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Old 09-13-2016, 11:44 AM   #1
Join Date: Feb 2016
Posts: 13
Initial cost?

I know this is probable a silly question that had to been asked before BBBBUUUT I'm going to ask anyway. I want to get a feel for the average price that people paid for the stock bus. I know it all depends on engine and size and miles . I would like to hear from those that bought a full size diesel bus. Any body style flat nose or conventional. I think I need to spend at least 2000.00-2500.00 or do I need to spend more?

Thanks for all the Help!
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Old 09-13-2016, 11:53 AM   #2
Bus Nut
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Colorado
Posts: 724
Year: 1993
Coachwork: bluebird
Engine: 5.9 Cummins, Allison 545
Rated Cap: 2
search the forum..... we had a thread a year or so ago that lots of peeps posted their bus purchase info.
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Old 09-13-2016, 12:41 PM   #3
Join Date: Feb 2016
Posts: 13
Ok I'll give it a shot
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Old 09-13-2016, 01:05 PM   #4
Bus Geek
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Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 4,345
Year: 1946
Coachwork: Chevrolet/Wayne
Chassis: 1- 1/2 ton
Engine: Cummins 4BT
Rated Cap: 15
Bus pricing is all over the place. Varies geographically, by make, model, condition, mileage and so on. For whatever reason, there does seem to be some very good pricing out of California (?). But if it is a more desirable or hard to find model (like 4 x 4's for example) the prices can go through the roof just about anywhere.

Generally speaking, the best deals can be had by buying direct from a school district (no dealer markup), can very often get the vehicles maintenance records (worth their weight in gold) and even chat with the techs who took care of a particular unit.

So...price is part of the buying equation...but there can be a lot more that should be considered. Including location. Sometimes you 'll find a great deal right in your own backyard, but if your ideal unit shows up across the country...well, then you have to factor in travel and such.

Just my dos centavos on the subject.
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Old 09-15-2016, 02:00 PM   #5
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Central Oregon
Posts: 25
Year: 1995
Coachwork: Amtran
Chassis: Gensis
Got my bus from Original bid was at $1650 or so. A few seconds from finish the bidding war started and i won after running it up to like 2850 against 3 others.

95 30ft flat nose Amtran with less than 180k from Seattle area school.
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Old 09-15-2016, 03:38 PM   #6
Join Date: Feb 2016
Posts: 13
Happy ?

So in the end was it worth it?
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Old 09-15-2016, 03:50 PM   #7
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Central Oregon
Posts: 25
Year: 1995
Coachwork: Amtran
Chassis: Gensis
I think your asking me

Yes I think it was worth it. I am pretty sure If I had wanted I could have turned around and sold my bus for profit on the drive home. I highly recommend buying from the school district as they can share the maintenance logs.

In my case I was able to learn the history and use of the bus and see the maintenance records. My only recommendation is to have your financing ready and have a plan for sitting at the ready for when your auction is ending as mine errupted into a bidding war about 5 seconds before it closed.
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Old 09-15-2016, 03:55 PM   #8
Almost There
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: Salt Lake City, Ut
Posts: 82
Year: 98
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: D
Engine: 7.2L turbo Cat C7 3126
Rated Cap: 84
I paid $5500 for my bus, but it came with some nice perks. The previous owner had already torn out the seats and windows, installed sheet metal over the windows, and it came with a bunch of supplies (3 water tanks, RV windows, spare engine parts, spare tire, and more).

It is a flat nose '98 Thomas, 40 ft long, with a Cat C7 3126 engine, 250HP. I bought it in Texas and it had 113k miles, no rust, and it was in good shape. It is a transit style bus, so it has huge storage compartments underneath.
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Old 09-15-2016, 04:48 PM   #9
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: Utah
Posts: 113
Year: 1990
Coachwork: BB
Chassis: TC2000
Engine: Cummins
Rated Cap: 25.999K

I paid $2500 for a 1991 30ft BB. 5.9 cummins, AT Allison, wheelchair lift. 250K miles. It was only out of service from a northern Utah school district for about 6 months when I got it.

My Buddy is on a road trip to pickup a 30-ish foot (Thomas?) with a Dt466, Allison 645, 170K miles bus in Washington state. His was on auction earlier this week and he is out the door for less that $1500. (but he has a 1600 mile trip to get it.) (and he only wants the engine and trans).
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Old 09-15-2016, 05:13 PM   #10
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Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Sarasota, Florida
Posts: 159
Year: 1995
Coachwork: International
Chassis: Carpenter
Engine: d466 mechanical
I got my bus for $4500 and made out like a bandit if you ask me.
65k miles with 3.1k engine hours
International d466 (pre electric) with MT643 trans
Air brakes and air suspension
4 underbelly storages already
And behind the rear wheel wells the chassis was lowered to walk in level.
From what I've been told and some research, It served as a prison work transport bus and the reason for the lowered rear chassis was for the guards horses. Afterwards it was an extra bus for a horse breeder in Ocala, FL and used it to transport show bikes here and there.

Pretty cool story and I'd of paid probably up to $7,000 if I had to for the engine/trans and custom work done without questioning. Air brakes and suspension a big plus too.

My point is: is a $2,000 bus off someone on Craigslist really a steal? When you have to put in that or more on engine or tire problems?
If I had to do it again I'd pay good money for a 40ft Rear engine with air brakes/suspension.
Go with auctions and cold calling local school districts before CL, eBay, dealers.
Pay good money for the sure thing
Nowhere Fast - Sarasota, Florida
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