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Old 12-15-2017, 07:25 AM   #21
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Location: Essex, MD
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Chassis: Blue Bird TC RE 3904, Flat Nose, 40', 277" wh base
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Rated Cap: 84 pax or 1 RV; 33,000lbs
I can't say I've ever seen one. Not sure I've ever seen even pics. Thought they were more like Crowns.

Your bus, ... she has ... a nice personality? Lol. Too square and utilitarian looking for me. But congrats. It's obviously what you wanted since they are rare and 2600 miles away.

2603 in 77 hrs. I guess the Cannon Ball Run record is safe for awhile.
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Old 12-15-2017, 07:31 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Brewerbob View Post
I can't say I've ever seen one. Not sure I've ever seen even pics. Thought they were more like Crowns.

Your bus, ... she has ... a nice personality? Lol. Too square and utilitarian looking for me. But congrats. It's obviously what you wanted since they are rare and 2600 miles away.

2603 in 77 hrs. I guess the Cannon Ball Run record is safe for awhile.
IMO they're even sweeter than a Crown.
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Old 12-15-2017, 07:38 AM   #23
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Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: Essex, MD
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Chassis: Blue Bird TC RE 3904, Flat Nose, 40', 277" wh base
Engine: 8.3L Cummins ISC 260hp, AT643, 4.44 rear
Rated Cap: 84 pax or 1 RV; 33,000lbs
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Originally Posted by cowlitzcoach View Post
I have seen where buses have leaned into the bus next to them. It can actually cause damage if two buses side by side lean into each other.
You have put your coach somewhere it doesn't belong. Like next to people. My bus has wheels. I use those wheels to avoid people.
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Old 12-17-2017, 04:26 PM   #24
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I love you guys bus!! I look forward to the seeing the transformation. I drove those kinds of Gilligs back in college and I love the way they drove! Good luck with the conversion and enjoy your videos!!
Thank you! Wow it is a lot of work to research every small step, constantly be learning to build a reasonable idea of how to execute the big picture of a school bus conversion, AND make videos!! Not to mention all of the other things we've packed into our lives lately (like a newborn baby, she's the best though). By the way you can see lots of photos at: http://instagram.com/gilliganphantom

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brewerbob View Post
I can't say I've ever seen one. Not sure I've ever seen even pics. Thought they were more like Crowns.

Your bus, ... she has ... a nice personality? Lol. Too square and utilitarian looking for me. But congrats. It's obviously what you wanted since they are rare and 2600 miles away.

2603 in 77 hrs. I guess the Cannon Ball Run record is safe for awhile.
It's either what I wanted, or I'm a complete idiot (the answer is both). But really I wanted unique, and so I went out and got it (and now I'm trying not to destroy it). As far as I know we have the only one on the East Coast.

BTW you can learn all about this bus here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gillig...om_(school_bus)

New video hopefully getting finished tomorrow.

Progress in the meantime includes grinding and priming the interior where I've pulled off paint by removing paneling and adhesive. Also thoroughly assessed windows for leaks and determined removal and resealing is absolutely necessary.

These buses have a drip rail that covers the tops of the windows that from my experience notoriously fails. When I removed it I found some silicone repairs (which may have made things worse), plenty of rust, and some missing window screws. I pulled the bump rail at the base of the windows to expose the bottom screws. When I removed each window Some windows kept all of their sealant (I think it's silicone based?? It's rubbery, and black), some left it on the bus ribs, and some pulled off paint on the bus ribs down to bare metal. All windows came out very easily. All seals were in some state of failure. So now every window is out on the passenger's side.

Next I scraped off adhesive left on windows, and adhesive left on the bus. I removed what remained with a wire wheel. In some areas I chipped away paint from the bus ribs and the top (underneath the drip rail).

I didn't expect to be repainting these areas and ended up doing so a little hastily with what was available to me at Lowes seeing as I've got to get these windows back in before leaving to see family in 4 days. I scuffed all painted areas with 220 grit sandpaper and then cleaned with soap and water per instructions on can of primer. I primed all rusted (after converting with ospho) and clean bare metal with Rustoluem Rusty Metal Primer: https://www.amazon.com/Rust-Oleum-77...y+metal+primer this may have been a mistake as I've read about adhesion problems with this product when applied to clean bare metal and painted metal. My only recourse at this moment is to give it as much time as I can to cure (likely 72 hours), and I actually scraped some of it off of the painted areas. I worry that I've made a mistake but my goals are as follows: protect from future water and rust, and allow windows to reseal. I did not topcoat this product, and I'm not sure if it fully seals without a topcoat. I could not figure out if this product needed to be topcoated. Do you happen to know? Nothing painted with this primer will be visible in the end. If nobody here talks me out of it, I'll be putting windows back up without topcoating (but experts please chime in).

For the windows: I bought butyl tape: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1 it is 3/4 wide and 1/8 thick.

It fits my window channels perfectly and I plan to apply it to the tops and sides (the windows were not sealed at the bottom) and then screw them back in.

I also bought Sikaflex 221: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I don't currently plan to use this on the windows, but it will be my backup if they leak after installed with butyl tape. I'll plan to run a super thin bead along the sides and top from the exterior. I'll also be using it when reinstalling the drip rail.

Thank you for following along and let me know if you can help about the primer, and if you have any thoughts about my plan to reseal windows positive or negative.
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Old 12-18-2017, 07:53 AM   #25
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Chassis: Blue Bird TC RE 3904, Flat Nose, 40', 277" wh base
Engine: 8.3L Cummins ISC 260hp, AT643, 4.44 rear
Rated Cap: 84 pax or 1 RV; 33,000lbs
Primer is supposed to work on bare metal. If it doesn't, what the hell is the point of it? I used the oil based paint directly over the Corroseal. I've since scrapped some off moving sheet metal around. 1) I didn't put enough down in the first place. Needed another quart to do it right. 2) Not sure anything short of a ceramic coating would hold up to sheet metal sliding (on edge) around.

Count yourself lucky with your windows even if you TOTALLY screwed them up. Mine do NOT come out all that easy. Whatever they used for sealant doesn't want to let go. In fact, it on one of them took the window sill edge with it. Granted the rivets that were originally holding in place have been removed but I still need to see why the rest of them didn't get yanked out with the window too. There is almost nothing on a Blue Bird that is put together with screws. Rivets are the only fastener that they know how to use.

I have no real experience with your tape but I don't like it. I'd rather have a tube of chalk (or whatever). I've used some kind of tape around the house before and it never wants to stick properly. No idea what brand or type I was using tho. I'd rather have a robber gasket and/or the tube.
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Old 12-18-2017, 09:42 PM   #26
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I am definitely lucky! Everything except for the rubber floor so far has been so easy to take off. Not a single rivet, maybe just a couple stripped screws. I'm very happy with the construction of this bus until it comes to this drip rail and window adhesive.

I'm definitely worried about reinstalling the windows tomorrow with Butyl tape. The humidity is hovering in the 90's tonight and won't hit the 60's until about 10AM tomorrow. My paint is very wet (can be scraped off with a fingernail) where it is attached to previously painted surfaces. I've actually taken quite a bit of it off with a scraper and might do more in the morning. I really don't want to leave the windows off as I leave to visit family up north for about 10 days. I think they're getting installed in some way shape or form. I'll improve on this process when I do the driver's side, and hey, maybe I'll get lucky.

Everything is explained in the video:

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Old 12-19-2017, 04:45 AM   #27
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Great video, man. You're right on, with all of it.
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Old 12-19-2017, 09:19 AM   #28
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Chassis: Blue Bird TC RE 3904, Flat Nose, 40', 277" wh base
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Rated Cap: 84 pax or 1 RV; 33,000lbs
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Originally Posted by Juicifer View Post
I am definitely lucky! Everything except for the rubber floor so far has been so easy to take off. Not a single rivet, maybe just a couple stripped screws. I'm very happy with the construction of this bus until it comes to this drip rail and window adhesive.
Some thoughts for you...

1) if the paint isn't curing, just stick the windows back in and worry about it after the vacation. Just use one screw to hold things in place. You don't want the paint peeling off with the new tape. If you don't get it sealed right then all the work is for nothing.

2) can you get UNDER the metal behind the drip rail? You're right in that being the worst design possible. Even sealed it will only just work. The shingles on your roof are layered only in one direction for a reason. If you can get sheet metal under there, I would recommend going to a fab shop and having a piece of sheet metal fabbed into a sort of angle iron. Blue Birds come with "fancy eyebrows" that some cut off in order to make it look more RV. Crazy but each to their own. Making something like that might be pricey if it's bends in and out at every window. I would just go with making a forty foot unibrow instead. Then stick it under the roof metal and screw/rivet back in place of the OEM drip rail. That could be made stupid cheap.

See the attached. Just get yours tucked at the front and rear. Would be stupid cheap and would keep water from dripping behind the windows at the top.
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File Type: jpg eyebrows.jpg (207.1 KB, 19 views)
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Old 12-26-2017, 03:15 AM   #29
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Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Southern Maryland
Posts: 209
Year: 1986
Coachwork: Gillig
Chassis: Phantom
Engine: Cat 3208/Allison MT643
Rated Cap: 2 Humans + 2 Chihuahuas
Quote:
Originally Posted by Juicifer View Post
I am definitely lucky! Everything except for the rubber floor so far has been so easy to take off. Not a single rivet, maybe just a couple stripped screws. I'm very happy with the construction of this bus until it comes to this drip rail and window adhesive...
Justin,
Not to hijack your thread, but... My wife and I are about to become the only other (currently known) East Coast Phantom owners (from Skoolie Nation). I am flying to Northern California tomorrow, and Thursday morning I will begin a solo ~2800 mile trip back to Southern Maryland in our 1986 Phantom.

Thank you for your presence here and elsewhere and the videos. I will be watching closely to learn from your conversion. I haven't even seen our bus in person yet but I already love it. A Gillig Phanton? What the heck is that?

Rick
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Old 01-08-2018, 06:18 PM   #30
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Some thoughts for you...


2) can you get UNDER the metal behind the drip rail? You're right in that being the worst design possible. Even sealed it will only just work. The shingles on your roof are layered only in one direction for a reason. If you can get sheet metal under there, I would recommend going to a fab shop and having a piece of sheet metal fabbed into a sort of angle iron. Blue Birds come with "fancy eyebrows" that some cut off in order to make it look more RV. Crazy but each to their own. Making something like that might be pricey if it's bends in and out at every window. I would just go with making a forty foot unibrow instead. Then stick it under the roof metal and screw/rivet back in place of the OEM drip rail. That could be made stupid cheap.
Brewer Bob you actually have a great solution to my problem, and I believe it would actually work as you have described. It would be a bear getting it under the metal at the roofline though. I think I can re seal this drip rail and be okay and just keep up with it once a year. Turns out it's not going to be our major source of water intrusion anyway.

So I sealed and reinstalled the windows a couple weeks ago before leaving. You can see all about it in this short video here:



My problem is now I found a new source of leaks. Where the window pane (the glass) meets the window frame there is a small hard rubber angled seal. I believe water is getting behind this and seeping out the bottom of the windows. The sealing we've already done was absolutely necessary, but this is a new source of water intrusion. After I reinstall the drip rail this will be reduced, but it will still be affected by driving rain. Does anybody have any ideas for sealing this small seam? The only thing I can think of is a small bead of a clear sealant such as: https://us.henry.com/roofing/roofing...-clear-sealant and I'll go with that unless someone has a better idea. Let me know your thoughts. Thanks!

BTW Rick congratulations on getting your bus home with only one giant hiccup of almost being offed by a flying pheasant!! What a mess!!! Glad it didn't set you back too long. How much did you have to pay for that new windshield? I admire you for making it even farther than I did, and completely solo!! I would still be on the road if I were in your shoes
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