Some popular top-bar beehive plans include P.J. Chandler's 1-Top Bar Hive, David Heaf's People's Hive and the 4-Top Bar Barrel Beehive by Food Plot Survival. Another simple and popular beehive design is the 5-Shift Top Bar Hive, which is a Warre hive made out of polystyrene boxes.
The 1-Top Bar Hive is a simple beehive constructed out of western red cedar wood. Experienced and amateur beekeepers can construct this type of hive using only timber, stainless steel screws, bolts, nuts and washers along with a few simple woodworking tools. The 36-inch long box does not require much maintenance and remains effective throughout the year.
The People's Hive and the 5-Shift Top Bar Hive are both vertical hives in which individual boxes stack on top of one another. Of the two, the 5-Shift Top Bar Hive is easier to construct and less expensive because of the materials used.
The 4-Top Bar Barrel Bee Hive is a creative hive constructed out of a repurposed 55-gallon barrel drum. The drum is cut in half, and the intake valve on its top is the bees' entrance and exit point. Beekeepers who wish to construct this hive need only construct the frame around the 55-gallon drum and then lay an aluminum sheet over the top as the roof.