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Old 02-14-2006, 11:31 PM   #1
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Driving in Sand With a Skoolie

a couple of us are getting ready to drive to south padre island texas and do a little campin on the sand for a week.

I was there last year with my car, and in places the sand was rather deep. In a regular vehicle it is advisable to reduce the air pressure in your tires. Anyone know if the same goes for large bus tires? WE both have 22.5" tubless radials.

I am not at all looking foward to getting stuck! I would like to avoid that if at all possible. I will bring shovels, planks, and a strap just in case.
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Old 02-15-2006, 02:47 AM   #2
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Just remember that the furter away from the beach access you drive, the move expensive the towing bill. I'd test it out by walking or with another car first, then park as close to the beach access as possible. I've seen people do this with their schoolies on Quintana Beach (south of Glavaston).

If you do air down, I wouldn't go below 90 psi. And air them back up before you leave. If you drive with the sidewalls rubbing on your rears, they will blow after a while.
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Old 02-15-2006, 10:59 AM   #3
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excellent point about the duals rubbing together! I didn't think of that.

the good news is that we do have 2 skoolies, so hopefully if one gets stuck, the other one can help out.....or we might end up with 2 stuck skoolies! lol

I'm a master of driving in the snow, and i have a good deal of offroad driving expierence, but never with a skoolie. I did drive over 200 miles on north padre with my 2wd vw fox, and nearly all of that was in the 4x4 ONLY area. In the snow, it's amazing how many people i have helped get unstuck with nothing more than a shovel.

I'm interested to see how things go with the bus on S. Padre.
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Old 02-15-2006, 12:59 PM   #4
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I am no expert on sand either. But now something I would do when parking is to put down your planks down first and park the bus wheels on them so they don't settle in to the sand. So what ever planks you think you'd need, I'd bring extra on top of that. It's better to be prepared rather then scratching your head later.
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Old 02-16-2006, 11:24 AM   #5
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Excellent idea about the planks. I've done that many times under the landing gear when dropping trailers on soft ground. I'd get some 2x10's or 2x12's and cut them about 3-4 feet long. One under each wheel facing forward and aft. When you leave, drive out to solid ground, then walk back to get them, or have a passenger pick them up and carry them out behind you. That way, you don't loose your momentum.

I notice your bus has Dayton spoke rims. Don't forget to tap the clamps once in a while with a hammer to make sure they are still tight. I've found dozens over the years that had loosened up. For those of you with Budd wheels, look around the lug nut for rust streaks as a sign that it has loosened up. If they are loose, then head straight to a tire shop and have them checked and retightened with a torque wrench. Remember to have a metal valve stem cap on, as the valve in the stem doesn't do a great job of holding in all the pressure, the cap does the job better. (During a DOT inspection, they look for metal valve stem caps.)
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Old 02-16-2006, 04:14 PM   #6
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time for me to put in my crazy, sarcastic, but interesting and almost do-able idea.

You should just slap on a set of these...



they aren't called floaters for nothing!
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Old 02-16-2006, 05:51 PM   #7
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You could actually probably replace duals with a single tire, I think I have seen trucks with those before, not sure where.
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Old 02-16-2006, 05:58 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dammitAndy
. . . interesting and almost do-able idea.
Not almost, it IS do-able! (It just isn't gonna be easy!) I used to work for Ravens, maker of aluminum flat bed, dump bed semi trailers (& dump bodies), and we custom made a few flat beds & dump beds with set-ups like this, the only difference was that they had highway tires vice terrain tires on them.

Hmmm, those were drag axles though, not drive axles, but the hardware's out there somewhere to do it, I've seen that set up on grain "weigh wagons" in the farming community. Lemme go to Rockwell's site & look at some axles. . .
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Old 02-16-2006, 07:26 PM   #9
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Drove a dognose schoolie in the desert in Baja, and Anza Borrego. One of the most useful things you have in the bus when stuck is rubber floor mats. They flex, can be stuffed under the drivers with minimum digging, and will allow you to get rolling. Dig them out, drive over them, replace and repeat. They won't kick up and hit you like planks, and take up no room if you use them for the original purpose. Planks are still great, do carry some. Another friend with a skoolie, and a REALLY GOOD tow strap help also. But they can be a killer, so use only when sober. Keep all spectators away, and hang a blanket or heavy coat in the middle of the strap between the buses.

Pull two or three pickups out with the bus, and you will have additional diggers.
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Old 02-16-2006, 07:39 PM   #10
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Please keep us posted on how you faired in the sand. I'm intregued because after getting stuck & towed in Florida sugar sand I'm leery about beaches and buses!
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