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Old 07-29-2019, 11:15 AM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Join Date: Sep 2018
Location: St. Charles County Missouri
Posts: 52
Year: 1997
Coachwork: Bluebird International
Chassis: 3800
Engine: T444e
Rated Cap: 35
MOe the 97 international bluebird

Hello all, my wife and I bought our 97 international 6 window bus in May of 2019. We plan on using this as a weekend/ national park traveling bus. My wife came up with the name MOe which is short for Missouri explorer. We are the 3rd owners of the bus. We bought it from a church that was using it for their youth ministry. They owned it for about 10 years. The bus was already painted white so that elemited one job to start with. We will end up painting it sometime in the future but for now it will remain white.
I will try to keep this thread up to date. Which currently should not be to hard as I am doing mechanical repairs to make sure we don't have any trouble later down the road.

===Here is what has been done so far.===
New front shocks
Repaired/ replaced exhaust system
All seats removed
Floor stripped to metal
Roof and wallpanels removed
Insulation removed
Floor wire brushed to remove rust and a heavy coat of coroseal to convert rust
Rear clearance lights replaced with LEDs to help stop some leaks
Currently in the process of replacing king pins

Also when removing parts I am removing rust and painting the parts to avoid future rust
I have some pictures in my albums if you want to have a look.

Feel free to ask questions, offer advice or give constructive criticism.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 20190427_172434.jpg (181.9 KB, 7 views)
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Michael G.
1997 Bluebird IH 3800 6 window T444e
https://www.skoolie.net/forums/f11/m...ird-28058.html
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Old 08-01-2019, 12:35 PM   #2
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Join Date: Sep 2018
Location: St. Charles County Missouri
Posts: 52
Year: 1997
Coachwork: Bluebird International
Chassis: 3800
Engine: T444e
Rated Cap: 35
We have all the rust on the floor converted and plan on cutting out some of the bigger areas this weekend and replace with new steel. I decided to use the panel epoxy. It is a bit more expensive I guess but I figure my wife can help this way as I have not taught her how to weld yet.

I am also going to be replacing the rear door seal since it has a leak. I sanded the door frame to remove some light rust from where the paint has been rubbed off over the years. I am keep the door open for a couple of days to make sure the paint is completely dry.

There are still a few small leaks mostly the neoprene seals around the upper warning lights. I might replace them with some LEDs in the back and wire them up as blinkers and break lights.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 20190720_171033.jpg (253.6 KB, 4 views)
File Type: jpg 20190720_171011.jpg (180.6 KB, 2 views)
File Type: jpg 20190720_170953.jpg (165.3 KB, 5 views)
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Michael G.
1997 Bluebird IH 3800 6 window T444e
https://www.skoolie.net/forums/f11/m...ird-28058.html
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Old 10-14-2019, 09:01 AM   #3
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Join Date: Sep 2018
Location: St. Charles County Missouri
Posts: 52
Year: 1997
Coachwork: Bluebird International
Chassis: 3800
Engine: T444e
Rated Cap: 35
So it has been a while since I posted here in my build thread. So this is going to be a bit long Sorry.

Here is what has been done since the last post.

We have removed 5 windows and resealed them to make sure there are no leaks around them (8 more to go). I sealed between the bus and the rear light cover, this stopped the leaks around the upper flasher lights until I decide if I will convert to LED blinker and break light.

The big project was replacing the floor support behind the wheel well. It was pretty much gone since we live in the rust belt. I used 2 1/5 square tube for the replacement.
When bolting the new support to the supports on the side skirts I found that standard were not the best choice as one snapped when I was tightening the other side so I upgraded to grade 5 bolts.

While I was underneath the bus I hit it with a wire brush to remove the loose rust and old under coating. I then sprayed it with some rustoleum rust converter and some new undercoating. I still has some more to do. It seems most of the heavy rust is behind the rear wheels, I am guessing that is from the salt spray from winter driving.

I cut out some of the rust in front of the wheel well inside and out and welded in some new metal. I plan on throwing some bondo over the outside this week before if gets much colder.

I also finally welded in the larger floor panels that had rusted through.

I started to remove the stairs to repair the bottom stair but could not figure out how to get the front part to come off. (I have a thread opened looking for ideas on what I am missing http://www.skoolie.net/forums/f10/st...lp-28992.html# )
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 20190907_153148.jpg (177.6 KB, 4 views)
File Type: jpg 20190907_143305.jpg (195.1 KB, 3 views)
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File Type: jpg 20191009_183415.jpg (133.5 KB, 2 views)
File Type: jpg 20191013_152249.jpg (134.9 KB, 2 views)
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Michael G.
1997 Bluebird IH 3800 6 window T444e
https://www.skoolie.net/forums/f11/m...ird-28058.html
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Old 10-14-2019, 09:04 AM   #4
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Join Date: Sep 2018
Location: St. Charles County Missouri
Posts: 52
Year: 1997
Coachwork: Bluebird International
Chassis: 3800
Engine: T444e
Rated Cap: 35
A few more pictures of progress
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 20191009_193949.jpg (119.5 KB, 3 views)
File Type: jpg 20191009_183423.jpg (146.5 KB, 2 views)
File Type: jpg 20191013_143850.jpg (175.2 KB, 2 views)
File Type: jpg 20191009_194041.jpg (193.7 KB, 2 views)
File Type: jpg 20191008_205150.jpg (109.7 KB, 3 views)
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Michael G.
1997 Bluebird IH 3800 6 window T444e
https://www.skoolie.net/forums/f11/m...ird-28058.html
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Old 10-14-2019, 02:33 PM   #5
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Looking good! Keep at it.
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Old 10-14-2019, 02:56 PM   #6
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Join Date: Sep 2018
Location: St. Charles County Missouri
Posts: 52
Year: 1997
Coachwork: Bluebird International
Chassis: 3800
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Rated Cap: 35
Thanks, I am hoping to get the last bit of welding done today and get ready to insulate the floor with spay foam on Sunday since it is almost the last warm day we will have in Missouri for a while. Then plywood and a drivers seat added back in.
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1997 Bluebird IH 3800 6 window T444e
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Old 10-15-2019, 07:52 AM   #7
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Central missouri
Posts: 31
Sweet, another Missouri build.
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Old 10-15-2019, 08:18 AM   #8
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Join Date: Sep 2018
Location: St. Charles County Missouri
Posts: 52
Year: 1997
Coachwork: Bluebird International
Chassis: 3800
Engine: T444e
Rated Cap: 35
@MacC What part of MO are you in?
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1997 Bluebird IH 3800 6 window T444e
https://www.skoolie.net/forums/f11/m...ird-28058.html
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Old 10-15-2019, 08:46 AM   #9
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Join Date: Sep 2018
Location: St. Charles County Missouri
Posts: 52
Year: 1997
Coachwork: Bluebird International
Chassis: 3800
Engine: T444e
Rated Cap: 35
Last night I was able to get the other rust spot over the drivers side wheel well removed and new metal welded in. Other than a few screw holes near the firewall I think all the holes in the floor are now sealed.

I am hoping to wire brush underneath the last few feet of rust and old undercoat to make sure there are not other holes that will show up.

I am also looking in my metal scrap for a couple of pieces that I can use as a stove jack and heat shields so I can easily install/remove the stove pipe for my homemade wood burning stone I made from an old propane tank. I get some pictures when I get that project going. That will be after the floor is in.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 20191014_173714.jpg (127.8 KB, 1 views)
File Type: jpg 20191014_173510.jpg (180.6 KB, 2 views)
File Type: jpg 20191014_173730.jpg (191.7 KB, 2 views)
File Type: jpg 20191014_210223.jpg (221.6 KB, 2 views)
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1997 Bluebird IH 3800 6 window T444e
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Old 10-15-2019, 12:13 PM   #10
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Join Date: Aug 2019
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gorzie View Post
@MacC What part of MO are you in?
Randolph County. I am right of 63 south of Moberly.
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