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Old 07-07-2015, 09:32 AM   #21
Bus Crazy
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario
Posts: 1,439
Year: 1997
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: B3800 Short bus
Engine: T444E
Rated Cap: 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by bubb, the real one View Post
You can get a honda or yamaha generator that will run much quieter than your bus engine idling,
using the bus as a home office still leaves a lot of questions unanswered but for a short bus if you want to have air conditioning it will need to have a generator or be plugged into the grid,
If you just want to run some lights and fans and keep a computer and printer running you can get away with solar.
all the items listed above will need probably about 500 watts of solar panels, about 500 amp hours worth of batteries, will probably cost at least $1500 installed if you do it all yourself. This is a very rough estimate.
Of course you would want to get a list of the electric devices you want to use, estimate the hours per day they would be in use to then find out how much solar power and battery power you will need, this should be done before you make any purchases.
That price seems reasonable for a solar setup. I would go a bit bigger on the panels, though. Maybe 600-700 watts. This will keep things happily humming away even on a cloudy day.

You know, something I don't see much of on this site is a cost analysis of solar vs generators. If all you need is to power small to medium sized appliances (computers, fridges, fans, lights, water pumps) you can easily and affordably go solar. A more complex system is fully capable of running every household load, including electric ovens.

Benefits of solar: batteries are automatically charged daily; IT'S SILENT; it's low maintenance.

Benefits of generators: portable.

What about cost? To get a nice, quiet generator such as the Honda EU3000is you'll be looking at $2300 MSRP. For a gas generators these are about as good as it gets for fuel consumption. They can get up to 0.17 gallons/hour on a light load. If you ran it half of the year (180 days) to charge your batteries I would guess you'd be looking at 4 hours a day.

180 days * 4 hours = 720 hours
720 hours * 0.17 gallons/hour = 122.4 gallons
122.4 gallons * $3.70/gallon = $452.88
$452.88 fuel cost + $2300 generator cost = first year cost of $2752.88

I also was looking at a cheaper Canadian Tire model, a Champion 3000w, which goes for $549. It is said to use 0.34 gallons/hour.
720 hours * 0.34 gallons/hour = 244.8 gallons
244.8 gallons * $3.70/gallon = $905.76
$905.76 fuel cost + $549 generator cost = first year cost of $1454.76

Something to think about, anyhow.
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Old 07-07-2015, 09:38 AM   #22
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Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: central texas
Posts: 90
Year: 1990
Coachwork: Thomas/International
Chassis: 3700
Engine: 7.3
Rated Cap: 72
post your city and state and you may get some local advice on where to look for buses,
call or look online at your local school districts, some do their auctions in-house,
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Old 07-07-2015, 09:57 AM   #23
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Eustis FLORIDA
Posts: 12,136
Year: 1992
Coachwork: Ward/AmTran
Chassis: International
Engine: dt466
Rated Cap: 78
She's in NY, NY.
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Old 07-07-2015, 10:00 AM   #24
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Location: Eustis FLORIDA
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Year: 1992
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scooternj View Post
Sometimes, though you do get lucky CB. I got my bus on Fleabay from a NL-based bus company that drove it down from Newfoundland to Maine, and from Maine the last 511 miles to South Jersey without a hiccup for 2.5k.

But the two auction sites I linked to are going to be your best options for decent, running buses, short or shuttle. I was looking at one FE transit in upstate NY that was garage sheltered on govdeals, but I wanted an RE and hadn't seen any, other than scrap grade Thomases in VA and Florida
I agree with that... I've seen some fantastic deals on Ebay and CL.
But for the most part the best deals are to be had from schools.
I agree on the "scrap grade" part... I noticed that too when I was shopping.
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Old 07-07-2015, 10:18 AM   #25
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Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Russell, Kansas
Posts: 1,117
Year: 1989
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Saf-T-Liner ER
Engine: 3208 CAT/MT643 tranny
Rated Cap: 87
To me it was worth the extra hassle with going to California and getting a rust-free high quality bus from the Wasco school system. Did my due diligence and came away with a winner. Had to use a week of time in the hottest of conditions, but well worth the effort. Some of the best bus deals are coming out of California now. All types of older buses are being sold for less than scrap value in great to good condition. I understand NYC is a bit more than twice the distance from California than Texas, but it may be a better value in the long run. Just sayin'.......
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Old 07-07-2015, 01:19 PM   #26
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Auctions r the thing !
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Old 07-07-2015, 11:42 PM   #27
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Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Gainesville. Georgia
Posts: 526
Year: 1992
Coachwork: bluebird
Rated Cap: 72
Make friends....pick out a local bus barn & start smoozing. Catch people on breaks or lunch and shoots maybe even bring ammunition like pizza and make a friend that will steer you on where & when to go to really check out some buses for sale.

Word of mouth is the best advertisement there is. And people for the most part (unless they are in sales) have a hard time lying to your face.

We lucked out when we got our bus. We picked out Wades (I call it the bus bone yard) here in Alto, Georgia. Hubby & I were ready to do a little smoozing and make sure Walter knew us personally after a week or two of showing up every day or other day if we had to.

We found our bus, our first trip and he actually took us to what he felt was the best bus there. She was in our yard less than a week later, delivered personally by him.
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Old 07-07-2015, 11:44 PM   #28
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Sounds gr8...Thanks!
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