Introduction: Bee House
For this colorful bee house, you'll need:
- A nail gun
- Miter Saw
- Hot glue gun
- Circular Saw (Optional)
- Paint & Brushes (Optional)
- Drill with 1/4 inch bit
- ~50 nails (for nail gun)
- 2' by 4' plywood (1/2" thick)
- Glue (For Hot glue Gun)
- Wood Glue
- Bee Tubes (~200)
- 7.5" pieces of wood/ logs
- Scrap wood
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Step 1: Design Prototype
You can do this in many different ways, but we chose to use the 3d program Tinkercad for our design. This is where you decide if your build looks good and will work with your measurements, so it's a very important step.
Step 2: Marking Wood
Mark your measurements on the sheet of plywood.
- (2) 8" by 12"
- (3) 8" by 7"
- (1) 7" by `12" (On top of this measurement, add an Isosceles triangle, with a height equal to half of the width (3.5")
- (2) 8" by 5"
Step 3: Cutting Wood
Use the table saw to cut the wood down into smaller pieces (While keeping your markings intact) so that you can use the miter saw.
Step 4: Final Cuts
Using the miter saw, make your cuts on the measurements that you marked. Remember: Measure twice, cut once! Make sure you have everything correct before you cut!
Step 5: Glue & Nails
Now, use your wood glue to hold the boards together and use a nail gun to keep the pieces in place. The combination of the two makes for a very sturdy and airtight build, but you can use one or the other and it should work just fine. We recommend starting with the back (7" by 15.5") with the wood glue.
Step 6: Complete Build
Once your build is complete and looks like the picture above (Or what you had planned), you can move on to the next step. However, if you are having trouble fitting the wood together, you may have to recut or mix together sawdust and wood glue to act as a sort of wood cement and fill in gaps.
Step 7: Sanding
Using an electric sander or your hands, you want to make the outside of your wood as smooth as possible, especially if you're painting. In order to get the wood as smooth as possible, you'll want to start with larger grain sandpaper and work down to the fine grain. Use this step to take away the roughness of your glue-sawdust mixture as well.
Step 8: Add Wood
You can now use pieces of scrap wood or logs to add \some texture to your bee holes. Cut each piece to 7.5" long and make sure it can fit inside your bee house. It should run relatively parallel to the front, but a bit of depth is recommended for it to look good. Drill multiple holes into the tops of each piece with a 1/4" drill bit. Now, use hot glue to stick each piece, hole side up, onto the backboard of your house. Make sure you place the house on it's back first, so that you won't be fighting gravity.
Step 9: Add Bee Straws
Next, you'll want to put a little bit of hot glue on the back of each bee straw and stick it into the gaps left by the wood/logs. Make sure to add as many as possible! You can even cut them to fit your needs.
Step 10: Painting!
We did a Dr. Seuss theme for our bee house, but you can paint whatever you'd like on yours! Make sure you've sanded before you do this step, it will make it much easier!
Step 11: Finished!
Now that you've completed your bee house, put it outside near some flowers and watch the bees explore their new home! Thanks for reading!