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Old 03-29-2015, 02:43 PM   #91
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 58
Year: 1971
Coachwork: Gillig
Engine: Cat 3160
Quote:
Originally Posted by cowlitzcoach View Post
Make sure that as you build in furniture, cabinetry, and floor coverings that you don't block any of the access panels that go through the floor or at the rear going into the engine compartment.

I can tell you from experience that there is no physical way in which to access the top of the transmission and the rear of the engine if you can't go through the floor or through the front of the engine comparment.

Also, there should be an access to the top of the fuel tank. You need to be able to access that as well. Most probably you will never have to access the top of the fuel tank but sure as life if you block the access off you will have to get into the top of the tank.

Good luck and happy trails.

Thanks, cowlitzcoach! We are planning on keeping all access available. Hubby was working on welding in a hitch yesterday and was being very careful not to interfere with access from underneath, either!
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Old 03-29-2015, 02:51 PM   #92
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 58
Year: 1971
Coachwork: Gillig
Engine: Cat 3160
Quote:
Originally Posted by WolfyWho View Post
Oh, I see. I didn't realize there was that much of a space difference between the Crown and the Gillig. I forget what the interior width of my Crown is, but 7'4" rings a bell. I'll have to confirm. What is the interior width of the Gillig?
There is not a huge difference, but Crowns are a bit wider and they also bow out at the sides, giving the feel of more space. Gilligs are straight up and down on the sides and slightly narrower. The point is, we considered insulating straight over the stainless steel panels on the inside, but we would have lost several inches of width in our living space. That makes a difference when you have a whole family trying to move around each other. Also, we know that we are eventually going to replace the windows and at that time we would not need to maintain the wet-wall construction, so we are preparing for that time, by going ahead and insulating with 2" foam between the skins on the windows that we are removing and covering with sheet metal. Our build is going to be a series of building phases. We just can't do it all at once, so each decision is a combination of what can we do to get by for now, and how is what we do to get by going to affect what we need to do in the future......
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Old 03-29-2015, 03:16 PM   #93
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 58
Year: 1971
Coachwork: Gillig
Engine: Cat 3160
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alan N View Post
Greetings.
No we don't have a conversion thread. Our conversion was rather hurried and I can't find most of the few pictures we had of the process.
Some pictures on the photo gallery here, look for 75 Gillig.
Our bus conversion started a family joke." Lets go to Alaska in a school bus"
Well long story short we did. Brought the bus home in march, left for Alaska July 3.
The motto was "It's a trip NOT a project!" else I would have a half converted bus in my shop yet.
Not much insulation in the walls as of yet. Just rigid foam in the spaces where we removed windows and some double bubble foil stuff on top of the factory interior and under carpet in the back bedroom.
My plan is to remove the quickie conversion and do it right one room at at a time starting at the back.
The problem is it's more fun to use it than fix it.
My question for you is how are you planing to insulate your roof?
Have you removed the ceiling? If so how?
I have thought about trying to squirt spray foam between the roof and ceiling but have not tried it yet.
I enjoy seeing the photos of your project. Keep up the good work.
Blessings to you all.
Alan

Alan, it's so fun to see a bus like ours out there and being used. And it's white! Will you be repainting it any time in the future?

Sounds like you have a plan that works well for you. Do you have kids travelling with you?

We have not removed our headliner. It is in beautiful condition and we do not want to mess with it. Our bus is not put together with rivets. Our headliner panels are tucked and folded together and we would have to remove all the side panels between the windows and who knows what else to get it down and then I don't know if we could ever get it back up there as tight and smooth as it is now. We do not want to lose any height in the interior space, so we will not be covering over it. When we raise the center or just add platforms on top for the solar equipment, we will address the roof insulation then. In the meantime we are putting on three coats of Henry's Solar Flex to help a bit with the roof heat. when we build the rooftop platform for the solar equipment, we will be insulating between the roof and the platform, except in the areas that will have skylights to the interior. It's very hard to explain with words, but we'll photo document as we go through our building phases.

My hubby says you do not want to put expanding foam into your ceiling. It could cause your panels to warp. There is now a non-expanding liquid foam product that you can shoot in there that will fill the spaces, but it doesn't seem to be on the market for the individual consumer, yet. We are still attempting to source it ourselves and will certainly post if we find it available to the general public. He used it previously in the Motor Coach industry.
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Old 03-29-2015, 04:14 PM   #94
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Stony Plain Alberta Canada
Posts: 2,937
Year: 1992
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: TC2000 FE
Engine: 190hp 5.9 Cummins
Rated Cap: 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by GilligusMaxibus View Post
Why won't insulating under the bus have any effect? We will also have some insulation under the flooring, just not much.

We will be replacing 10 or 11 windows, but will not be using RV windows. We want to maintain some of the school bus look and feel, so will be working within the parameters of the existing window frames. The least expensive custom windows we have found are the ones from Home Depot that Ol Trunt used.

Due to our desire to maintain the structural integrity and vintage style of the bus, a roof raise is not viable for us. At least, not a traditional one. We will be maintaining the original curve of the roofline and will be raising just down the center with possible skylights along the edge. the raise will allow additional storage above and the ability to insulate about a third of the area of the original roof. We will also be adding solar to the roof, but this will all come in another phase.
I also used the Jeldwen 3600 series residential windows. The work great, and come with a ton of different options, like vent tubes, tempered glass, argon gas, ect.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GilligusMaxibus View Post

My hubby says you do not want to put expanding foam into your ceiling. It could cause your panels to warp.
Spray foam from cans will cause a mess, and rust inside the roof because without air to dry, the chemicals will simply start corroding the steel around them.

In order to insulate, you have to separate the living space in the bus from the metal structure.

Insulating under the bus between the ribs does nothing due to the fact that the steel in the floor is still transferring the cold from everywhere the steel floor is not covered.

Even if you spray foamed the entire floor underside with 4 inches of foam, the cold would still transfer over a foot inward from each side of the bus. The walls attach to the floor. Steel transfers the cold all too well.

I live in 16 feet of bus body that is insulated on the exterior. The cold from the floor climes the walls 2.5 feet up each side, complete with frost.

I'm trying hard to keep you from wasting your time and money on a insulating system that will not work.

I don't understand you people that are worried about how your bus looks over how well it performs.

I'm a function over fashion guy.

Shortcuts lead to problems latter every time. Without a roof raise, your wasting your time and money.

Also, cutting your roof destroys the strongest part of your buses structural integrity. Raising the roof as a single piece retains the original strength of the curved roof.
This is one of the reasons I lifted my entire roof as one piece.

Nat
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Old 03-29-2015, 05:54 PM   #95
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 58
Year: 1971
Coachwork: Gillig
Engine: Cat 3160
Quote:
Originally Posted by nat_ster View Post
I also used the Jeldwen 3600 series residential windows. The work great, and come with a ton of different options, like vent tubes, tempered glass, argon gas, ect.



Spray foam from cans will cause a mess, and rust inside the roof because without air to dry, the chemicals will simply start corroding the steel around them.

In order to insulate, you have to separate the living space in the bus from the metal structure.

Insulating under the bus between the ribs does nothing due to the fact that the steel in the floor is still transferring the cold from everywhere the steel floor is not covered.

Even if you spray foamed the entire floor underside with 4 inches of foam, the cold would still transfer over a foot inward from each side of the bus. The walls attach to the floor. Steel transfers the cold all too well.

I live in 16 feet of bus body that is insulated on the exterior. The cold from the floor climes the walls 2.5 feet up each side, complete with frost.

I'm trying hard to keep you from wasting your time and money on a insulating system that will not work.

I don't understand you people that are worried about how your bus looks over how well it performs.

I'm a function over fashion guy.

Shortcuts lead to problems latter every time. Without a roof raise, your wasting your time and money.

Also, cutting your roof destroys the strongest part of your buses structural integrity. Raising the roof as a single piece retains the original strength of the curved roof.
This is one of the reasons I lifted my entire roof as one piece.

Nat

Nat, you mention the connection between the walls and the steel frame. What is the fix for that? We have cut rigid foam insulation and inserted it into every hollow steel tube that we can. We have rigid foam insulation in the space between the steel skin and the steel interior. We will also have more insulation in front of the steel ribs (that already have insulation in them) and behind the bead-board paneling we are installing. How else do you insulate against the cold transfer of the frame and walls?

As far as the under floor is concerned, the majority of the steel beams under the bus will be enclosed in our storage boxes that will also have additional insulation in them. We will also be putting down another insulating layer before putting down our flooring. If none of these measures help to insulate, they will at least cut down on noise transference!

Maybe it would just be easiest if you tell me how you would insulate our bus.
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Old 03-29-2015, 06:03 PM   #96
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Stony Plain Alberta Canada
Posts: 2,937
Year: 1992
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: TC2000 FE
Engine: 190hp 5.9 Cummins
Rated Cap: 72
If I was to tell you how to insulate, You would be removing the entire interior skin of your bus, raising the roof 16 inches minimum, and strapping the inside with 2x4's running front to back, every 16 inches from the floor up. I would vault your ceiling, so you could reskin the ceiling on nice flat surfaces without having to deal will all them curves. Walls would get spray foamed, then rigid Styrofoam sheets 1.5 inches thick would get glued to the strapping. Interior finish would get glued to the rigid Styrofoam.

This method would eliminate all condensation, and thermally decouple you from the bus metal.

All insulation needs to be inside, separating yourself from the steel frame and exterior of the bus. It's called thermal decoupling.

You want no bus steel showing inside the bus. All bare steel needs to be covered by minimum 1 inch of high density Styrofoam insulation. I'm doing 3.5 inches minimum.

Any bare steel inside the bus will cause massive condensation, water and frost buildup.

Again, this is experience talking from my own mistakes, and the experiences of fellow skoolie members here on this site. I have seen it happen over and over again.

Most times it's someone like you, trying to save space, instead of doing a roof raise so you have the space to properly insulate.

Nat
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Old 03-31-2015, 12:37 AM   #97
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Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Gonvick MN
Posts: 255
Year: 1975
Chassis: Gillig
Engine: Cat 3208t/10 speed transmission
Quote:
Originally Posted by GilligusMaxibus View Post
Alan, it's so fun to see a bus like ours out there and being used. And it's white! Will you be repainting it any time in the future?

Sounds like you have a plan that works well for you. Do you have kids travelling with you?

We have not removed our headliner. It is in beautiful condition and we do not want to mess with it. Our bus is not put together with rivets. Our headliner panels are tucked and folded together and we would have to remove all the side panels between the windows and who knows what else to get it down and then I don't know if we could ever get it back up there as tight and smooth as it is now. We do not want to lose any height in the interior space, so we will not be covering over it. When we raise the center or just add platforms on top for the solar equipment, we will address the roof insulation then. In the meantime we are putting on three coats of Henry's Solar Flex to help a bit with the roof heat. when we build the rooftop platform for the solar equipment, we will be insulating between the roof and the platform, except in the areas that will have skylights to the interior. It's very hard to explain with words, but we'll photo document as we go through our building phases.

My hubby says you do not want to put expanding foam into your ceiling. It could cause your panels to warp. There is now a non-expanding liquid foam product that you can shoot in there that will fill the spaces, but it doesn't seem to be on the market for the individual consumer, yet. We are still attempting to source it ourselves and will certainly post if we find it available to the general public. He used it previously in the Motor Coach industry.
It was yellow to start out.


When we did the conversion we had 4 children at home, just 2 now but we occasionally borrow grandchildren.
One of the nice things about making your own RV is doing what works for you.
No wrong way to do it.
Blessings
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Old 04-01-2015, 05:09 PM   #98
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 58
Year: 1971
Coachwork: Gillig
Engine: Cat 3160
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alan N View Post
It was yellow to start out.


When we did the conversion we had 4 children at home, just 2 now but we occasionally borrow grandchildren.
One of the nice things about making your own RV is doing what works for you.
No wrong way to do it.
Blessings
Ha! Ours came white and I forget that it started out yellow at some point. We are planning on painting over the white, but now I'm afraid I'm going to miss the white! We are using a metallic charcoal on the ribs and around the windows. The body color we have planned is a light taupey-beige, but not with a golden hue. More of a cool toned tan. We'll see what we end up with. Did you paint the white yourself? I see you sprayed the black, did you also spray the white? What type of paint did you use and did you thin it or add anything to it?

Thanks for the encouragement. I'm not too worried about structural stuff. My husband is an engineer and worked in the Research and Development department of a large motor coach company. I think I can trust him....

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Old 04-01-2015, 05:45 PM   #99
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Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 6,177
Year: 1946
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Chassis: 1- 1/2 ton
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Excellent choice in husbands if I may say so!
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Old 04-02-2015, 12:06 AM   #100
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Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Gonvick MN
Posts: 255
Year: 1975
Chassis: Gillig
Engine: Cat 3208t/10 speed transmission
I painted the whole works.
Paid to have it sandblasted and primed (mistake).
Just used implement enamel from the parts store. Probably did it all wrong.
But I don't think it looks too bad.
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