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Old 01-17-2014, 03:49 PM   #1
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Flying for the skoolie

For you guys that catch a flight fly across country to pick up your bus, what the heck do you do if she dont make it home. Donate it to the local salvation army ? The south west seems like the best place to buy but I would have a long drive back to SC. I dont think my little nissan would pull that thing home. I cant even think about how much money it would cost to replace a tranny or engine out on the road.
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Old 01-17-2014, 08:57 PM   #2
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Re: Flying for the skoolie

Make sure you have AMA?

Nat
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Old 01-17-2014, 10:24 PM   #3
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Re: Flying for the skoolie

I put Coach Net on our bus before we drove it home from CA to NC. Not a chance in hell we'd leave her behind.

Other than that, just check everything over real well, keep your fingers crossed and hope all the way!
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Old 01-17-2014, 10:27 PM   #4
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Re: Flying for the skoolie

I bought a bus in Indiana about 12 years ago on ebay, rode my motorcycle from California to pick it up,ended up junking it in Nebraska, luckly I had the motorcycle to get me home, thats one story
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Old 01-17-2014, 10:54 PM   #5
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Re: Flying for the skoolie

Good Sam has a reasonably priced RV towing program that also covers your family cars. We haven't had to have our bus towed so far but we did use it on one of the cars and it was very easy to use. One call to Good Sam's 800 number and the tow company took care of the rest.

That first drive home in a well used bus can be stressful to say the least. When we picked ours up the guy at the lot basically gave us the keys and wished us a good life. We had to jump start the thing and two tires needed air before we could hit the road. Fortunately we only had 40 miles to go and the trip went smoothly.

If I was flying in to pick one up I'd want to at least have a good test drive before handing over the check. It seems that many school system mechanics are willing to go over the bus with you and some have even swapped out parts and filled fuel tanks to sweeten the sale. Some will give you a copy of the service records if you beg properly.

Bottom line - look for a reliable (or at least drivable) bus but assume you'll have problems en route and try to plan for them as best you can.
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Old 01-18-2014, 06:49 AM   #6
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Re: Flying for the skoolie

be sure an take lots of cash with you.

when i got mine. it needed 3 batteries ($450). and a couple of tanks of fuel ($250/each). then after i got home i got the oil changed ($600).

i had no issues on the way home, however, since then i have added a heavy towing, roadside assistance to my bus insurance policy.
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Old 01-18-2014, 07:04 AM   #7
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Re: Flying for the skoolie

Biggest thing would be the right mindset, my trooper has 250k+ I drive it anywhere I want...what's the worst that could happen?blown engine? Okay, call the wife sshe'll bring the trailer load it bring it home and buy another wrecked, swap motor and good to go.

A bus, well I would attempt to drive damn near anything for anyone....just for the adventure, worst case you need to scrap it on the road...call a tow company tell them its dead and you need xxx and its theirs


A buddy needed help moving some rigs, he started the old bigazz thing and pointed to this and that....piss on it, it stopped when I mushed the brake pedal....he said if buzzer comes on stop quick...no shi at, learned that in the army....great trip keeping the 50yr old pos in the lane.
Never got over 40 mph...I couldn't figure out the 2speed rear and split shift things so I said....Frick it and just drove and had fun


For me, I would store the bus, buy another and strip seats out...I can strip mine of $$$ in 1 day and be on my way....the scrap metal price will pay for tow,storage and fuel

Perfect plan in my exotic and wandering mind

So if you have the mindset, enjoy the drive....if your safe and alive standing on the side of the road....what was so bad?
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Old 01-18-2014, 12:01 PM   #8
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Re: Flying for the skoolie

Amen to that Bansil!
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Old 01-18-2014, 12:26 PM   #9
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Re: Flying for the skoolie

Research where you are buying it from. I'd rather spend more money initially, knowing what I was getting than to buy one from an auction. Wont guarantee no troubles but it sure helps.
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Old 01-18-2014, 02:45 PM   #10
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Re: Flying for the skoolie

I don't know how mechanically inclined you are, but Bansil was spot on. It's a risk, no way around it, but it's fun. I've bought many vehicles on Ebay and flown out to get them. Bring tools, extra cash, and big balls Every trip I have made is a memory. The most challenging one was a 1999 GSR Integra I bought in Los Angeles (I live in Mn). It had a completely worn and siezed throw out bearing (sold as "clutch needs adjustment"). I lost compression on #4 cyl in Utah. Yup, I drove from Utah to Mn with 3 cylinders and no clutch (almost, I was only using it to shift into first, and at stops). Stressful, but awesome memory with my daughter. Opus is right, though research is KEY!!
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