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Old 05-16-2018, 11:42 AM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: May 2018
Posts: 29
2001 Thomas Built to 12 Person RV

Hello everyone,

I will use this thread to track my conversion and post questions and track solutions, I will edit this post to track what I am going to do, have done, and whats in progress.

Bus Info:

2001 Thomas Built 77 passenger bus with 179k miles at purchase.

(Planned layout picture to follow)

Goal:

Convert to an RV that comfortably sleeps either 5-7 hunters on hunting trips, or up to 12 people (couple sharing beds) on camping trips. Seating space for 12 during transit/meals/etc.

Need to Figure out:
  • AC Unit - Size, Location, Installation
  • Heat Source - Energy type, Size, Location, Energy supply.
  • Cooking Appliances - Type, Energy Source
  • Pottable Water system
  • Under chasis storage along sides
  • Co-pilot Chair


Planned:
  • Laminate Floors
  • RV Queen Master w/ Storage Under
  • RV Full Bunks (x2) w/ possible storage under
  • Couch (~12' sectional) w/ storage under
  • Meal Prep Bar
  • Cooler Storage under Bar (x3)
  • Over head Storage
  • Electrical
  • Trailer Electrical
  • Hitch Rack


In-Progress:
  • Paint - Blue Sides, Black Trim, White Roof

Complete:
  • Buy A Bus

If you have any thoughts on anything on the list, or items that I forgot please let me know! This list will be a WIP
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Old 05-17-2018, 04:17 PM   #2
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: May 2018
Posts: 29
As some of you may have seen, I learned my first lesson today.. Not all paints are created equal. The rain we got this morning got under some of my latest painted areas and the latex paint starting peeling and coming off in large sections. The older areas seem to have held good so far, time will tell the extent of the rework required.
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Old 05-18-2018, 09:22 AM   #3
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Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Goose Bay NL
Posts: 129
Year: 1997
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: International
Engine: T444E
Rated Cap: 72
it's all a learning curve, some are steeper than others.
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Old 05-22-2018, 01:25 PM   #4
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: May 2018
Posts: 29
I tried taking a few of the bolts out on the seats just to see how it went today over lunch and found that I could get the bolts to spin, but there must be a nut on the back side because they are not coming out. I crawled under to try and find where they are and I can't seem to locate them.

Anyone have any tips for getting the seats out?
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Old 05-22-2018, 01:29 PM   #5
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: May 2018
Posts: 29
Also, after I removed the stop arm, whenever I turn the key on or turn the bus on there is a buzzing sound coming from the general area that the stop arm was located, anyone know what that is?
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Old 05-22-2018, 02:11 PM   #6
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Cuyahoga Falls Ohio
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Year: 1997
Coachwork: Startrans
Chassis: Ford e-350 single wheel
Engine: 5.4 litre
Rated Cap: 12
Cut the bolts to remove the seats. Should be an interlock circuit for the arm. Unhooking it usually results in a bus that won't start/run. Latex paint isn't the best paint for steel school bus. Read and research this forum before you leap.
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Old 05-22-2018, 02:26 PM   #7
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: May 2018
Posts: 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by leadsled01 View Post
Cut the bolts to remove the seats. Should be an interlock circuit for the arm. Unhooking it usually results in a bus that won't start/run. Latex paint isn't the best paint for steel school bus. Read and research this forum before you leap.
Yeah, unfortunately I was lead down the wrong path on the paint.. live and learn I guess. From now on I will be asking those types of questions ahead of time!

For example:

When I get the seats and the isle out, do I take up the current flooring too before putting my floor down?
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Old 05-22-2018, 03:26 PM   #8
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Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Dawsonville, Ga.
Posts: 3,440
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Genesis
Chassis: International
Engine: DT466/3060
Rated Cap: 77
Quote:
Originally Posted by iHunt View Post
Yeah, unfortunately I was lead down the wrong path on the paint.. live and learn I guess. From now on I will be asking those types of questions ahead of time!

For example:

When I get the seats and the isle out, do I take up the current flooring too before putting my floor down?
You need to see how much rust has infiltrated in the last 20 years. The only way to do that is to remove the old plywood subfloor and inspect the base metal floor for rust. Remove, treat, and prime before adding insulation and subfloor.
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Old 05-22-2018, 03:53 PM   #9
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: May 2018
Posts: 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by o1marc View Post
You need to see how much rust has infiltrated in the last 20 years. The only way to do that is to remove the old plywood subfloor and inspect the base metal floor for rust. Remove, treat, and prime before adding insulation and subfloor.
How do you differentiate between ok rust and not ok rust. Obviously some of the rust under the chasis is normal and expected right?
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Old 05-22-2018, 04:02 PM   #10
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Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Billings, MT
Posts: 1,172
Year: 2003
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: HDX
Engine: Cat C7
Rated Cap: 84 passenger
Just like the DIN tests I had to endure in Germany. Start with an ice pick. If you can put the point through the rust, it's bad. If not, grab some sand paper and a rattle can.
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