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Old 08-06-2015, 01:07 AM   #11
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Every time I read "Gear Vendors" I just shake my head.

That stuff was never made big enough for a bus, and was a joke to begin with.
Nothing more than a band aid on a problem for a massive cost.

Hell them boxes cost more than most of us paid for our buses.

Bottom line, you need big engine, MD3060 trans, and 4:10 or higher gearing to make big speed.

Best advice, stay off the interstates with a vehicle that was never made to travel on them. Take the side highways, that's the kind of roads school buses where made to drive on.

Nat
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Old 08-06-2015, 04:42 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by nat_ster View Post
Best advice, stay off the interstates with a vehicle that was never made to travel on them. Take the side highways, that's the kind of roads school buses where made to drive on.
Plus that's where the most interesting rides are anyway. A friend of mine and her spouse drove from SoCal to Chicago on Old Rt 66 in a convertible Corvette, and they had a blast. Whenever I have to go down to Wilmington VAMC or into the Baltimore area, I take US40 for a good portion of the ride.
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Old 08-06-2015, 09:04 AM   #13
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I prefer the "blue highways" and county roads for interest, but sometimes you gotta' get on the Interstates even if just to get to the next "back road". If you can make 60-65 you should be OK on most roads including Interstates as long as you stay to the right. Less than that is a problem, but just about any bus can make those numbers if geared and powered properly. That is one (more) reason why doing your homework before buying is so critical. One bus might make 70 all day long while the unit sitting next to it can't top 50. The power & gear packages can vary greatly and they will also greatly impact the build cost if you ever plan on actually driving it anywhere.
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Old 08-06-2015, 10:18 AM   #14
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Join Date: May 2014
Location: West Ohio
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Year: 1984
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Engine: 6.9 International
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I have the same bus you have.

70 is the top speed, turbo or not. You want faster? I'd recommend against it. I looked at an OD trans strictly to drop cruise rpm but I guess you could use it to go faster.

Someone mentioned brakes, Great Point! The brakes on mine(I'm sure yours are the same/similar) are half the size of those on a modern bus. They're adequate for it, but could easily turn hazardous if something happened. So don't hot rod at all, and leave plenty of space.

I've looked at turbo kits. They all look nice until the 2000+ price tag. Then you have to add the necessary hardware(head studs, Oil temp/trans temp/egt gauges). For that additional cost, you could have bought a 20 year newer bus and have the turbo/intercooler/additional power installed by the factory.

I did turn the fuel up on mine, and played around with the timing. I'd suggest reading all you can on the oilburners site. Mine is turned up 1 flat from stock with the timing advanced 2 degrees and that's where I'm happiest with it. You can see a slight amount of smoke come from the pipe but it's nothing significant. It's an improvement over stock but it didn't turn my bus into a Ferrari by any means.

Any other questions, just ask.
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Old 08-06-2015, 10:32 AM   #15
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Everything I've read has been talking about adding the turbo these engines in a f250, or f350. But I can't seem to find any information from anyone that has actually done it much less on a bus, which is very frustrating. I can comfortably cruise the bus at 60-65 as it is, but when I hit a hill of any length or grade I have to downshift to 3rd to maintain 45 which is not super cool on the interstate. In the end id like to get a faster ratio differential and a turbo to provide the needed extra little push, plus the engine just feels like it's not working as hard as it wants to. I bought this for cross country travel/ full time living.
This is better than some.

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I'm hoping to find someone else that has this era of s1700 Air Force bus that has specific knowledge or at least someone that has has this engine and has made adjustments to get more power/fuel economy out her
Might as well end your search now.

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So I either have an allison 545 or 643???? is there any good replacement for these, or if not, is there an overdrived unit? gear vendor? auxilary trans? is the solution a two speed rear end? id like to be able to cruise at 75 even 80 on flat desert roads like the 140 or I80 in the nebraska flats etc. and right now it seems like 70 is my top speed. any help would be appreciated, i cant seem to figure out how to add pictures here i dont have any online and the only option seems to be adding links...

Here we go again. In case you hadn't noticed, you bought a school bus, not a dragster.
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Old 08-06-2015, 11:36 AM   #16
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I appreciate the answer booyah, that's my main interest for the majority of the time I'll be driving (lower rpms). But that would also mean tht when I'm alone on a desert road I can push t a little faster. Crazy cal, I'm nt trying to race it, i ap
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Old 08-06-2015, 11:41 AM   #17
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I appreciate your concern for safety etc, however, I have no reason to believe that with proper gearing I couldnt cruise at 80. I've got six new tires, The engine runs like a top and my alignment/steering are impeccable. If I could drop my rpms by 500 or so maybe a little more I could hit 75-80. I looking f
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Old 08-06-2015, 11:42 AM   #18
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For mechanical advice on this however not people telling me to take back roads
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Old 08-06-2015, 11:47 AM   #19
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Engine: 6.9l IDI
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I thought I'd mention it's not a full length, it's an eight window. Slightly longer than a short bus. In case people thought this 6.9 was on a full 40 footer. I know that my desires are unusual, but if I can do it it will be the coolest bus ever
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Old 08-06-2015, 11:48 AM   #20
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Will the MD3060 mate up with the 6.9
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