Beekeeping can be traced back to ancient times, and moveable hives are known to have existed at least 3000 years ago. Needless to say, beekeeping has come a long way since then. No longer are hives and bees destroyed to obtain honey, but instead, there are a variety of hives that allow for honey harvesting without killing the creatures. Using pre-made hive kits like the Mann Lake HK370 Assembled Hive Kit brings a simplicity to beekeeping that allows for more simple labor.

 

As with any venture that comes to living beings, beekeeping is also a responsibility. It requires a lot of research before delving into it, and there are tons of products out there. With any kind of animal husbandry, it's vital to ensure proper research is done. Lives are at stake here, no one wants a box of dead bees. Being crowned Keeper of the Bees could be a great title. One misstep could lead to being called Bee Killer though, so it's best to avoid that. Not all beekeeping products are the same, so it's important to know what works the best. Knowledge is power, and that keeps hives healthy and thriving well.

 

About the Mann Lake HK370 Assembled Hive Kit

This kit comes ready to go - all you need to do is open it up once it arrives at your home, add bees of your choice, and care for them as normal. The kit is also painted, so it only needs regular maintenance to last for season upon season. Sometimes simple is better as is the case with the Mann Lake HK370 Assembled Hive Kit: it does exactly what it needs to without the frills. It's a cost-effective way to get started with beekeeping or adding additional hives.

 

Product Specs  

There is a homey simplicity in the Mann Lake HK370 Assembled Hive Kit. It is made with quality materials and comes not only fully assembled but also painted, which is a huge benefit. That means no fuss. It's ready to go, just find a spot in your yard, add bees, and make a glass of sweet tea to enjoy your laborless afternoon.

 

Pricing  

At a price point of around 200 dollars, the Mann Lake HK370 Assembled Hive Kit is also cost-effective. You don't need to spend time assembling or painting it, so that alone is worth the price of such a sturdy product.

 

How It Compares

We picked a few similar products available on the market to see how they compare. Not every product is the same or even offers the same features, so it's important to look at the various aspects involved in each product.     


Busy Bee's -n- More Complete Langstroth Bee Hive

6 Piece Beekeeping Supplies Starters Kit The Magnificent BEE

Ware Manufacturing Home Harvest Bee Hive

 

Price: $$

The Mann Lake HK370 Assembled Hive Kit has a starting price around 200 dollars.

Ease of Use 

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We give 5 stars to the Mann Lake HK370 Assembled Hive Kit. It's a fully assembled unit, so you unpacked the shipping packaging and it's ready to go. You will still need to purchase your own queen excluder, but other than that, it's ready for bees, which will be ready to start building beautiful honeycombs.

Construction Material

The Mann Lake HK370 Assembled Hive Kit comes fully prepared and ready to go, with dimensions of 22" by 18-1/2" by 13-1/7" tall. It has two painted 6-5/8" hive boxes, allowing for easy expansion later. The 20 6-1/4" wooden frames are waxes with a yellow RiteCell foundation, which encourages bees to build honeycombs. It has a solid wooden bottom board and an entrance reducer, which assists in preventing larger pests from getting inside. There is a telescoping cover and an inner cover as well.

Design Quality

The Mann Lake HK370 Assembled Hive Kit is built like a tank. It's solid and sturdy. It's made to last and easily maintained once it's set in place for bees. Although a more simple model, this product shows that sometimes, the beauty of simplicity can be one of the best features of a product. It's a no-mess product and we like that it is so easy.

                                      Pros

  • Comes fully assembled     
  • Painted and prepared to for set up
  • Excellent price point for product

  Cons

  • Does not include queen excluder
  • Reducer is unpainted
  • Solid bottom board instead of screen

The important distinction about this product is that while it includes tools needed for beekeeping, it does not include a hive unit. The 6 Piece Beekeeping Supplies Starters Kit does comes with some essential tools for beekeeping, so it's helpful to have for both new users and experts alike. That being said, it comes ready to use and can even be conveniently stored in the original box it comes in.

Price: $

The starting price for the 6 Piece Beekeeping Supplies Starters Kit is around 40 dollars, which is a great price point for some necessary tools for beekeeping.

Ease of Use 

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Open the box, remove the tools, and use. The simplicity of storing the tools in the original box means you can find it easily when you set it down in your overstuffed garage and it gets lost with all the other things you put some place you would never forget. At least in this case it comes in a sunshine yellow box for easier spotting.

Construction Material

Made of high-quality stainless steel, wood, and plastics, the 6 Piece Beekeeping Supplies Starters Kit includes a bee hive smoker, an uncapping fork tool, a bee brush, frame grip, extracting scraper, and a bee feeder tool. All you need now is a hive and some bees! Well, that and some protective gear.

Design Quality

The tools a beekeeper uses are important. Whether using this kit as a beginner or just to replace well-used tools, this kit doesn't disappoint in that department. It would be nice if it came with storage for the tools besides the cardboard box it comes in, as with time and wear tools can get lost or damaged sooner than they otherwise might.

                                      Pros

  • Ready to use immediately
  • Tools can be stored in box
  • Low cost

  Cons

  • Does not include hive
  • No fuel for smoker
  • No dedicated storage for tools except cardboard box

The Ware Manufacturing Home Harvest Bee Hive looks a little like a house with a peaked roof, which is great to prevent rainwater from collecting on the top. These are designed to promote natural honeycomb building so the bees are more productive and calmer.  This allows for easier work for beekeepers as they harvest honey.

Price: $$

Pricing for the Ware Manufacturing Home Harvest Bee Hive begins around 150 dollars.

Ease of Use 

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It takes around 45 minutes to build the Ware Manufacturing Home Harvest Bee Hive, but the instructions are relatively easy to follow. Since the hive is pre-painted, that means a little less time in the completion process. Some users noted that some pieces seem to be machined without exact specifications, so sometimes a little additional work is required to get everything in place properly.

Construction Material

Materials for the Ware Manufacturing Home Harvest Bee Hive come fully disassembled. This kit comes with a vented rooftop, two hive bodies, two viewing windows, an insulated quilt box, 18 top bars, a screened in the base, and two support legs. More boxes can be added to expand it, and the wood is made from quality cedar and painted for one less step.

Design Quality

The Ware Manufacturing Home Harvest Bee Hive features a peaked, vented roof that allows for air circulation. Below that is an insulated quilt box so the customer can add leaves or wood chips to help keep the hive warm. There are two hive bodies where the bees will work their honey-making magic, and each box has top bars with spacers so honeycombs can be built downward from them. Finally, the hive base comes with leg supports to allow more control of air circulation within the unit.

                                      Pros

  • Designed for a more natural honeycomb building
  • Peaked roof for rainwater runoff
  • Air circulation control

  Cons

  • Time-consuming to build
  • Quality control issues with parts not quite fitting
  • Cost is higher for quality craftsmanship

Comparison Table

Conclusion

As a final thought to keep in mind, every beekeeper needs to decide what factors are important to them. There are many great products on the market and it's easy to get overwhelmed by all the options. As with any piece of research, each person needs to keep in mind the different aspects they are looking for.

The Mann Lake HK370 Assembled Hive Kit is well known for quality and dependability, and the company takes great care in ensuring customer satisfaction with each of their products. Their kit comes ready to go: just unpack and pack with bees. While not the lowest cost item on this list, it's hard to argue with a minimalist approach. It doesn't have to be complicated to be an amazing product.

We give the Mann Lake HK370 Assembled Hive Kit 5 stars for overall cost, assembly, construction material, and design quality. Hands down, this kit is a great asset to both new and experienced beekeepers, and it take a lot of the confusion out of learning how to use a new product. Beekeeping shouldn't be difficult, and if it's not enjoyable then what's the point? That's what we love about this product. It gives so much yet asks so little.

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