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Old 04-27-2005, 01:28 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Montana
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Buying Bus

Been reading here & shopping around for bus on a budget. I want power, & I have 4 buses I'm looking at. 3 internationals with dt 466's. Two are 87 blue birds with 5 speeds & 2 speed rears with 204k & 130k miles. The other international is a carpenter with an AT545 auto with 157k miles.
The forth is a 1987 blue bird flat nose with a cat turbo 3208 with 164k miles, it has the bigger auto AT643 or something like that, it's definetly not the 545.

OK I have been quoted a price of $2,500 on the auto international. The other 3 I haven't been quoted prices as of yet. What are they worth with great bodies no rust still decked out in full school gear? I really love the flat nose but I don't know if they will want a lot for it.

How will the int. 5 speeds run on the hwy with the 2 speed rears. Do they tend to have a good hwy final drive? I couldn't find the tags on the rears for those. I have crawled all over these buses & think they are in great shape, but is there something I should be looking for? The flat nose sounds great while idleing & the other 3 I haven't heard run yet. The flat nose had main & rod bearings replaced at 100k. Is that normal?
Sorry, Lot of questions! TIA
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Old 04-27-2005, 01:49 PM   #2
Mini-Skoolie
 
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For me it would be between the flat-nose and the low-mileage 5+2 International, the flat-nose will be more manuverable and has recent engine work. As far as final drive goes on any of them its hard to tell, depends on the gearing in them.
Keep us posted!
~B~
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Old 04-27-2005, 11:13 PM   #3
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I like the flat nose buses a lot but if the engine has needed work like that and only has 100k miles I would run. At the least see if you can get an oil sample and send it to a lab. You never know if that engine had metal floating around in it. I would go for the of the low mileage DT466s. The two speed rear end should help with highway speed as well. Though unless you can find out just what the gears are you still may not make it over 55MPH. If you plan on keeping the bus forever and don't mind driving a manual, pass on the AT545 and get the manual. You can always win the lotto and buy all of them and put the best engine in the flat nose
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Old 04-28-2005, 11:29 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by busone
I like the flat nose buses a lot but if the engine has needed work like that and only has 100k miles I would run. At the least see if you can get an oil sample and send it to a lab.
I wouldn't be that afraid of the 3208 - it's pretty normal to replace bearings in them. For some reason the 3208's are a little hard on main bearings - if I remember right Cat used to recommend replacement @ 500hrs. which would be around 100k miles on a typical schoolie. If you you know what district the bus came from you can ask the shop there about history and records. School districts are usually very helpfull in that regard. Also Montana buses seem to have pretty high gearing - I've had a few blow by me on the freeways!

Good luck and stay away from the AT545!
Stego
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Old 04-28-2005, 01:33 PM   #5
Mini-Skoolie
 
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I think the flat nose came from N Dakota. I was snooping through the bus & found a complete log on the bus with every fill up, service, & even if a light bulb was replaced. That's how I know that the bearing were replaced at 100k I also was able to verify through the log that the bus has 164k. (The odometer has only 5 digits & I wasn't sure how many times it may have rolled over) The owner is due to return tomorrow, we'll see what he wants for it. It may be over my budget, if so I'll go for the 466 5+2
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Old 04-29-2005, 03:13 PM   #6
Mini-Skoolie
 
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6k for the flat nose & 3,500 for the IH. I can't swing that much for the flat nose. It is full of new cloth reclining seats similar to a greyhound bus. I wonder if there is a market for these that I could make some $$ I'll go to do some test driving this Sunday.
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Old 05-01-2005, 06:22 PM   #7
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Well just got back from test driving. The higher mileage DT466 could only manage 56 mph & had some vibrations. The lower mileage DT466 did 65 in no time, & it was just under 2600 rpm. It might do close to 70. It has 130k miles & sounded awsome. It is a 65 pass as opposed to the other 71 pass. I did a hand shake deal for $3,200. I asked him for 4 new used tires on the rear as those were dry rotted. I am going back tomorrow to pay him & bring her home.
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Old 05-02-2005, 01:13 PM   #8
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Congrats!

You'll make lots of us jealous with that DT466. Sure wish i had one.

It's always exciting bringing home a new bus.
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Old 05-02-2005, 11:46 PM   #9
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Well I'm home with ?, I need to name her. It was a 70 mile ride home along lake koocanusa on a beautiful sunny day. It was fun driving it home. It does 65 @ 2400 rpm. On long 8 percent pulls the pyrometer would get up to 1100 then I would let off. I don't know how hot you should let them get? On a straight stretch I let her rip & the rpm went past the 2,600 rpm. I thought these buses had govenors at 2,600. I shut it down at 75. To be honest I enjoyed running at about 60 or just a hair over, a lot less noise etc. Just keep looking out the window at it, I love the loud turbo diesel and the air brake sound. The 3 dogs, GF & I just sat in it in the yard until it got dark, we're excited about getting started. Next is removing the seats.
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Old 05-03-2005, 12:21 PM   #10
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Sounds like a great day, nice that you got a bus with a pyrometer, in my Freightliner road truck i always tried to keep it at or below 900 deg to be on the safe side, i do not know if the smaller engines run warmer or if you should follow the same route. Keep us posted on your progress!
~B~
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