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Old 01-19-2014, 05:50 PM   #21
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Re: Adventure Bus - Build Log

Hi guys,

There's a lot of (what looks to be) good information here I have to catch up on tomorrow. I'm sitting in front of my computer right now working on some floorplans that I'm modeling in Sketchup.

I'll hopefully have a few different options to choose from later and I'll be responding to some posts here too.

Thanks for the info!
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Old 01-21-2014, 03:12 AM   #22
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Re: Adventure Bus - Build Log

Well, plans tend to change a bit.

We may not be using the roof to transport sleds any longer. Sleds are great and rather fun but they get stuck pretty often, have no protection from the elements if you get stuck in the wilderness and aren't really ideal for carrying more than one person (especially in 2' powder).

On the other hand...something like this can fit four people in the cab and and more outside. Not only that but you can get plows (which would be EXTREMELY nice to have for building jumps) with them.



The best part? You can find them in rough shape for <$2,500 or in decent shape for $5,000...or about the cost of one good sled.

Of course, snowcats are slightly heavier than sleds so putting a snowcat on the roof probably won't work which means we'll have to just take a trailer which isn't a huge issue.

On that note though, how significantly do peoples MPGs drop when towing say...a car or similar object?

Plus, I could plow the driveway with it!
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Old 01-21-2014, 08:25 AM   #23
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Re: Adventure Bus - Build Log

My experience with pulling big diesels empty or loaded the mileage doesn't vary much. It's lousy empty and lousy loaded

BTW mine has been a pretty willing starter this winter and I know my battery isn't the best and no block heater. I just plan my trips when it's above 0 and everything is fine. I'm really quite pleased so far.
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Old 01-21-2014, 11:10 AM   #24
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Re: Adventure Bus - Build Log

Quote:
Originally Posted by gusbus
My experience with pulling big diesels empty or loaded the mileage doesn't vary much. It's lousy empty and lousy loaded

BTW mine has been a pretty willing starter this winter and I know my battery isn't the best and no block heater. I just plan my trips when it's above 0 and everything is fine. I'm really quite pleased so far.
Yeah, I kind of figured as much but was just wondering if I was right. I mean...it doesn't get much less aerodynamic than a forty foot long box

Good to hear on the diesel starting in the cold! I think that "issue" can be resolved pretty easily. It's not like we'll have to start it a whole lot in -30F weather. But if where we are staying gets hit with a cold spell it's good to be prepared. We're still debating between British Columbia or Colorado.

I think we're going to be A-OK with the starting issues. We're going to have about 9,600 watt hours of battery storage. I think that should be enough for us and should keep us able to leave some stuff on overnight when we're sleeping without the generator on. I think I'll wrap the fuel filter in some sort of electrical heating element (probably just an electric blanket) to keep the fuel from gelling up. I'll have to research how much draw a small blanket will require but my hope is to be able to turn it on at night when we go to bed and keep the fuel un-gelled. We'll also be replacing the crank battery or batteries on the bus, if it depletes overnight we should be able to charge it off of our house batteries. If that doesn't work we'll have two generators with us at all times (on board propane and portable gasoline for portable lighting for skiing) that we can get running to charge up the crank battery and maybe run a block heater in emergencies for a few hours.
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Old 01-21-2014, 11:53 AM   #25
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Re: Adventure Bus - Build Log

I live up north as you do and the best advice I can give about gelling & winter fuel problems is this. Always run number 1 fuel between November & April and change your fuel filter every year. I've put hundreds of thousands of miles on diesels up north and never had one gel by using those two simple pieces of wisdom I learned elsewhere.
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Old 01-21-2014, 12:05 PM   #26
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Re: Adventure Bus - Build Log

Quote:
Originally Posted by gusbus
I live up north as you do and the best advice I can give about gelling & winter fuel problems is this. Always run number 1 fuel between November & April and change your fuel filter every year. I've put hundreds of thousands of miles on diesels up north and never had one gel by using those two simple pieces of wisdom I learned elsewhere.
Will do!

Thanks for the tips
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Old 01-22-2014, 12:11 AM   #27
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Re: Adventure Bus - Build Log

Sweet, I love snow cats.

I find things on the roof of the skoolie causing wind resistance reduce fuel mileage worse than towing something heavy behind.

Looking forward to more pics.

Nat
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Old 01-22-2014, 02:40 PM   #28
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Re: Adventure Bus - Build Log

Quote:
Originally Posted by nat_ster
Sweet, I love snow cats.

I find things on the roof of the skoolie causing wind resistance reduce fuel mileage worse than towing something heavy behind.

Looking forward to more pics.

Nat
Hi Nat,

I figured as much for the fuel mileage. That's why we were originally going to cut some of the roof off in the back so that the bus would not be too much larger out the back (that and so we don't hit bridges).

We're still working out the logistics, we may end up just getting a pickup trick to go with the bus on our trips to tow the snowcat and sleds. It would give us more floorspace on the bus and I have a feeling towing a 25' trailer behind a 40' bus will make it difficult to get into some of the trail access' that we want to use!
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Old 01-22-2014, 10:32 PM   #29
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Re: Adventure Bus - Build Log

16 feet tall sounded high to me. I have had to find alternate routes off of an urban loop interstate when my vehicle was only 12.5 feet. So I checked:

According to Wikipedia, 16 feet is the height of the bridges on rural interstates. Urban area interstates are 14 feet or more above the pavement. But there is supposed to be at least one alternate route through an urban area between rural interstates that has 16 feet available. But not all numbered roads meet Interstate standards, especially when an older road is designated part of an interstate.

That still sounds high to me. I remember seeing an army truck that lost its roof against a bridge on I-90 between cities because the soldiers forgot to let the air out of the tires after loading it onto a low-boy trailer.

According to the Federal Highway Administration http://www.ops.fhwa.dot.gov/freight/...view/index.htm, "No federal vehicle height limit is imposed. State standards range from 13.6 feet to 14.6 feet." That sounds more like what I recall. So you may want to put the sleds behind the bus where they can "draft" the big shoebox, instead of having them on the roof. If you put them on the roof and are lucky, you would only lose the windshields. If you get off the interstate, you may lose the entire sleds.

p.s. I think here in the northeast the diesel pumps have a "winter mix" of #2 thinned out with kerosene. The makers of stationary diesel backup generators warn to only fill the tanks in winter, never allow a tank full of summer fuel to be sitting waiting for a winter power failure. Of course, big stationary generators usually have an AC-powered coolant heater and circulator pump that keeps the anti-freeze above 50F/10C.
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Old 01-23-2014, 02:03 AM   #30
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Re: Adventure Bus - Build Log

There are Trucker's Books that list the overhead clearance for just about every road in the US...but from what I've seen, anything over 13 feet is severely limited as far as access.
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