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Old 01-23-2012, 09:36 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 61
Year: 1993
Coachwork: Amtran
Chassis: Genesis
Engine: Dt40
My plan to lock our air door

I need to find a way to install a door lock on the front door of our 1993 Amtran Genesis with air door.

The photo is terrible, I took it last night in the dark, but you can see that there is an air cylinder that opens and closes the door.


So, my plan is to restrict air flow at the base of the cylinder, and thus lock the door. There is a valve that opens and closes the door already, but this second valve would be installed directly at the base of the cylinder and just be a single action valve. Since it would need to be open in order to allow the door to operate, I would wire it to an ignition power source so that it was on (or open) anytime the bus key was in the on position. Then, I would install a second key switch on the outside of the bus that could supply power when switched to on, thus allowing you to push the door open from outside.

Has anyone done something similar? Suggestions?
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Old 01-23-2012, 11:04 PM   #2
Bus Crazy
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Oregon/Philippines
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Re: My plan to lock our air door

the thomas bus that i am working on now has a key switch by the passenger headlight that shuts the door and locks it. However, it is an air switch, and when the air bleeds down it allows the door to be manually opened.
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Old 01-24-2012, 07:57 AM   #3
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 61
Year: 1993
Coachwork: Amtran
Chassis: Genesis
Engine: Dt40
Re: My plan to lock our air door

Quote:
Originally Posted by chev49
the thomas bus that i am working on now has a key switch by the passenger headlight that shuts the door and locks it. However, it is an air switch, and when the air bleeds down it allows the door to be manually opened.
That's the problem I was expecting if I tried to use positive air pressure. This way, with the valve directly at the base of the cylinder. It should be solid. If the air can't exhaust out of the cylinder; the ram can't retract whether there is pressure or not.
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Old 01-24-2012, 09:28 AM   #4
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Re: My plan to lock our air door

you could easily use an electric solinoid to keep your door locked. One of the good ones i use from autoloc would work well with a remote...
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Old 01-24-2012, 09:45 AM   #5
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
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Year: 1993
Coachwork: Amtran
Chassis: Genesis
Engine: Dt40
Re: My plan to lock our air door

Quote:
Originally Posted by chev49
you could easily use an electric solinoid to keep your door locked. One of the good ones i use from autoloc would work well with a remote...
The way the door folds, I wouldn't know where to put it. A pin won't work as with a standard door. Only real way to secure it other than the cylinder would seem to be a bar all the way across or a hook of some sort.
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Old 01-24-2012, 06:29 PM   #6
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Location: Oregon/Philippines
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Re: My plan to lock our air door

My front door still opens in the middle, although i removed the steps and welded up a box for the generator. I have not put an electric solenoid to lock the doors together, although i have been looking around my stuff for one, because if the air shuts the door tight, then a normally open solenoid would easily keep it shut as the air was let down, because the pin would be out, and the release of air would create tension against the latching part. Then when the bus had air, it of course keeps itself shut. I looked in my street rod stuff probably 3 days ago, to do that to the inside of my door, with a switch by my key operated air switch by my pass headlamps.
This will only be temporary, as i will build an upper and lower generator door, and make them only hinge on the front hinges. I did this in my last bus and it worked out very well.
So thats how i am going to do mine for now.
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Old 01-22-2019, 01:23 PM   #7
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Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Annapolis, Maryland
Posts: 3
Year: 2007
Coachwork: Thomas Built
Chassis: School Bus
Same Issues

I am having the same issues with my 2007 Thomas Built School Bus, air operated main doors, that swing open outwards, split in the middle, and full glass. I'm currently researching to replace the doors with an RV door, as I have not found a sustainable solution to locking it up! Here is the picture of my doors. Has anyone else found an easier solution without replacing the doors?

Thanks,

Eric
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Old 01-22-2019, 01:29 PM   #8
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Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 8,453
Year: 1946
Coachwork: Chevrolet/Wayne
Chassis: 1- 1/2 ton
Engine: Cummins 4BT
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If you go with an RV type door you can use an RV door latch & lock. Below is one like what I am using...


https://www.etrailer.com/RV-Locks/Gl...SABEgJAj_D_BwE
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