Frame: Vacuum Formed Frame: A Plastic/Aluminum Hybrid

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Bottom view of Vacuum Formed Plastic/Aluminum Hybrid Frame

OVERVIEW

The vacuum formed frame utilizes a rectangular plastic hive rail with a reinforced aluminum undercarriage. The general concept behind this scale was to produce an affordable light-weight scale that was able to accommodate both ten frame and eight frame Langstroth beehives. An additional aluminum undercarriage was added as extra reinforcement was needed to support the weight of the cantilevered load cells.


PRODUCTION

Production of this scale started out by creating a very accurate wooden mold that was able to be used in a commercial vacuum forming machine. The plastic used was 1/4" thick and possesses UV resistant properties that could handle the exposure to weather elements. After the plastic form was produced additional work was done to remove the unneeded flashings. Holes were drilled and aluminum bars were cut to size and added to properly secure the load cells.


SCALE LOCATION

HiveTool Scale: Waypoint01


DEVELOPMENT AND FABRICATION PHOTOS


PARTS LIST

Due to the complexity and specialized techniques utilized in the creation of this scale a parts list is not available for this design.


PROS/CONS/AVAILABILITY

The vacuum formed plastic scale is currently undergoing testing for weather durability and accuracy as it is light weight and seemingly sturdy. Initially the vacuum formed scale was an option for mass production however, due to the size of the scale shipping costs may negate any cost cutting use of plastic over other light weight options with a smaller footprint.


CREATION CREDIT

Ken Hill - K-Hill Inc.
David Hawa- HiveTool