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Old 09-29-2016, 06:25 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlleyCat67 View Post
Chris: It's a 2005 so it is a lot newer than most of the conversions you see. Paying a bit more than I would like ($7500) but it's worth it to me.

I will be picking it up as soon as the money hits the bank (should be tomorrow) then I have to get up to Whitestown IN so it may be the first part of next week.

CarytownCat: Yes, all it took was a phone call to the company, told them what happened.... apparently the door was picked but for whatever reason never shipped. Mistakes happen, I get that.... the fact that they made it right so quickly means I'll probably order from them again... in fact I have a shopping cart ready to go with my city water inlet/tank fill, water pump, strainer, pressure regulator, accumulator tank and supply hose. With the sale they have going right now I'm getting all that for less than $200.
hey nothing wrong with that... even for 10 years old it looks to be in fantastic shape, like it was cared for well.. I almost bought a much newer one..(2006) but wanted that big-brute old-bus feel so i found a good solid old bus.. I just recently got a newer one..(I have both) its amazing how much different the 2 drive..

and you got pieces for your conversion already arrving to put your peoject in high gear!! that rocks!
-Christopher
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Old 09-29-2016, 07:18 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by cadillackid View Post
and you got pieces for your conversion already arrving to put your peoject in high gear!! that rocks!
-Christopher
Yes indeed.... with what's going on in my life right now I can't afford to waste any time. Not gonna go into the details but suffice it to say that in about 3 weeks I'm gonna be homeless so I will be fulltiming in it WHILE I convert it. (Not sure how an RV park or campground is gonna feel about that, so will have to hope I can fly under the radar by not doing anything too too major on their premises.)

With that in mind, I have to get as much stuff as I can while I have somewhere to have it shipped to. Electric and water systems are top priority right now. Everything else can come later since I have camping gear and small appliances that I can use for cooking inside the bus, and a gas grill for use outside. The water heater is 3 way (12VDC/120VAC/LPG) so I'm in good shape for hot water once I get minimal plumbing in place.

I will be ordering my water system (except the water tanks) as soon as the money hits the bank. I found a place where I can get a 100 gallon water tank for only about $160, but I have to drive to Elkhart IN to pick it up otherwise it's gonna be ANOTHER $160 to ship it. I know I can make the drive for way less than that. But on the other hand, even with the shipping it's still less than the 500-600 other places want (and they also charge anywhere from 150-200 to ship). I'm thinking two 100 gallon tanks, one for fresh water and one for grey water. Haven't decided if I want to deal with black water or not, thinking about a composting toilet, would certainly be a lot cheaper. I'll also need tank heaters to keep my water from freezing (3 per tank for a total of 6, plus one for the black water tank if I go that route) but fortunately they are also 12VDC/120VAC so I can go either way.

My power distribution center order has been a challenge unto itself. I ordered the panel I want from a dealer on Amazon for $199.99 plus another 21 for shipping... but they were taking their sweet time to ship. I found another online store with the exact same panel for only $133 plus $11 to ship. Cancelled the Amazon order and placed it with that company, only to find out the panel was discontinued. Fortunately I found a third source who wanted $181 for it, but only $5 shipping. Looks like I might actually get it this time.

Parallax 500-12P24

Whew, I've written a book here. I'll shut up for now, until the next big thing.
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Old 09-30-2016, 01:10 PM   #13
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Well. I'm SOL as far as that power distribution panel I wanted. NO ONE can get it.

Any suggestions for a good 50A load center? Can I just go to Home Depot or Lowe's and grab something off the shelf or do I have to have an RV specific one?
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Old 10-01-2016, 05:52 AM   #14
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Decisions, decisions....

I've found another project bus that I really like, now I'm torn between them and not sure which one I want to go with.

The current option:
2005 Thomas flat nose RE with 133k miles, Detroit engine

The new option:
2004 IC CE conventional with 167k miles, DT466 engine

Points in the Thomas' favor: newer, lower mileage, flat nose, rear engine, underbelly storage
Points in the IC's favor: DT466 engine, rear exit door, lower cost (4800 vs 7500), tires in much better shape

While the Thomas has more points in it's favor, the allure of that DT466 engine is just too strong to ignore. And with the tires, not to say the ones on the Thomas are bad, just that the ones on the IC look like they have a lot more life left in them.

The bodywork on both is in comparable condition, no visible rust on the exterior, though there did appear to be a little bit around the entry steps on both... which is to be expected on buses that old.

I actually saw another IC CE that was a 2003 with 127k miles on it but the tires on it are just about gone... no point in saving 3k on the bus itself if I'm gonna have to turn around and reinvest 2k in new rubber a couple of months down the road.

I have photos of the 2004 IC but not gonna post them unless someone wants to see...

Opinions?
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Old 10-01-2016, 07:52 AM   #15
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Thomas with a Detroit?
That's rad!
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Old 10-01-2016, 09:30 AM   #16
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Yea that's what I thought too..... all the ad for the bus said was MBE906, I Googled that and Detroit is what it came back with.

Much as I like a well built Detroit engine, I like the DT466 even more... it's a tough choice since I like both powerplants.
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Old 10-01-2016, 10:37 AM   #17
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id go for the DT-466 because everyone knows how to work on them at almost any diesel shop... and you can find parts online all over for it.. it was made forever.. in fact a version of it the "Maxxforce DT" was made up until 2015...

the one you are looking at will be a DT-466E

im going to guess that an IC in that year is still probably more AmTran than IC and will be one of the good sturdy ones.. im assuming its a CE300?

the CE200 was a little lighter duty, and the BE was a really light duty chassis.. for an RV either CE should be fine... that should have an allison 2100 Series transmission in it... which is a good transmission..

if you are going to run it alot tires are definitely a concern..

-Christopher
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Old 10-01-2016, 01:41 PM   #18
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It actually doesn't say on the listing whether it is a 200 or a 300... I'll throw up a pic, maybe you will know better than I.



Neither of the listings specified the transmission, other than being automatic... that's something I will have to inquire about, I didn't think to ask when I reserved the Thomas.

Not sure how much I'm gonna be on the road with it, but since it's all I'm gonna have I may be moving around a lot, so yes tires will be a concern. Even used tires are not cheap, never mind new ones.... at least it's not those super singles you see on semis nowadays, those are over $1200 PER TIRE. To help with that.... I had a couple of these lying around from my days as a truck driver, gonna throw them on my rear axle to kind of keep tabs on things.

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Old 10-02-2016, 12:05 AM   #19
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it looks like a nice CE300 and that new you should have an over-drive 2000 series transmission..

I thought the MBE900 series were the mercedes engines that Love to burn oil... but I thought those were only in FreightLiner chassis... oh wait maybe that was a different bus you were talking about.. anyway the mercedes engines were a total PITA..

so im assumingthe bus on the pic is a DT-466E.. looks like a noce heavy CE300 and will likely have an allison 2000 series.. yeah thats a bus which should run you about anywhere you want to take it!..

-Christopher
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Old 10-02-2016, 06:32 AM   #20
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That was the Thomas that had that engine, and it is a Freightliner chassis (I can tell by the instrumentation). The MBE906 is a Detroit engine, pretty sure it's not built by Mercedes Benz. It's still food for thought though.
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