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Old 07-31-2010, 08:32 AM   #1
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Re: New Alaskan Skoolie

Fun project!
Never done Alaskan nights, close as I've come in Northern BC Canada. Long.... long winters.
I'm guessing most your work will be done indoors, nice heated area?
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Old 07-31-2010, 02:30 PM   #2
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Re: New Alaskan Skoolie

Hel,i didn't know when to go to bed or get up ,,,,land of the midnite sun, i wish i was back there right now,i be sitting out at lake clark and fishing ,,,with my buddy SMITTY
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Old 08-01-2010, 01:57 AM   #3
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Re: New Alaskan Skoolie

I like the idea of the bar... Any plans drawn up yet???

Congrats on the bus...
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Old 08-01-2010, 09:14 AM   #4
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Re: New Alaskan Skoolie

Quote:
Originally Posted by phillygoat
Well, I've been wanting to do it for a while, but tonight a bus finally fell into my lap. She is a confusing mash up of bus bits (The chasis says its a 1990 ford, the body is a mid/late 80's thomas, and the engine is a GM labeled detroit 8.2l). So who knows what I've really got. Will have to spend some time decoding the ID numbers, I guess.
All that info sounds correct. Conventional (nosed) buses were built as a separate body and chassis, and up through the 90s, you could mix and match any body/chassis combo. That's a Thomas body on a Ford chassis. The 8.2 "Fuel Pincher" is sometimes called GM, sometimes Detroit Diesel, but it's the same engine. (Going way back, Detroit Diesel was originally created as a division of GM's truck and bus line).

There are separate electrical systems for the body and chassis wiring. The driver's fan is definitely body; the fuse and wiring would be behind the switch panel on your left. Brake lights start as chassis wiring but then go into the body wiring (there's a "body builder interface" by your left foot that lets the body manufacturer hook up to the ignition feed, battery supply, and all rear lights). The chassis fuse panel is by your left foot as Dr LuLu described. When troubleshooting an electrical problem like that, a test light is your best friend. Check every terminal that relates to the affected circuit and see where you have power and where you don't.
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Old 08-01-2010, 10:39 AM   #5
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Re: New Alaskan Skoolie

Congratulations! This bus looks much more workable than the non-running classic money pit you posted about before.
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Old 08-02-2010, 06:12 PM   #6
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Re: New Alaskan Skoolie

Sure looks like you were working hard there, comfy on that couch If I was her, I'd shoot up the side of your bus, too *teasing*
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Old 08-03-2010, 03:10 AM   #7
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Re: New Alaskan Skoolie

Quote:
Originally Posted by phillygoat
I found a switch on top of the electric panel with a little green light next to it. Last time I flipped it it didn't do anything, but after today's electrical repair, when I flip the switch, I hear a deep whirring noise coming from under the bus. It goes for about one minute then stops. I tracked the sound to an enclosed box under the bus. It had a vent on the bottom blowing cool air out when the whirring was happening. Any idea what I might find in there when I open it up? Some kind of pump maybe?
...
Does anyone have a wiring diagram for a thomas electric box? Are the configurations pretty standard, or do they vary by bus/options/year/whim? I figured out most of what was going on in there, but a few things still puzzle me.
That switch might be an auxiliary heater. Is the box near the battery box? Those things are great (if it still works), they use a small diesel furnace to pre-heat the engine coolant.

I have a main body wiring diagram that might be helpful. Thomas used a mostly standard configuration, with lots of additions for the extra options. If you can still make out your wire colors and numbers, the diagram will be useful. I'm on vacation for the next two weeks, but I'll see if I can get a legible copy scanned when I get home (along with the emergency door lock circuit diagram other people have been asking me for).
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Old 08-15-2010, 11:05 AM   #8
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Re: New Alaskan Skoolie

Quote:
Originally Posted by phillygoat
. . . . . . The leak is coming out of the middle fitting in the picture below, the one with the wires attached to it. I imagine those wires are some sort of sensor or sender, but it looks pretty jury-rigged (ie, different fitting, bad attempt at a pressure wrap to fix the leak). I am wondering, can I replace this fitting (and that sensor unit?) and then bleed the brakes, or do you think I will need a whole new master cylinder. If I can just replace the fitting/sensor, does anyone know the name of the part that I will need to purchase (or do you think if I brought this picture into the truck parts store, they could identify?)
What you see in the middle is the idiot light switch for the dual braking system, required on post-1967 vehicles. If you step on the pedal, and the balance of pressure to the wheels fed by the #1 line in front is not roughly equal to the pressure to the wheels fed by the #2 line in back, the "BRAKE" warning light on the instrument panel will light up.

I would bring the picture to a parts store, plus any model info on the master cylinder if available, and info on the bus chassis. I can't tell you if just replacing the sender is all that is required, or if the leak is a symptom of a combination of a leaky sender plus fluid bypass problems inside the metal block that the sender and brake lines are attached to. You may not have to bleed the brake lines, as the leak is not in the lines, and may not suck air back in, but it wouldn't hurt to do so.

If I was in a hurry to move the bus, I might remove the sender and put a threaded plug in the middle hole to stop the leak, and do without the idiot warning light. I would keep a close eye on the fluid levels in the two halves of the reservoir to warn me of any leaks in the lines going toward the wheels. But the warning light is an important safety indicator, and I cannot advise you that it would be safe for you to operate your bus that way.
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