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Old 01-16-2017, 11:11 AM   #1
Bus Geek
 
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Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: Essex, MD
Posts: 3,434
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Blue Bird
Chassis: Blue Bird TC RE 3904, Flat Nose, 40', 277" wh base
Engine: 8.3L Cummins ISC 260hp, MT643, 4.44 rear
Rated Cap: 84 pax or 1 RV; 33,000lbs
Do you think this bus is worth the money?

Let's try this again, computer rebooted about the time I was going to submit. Grrrr.

2001, International, FE, DT466, 89175.7 miles, 84 pax, last inspection expired 10/2016. It was listed for $3900 but the guy dropped it to $2900 while talking to him via email for the body damage. There's a rivet or two missing but nothing big. The ding near the roof doesn't appear to be leaking and looks like it can be hammered out easily. The wrinkle on the side is an eyesore but no biggie.




The stairs were patched and have since rotted out again. They will need a complete rebuild. There is also rust around the wheel wells but I can't tell how bad with the floor covering. One spot is certainly soft. But these are to be expected.

What worries me is the passenger side drive wheel; it's rusty as well. I've no idea how bad too bad is. Nor have I any idea what a new one costs. As they service buses there, I'd want them to at least swap it with another used bus.




The frame is also rusting. It's more than what I'd call surface rust but I don't think it's anywhere near structural yet. The whole underside needs sanded and sealed.




The bus was started the day before I came to see it (Fri). It dipped to 30° overnight and wasn't any warmer when I got there Sat. It started up. I decided to go back Sun to crawl around under the bus. I moved it 100 feet to a dryer spot. It started right up again. One of the times I started it, I didn't want for the Warm Engine light to go out but it started anyway. Sun I remembered to check the exhaust. With about a 2~3 minute idle, it was completely clear. No vapor even.

I don't know what the missing display is above the oil temp but the light goes out once the bus is running. Gauges, other than the plastic cover, all seem to be good.




The engine oil was black as coal but in a diesel it doesn't take long. Didn't see any water on the stick. Tranny fluid was the appropriate level too. I've no idea where the radiator cap is. The engine cover is bolted on; I expected hinged and a latch.

The rest of the bus...



Stairs






There was one sold at auction for $2k in MD just recently. But I didn't see that one so I've no idea how much rust or body damage there might have been. I'm thinking I'm going to offer the guy $2,000 and see if he bites. Good plan or let it pass?
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Old 01-16-2017, 11:19 AM   #2
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Join Date: May 2016
Location: Eastern WA
Posts: 4,374
Year: 2002
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: All American RE (A3RE)
Engine: Cummins ISC (8.3)
Rated Cap: 72
Low miles DT466 is exciting but the rust would scare me.
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Old 01-16-2017, 11:23 AM   #3
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Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Colorado
Posts: 1,594
Year: 1993
Coachwork: bluebird
Engine: 5.9 Cummins, Allison AT1545
Rated Cap: 2
i don't see every bus picture on here, but in the 5-ish years i've been on this forum, that got to be about the worst rust i've seen.

unless you just want just the engine or trans, i'd walk away. you can find much better than that.

my 2 cents

good luck
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Old 01-16-2017, 11:26 AM   #4
Bus Geek
 
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Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: Essex, MD
Posts: 3,434
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Blue Bird
Chassis: Blue Bird TC RE 3904, Flat Nose, 40', 277" wh base
Engine: 8.3L Cummins ISC 260hp, MT643, 4.44 rear
Rated Cap: 84 pax or 1 RV; 33,000lbs
Quote:
Originally Posted by PNW_Steve View Post
Low miles DT466 is exciting but the rust would scare me.
Lowest mileage flat nose they had in the older bus lot. Next closest was 125k. It wasn't an 84 pax tho. Might have been a 77.

I think there are probably more unicorns in the wild than there are 15 yr old rust free buses. Some rust is inevitable. But how much is too much? An AZ, NV, NM, TX bus would cost me $1,000 in diesel to get it home alone. Plus airfare out, etc.
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Old 01-16-2017, 11:48 AM   #5
Skoolie
 
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Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: Alberta
Posts: 134
Year: 1996
Coachwork: Thomas 72 passenger
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: 230HP DT466 engine MD3060 transmission
Looks good for the money, I would buy it
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Old 01-16-2017, 11:51 AM   #6
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: Pensacola and Crystal River, FL
Posts: 554
Year: 1998
Coachwork: AmTran International
Chassis: 3800
Engine: Navistar 7.6L
You can get much better rust free busses from the southeast as well.
For that $2900 at auction.
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Old 01-16-2017, 03:05 PM   #7
Bus Crazy
 
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Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Oberlin, Kansas
Posts: 1,328
Year: 1989
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Saf-T-Liner ER
Engine: 3208 CAT/MT643 tranny
Rated Cap: 87
I'd skip it
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Old 01-16-2017, 04:23 PM   #8
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Join Date: May 2009
Location: Columbus Ohio
Posts: 11,359
Year: 1991
Coachwork: Carpenter
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: DTA360 / MT643
Rated Cap: 7 Row Handicap
the missing plastic piece over hte 2 lights.. one would be the ABS and the other is the LEFT turn signal arrow..

-Christopher
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Old 01-16-2017, 05:01 PM   #9
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 716
Year: 1998
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: TC2000 RE
Engine: 8.3l Cummins
Rated Cap: 78
I'd nope right out of that thing. Good for parting out the engine and trans, and scrapping the rest.
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Old 01-16-2017, 05:57 PM   #10
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Join Date: May 2015
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 502
Year: 92
Coachwork: Thomas Built
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: DTA360 5.9L
Rated Cap: 77
i'd pass it too, i've got a 92 from MN and my rust isnt half as bad as this, took me months to get rid of it. the $1000 in cost to go get a rust free one might be cheaper than your time spent fixing that amount of rust, or your back! also got mine for $2500. keep looking, the one is out there!
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