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Old 09-15-2019, 08:30 PM   #1
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Location: Cazenovia, NY
Posts: 108
Year: 1985
Coachwork: Leyland
Chassis: Leyland
Engine: Cummins
Rated Cap: 17500, probably kg
Leyland Olympian Double Deck Conversion

My bus is an 85 Leyland Olympian. It started its life in northern England as a transit bus, had a second career as a school bus just east of Cambridge, and will end it's life as my RV here in upstate New York.

Here she is parked next to my house.



Next steps are stripping the interior, installing locks on the pneumatic doors, and getting licensed to drive it and getting it registered and insured in NY.

And so it begins.
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Old 09-15-2019, 10:33 PM   #2
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Join Date: Jun 2016
Location: Orange County, CA
Posts: 857
Year: 1990
Coachwork: integral
Chassis: Crown Supercoach II (rear engine)
Engine: Detroit 6V92TAC, DDEC 2, Jake brake, Allison HT740
Rated Cap: 37,400 lbs GVWR
What is that frame in front of the upper front windows? Is it part of some low-tree-branch-deflector-thingy? (That's what you'd expect of those Northerners - won't trim the trees, but will put something on the bus instead! I say that as a proud Southerner.) Does your bus have the O-680 engine and Pneumocyclic semi-automatic gears? I've been in many Leyland Atlanteans and Daimler Fleetlines and Bristol VRs, and even the one and only front-entrance rear-engine Routemaster: I love them all! I guess your bus is from just before Leyland got subsumed into Volvo?

Many years ago I had the semi-sane notion of converting a double-decker, but it would likely have been an ECW-bodied Bristol Lodekka with the wonderful Gardner 5- or 6-cylinder engine. I would have put all the heavy stuff in the lower saloon such as the kitchen, loo, shower, tanks, etc, then have the entire upper deck as a big open-plan bachelor pad, maybe with lots of beanbags and kilims (it was the 1970s after all). Alas, that plan came to naught, but here I am several decades later finally converting a bus.

Just remember - low bridges are higher up the food chain than double-decker buses.

John

PS - here's Herbert's Travel website: http://www.herberts-travel.co.uk/home/4577043733 It looks like maybe they're the ones putting those upper window shields on, so I take back what I said about Northerners . . .
Bedford is actually west of Cambridge, but I'll forgive you for that!
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Old 09-16-2019, 05:20 AM   #3
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Location: Cazenovia, NY
Posts: 108
Year: 1985
Coachwork: Leyland
Chassis: Leyland
Engine: Cummins
Rated Cap: 17500, probably kg
Ha ha, yes tree guards. And it's an '85 Leyland Olympian, ECW body. I'll get a walk-around/walkthrough soon enough.

Can't really drive it without getting my telephone and cable lines raised... That's the project for today.

It did start it's life as a Northern General fleet member.

As for the engine and transmission, it's Cummins L10 with a fully automatic Voith. Shifts like butter... Was good fun to drive back. Met the seller in an empty church parking lot to get used to driving it.
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Old 09-17-2019, 06:29 AM   #4
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Well get off your Wanker spammers an get too it.
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Old 09-17-2019, 09:47 AM   #5
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Chassis: 3800
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Are you going to do a rear phrase on this?
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Old 09-17-2019, 10:18 AM   #6
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Is she road legal in the U.S? Will she make it under HY overpasses?
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Old 09-17-2019, 10:33 AM   #7
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It was supposed to be Wanker spinners not spammers. Damn autocorrect
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Old 09-17-2019, 10:54 AM   #8
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Location: Cazenovia, NY
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Year: 1985
Coachwork: Leyland
Chassis: Leyland
Engine: Cummins
Rated Cap: 17500, probably kg
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheRollingBones View Post
Is she road legal in the U.S? Will she make it under HY overpasses?
This is a low-bridge body (by ECW, or Eastern Coach Works). It's 13'6" tall and is street legal in every US state. Any truck route is safe. I live in the country off a pretty major trucking route. The trees are pretty far from my roof in most spots. That being said, the road I live on passes through a village (by the same name as my town), with pretty low tree branches. Only scraped twice. Tree guards did their job.

There are no highway overpasses I've heard of that won't work. There are plenty of low bridges that won't - all of them are well marked by necessity. I will be using a combination of trucker's atlas and RV apps to prevent terrifying accidents.

Quote:
Originally Posted by crazycal View Post
Are you going to do a rear phrase on this?
No idea what you mean by this! . Am I painting a phrase on it? Probably. But more realistically I'll just use my awesome faceplate up front.
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Old 09-17-2019, 11:01 AM   #9
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Join Date: Jul 2019
Location: Cazenovia, NY
Posts: 108
Year: 1985
Coachwork: Leyland
Chassis: Leyland
Engine: Cummins
Rated Cap: 17500, probably kg
Just a friendly reminder: only 3.12% of New York is NYC plus Long Island. The remaining 96.88% of the state is farmland, forest, and pretty small towns and cities.
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Old 09-17-2019, 02:33 PM   #10
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I am wanting to do the same. Where is the best place to purchase a bus like yours?
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Old 09-17-2019, 03:30 PM   #11
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Location: Cazenovia, NY
Posts: 108
Year: 1985
Coachwork: Leyland
Chassis: Leyland
Engine: Cummins
Rated Cap: 17500, probably kg
I PMd you the contact information for the British bus company out in San Diego
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Old 09-18-2019, 05:12 AM   #12
Bus Crazy
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 1,038
Year: 2002
Coachwork: Thomas Built Bus
Chassis: Freightliner FS65
Engine: Caterpillar 3126E Diesel
Rated Cap: 71 Passenger- 30,000 lbs.
Well congratulations! It has been a long time coming. Glad to see it has arrived.
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Old 09-18-2019, 09:18 AM   #13
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Location: Barrie ON
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Year: 1997
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: International
Engine: T444E
Rated Cap: 72
That is a sexy piece of kit
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Old 09-18-2019, 10:43 AM   #14
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Feb 2018
Location: Central MN
Posts: 152
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: TC RE
Engine: 8.3L
This will be a very interesting build to follow. I wish you all the best!!
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Old 09-19-2019, 09:13 AM   #15
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Location: Cazenovia, NY
Posts: 108
Year: 1985
Coachwork: Leyland
Chassis: Leyland
Engine: Cummins
Rated Cap: 17500, probably kg
All upstairs seats are removed, including the rear one (which was a pain). The rearmost ceiling panel is also out. No insulation at all in the bus (as in zero).

The tiny rivets holding up the panels and holding up the trim pieces pry off easily enough. The giant ones are terrible...wind up warping the panel terribly just to get it off. Not sure exactly how to remove properly just yet, but I did it by force (bent the sheet back so I could pry it from the rib). Tried drilling out the middle and just broke my bit.

The result:

https://youtu.be/VOd6DAZ2_hE

Any ideas on removing that back seat frame? It's 100% rivets and welds.
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Old 09-19-2019, 01:27 PM   #16
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Join Date: Jun 2019
Location: Hagerstown, MD
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Year: 2001
Coachwork: Thomas
Engine: CAT 3126
Air chisel...
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Old 09-21-2019, 03:24 PM   #17
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Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Calgary, Alberta
Posts: 151
Year: 2001
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Thomas
Engine: Cummins ISC 260/660
Rated Cap: 81
At 13’6” tall your interior ceiling height must be pretty low. Is the upper floor lower than the main floor?
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Old 09-21-2019, 05:31 PM   #18
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Location: Cazenovia, NY
Posts: 108
Year: 1985
Coachwork: Leyland
Chassis: Leyland
Engine: Cummins
Rated Cap: 17500, probably kg
Yup. 5'11" downstairs, 5'9" upstairs. Approximately, at least
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Old 09-21-2019, 05:44 PM   #19
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Location: Philadelphia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crisfole View Post
Yup. 5'11" downstairs, 5'9" upstairs. Approximately, at least
Are you going to cut away any of the upstairs deck so you have extra height downstairs?
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Old 09-21-2019, 06:20 PM   #20
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Location: Calgary, Alberta
Posts: 151
Year: 2001
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Thomas
Engine: Cummins ISC 260/660
Rated Cap: 81
I raised the roof on mine for more spacious feel but I’d trade that for a 2 story. Your bus is only 6” taller than mine when I count the a/c’s on the top.
How long and wide is it? Maybe I’ll do a conversion like yours someday.
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