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Old 12-21-2014, 06:45 PM   #11
Skoolie
 
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You can definitely pull this off on a budget. People regularly throw away (almost) everything you'll need to make this happen. Watch the craigslist free section like a hawk. Consider posting there too, explaining what you're doing and politely asking for help from anyone who might have materials or help for you. Check your local landfill. Talk to contractors and tell them about your project. You can likely get scrap wood, full kitchen tear outs (all the old cabinets when they do a remodel,) appliances, etc.

If you are patient and resourceful, the conversion doesn't need to cost much, especially just to get to the point you can insure it as an rv. And you said you have a place to store it, so you don't even need insurance for a while until its ready to roll.

Doing everything "all at once" is usually the most expensive route. Because instead of waiting for things to pop up at the right price (free) you end up going out to home depot and paying retail. If you can take your time, you'll find most of what you need second hand.

Make sure your friends who plan to enjoy the bus with you actually contribute something to its reality, be it money or time. I'm in a similar age demographic/situation and there are lots of people who will try to free-load off you once all the hard work is done. Beware, just not jaded, people are what they are.
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Old 12-21-2014, 11:37 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by EastCoastCB View Post
No they will want real "rv-type" conversion work.
Used to be you could have a porta potty and an air mattress.
Now they want to see electrical, cooking, plumbing, and a dedicated sleeping area. Some will only insure it if the work was done by a licensed professional outfit. Progressive and Good Sam will both verify that it is indeed fully converted. They suggest keeping receipts for all work and materials.
Its a bit of a headache dealing with all the stuff involved. But its do-able.
Furniture is up to you... Lots of folks use stuff from Ikea. I'll likely build my own as it really isn't hard to put some benches and a dinette together.
Alright. I think I can feel the wheels turning now. I want kitchen and sleeping-related stuff to be space-smart because I would like a lot of the room to go towards entertainment and for it to be as open as a bus can be. So if I had a large mini-fridge and a single element stove with a bed that's either a loft bed or attached to the side of the bus by a hinge and chain so that it can be raised, and be high enough to have a low-sitting couch underneath, would that be good enough for the kitchen and sleeping requirements? And of course a sink too but I think I'd want to have the sink used for both the 'kitchen' and the bathroom.
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Old 12-22-2014, 04:32 AM   #13
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Call any prospective insurance companies and ask them. I'm just relaying to you what Progressive, USAA, and Good Sam told me.
I'm not at all trying to scare or dissuade you. But I LOST my first bus due to not doing all the homework ahead of time.
To me it sounds like you really just want a party bus that can be camped in. I'd not tell the ins folks that. Just use words like "camper" and "motorhome".
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Old 12-22-2014, 09:01 AM   #14
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yes you can use household furniture and bolt/strap it down

biggest downfall is it's normally bigger and plusher which takes up more space

get a bus, strip out seats (save a few right and left hand ones) and play with card board boxes and tape
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Old 12-22-2014, 11:22 AM   #15
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Ya this is definitely a good idea. We did this in my tiny cabin with tape and camp chairs before the walls ever went up just go get a feel for what it would be like living in the space. Drawing it out on paper and actually standing in it aren't even close to the same. The kitchen is the biggest place this helps, as you spend the most amount of time moving around doing things there, so optimizing your workflow really counts.

I've seen people in tiny homes who put shelves/cabinet on the inside of the bathroom door to take advantage of the shower space when not in use. When you want to take a shower you just open the door and close the curtain rod. Put it next to the kitchen and you can open this up for whenever you're cooking.. Might be good for storing things like dishes and anything else not super sensitive to moisture.
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Old 12-22-2014, 06:41 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by EastCoastCB View Post
Call any prospective insurance companies and ask them. I'm just relaying to you what Progressive, USAA, and Good Sam told me.
I'm not at all trying to scare or dissuade you. But I LOST my first bus due to not doing all the homework ahead of time.
To me it sounds like you really just want a party bus that can be camped in. I'd not tell the ins folks that. Just use words like "camper" and "motorhome".
That'd be about right haha. Mainly I just want it to be a comfortable vessel for long roadtrips. Something that doesn't have to make too many stops for anything between point A and point B and can offer more ammenities than something like a shuttlebus could.
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