The smell of testosterone is getting pretty rank in this thread!
Having welded professionally for 40 years now, and having taught for many years as a certified, 4-year college degreed professional at the high school and college level, well- I enjoy a good argument between 'experts' as much as the next guy but when it turns personal it gets in the way of real learnin'!
Some of you boys need to learn to play nice and not try to always have the last word
There is an old adage: "never get in a pissing match with a skunk, cuz' the skunk always wins"
(something for some of us to think on?)
The arguments for riveting vs welding are, for the most part, moot points since most bus users on this forum will not be
using their buses as much, or as often or for as many miles as they were designed for in thier original use. The strength
in the roof sections and components was for roll-over protection. Proper placement and the correct number of rivets
would likely be very close in strength to welds with internal tube bracing done by a professional welder. So close in fact
that it would take an engineering firm much study and considerable roll over testing to tell if there was significant differences between either method for raising the roof. Now if anyone feels that either method is seriously compromising the original safety design intent, well- don't do it. But it seems that the internal clearances will be a mite tight for some
folks, so perhaps a compromise might be in order.
Bear in mind that for many years, before welding became common place, rivets held the industrial age together. So it is
possible to obtain great strength using that method. And if a person does not feel comfortable welding, then it is a viable option for fabrication due to the lower stress nature of the component use then, say a high speed jet or an Airstream travel trailer.
Just my 2 cents worth