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Old 04-12-2015, 11:59 AM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Mounting a Box

Forget the double entendre for a second. Any reason why not to cut the body off the chassis just past the driver's seat and then mount a 8' high box from an old moving truck to avoid having to do a roof raise?
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Old 04-12-2015, 12:09 PM   #2
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Go for it.

Why not just get a box truck. Why the bus?

Buying the box truck from the start would save a ton of work.

Nat
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Old 04-12-2015, 05:14 PM   #3
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Decent box trucks start around $17K.
I can get a good box off one with a seized engine and other bad mechanics for 1k.
I can get a newish school bus with a dt466 mechanical no emission req for a couple thousand.
I'd raise the roof on the skoolie if I had the skills and tools.
On the other hand, I can probably have a local shop do the mounting as this is more in their line of work than raising the roof on a skoolie (if they would do it at all).

So it seems like my best course is to buy the bus and the box and mate them.
I'm just wondering if there is anything structural right off the bat that might make this a bad idea.
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Old 04-12-2015, 06:03 PM   #4
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I might/would add in a atleast what would be called a "B" bar cage

I would keep atleast 8 ft of the bus for roof strength, and then use 2" dia .120 wall tubing and make a "cage for driver area" and tie it into the bus body like you would for a WRC (world rally car and other highend highspeed cars) this makes body and cage 1 pc

install the box using a 3 point pivot mount and rubber bellows, this would be awesome and sturdy and about perfect
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Old 04-12-2015, 06:16 PM   #5
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Buy the box truck with the seized engine for $1000, rebuild it for $1000 and your done. Way less work, much much more simple to insure.

I cut a bus down from 32 feet of cab to 10 feet of cab. It's a ton of work.

The tools to shorten the cab of a bus are the same tools you need to raise the roof. They are also the same tools you need to swap the box onto the chassis.

Many of them box trucks have wet sleeve engines. This means you don't even have to pull the engine to rebuild it.

Nat
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Old 04-12-2015, 06:30 PM   #6
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I'll ask about a rebuild, the truck repair shop wants 3,500 for the whole truck/1000 for the box alone and from what I understand it's not just the engine that doesn't work.

Since they can take the box off, I figure they can put it back on (a bus). Who does the bus's cab cutting is another story. I was hopping to rent a sawzall and/or plasma torch and cut the bus cab down to the floor -sortof make it a flatbed. then mount the box and have a enough space in the rear to haul some toys.

But if you're saying the effort cutting is more than it's worth, i've got to rethink (even though bansil's idea about a roll cage is right where my head is at).
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Old 04-12-2015, 07:33 PM   #7
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you are looking at so much work....I would think of a mitsu/isuzu 4x4 and mount a 20ft camper on the back using a nice pivot mount

there are so many options as to a build, that you need to envision what you want and how to get there...or how much you want to spend to get it done....make sure to post pictures of whatever it is
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Old 04-12-2015, 09:17 PM   #8
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pictures, ok. build parameters: I need the thing superinsulated to withstand -25F with only a pellet stove going to keep water tanks (internal) from freezing. There needs to be space for 1-2 adults and 2 teenage boys, all their gear, piggybacking a snowmobile (maybe with room for a second) and be able to occasionally to tow a car. Here are the two vehicles I am thinking about having joined. Sure it's weird, but at least it's no human centipede:

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Old 04-12-2015, 09:18 PM   #9
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with the box off this:

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Old 04-12-2015, 10:05 PM   #10
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It's not that big a deal and based on what you want to use the vehicle for it would work out better than a roof raise and consider all the under box space there is for storage boxes. Just be sure to check that the bus driveline and CGVW will support what you want to do and get choppin'. I know several people on the forum have started bus "cutaways" of one sort or another and for what ever reason none to my knowledge have been completed which I don't understand because it ain't rocket science--just a bunch of work. Since almost none of us can read or write, pictures are of utmost importance. Good luck and go for it.
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