Just went and picked up our bus today. Drove it the 90 miles home through the South Eastern Kansas Flint Hills with no problems. It does have some minor issues but I think it is going to be a good bus for us.
The bus is a 1977 International Harvester with a Carpenter body. It's got a gas engine w/ automatic transmission. We only got it up to a max of 55mph but it never really dogged except for the few steeper grades we had to climb and even then it only dropped to about 45-50mph. I think after I get it a tune up we might be able to get a little more speed out of the old girl.
One of the things I am going to do some research into is the fact that they changed out the original 4-barrel carb for a 2-barrel. I am wondering if that may be affecting things. I got the 4-barrel carb with the bus but was told it needed a rebuilt. That will be something I look into.
One of the little tricks the original owner did to the bus that I like is they put heavy duty trailer tongue jacks on the bumpers. According to the guy I bought the bus from this make tweaking the bus level extremely easy. You should be able to see the jacks in the pictures.
I have health issues converting a bus from scratch was too much for me right now, but I will be making some changes to this one to make it fit our needs a little better.
So far the TODO list on the bus is:
1) Tuneup on the bus, possibly getting the 4 barrel carb rebuilt and put back on. The battery may need to be replaced. I had to jump it to get it started at first but It worked everytime after. I will pull it and get it checked this week.
2) Fuel Gage needs to be fixed.
3) Looking to add better and more mirrors. The driver side mirror is cracked and only having the two really limits visibility. My wife drove School Bus for a couple of years and is already missing all the extra mirros.
4) Replace the forward air conditioner. I am thinking I am also going to wire in a inverter for it so I can run it while going down the road. Right now it has to be connected to a generator or shore power.
5) Rewire the power on the bus to something a little more up to date and allow me to run some things while driving. It has a couple Marine Batteries but they will need to be replaced.