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Old 01-04-2010, 07:30 PM   #31
Skoolie
 
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Re: Huh? What just happened?

Now that's quite a tale of adventure!

Take Care,
Den
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Link to my bus conversion http://www.skoolie.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=3981
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Old 01-04-2010, 08:04 PM   #32
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Re: Huh? What just happened?

Sum total on the kids is 7...2 for me...5 from here. We have custody of 5 of them (4 hers and 1 mine). The oldest is 15, then two 13 year old (that's tons of fun), then an 11 year and a 10 year old. We don't quite need all the room, but man it was great to not have people pretty much sitting on top of each other last trip. There was a distinct lack of crying and fighting on the last trip.

Here are some pics of the "progress" we've made. I didn't take a full on pic of all the seats. Nor did I take a good pic after we removed the last six rows of seats. I just have some pics of the "new" seats that we plan to integrate. I think the pictures make them out of be better than they are. They're not bad, but need some shampoo and whatnot.

Other than being at the back half of the bus, this is the relative position that we want the seats in. The two seats nearest the isle are "quick release" (with a sledge hammer, at least that's how I removed them from the donor van! There is a section of the couch that is on top and I intend to reattach it and "quick release" the chairs for a bigger bed when camping. Otherwise, there's enough room as it is to unfold the couch and leave the chairs as they are. No one should be "touching" each other!



Thanks for all the comments and stuff too!
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Old 01-04-2010, 08:07 PM   #33
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Re: Huh? What just happened?

It's going to be about two months down the road, but I hope to relocate the door similar to how you did, Den (and SportyRick). I'm hoping to alter my factory stairs though to slide in a generator and/or battery bank. I'm going to put the door just ahead of the duals, as others have done. We'll see how it all works out. I'll have Spring Break during March and my welding-metal guru friend will be home from snow-birding. Then the real fun can begin!
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Old 01-04-2010, 08:10 PM   #34
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Re: Huh? What just happened?

RedBear...you bring up a good point. I bought a 78 Chevy Malibu that someone had swapped in a blow racing motor that I limped along with for awhile (I bought it for the body). When winter came it never warmed up. I ended up "replacing" the nonexistent thermostat. I'll have to look into that with my bus. I don't think she's been out racing, but it could have a really low temp thermostat. But now with the cardboard, it does great. Maybe I'll just leave it and be happy with a lower thermostat come summer.
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Old 01-05-2010, 12:57 AM   #35
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Re: Huh? What just happened?

7 kids?... shouldn't be to hard to track you down with that many running around.

"my Cross Country Team"
Theres some pretty good hills out north of you...heck take them over to St. Francis and let them work their way back.
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Old 01-07-2010, 09:13 PM   #36
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Re: Huh? What just happened?

NewSkewlHauler congrats on the bus purchase, you got a hell of a deal on a great bus and you got home with no problems, great. I am sorry I haven't been here at skooklie.net to catch up on my reading because I live just 7 minutes off I70 at the Kingdom city exit. You could have crashed here and seen my bus too! As far as the heat thing that is normal for a diesel, no heat in the winter vs my gas motor that runs you out because of all the heat produced. If you were having lots of heat from a diesel in the winter then you would be putting head gaskets on it this summer. Are you sure you don't have louvers in front of your radiator that aren't functioning correctly? I did but I pitched them because I figured I wouldn't be driving it in the winter, that was a dream, I drive it every winter now to Salina. We must have just missed each other, I drove to Salina on the 26th and back on the 27th. Don't be in too much of a hurry putting those seats down, make sure you understand your needs presently and in the future, you don't need to put any extra holes in the floor that are not needed. You may want to put some flooring down before you attach seats. If you are going to cut the rear of the bus off then use both your front and rear underseat heaters to heat the passenger quarters as well as your dash heater for defrost. Other input would be invited but I think you can leave the floor in the rear in place for a deck (it is well supported with crossmembers) and put a goose neck ball supported properly under the floor welded or bolted to the frame rails. Are you going to move the rear cap up to where you cut the walls off? That will give you a rear door and look good too. I haven't done it but have seen it done many times so I assume it's do-able for you too. What about camping in the bus at rest stops to and fro? Have you thought about that? Storage? Potti? A toilet doesn't take up much room and is a very welcome addition, then no stops except for fuel. Even one with a tank built in would be better than nothing. Kitchen counter to fix lunch on? Den showed you how to put in a mid door, it's great! It goes on and on and I am sure I am preaching to the choir but thought I would put in my 2 cents. You will use your bus more than you think. Tailgating, I tailgated for homecoming at MU this year, spent the night on the grounds 2 nights in a row, you wouldn't believe the goings on in the middle of the night. We spent labor day weekend at Clinton Lake by Lawrence Ks for a family campout. We love our bus and you will too! sportyrick ps you want that generator as far away from your living quarters as possible and it will hang down a little too so stay near a wheel so it won't drag on the ground.
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Old 01-07-2010, 11:28 PM   #37
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Re: Huh? What just happened?

Thanks for the advise, sportyrick! It's too bad I missed you on the way home. I think I stopped for fuel near there. I would love to see your bus. I'll have to make a trip next Christmas through Salina to see you there! I'm sure sometime during Christmas I'll be on my way to Kansas City. I hope to end up at Clinton Lake to ride the horses again. I've been on those trails several times and they are fantastic. Maybe we'll see you there sometime too!

Originally I wasn't going to use the rear cap. But I'm leaning more and more towards it. Another set of seats that I'm hoping to latch on to would create a really nice storage area with the rear cap that a flat-wall just wouldn't have. I'm hoping to get the rear seat out of an Impala that were set up to fold flat for trunk access. I think that with the BB slope in the rear cap, I could gain a goodly amount of really cool storage space.

I've got a fiberglass surround with a toilet and sink that has the shower drain in it that I pillaged from a stick and staple unit. I'm not 100% sure how to incorporate it, but I think I have a good idea. I'm almost thinking of trying a pocket door since the door will run the length of the bus, not across.

I, personally, don't have the skills to do the mid-door, so I'll have to wait a few months until my friend with the skills gets back from Texas. Then the mid door is certainly going to happen! I've gotta have my baby beside me! The one trip we've made together was good, but not great because she had to ride behind me. She did get a lot of good face time with the kids though!

Thanks again.
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Old 01-08-2010, 02:41 PM   #38
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Re: Huh? What just happened?

I guess the best part about the unit that I have is that it only goes 32 or 36 inches high. So I guess it's really a two-piece! I'm not sure what I'll use on the top part...there's a discussion somewhere about FRP or something. I see it in bathrooms all the time. I think the stick and staple I pulled it from just relied on a curtain to be pulled all the way around when you shower. Somehow I don't think it worked too well, otherwise I wouldn't have been dismantling it! I'll have to post a pic sometime so ya know what I mean...and so I know what I'm talkin' 'bout! But I think the FRP and several pounds of caulk "should" work. I do like the idea of sinking the pan between the frame rails for a taller shower. I might have to kick that idea around and past the wife...

One thing we don't have is roof hatches. I really wish we did have them. I think the "next bus" will have them...but that won't be for another 5-6 years! The next bus will have a different purpose, so we'll be looking for different things next time. The bus I used for my Cross Country team had them and they were awesome for ventilation cruising down the road.
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Old 01-17-2010, 10:42 PM   #39
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Re: Huh? What just happened?

I got the permanent plates on the Silver Snail Friday. I couldn't register it as an RV yet, but the registration as a bus wasn't all that expensive. Granted, there was only "some" sales tax, personal property tax (stupid Kansas), and whatnot. The total bill was only $51.50...good Van Halen album too! I'll have to renew the plates in May, but I was really surprised at how little it cost. Our Suburban is at least 3 or 4 times that amount!

I got a few more things out of the donor van. Here is/was the van...it was a nice unit at one point.

That's all for now anyway...oh yeah...I scored more seats! I was cruising FeeBay and came across a set of leather seats out of a 2001 Chevy Impala. I might have mentioned it before...I don't know. But the auction was for the heated front leather seats (driver and passenger) and the rear seats. The rear seat is supposed to fold flat for trunk access. I'm looking forward to integrating that into a storage design! I figure when I move the rear cap forward, with the BlueBird slope in the rear, I should have some nice storage with easy access!

OK...that's all for real.
Ben.
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Old 01-19-2010, 07:52 PM   #40
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Re: Huh? What just happened?

Looks like you need to pull all the drink holders too!

I wonder how hard it would be to use van windows similiar to those on a skinned over wall... Those would look nice & they open too...
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