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Old 02-03-2016, 08:56 AM   #21
Bus Crazy
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario
Posts: 1,283
Year: 1997
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: B3800 Short bus
Engine: T444E
Rated Cap: 36
Yep, I wouldn't put any time into fixing that body. You could find a weaker-specced, but otherwise identical bus and transfer things over. It'd be a lot of work, though. I'd be inclined to purchase another identical bus and keep that one for parts (if you had the space for it).

This is really an unfortunate situation.. I've never seen anything like it.
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Old 02-03-2016, 09:52 AM   #22
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: May 2014
Location: West Ohio
Posts: 477
Year: 1984
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: International 1753
Engine: 6.9 International
Rated Cap: 65
I wouldn't waster my time either. What you have would take new steel to properly fix. Welding the cracks will only cause the cracks to reform at the toe of the weld, so welding will never fix it.

I've never seen anything like this before. I can't imagine the amount of constant flex/bouncing that would have to occur. And remember, the suspension saw all of that stuff too so who knows how good any of that is. Your best bet is to punt that one and find something else.
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Old 02-03-2016, 02:10 PM   #23
Bus Crazy
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Winlcok, WA
Posts: 1,342
I would say your bus saw a lot of service off pavement. Many years blasting down gravel roads will do that to the best of buses.

Trying to fix what you have is going to take a lot of time and $$$. I would suggest it is time to find another bus.

I would find a bus that has a basket case engine or transmission that has a good body and swap the power package from your bus to the new bus.

A bus with a bad engine or transmission can usually be found for scrap prices.

By the time you swap stuff over you can crap your current bus and you may actually come out better than even on the $$$.
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Old 02-03-2016, 03:11 PM   #24
Bus Crazy
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario
Posts: 1,283
Year: 1997
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: B3800 Short bus
Engine: T444E
Rated Cap: 36
Have you seen anything like this before, Cowlitz?

I live in a rural area where many of the buses probably only see about 20% pavement use and I've never heard of something like this happening. I remember as a kid purposely wanting the rear-most seats for the catapulting effect one could enjoy. Those buses took a serious beating.

If I were to guess, I'd say that the steel has a higher carbon amount than it's supposed to, rendering it brittle. Perhaps a manufacturers defect?
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Old 02-03-2016, 08:10 PM   #25
Bus Crazy
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Winlcok, WA
Posts: 1,342
There is a school district in our area that has gone 100% Blue Bird.

Over half the district roads are still not paved. And those that are paved are not anything to boast about.

They order all of their buses with an additional rub rail located above the window "eyebrows".

If they don't, over a fairly short amount of time the "eyebrows" start to tear in the corners from the body flexing so much.

Because both IC and Thomas have drip rails they didn't have the same sort of problems with them. I would imagine that if you got under the skin of the Thomas buses that they used to have you would most probably find the same sort of damage that you discovered.

I have seen pictures of a Crown Supercoach that had almost ever body bow sheared off at the floor level after 40+ years of school service on mostly unpaved roads.

A school bus frame and body have to be pretty stiff in order to pass the safety standards. But without any give the stiffness will break if it is subjected to enough pounding.
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Old 02-03-2016, 09:21 PM   #26
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 50
Thanks guys! I really value your opinions! The bus was from a small town school in Oklahoma, so there's a very good chance that it may never have even seen asphalt, I bought it from a local dealer for $2300, I guess he bought it from the school, I didn't ask. Could I sell the engine and drive train and scrap the body for more than that??
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Old 02-04-2016, 09:25 AM   #27
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: May 2014
Location: West Ohio
Posts: 477
Year: 1984
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: International 1753
Engine: 6.9 International
Rated Cap: 65
You might come close, depends on how quickly you want stuff gone. A lot depends on where you're at. Scrap is way down at the moment, so don't count on getting rich off just a bare chassis. Around here, I'd say a dt466 is worth about $1000. What your Allison is worth depends on the model. Anywhere from 100-1000 if it's electronic. Most likely it isn't so 100-500 would be reasonable. Then you can maybe get rid of the tires for a couple hundred if they're in alright shape. The odds and ends like radiators, intercoolers, and other stuff can be sold if you find somebody in need.

Basically, what you get out of it depends on how long you're willing to try.
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Old 02-04-2016, 10:15 AM   #28
Bus Crazy
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario
Posts: 1,283
Year: 1997
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: B3800 Short bus
Engine: T444E
Rated Cap: 36
Mr. friend.. where are you located?
If you post a general location there may be some nearby skoolie folk who wouldn't mind cannibalizing your bus into their own
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Old 02-04-2016, 12:54 PM   #29
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by jazty View Post
Mr. friend.. where are you located?
If you post a general location there may be some nearby skoolie folk who wouldn't mind cannibalizing your bus into their own
Southeastern Oklahoma
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Old 02-04-2016, 12:56 PM   #30
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Booyah45828 View Post
I wouldn't waster my time either. What you have would take new steel to properly fix. Welding the cracks will only cause the cracks to reform at the toe of the weld, so welding will never fix it.

I've never seen anything like this before. I can't imagine the amount of constant flex/bouncing that would have to occur. And remember, the suspension saw all of that stuff too so who knows how good any of that is. Your best bet is to punt that one and find something else.
Scrap metal is extremely low here, I got $45 for a car body a couple months ago
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