Ok, I'll not worry so much about the level. But from your posts, I'm getting the hint that my bench may need shoring up. That will be easy as I have two more bricks sitting next to it, and had intended to add a third 2X6 deck board anyway. We have a local skunk and the meadow can get boggy in Spring, so I thought it needed to be somewhat elevated.
Michael, I will do as you suggest, though some combs will have to be cut off completely (I think) as they will overlap each other. Cut from the bottom AND rubber band, right?
Just wanted to thank you all and let you know that your other comments on this site have heavily influenced my approach. I've read much of Michael's blog and will strive for his approach, while also remaining flexible (per Kathy) while I try to get a few colonies established. I plan to use integrated pest management, e.g. screened bottom boards, requeening from local bees, limited-to-no added chemicals (and only organic, though after making Honey-B-Healthy from scratch and stinking up my house, I have a new appreciation of the strength and potential misuse of essential oils), good location, etc. I may now need to tilt my hive forward a bit for water drainage, but I think I'll wait a bit on that!