Yah.That is certainly a rough start- to be dealing with AFB right out of the gate.
Kind of sobering too- I have bought used equipment a few times already and have had good success so far- but I won't lie that it is always in the back of my mind that I might regret it later...
I helped with one inspection session on the said project (we needed to find and evaluate the queens).
Subsequently, I put the hive tool I used into a separate bag and mean to scorch it (IF I find it again in my mess!).
So, I have been lucky I never had the issues with the used equipment so far.
BUT.... (and I explained this to Scott also - that was his mistake - getting very old used equipment). They got some really, really old equipment from some source.
You don't want used equipment that came from the era of AFB (meaning old equipment originating from about 40-50 years ago or older).
You want used equipment from the era of Varroa (very likely safe equipment of recent origin; available due to the issues with Varroa).
See what I mean?
Avoid the old used equipment.
Get the recent used equipment (ideal - if the Varroa-related failures are obvious or documented).
This being said, maybe I am done with used equipment. No longer need any.