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Old 03-17-2018, 09:41 AM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
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I need help with my purchase...ugh!!!!

OK....Now I'm really getting frustrated..lol!!!! The buses that I've seen that are in the 4-8k range look to be in the same condition of that price...I look at the 8.3's that I want in awesome condition for 12-15k range??? So do I just pull the trigger on a well maintained bus for the more $$$ or buy the cheap and have a rust bucket bus with almost 300k miles on it..versus NO RUST and 150k miles????? GRRR!!!!!! Thanks all...but want to get this project started sooner rather than later!!! Any help is greatly appreciated as always!!!
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Old 03-17-2018, 10:27 AM   #2
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Location: Colorado
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It's the same as any used vehicle.

If you buy the cheapest vehicle you get a money pit that is a pile of garbage. You will fight with it, it will take all fo your money then you will finally sell it at a big loss.

Even at 10k you are buying a bus at the "end of service life". end of service life means they are selling it off because it will cost more to maintain then to buy a new one.

The most helpful advice I can say is to watch the market figure out what goes for what and buy the best you can afford.
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Old 03-17-2018, 10:57 AM   #3
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Keep your ear to the ground and don't give up hope. There can be a lot of competition on the popular sites at times but great deals are out there if you're patient enough.

If you haven't already, get a craigslist app that can search nationwide postings and be sure to keep an eye on eBay as well. It took us over a year of searching and a couple disappointing roadtrips before we landed ours. Good luck on your quest
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Old 03-17-2018, 12:39 PM   #4
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Hahaha...Backwoods..I'm getting a bit desperate...so going post crazy/frustrated!!!!
I have looked craigslist and SearchTempest that searches nationwide...just ones from Cali have emission computers on them that hike the prices up by 10k or so...and are FAR AWAY from the homestead!!! Below is what I posted in the other thread...just reaching out...because no matter what you think you found...there will always be one that could of been better.
Bus engines are my biggest worry of course..but rebuilds and parts are of plenty..ssssoooo??? GGGRRRRR AGAIN on you just don't know until you know!!!!

See..yes i have found some pretty good deals..but most of those deal are for the 5.9's...there's tons and tons of them!!! The 8.3's or the DT466 go QUICK because of the tiny home movement. So now...being I live in the midwest everything is a day to a three day trip and expenses..which puts the $$$ higher and higher..thats if I can find one that is or isn't in decent shape. All or alot of the midwest dealers..get their buses from the midwest schools..and are FILTHY!!! Another issue is...ANYWHERE you buy a bus..theres ZERO records on it..so damn if you do damn if you don't!!! Not much of in a rush, but at the same time I am!!!
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Old 03-18-2018, 03:26 PM   #5
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Ok...I’m getting closer now...lol!!!! Looked at some auctions...and others...just don’t know about some of them...because they look like buses that have hit rock bottom...and have something leaking or wiring issues or whatever.

Liking the 8.3...and the Detroit as well, but have heard that Detroit’s have a bit of a oil leak issue...so back onto the 8.3 being a Cummins and everyone and their brother has parts for them?!?!

So at this point...is the transmission choices!!! It’s either between the mt643 or the md3060? I know the mt643 is better for city driving and the md3060 is good for highway and better fuel efficiency...but the md is more expensive to fix if anything goes wrong. I want to tow a trailer here and there...just not sure which is more bullet proof.
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Old 03-18-2018, 03:43 PM   #6
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Location: Owasso, OK
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Year: 1999
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Chassis: Saf-T-Liner MVP ER
Engine: Cummins 6CTA8.3 Mechanical MD3060
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Originally Posted by Madrider121 View Post
Ok...Iím getting closer now...lol!!!! Looked at some auctions...and others...just donít know about some of them...because they look like buses that have hit rock bottom...and have something leaking or wiring issues or whatever.

Liking the 8.3...and the Detroit as well, but have heard that Detroitís have a bit of a oil leak issue...so back onto the 8.3 being a Cummins and everyone and their brother has parts for them?!?!

So at this point...is the transmission choices!!! Itís either between the mt643 or the md3060? I know the mt643 is better for city driving and the md3060 is good for highway and better fuel efficiency...but the md is more expensive to fix if anything goes wrong. I want to tow a trailer here and there...just not sure which is more bullet proof.
If you have a choice, MD3060 all the way.
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Old 03-18-2018, 05:03 PM   #7
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Thanks Twigg...see once again...white elephants is what this is turning out to be...or just LUCK!!!! Tough to watch something that might be a few thousand more..be let go of for something that might take up to a year too find again!!!
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Old 03-18-2018, 05:07 PM   #8
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Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Owasso, OK
Posts: 2,291
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Saf-T-Liner MVP ER
Engine: Cummins 6CTA8.3 Mechanical MD3060
Rated Cap: 46 Coach Seats, 40 foot
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Originally Posted by Madrider121 View Post
Thanks Twigg...see once again...white elephants is what this is turning out to be...or just LUCK!!!! Tough to watch something that might be a few thousand more..be let go of for something that might take up to a year too find again!!!
Sometimes it's just luck.

When I was looking I found two, almost identical Thomas Saf-T-Liners. Both were trades from a school district (different districts in Nevada), and they were almost identical.

One of them had the MT643, bald tires and significant rust. The other had the MD3060, decent tires and zero rust.

Both sold for $3600 within a few minutes of each other, and I got the good one.
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Old 03-18-2018, 05:19 PM   #9
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Location: Billings, MT
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Year: 2003
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: HDX
Engine: Cat C7
Rated Cap: 84 passenger
I paid $8K for mine, an 03 with a 3060 and a Cat C7. Tires were in good shape, with very little surface rust and a side-swipe ding on the right side.
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Old 03-18-2018, 05:27 PM   #10
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Nice man...thats what i'm talkin about...3 in Washington...two of them sold for about 10k in no time, the other one has electrical issues...so no go there. Found another in Nevada..280k miles (yikes) but with the smaller trans...so no go there. ALOT of private sellers...so they could care less on their reputation or not...so shaky ground there...so might bite the bullet and pay more...for something that I know I won't have to grind rust off of for "Hours". I googled the crap out of 8.3...and my fingers are getting tired and so is my iphone battery..lol!!!
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