Corvair, you make me laugh! The box is being used, primarily because she doesn't want to hurt her kids' feelings. The bees have built out the first bot and she is about to add the medium that came with the kit for a second brood chamber (I also found out she has back issues, so recommend she do this rather than get a 2nd deep).
After taking additional measurements, I found the extra width on the inside of the box is from the side walls being narrower than the wood used for standard boxes. She can actually stack standard equipment on top of this stuff, but some modification is needed because the materiels that provide the overall length are longer, so water is going to sit on the parts sticking out and possibly leak inside. She does have a neighbor that is a woodworer and he was there when she installed the bees. I showed and explained a couple of things to him that she would need and he's willing to help...in exchange for honey, of course!
I know, I know, it would have been easier to get new equipment.
What worries me is the eventual varroa issue. We've talked about it and talked about it, but she's in her honeymoon phase with the bees and I don't think it's really sinking in how difficult it will be to check for varroa, let alone treat (keep the hive clean), with a fixed bottom board.
Time will tell, there's always the possibility that she could get lucky. But it's more likely that a hard lesson is about to be learned.
What I'm upset about this company that made the box. Of course, they totally took advantage of the kids' lack of knowledge! But they also sold both boxes with only 9 frames inside! What is up with that? This gal had to go invest additional money to find more frames to fill the space (I know frames aren't real expensive, it's just the principle). They say that their bees have no problem with the extra space...really? Well of course the bees don't, they probably just build burr comb everywhere! Do they even keep bees? Because I'm wondering, seriously, if they do.
Okay, my carefully repressed attitude about this box is coming out, so I'm going to sign off now.
Sunny days and smiles, everyone!