This was originally a side question in another question of mine, but after investigating it more I think it deserves its own section.
The challenge is I want to build a self breeding apiary for my pure pairs without using an apiarist pipe, or ideally anything else that uses diamond. It should be both 100% reliable and have some way of dealing with overflow. Preferably it should use not use up much space and can the apiaries should not be linked to each other.
I've tried the two main piping systems but both have their flaws.
1. Buildcraft: Buildcraft pipes have the bonus of being very intelligent with apiaries. They will be smart enough to put princesses and drones in the proper slot regardless of which side you put them into, and will never put a bee into the wrong slot. My initial attempt was simply to pipe out all the contents of the apiary then come around to another face of the apiary, have an iron pipe put stuff direct stuff into the apiary and have a chest on the other side of the pipe for overflow. And this almost works perfect! However, unlike every other pipe iron pipes will send items back the way they can if it cannot input an item into the correct slot, rather than simply reroute to another available path, so produce and extra drones get discharged from the pipe. Using a standard cobblestone or other pipe gives a chance for the princess to be put in the chest, forcing the system to be manually reset.
2. Redpower: Redpower 2 tubes are sadly not as smart with apiaries as buildcraft pipes are. With tubes, queens must be put in the top and drones on the bottom, and they will put drones and princesses in the wrong slot if you do not prevent them from going into the wrong side. It thus at a minimum requires depositing all bees into a chest where a sorting machine or filter will then send the queens and drones into separate paths. For a decent number of apiaries producing the same bees this might work, but it seems like a bit of overkill for a single apiary, and having too many species can overwhelm even a sorting machine.
tdlr: Both of these systems can work but not very elegantly without an apiarist pipe. If anyone can come up with a good self contained system without using one I would be very grateful.