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Old 08-04-2014, 04:21 AM   #41
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Re: The Broccoli Bus

Which cut line is better? I prefer the straight back instead of the uh "fast back", but the straight back will be a bit more work to pull off.

Straight back



"Fast" back
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Old 08-04-2014, 10:14 AM   #42
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Re: The Broccoli Bus

Hey Aaron --- Aesthetics being a personal thing, the straight back look can be accomplished without cutting the rear cap. I did it on the 40' Blue Bird I built years ago. I was advised by a BB engineer never to cut or modify either of the original caps due to the major role they play in overall structural integrity. The answer was to simply cut & fit a new rib section onto what was there then just skin the difference. Another option is to get a second rear cap and attach it to the new rib if you want a nice, smooth rolled edge back there. The space in between the new & old roofs was used to house an A/C unit that fed directly into a center duct providing cool air the length of the bus. It also left a surprising amount of valuable weather-proof storage space on either side of the A/C.

Mine was raised 19" BTW and the full sized ribs were purchased directly from the manufacturer.

Also...skinning a "straight-back" is simple. Getting a good fit on an angled back is a bear to pull off without it looking lumpy.
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Old 08-04-2014, 10:35 AM   #43
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Re: The Broccoli Bus

Straight Back looks definitely better....
BUT, someone on here mentioned a few times, that a retired Blue Bird worker/engineer mentioned to "NEVER mess with the end caps!"
[Here we go! Tango beat me to it and Tango was the man!!]

I am not sure yet myself, how EXACTLY the design of the endcaps and the surrounding structure works, but if I get to agree with the BB retiree, I just keep the caps original. To get to the straight back, I would just put up a fairing/sideskirts and use the space behind for anything you want on the roof: cargo deck, solar panels, flat tank (for a thermo syphone water heating system), etc....

Furthermore, the straight back, if you can get the edges fairly sharp will work as a Kamm-tail - clean aerodynamic air run-off = less drag.
....the fast back is a total drag-chute!

Cheers,

thjakits

[Love the MOGS!]
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Old 08-04-2014, 02:29 PM   #44
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Re: The Broccoli Bus

Thanks for the details on the endcaps. I've read in a few places they're not really supposed to be messed with. When looking at it closely, I see a number of things that tell me someone has gone through some thought on them:


* Rib spar connection bolts at the front and rear are brazed so the threads won't come undone
* Front rib is doubled up
* A ton of bucked rivets connecting the skin to the cap
* Deep draw stamping to lend the sheet metal considerable strength


All of those are why I am considering the sloped rear end. When you mentioned adding a new rear cap, you gave me an idea I'm going to work on. I'll leave the end cap and rib, as well as a small stub of the original roof. Then I can rivet on a small roof extension on the lifted section, getting me flush with the rear wall, and instead of a full rib, I'll cut a sheet panel in the same arch and connect it together for the rear end. Then I can just rivet the bottom of that to the end cap.

Possibly clear as mud, when I have a moment I'll sketch it out. Anyway, thanks for the brainstorm!



Quote:
Originally Posted by Tango
Hey Aaron --- Aesthetics being a personal thing, the straight back look can be accomplished without cutting the rear cap. I did it on the 40' Blue Bird I built years ago. I was advised by a BB engineer never to cut or modify either of the original caps due to the major role they play in overall structural integrity. The answer was to simply cut & fit a new rib section onto what was there then just skin the difference. Another option is to get a second rear cap and attach it to the new rib if you want a nice, smooth rolled edge back there. The space in between the new & old roofs was used to house an A/C unit that fed directly into a center duct providing cool air the length of the bus. It also left a surprising amount of valuable weather-proof storage space on either side of the A/C.

Mine was raised 19" BTW and the full sized ribs were purchased directly from the manufacturer.

Also...skinning a "straight-back" is simple. Getting a good fit on an angled back is a bear to pull off without it looking lumpy.
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Old 08-07-2014, 02:24 AM   #45
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Oh god what have I done




Just kidding. It all still works. I think I pulled close to 1000 feet of wire out of the bus.

There are three wires on the main dash/cluster connector that confuse me however - hot pink, light brown with stripes, and dark brown with stripes. I'm not sure where they go, because they were connected to the terminal strips. I have a feeling they were/are part of the ignition interlock related to the emergency exits.

Any ideas? 1998 BB TC/2000. It looks like bluebird doesn't have wiring harness records.

I forgot to grab my wire terminal tool to pull the excess pins out of the connectors. Plus, I need some split loom and tape to clean things up a bit again. I'll take an "after" photo tomorrow.
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Old 08-07-2014, 02:20 PM   #46
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The wires

I think this is somewhere just south of 1000 feet of wire. 25 strands, all about 40' long.

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Old 08-08-2014, 12:34 AM   #47
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Re: The Broccoli Bus

On a side note, I sure do like your Unimog ambulance!
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Old 08-08-2014, 04:21 AM   #48
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Re: The Broccoli Bus

Electrical buttoned up. That looks better!

There are so many empty terminals and breakers for goodies! I can't wait to hook up a gps and rear view mirror, for example. I'm not sure what I will do with my two air solenoids yet. Also, since my control panel is greatly simplified, I may make a newer more modern one.

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Old 08-08-2014, 10:51 AM   #49
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Re: The Broccoli Bus

Looks like you might have pulled enough high-dollar, recyclable copper to pay for the bus!
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Old 08-09-2014, 06:50 PM   #50
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bluebird roof raise kit

Just cut and weld!
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