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Old 05-18-2005, 11:51 PM   #11
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Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Fir Island, Washington
Posts: 83
Title of a Blue Bird

Hi Branden , welcome to the club, I live on Fir Island north of Seattle and my friend Ron lives on N 205th in Seattle. Both of us have 35' Crowns. A little tip for you on the title thing. Washington State no longer requires inspections. Just go to your friendly licensing place and tell them that you have a "BLUE BIRD MOTOR HOME". They will license accordingly. It seems I have talked to you before about this but that was a while ago and i don't remember the circumstances. Any assistance either Ron or I can give you don't hesitate to ask. Ah yes, the Mercer mess , what a shame I don't have to drive down there much any more. My rules for Seattle are in by 10 and out by 2.
Best of luck, J.B.
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Old 05-22-2005, 03:19 AM   #12
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Seattle, Washington
Posts: 82
Year: 1981
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: All American FE
Engine: Cummins 555 9.1 L diesel
Rated Cap: 77
Licensing in WA

Well, thanks to the handy knowledge herein I've now got my Bluebird Motorhome licensed in the state of Washington. Interestingly, the woman at the licensing place still thought I needed a state patrol inspection as the title says "school bus" but I explained that I knew of people who had recently made the licensing shift and the WSP no longer inspects...

She called her manager, who also wouldn't do it, BUT, there was another employee there who would, explaining that if WSP called me I'd have to have it inspected... so we'll see.

Now I'm thinking paint... and I'm strangely thinking yellow--John Deere yellow, with lots of metallic sparkles. Kind of electric yellow with the same black trim as is presently on it.

And I'm looking for laminate flooring...

Yee ha!
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Old 05-22-2005, 05:49 PM   #13
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Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Fir Island, Washington
Posts: 83
Title

Congratulations , I always say you have to help people do thier job. As long as your title says BLUBIRD MOTORHOME you are OK. Now that that hurdle is out of the way you only have a few dozen more jobs to not only think about but accomplish. I spent last week and part of this week placing a trailer hitch receiver on 'Farther' and putting in the 52 gal black water tank. Just a couple of more days and it will be done.

J.B.
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Old 05-22-2005, 09:24 PM   #14
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Seattle, Washington
Posts: 82
Year: 1981
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: All American FE
Engine: Cummins 555 9.1 L diesel
Rated Cap: 77
Ah yes, the task list...

Yep, it sure does loom large.

Having some friends in the bus has brought up new ideas--flexible space and openness, not lots of fixed walls... interesting.

I'm still contemplating the toilet and shower possibility. Seems like so much space in a bus it would be a waste not to have one. How big is your fresh tank? You're doing a gray and black? I'm thinking about 100 gal fresh (burning man, you know) and appropriate gray/black although maybe not separate tanks...

A friend summed it up nickely when he said the challenge really was in the lack of any possibilities (minus money, of course). You can totally do what you want, and all those decisions make it hard to figure out where you want to go. I'm thinking function, then form... but with a good eye on form, too.

We'll see if the title comes back...

BB
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Old 08-16-2005, 03:41 AM   #15
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Seattle, Washington
Posts: 82
Year: 1981
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: All American FE
Engine: Cummins 555 9.1 L diesel
Rated Cap: 77
Finally, something is getting done!

With the Man Burning in just a scant few weeks, lots of good work is being done on Lucinda.

The outside paint is just about done. There are two coats of Sno Seal on the roof for cooling purposes (sealing, too). The inside has a coat of paint on the bottom (top was fine), and a new plywood subfloor over the steel floor.

We have mounted frames on seats (2 BMW buckets, 3 Ford Windstar seats) and are working on floorplans. Right now the diamond pattern is in the lead, which will allow for reclining and getting a seat close to the engine block between the front wheel wells, a space too narrow for two seats.

Pergo floor going in, to be finished once the seats are in. The back of the bus will remain empty for the trip to BRC, (two couches along with the five seats) for future simple, open floor plans including two long cabinets holding a 30-gallon tank each and additional storage, a sink, and a propane stove.

Where is the easiest place to mount propane tanks? I've seen the underchassis mount and the rear mount, up high out of the way of a collision. Which is better/easier--to install, to use? Opinions?

BTW, for those following the old cost/keys mess, I got my 300 bucks for the new batteries back from the seller, so my final cost for the bus came down to $3K. Not all bad.
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Old 08-16-2005, 06:45 PM   #16
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Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Grundy, Virginia
Posts: 632
Year: 1985
Coachwork: ThomasBuilt
Chassis: International Harvester S-1700
Engine: 9L IHC V-8 Diesel 180HP
Rated Cap: 60
Propane tank installation

My propane tank is mounted underneath the bus behind the "nut", the differential. I figured that was the safest place to put it. I could be wrong, but it's not directly in the line of fire from anything coming from the tires, and anything big I might run over would have to come through the differential to get to it.



I essentially constructed a floor that is suspended from the frame with allthread, and then I built a box around that. It is just barely big enough to fit 2 regular propane tanks in, although I only have one in there now.

It was a pretty simple installation. Drilling holes in the floor joist flanges was the only cutting that had to be done on the bus to hang the bottles. The allthread lets you use 2 nuts above the joist, 2 below, 2 above the floor platform, and 2 below it to hold the platform in place (8 per rod, 32 total) The platform is 1 1/2" of plywood with 2x2 frame around the edges. Then plywood walls are screwed to that with 2x2 framing pieces where they join each other. Wing nuts and carriage bolts hold the front board in place so that I can get the bottle(s) in and out. There is no top to the box, and the regulator hose passes over the sidewall on its way to the black steel pipe that leads it into the bus.

Oh yes, I did put some of that 1/8" thick by 1 1/2" wide sheet metal with 3/8" holes in it across the bottom of the platform in such a way that it is fastened on by the all thread. Just in case.... Can't hurt.
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Old 08-17-2005, 12:14 AM   #17
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Location: Seattle, Washington
Posts: 82
Year: 1981
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: All American FE
Engine: Cummins 555 9.1 L diesel
Rated Cap: 77
Tank hanger

Thanks Eric,

Is it a pain in the butt to get under to switch tanks?

And, how did you get the underchassis so clean? Mine is like, um, black and covered in gronuff and munge. Don't necessarily want to take a hose under there, though, don't know what shouldn't be hosed out...
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Old 08-17-2005, 01:54 PM   #18
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Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Grundy, Virginia
Posts: 632
Year: 1985
Coachwork: ThomasBuilt
Chassis: International Harvester S-1700
Engine: 9L IHC V-8 Diesel 180HP
Rated Cap: 60
Propane tank

It's not at all bad getting under there. I'm a little bitty fellow, so that makes it even easier, but it's pretty easy. Just roll the tank under, follow it, remove the forward side of the box and hoist the tank up into it and connect the regulator. Nothing to it. You can hardly see the installation from the side or rear of the bus, and it is painted flat black, which makes it even harder to see. There's still plenty of clearance beneath it, and it's far enough from the rear bumper that I'd pretty much have to back over a low wall to hit the tanks. I doubt it would be possible to bottom it out without bottoming out both the differential and the rear bumper first.



The bus was clean as a whistle when I got it. 99.99% rust free, too. There might have been 1.5 square feet of surface rust on the whole thing in about 3 spots. There is some tiny amount of sand accumulation on a few of the frame members, since the bus came from a coastal county, but other than that it was pretty much spotless underneath. I think they used pressure washers pretty regularly there. I know they had one handy when I went to pick it up, and they hosed down the inside for me because the bus had been sitting empty for several months.
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Old 02-16-2006, 12:40 AM   #19
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Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Spokane, WA
Posts: 71
Year: 1983
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: International S1800
Engine: SV396 V-8, International
Rated Cap: 66
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Where is the propane tank

I know this is a pretty late reply to the thread (hey, only about 10 months....). My propane tank is on the right side, behind the front stair, in front of the rear wheels. A long cylinder tucked in and protected by the frame and some extra steel "armor" pieces.

Of course, the bus is POWERED by propane - that's my gas tank. I just bought it from First Student in Portland (1983 International S1700/Bluebird) and will be doing the "Bluebird Motorhome" registration in Washington as well. Now, to see if I can't tap off of the main tank for peripherals like the stove, as well as rig some ability to connect barbeque cylinders into the main system as a "spare gas tank" in case I run out and have to hitch a ride to the service station.....
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Old 08-05-2006, 03:57 AM   #20
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Seattle, Washington
Posts: 82
Year: 1981
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: All American FE
Engine: Cummins 555 9.1 L diesel
Rated Cap: 77
update and propane question-HELP?

Cabinets are roughed in, two 88-inch open cabinets (like big bookshelves, no doors) over the rear wheel wells, holding the water tank (33-gal, vertical), the sink and pump, and propane stove.

The location of the tank, though, is a question of the moment. I want to keep the tank and stove removable, so I can cook outside or inside. I want to put the 20lb (5gal) tank under the sink, where the pump will be, or in the next compartment over. This will allow a four-foot connecting hose between the tank and the stove and I could take the whole deal out just by lifting it up. During transit, I'll store the tank outside in a lower bin, but in camp I want to keep it in the bus. Is this a major problem? Don't boats do it? With a propane detector perhaps?

Les and others, am I crazy?
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