails in each wedge, just to be sure.
Hung the frames in the box, and they are ready to put on top of the hives. While my initial hive bodies have nine carefully spaced frames, I will start with ten frames on this level while they build their comb.
Right now I'm just waiting for the weather to warm up. We're having frost tonight, so the bees are huddled in their hives trying to keep warm. The second deep will go on each hive in a day or two when it feels like spring again.
Today when I mowed I took the bubble balance out to the hives. They are about an inch off bubble, listing to the left. Aren't we all.