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Old 02-20-2007, 05:03 PM   #1
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Need help making a bus purchase decision ASAP!!!!

My brother and the rest of the band are with Greg from Florida church bus now, and we were looking at a 93 genesis with the DT360 engine, with tons of underbody storage and 120,000 mi for $5000, when they got there he told them he goofed on the engine, it's a DT466 instead. So he said we could have that one or another one thats got a 466 with only 70,000miles and an air ride suspension for $4500 but would need new tires $1400. Any suggestions? Air ride verses Storage? Miles verses Tires?
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Old 02-20-2007, 05:22 PM   #2
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personaly I would go with the first one..same engine but for a few more miles..on busses 120K isn't a lot, in fact on most diesels 120k isn't much... the arguement should be do you want storage or ride? $5000 vrs $6000
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Old 02-20-2007, 07:30 PM   #3
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I would do the one with the DT466 and storage and good tires. No question.
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Old 02-20-2007, 08:56 PM   #4
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Air ride would be very nice on a skoolie as they ride very rough, even heavily loaded. Under bus storage is not that expensive to get fabricated, and the stock stuff I would not want to put any of my pro audio gear into. It is not sealed or secure enough in my opionion. It's not like an mci. Get air ride, you will appreciate it while you are trying to sleep and drive. Well, someone else is driving and you want to sleep.

Shop around for tires, as you may find good re-treads for less.

-Richard
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Old 02-20-2007, 09:54 PM   #5
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I too would go with the first one. Under carriage storage wasn't the easiest thing I built....not that hard either, but would have been great to skip that process completely, Good tires are also a positive plus.

As for the ride, mine rides pretty nice actually... air ride is just one more thing that you have to maintain...and parts can be costly (I know, I sell truck parts)....
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Old 02-20-2007, 10:46 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by captainkf
Air ride would be very nice on a skoolie as they ride very rough, even heavily loaded. Under bus storage is not that expensive to get fabricated, and the stock stuff I would not want to put any of my pro audio gear into. It is not sealed or secure enough in my opionion. It's not like an mci. Get air ride, you will appreciate it while you are trying to sleep and drive. Well, someone else is driving and you want to sleep.

Shop around for tires, as you may find good re-treads for less.

-Richard
I agree 100%

We drove from Michigan to Texas last year with mine and I slept maybe a few hours the whole trip. I'd take the air ride.

I'd say forget underbody storage and get a hitch and a trailer for the equipment. Either that or pile it in the back of the bus.
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Old 02-21-2007, 01:47 AM   #7
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Ughh.....that's a tough debate. The miles are really the least of your concerns, especially given the fact that both have the same drivetrain.

Underbody storage can be fabbed up easy enough though even sheetmetal is somewhat expensive these days. Having it premade would be great. Having to work around it for your batteries, tanks, etc wouldn't be. I'm not really sure which one is of bigger benefit.

I would love to have air ride, especially if I put more miles on. It iwll be one more thing to maintain. Basically, if you plan to drive long distances at a time or put a lot of miles on in a year I would go with the air ride. If you won't be touring all that much due to other employment and whatnot, the spring suspension might be better for you. Certainly I would think the air ride would add some resale value, not that our buses have resale value.

Tires can be cheap. I would see no problem running retreads on the back (NOT the front). You could also run bias ply tires at about $150 each though radial tires are better. I have a soft spot in my heart for bias ply tires because that's all my truck has had for years. I'm used to square tires on a cold morning. Getting the tires installed will take time and depending on where it's done, may be expensive. Prices seem to run all over the board on that. I paid $75 each to get my front tires install new. In Bloomer, Wisconsin I paid $10 (plus a $20 tip cause the kid was cool) to get a used tire mounted.

Look at both VERY closely. Give them both a good inspection and look for problems that you can use as a bargaining chip. I've never dealt with Greg, but maybe he is willing to come down in price a little. Again...rust never sleeps.

No matter what you choose, I'm sure you'll be happy. Let us know what you do. Unlike some other sites, we DO like "baby pictures" of your unconverted bus. Even the driver's console.
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Old 02-21-2007, 08:02 AM   #8
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Thanks everyone for such quick and detailed responses. This forum is a lifesaver for sure. It was a REALLY tough decision, but we went with the bus with new tires and underbody storage, we hope to be able to use them to store other things so the instruments can go in the back of the bus. And as far as the air ride go's, it sounded NICE, but we're all young guys and dont mind a bumpy ride at this point. We'll be sure to post pictures once we start the conversion process. Thanks again everyone!
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Old 02-21-2007, 02:37 PM   #9
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MY experience growing up was that the transit style buses always road better anyway. I don't know if it's because they have the weight more evenly distributed between the axles or what. In fact, it never really did make that much sense given that their wheelbase is shorter than a comparable Class C bus, but they road better...
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Old 02-21-2007, 04:48 PM   #10
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I think they ride better as well. However, my girlfriend doesnt seem to think so.......at least when she is trying to sleep on an air mattress in the back going down the road......
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