AUGUST 2015: I stopped using linseed oil after the second year because it wore out too fast. The boxes required a new coat at least every two years. That’s way too much work. See How To Paint Hive Boxes for a more practical method of painting hives.
I put a second coat of linseed oil on hive #1 today. It’s almost as exciting as it sounds. I put the first coat on yesterday. I may put a final coat on in a day or two. The first photo shows the hive without linseed oil; the second shows it with the first coat and the third with the second (got it?). UPDATE: The fourth photo shows the 3rd coat. The fifth photo shows the completed hive.
I painted only the outside of the supers (the boxes). We thought about using a white exterior latex paint as a preservative, but we prefer the look of natural wood. We’re also using linseed oil instead of a varnish because it’s a natural product.
And we’re still waiting for the bees. No word yet. We’re hoping to get at least one nuc package by July, though two would be preferable. We won’t buy the next hive until we know we can get a second nuc. If we can get two nucs at the same time, we’ll still have plenty of time to order and build the second hive. Each nuc package would start off in a single brood box (or deep super). We’d have the second hive built by the time the bees were ready to expand into a second brood box.
PHOTOS NOTE (AUGUST 2015): The photos in this post may not display properly because they were uploaded through Google’s Picasa online photo album service, a service I no longer use because certain updates created more work for me instead of streamlining the process. I will eventually replace the photos with ones hosted on the Mud Songs server. This note will disappear when (or if) that happens.