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Old 03-21-2017, 12:32 AM   #11
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Previously someone made a deck on their bus by making small brackets that attached to the roof at the contact points, then the deck frame would attach to those brackets using pins.
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Old 03-21-2017, 08:47 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by BlueBirdman View Post
Lowkee said: Hi guys,

I'm getting ready to install my deck frame. I am using 1"x1" 16 gauge Galvanized steel square tubing. I intend to use 3/8" carriage bolts to secure the 7-foot steel cross members to the ribs of the bus, along the centerline. See the example picture below.

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My real challenge is finding a secure, sleek looking, way to secure the ends of the steel cross members to the ribs along the curved sides of the roof. I do not want to secure the frame to the sides of the bus, I just don't like the look. I don't like the look either, but I want maximum strength far more than aesthetics.

Ideally, I could find brackets, or maybe have them fabbed. I like this style of supports a lot. I would have my supports toward the edge of the bus more, with a 3rd mounting point along the centerline, but the deck more flush to the roof.

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I like the style of support in the second image too, and would recommend everyone have at least one center support for each cross tube. Otherwise, you could easily bend a tube or two when you get a bunch of people up there. Still, I'd make the deck wider and tie the long side tubes of the deck into the ribs vertically.

It would be some extra fab work, but you could always size the square tube to slip inside the hat channel, weld them in and then cover them with flat steel in the same plane as the sides of the bus. That would be as strong as possible, yet a very sleek look.

Also, I wouldn't put the deck flush on the roof. I'd want at least a couple inches between the deck and the roof for airflow - you'd be astonished how much that will help keep your interior cool on sunny days.

I suppose those might not be that hard to make if I weld the steel square tubing to some galvanized steel plate at the correct angle. Can any engineer-types find flaws with that design?
I'm a structural engineer

So your deck will be 7ft wide? Supports at each end, and one in the middle? Frames between every window? How many people do you intend to have up there? And what type of decking surface will you have?

At first thought, your steel is WAYY to small/thin. I planned on using 2x3x1/4 tube steel, oriented vertically, without center supports, frames every other window, and assuming a decently loaded deck (10/15 people at time?). I'm being conservative!

Obviously, using a center support cuts down on the size by a lot, as would using frames every window. Also, if you only plan to have 8 people up there, it won't be loaded as much. I just want mine over-designed and sturdy as all hell!
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