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Old 02-26-2014, 11:41 AM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
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What would you recommend? 39 ft and mountains

Hi,

We are looking for the perfect bus to buy, not easy.. Here are some of the specs we are looking for.
What bus would you recommend?

- We want to buy the bus in Texas or anywhere along the East Coast.
- The max length for an RV is 12m in Europe, so 39ft length would be perfect.
- The oldest year would be 1998, but if our budget allows it the newer the better.
- Our budget is a max of 6000$
- We want a bus without any rust on important parts
- As we are driving trough the snowy mountains I think a dog nose would be better, I read they our more noisy which I really don't mind, the dog nose looks safer. Length-wise inside do you know the difference?
- I would prefer storage space underneath the bus
- preferable an emergency exit in the back
- diesel
- the higher ceiling the better as Europeans are quite tall.
- best would be from in internationally well known company such as GMC, this would make import in Europe easier.

Do you know by any chance if you could put a double driver seat in the front? I've never seen it but it would be fun.

Thanks.
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Old 02-26-2014, 01:57 PM   #2
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Re: What would you recommend? 39 ft and mountains

Howdy --- you will find a very wide range of options & configurations out there as many buses are constructed to different school districts specs. You can either go directly through the districts (many still auction directly to anyone with the cash) or through a broker who buys in bulk lots from many different districts. There is an outfit here in the Houston area called 7K Bus Sales that does just that. I bought my first bus (a 40' Blue Bird All-American) from them years ago and they were great to deal with at the time. You can also send such brokers your specs and a willing price and they can shop it for you. That said, you should be able to find a good solid unit under $5K these days. I still see a bunch in the $3500-4000 range. A first person inspection is strongly recommended as condition is a big factor and highly variable. Also, if you can find a unit that comes with it's maintenance records (many do), it will be a real plus as far as evaluating what it has been through and what to expect will require service.

Best of luck with the hunt and let us know how it goes.
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Old 02-27-2014, 12:16 AM   #3
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Re: What would you recommend? 39 ft and mountains

I thought you guys were going to Europe to start your business!




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Old 02-27-2014, 12:19 AM   #4
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Re: What would you recommend? 39 ft and mountains

Dog nose uses 9 feet of usable space.

39 - 9 = 30 feet of useful space.

Nat
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Old 02-27-2014, 10:38 AM   #5
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Re: What would you recommend? 39 ft and mountains

With a rear engine bus you can mount the master bed right over the engine compartment. Conversely, with a front engine flat nose bus the engine takes up less space than with a dog nose, and the back end is even more versatile. You can have up to six bunks in the back (triples on each side), or a bathroom, or even a U-shaped kitchen. Down side is that the F/E flat nose is the noisiest driver of the three types.
And then there's the old Crowns with their mid ship under-floor engine. But you're looking for something newer. Don't rule them out though because a Crown will last longer than just about any other school bus.
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Old 02-27-2014, 10:52 AM   #6
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Re: What would you recommend? 39 ft and mountains

Quote:
Originally Posted by nat_ster
Dog nose uses 9 feet of usable space.

39 - 9 = 30 feet of useful space.

Nat
The biggest dog-nose I can find is a 72 pass, which is what mine is, but you can find 84 pass flat-noses. That would be only 2 rows of seating, though. So, yes...there is a difference, but I think 9' is not accurate. I can measure it tonight, but my snout for sure does not stick out 9'. That being said, though, a flat-nose RE would get my vote, just for driving pleasure, if nothing else. One other issue is that both styles of FE buses have a large overhang in the back that can make getting into and out of some places interesting (along with affecting the ride). RE buses have the rear axle back further, to support the weight of the engine, which eliminates that overhang.
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Old 02-27-2014, 07:46 PM   #7
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Re: What would you recommend? 39 ft and mountains

Quote:
Originally Posted by JakeC
Quote:
Originally Posted by nat_ster
Dog nose uses 9 feet of usable space.

39 - 9 = 30 feet of useful space.

Nat
I think 9' is not accurate. I can measure it tonight, but my snout for sure does not stick out 9'.
That number was from memory last summer. I can go measure the difference between the ford b700 (dog nose) and the TC2000 (flat nose) in the morning. I will measure from the front bumper to the back of the drivers seat, and subtract the difference.

Also a ford will have a bit shorter nose than a international.

The flat noses that use DT466's have the front axle about a foot farther back making the front hang over longer.

Nat
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Old 02-27-2014, 08:33 PM   #8
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Re: What would you recommend? 39 ft and mountains

http://www.renebates.com/
http://www.purplewave.com/
auction web sites

IMHO if you can get it directly from a school district and can get a few years of maintenance history you are more likely to get a quality bus
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Old 02-27-2014, 08:42 PM   #9
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Re: What would you recommend? 39 ft and mountains

[quote=nat_ster]
Quote:
Originally Posted by JakeC
Quote:
Originally Posted by "nat_ster":2599er0m
Dog nose uses 9 feet of usable space.

39 - 9 = 30 feet of useful space.

Nat
I think 9' is not accurate. I can measure it tonight, but my snout for sure does not stick out 9'.
That number was from memory last summer. I can go measure the difference between the ford b700 (dog nose) and the TC2000 (flat nose) in the morning. I will measure from the front bumper to the back of the drivers seat, and subtract the difference.

Also a ford will have a bit shorter nose than a international.

The flat noses that use DT466's have the front axle about a foot farther back making the front hang over longer.

Nat[/quote:2599er0m]

Sweet. What length and what passenger were they both?
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Old 02-27-2014, 11:58 PM   #10
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Re: What would you recommend? 39 ft and mountains

Check out government auctions; city, state and federal.
I just got my current ride for 1200.
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