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Old 11-16-2011, 08:48 AM   #1
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Location: Eastern Washington
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Year: 1986
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: All American RE
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"Rufus"

OK... Here we go, first post... Just bought a 1986 Blue Bird, All American, Rear Engine, 40ft. with a 3208TA Cat Engine. Air ride, auto-chains, and lots of non-rusted storage area. I rec'd ALL, and I mean ALL the maintenance records since new purchase in 86 by the school district. Complete with manuals and records of parts installed... a full 3 ring binder! So... I think I have what i need to a good start. I purchased from the guy who bought it directly from the district (2 yrs ago), and during his ownership, all seats were removed, rubber floor covering removed, and a variety of "stuff" was attained, such as; tanks ( grey, black and potable), windows (6 total), water heater, toilet, anyway... alot of stuff that I won't have to locate. So, yes, I feel I am off to a good start. Original Investment, $2500. So now that I am done bragging, hope not too soon, I have a question... or two ...
I have been reading information and gathering reference info from this website for about 6 months. I have decided to do a roof raise, about 12-18 inches', but before I proceed, has anyone used the ceiling metal for side fill? Or should I go purchase new (or other), and also, is there any reason I cannot leave the ceiling metal on, and fir over the top of it with my new insulation and cceiling wood material? It appears to be no rust or moisture from what I can see, and since I live on the east side of the state (WA), in a dry climate, do I need to worry so much about existing rust? Not trying to get out of work, just want to work smart. Also, I have decided to take it to a "real" mechanic before I get too far in order to verify I have a sound unit to begin with, especially motor. There seems to be almost "Too Much Info"(TMI) out there on roof raise, but not exactly what I need to know... so, please help if you can! Pic's are the drive home and the new resting spot for Rufus. Well, not much rest...
OK... let's get RUFUS off to a good start and use common sense on building a beautiful unit. The info from you guys here makes me feel like I am already part of a great community. (Rufus came from ; the name of the Pelican on the movie, 'Dolphin Ta'le")
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Old 11-16-2011, 11:24 AM   #2
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Location: Central Tennessee
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Year: 1973
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Re: "Rufus"

Awesome bus! There is lots of info on this forum about roof raises. Actually, there is everything you need to know.

Please keep us posted on your progress. Take lots of pics. See your conversion to it's fruition.

What state do you live in?

OOPS! I gotta get better glasses. I see now that you are in Washington state. I lived in Seattle for a year. I liked it.
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Old 11-16-2011, 01:37 PM   #3
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Re: "Rufus"

Thommassey,


Well welcome, looks like a great find for the price and EXTRA Stuff that you got... how many miles on her?

I too an from WA, Shoreline to be exact near Seattle, we have a 28 foot Thomas that we raised the rool 15" (Akitabus) I simple left the metal on the roof and am going to glue boat fabric or screw thin wood covering of some variety when the time comes... check our bus and I will be happy to answer any questions you may have... good luck and post lots of pictures.


Dogfinn
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Old 11-16-2011, 01:42 PM   #4
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Re: roof raise

These guys:
viewtopic.php?f=9&t=10838
are doing a terrific roof raise job right now. While they went a little too far up "for my taste" the method looks foolproof.
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Old 11-16-2011, 08:15 PM   #5
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Re: "Rufus"

wow sweet deal!!! good looking bus, plus to get the extra!! Im not a fan of roof raise, but all the best to you and keep us posted.

gbstewart
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Old 11-16-2011, 08:41 PM   #6
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Re: "Rufus"

You got my bus, but with a turbo'd cat; and I paid more . I think they are 6' 4" headroom, or there abouts, from the metal floor to the high point, I've got 1" insulation and 3/4" plywood on the floor, and at 5' 10" I still have a couple of inches of headroom when I stand on the 2 & 1/4" pile of plywood on the floor. (an OBTW: Home Depot has 3/4" cabinet grade plywood for 25 bucks, annual holiday thing.)

If you want an all-season bus, strip all the interior metal and have it foamed. Converting a bus is a lot of work and money depending on what you want. It's probably smarter to go quick, dirty, and cheap--and use it. If you want to keep on bus'n, there's always another bus out there. They're cheaper than they've ever been.
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Old 11-17-2011, 12:58 PM   #7
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Location: Eastern Washington
Posts: 234
Year: 1986
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: All American RE
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Re: "Rufus"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Accordion
Awesome bus! There is lots of info on this forum about roof raises. Actually, there is everything you need to know.

Please keep us posted on your progress. Take lots of pics. See your conversion to it's fruition.

What state do you live in?

OOPS! I gotta get better glasses. I see now that you are in Washington state. I lived in Seattle for a year. I liked it.
That is an understatment about "lots of info" lol! I love this site, been reading here for almost a year.
I plan on seeing it all the way to completion... Spring we will take her (Rufus, female? Why not? It is a Pelican after all...: )) out, ready or not...
I live on the East Side of WA, Tri-Cities area, but out of town about ten miles on the Snake River.

Seattle was/ is a nice place to visit, but we average 300+ sunny days here on the "dry"side, better for my liking.
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Old 11-17-2011, 01:18 PM   #8
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Posts: 234
Year: 1986
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: All American RE
Engine: 3208TA Cat 250HP
Rated Cap: 84
Re: "Rufus"

... how many miles on her?

I too an from WA, Shoreline to be exact near Seattle, we have a 28 foot Thomas that we raised the rool 15" (Akitabus) I simple left the metal on the roof and am going to glue boat fabric or screw thin wood covering of some variety when the time comes... check our bus and I will be happy to answer any questions you may have... good luck and post lots of pictures.


Dogfinn[/quote]
She has 212,500 miles on her. She was running a rural route. I have also considered leaving metal on ceiling and then firring down 1 1/2" with solid foam. Only concern is moisture in upper cavity? But she has been like that for 25 years w/ no apparent rust, so...? I have tried to register to "Gallery"so as to post pic's but after two tries, am still unable to log on, even after password reset? Oh well, I will figure it out. I will ck your bus this am... Happy Trails

Cap'n
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Old 11-17-2011, 01:20 PM   #9
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Year: 1986
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: All American RE
Engine: 3208TA Cat 250HP
Rated Cap: 84
Re: roof raise

Quote:
Originally Posted by pipopak
These guys:
viewtopic.php?f=9&t=10838
are doing a terrific roof raise job right now. While they went a little too far up "for my taste" the method looks foolproof.
CkÚd ths out last nite... for about 45 min, very ingenuitive (sp?). I too would not raise as high, but great idea. Will follow closely...

Cap'n
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Old 11-17-2011, 01:28 PM   #10
Skoolie
 
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Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Eastern Washington
Posts: 234
Year: 1986
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: All American RE
Engine: 3208TA Cat 250HP
Rated Cap: 84
Re: "Rufus"

Quote:
Originally Posted by bus-bro
You got my bus, but with a turbo'd cat; and I paid more . I think they are 6' 4" headroom, or there abouts, from the metal floor to the high point, I've got 1" insulation and 3/4" plywood on the floor, and at 5' 10" I still have a couple of inches of headroom when I stand on the 2 & 1/4" pile of plywood on the floor. (an OBTW: Home Depot has 3/4" cabinet grade plywood for 25 bucks, annual holiday thing.)

If you want an all-season bus, strip all the interior metal and have it foamed. Converting a bus is a lot of work and money depending on what you want. It's probably smarter to go quick, dirty, and cheap--and use it. If you want to keep on bus'n, there's always another bus out there. They're cheaper than they've ever been.
Home depot will be a stop next week... thx for that! I have no idea of the cost to foam the interior? But I want to do it as best I can and as economically as well... I wonder if my budget of $3-4k (complete bus) is unreasonable? I don't mind the work... If I did do a second (haven't even started 1st, Lmao), I would have opted for Front engine so as to have "garage" in rear... I can always pull a trailer.
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