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Old 02-22-2011, 04:57 PM   #1
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Possible purchases -- comments?

I'm looking at a few buses right now and would love comments on the makes/engines/etc, please

** new one** 1990 International 360 diesel, 5 speed Dana Drivetrain, 145000 miles $2k



1991 International convetional, Blue Bird model. Engine Size: 6.9
automatic. Diesel. 177,909 miles. Under $1000 price tag.

1992 Conventional International, Blue bird. 214,518 miles. Engine: DT360. Diesel. Also under $1000

Conventional International Blue Bird. 1992, 214,518 miles Engine: DT360 Also under $1000

Conventional GMC, Blue Bird 1993, 208,667 miles. Engine: 3116. Runs $1600
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Old 02-22-2011, 05:10 PM   #2
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Re: Possible purchases -- comments?

I've heard good things about the DT360, and not such great things about the 3116. I've not heard much about the 6.9 though, except that they are a cousin to the 7.3 which I have in my pickup truck. Not a bad engine, but I think the injection pump is weaker than the one in the DT360. The 6.9 is a bigger engine so perhaps more powerful if it has a turbo, but also worse fuel economy and 8 cylinders vs 6 means more expense if replacing injectors, etc. I personally would be attracted to the lower mileage though. People often say "oh it's a diesel, it'll last forever", but there are so many other major parts of the bus that can break down and cause the ultimate demise of the bus due to the expense of fixing it not being worth the investment. So I don't put a lot of stock in that "diesels last forever" philosophy. In your example I would be torn between wanting the DT360 engine, and wanting the lower mileage on the bus with the 6.9.
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Old 02-23-2011, 08:20 AM   #3
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Re: Possible purchases -- comments?

Added today's find.
And thanks
Anyone else have comments?
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Old 02-24-2011, 11:28 AM   #4
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Re: Possible purchases -- comments?

I think, all other things being equal, I'd spend the extra dough for the low mileage DT360. It might be underpowered but from all I've heard it's not only a long lasting motor but probably the easiest one to repair. It was designed for tractors and those are the only 2 charateristics the old farmers cared about, How durable is it and how hard will it be to fix in the middle of a field. To me those are the same features I look for in a long term vehicle. I wanted the same drive train I just couldn't find one in a decent short bus and really didn't want to go to a full sized bus (for parking reasons)
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Old 02-26-2011, 08:14 PM   #5
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Re: Possible purchases -- comments?

All my buddies, that work on diesels for a living, have told me basically the same as above about my dta360...

I didn't have a clue when buying mine and was told it was a dt466, was kinda bummed when I found out it wasn't... But, after doing some research and talking to a bunch of people, I feel I picked up the perfect bus for my needs... Good luck with your search...
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Old 03-01-2011, 08:26 AM   #6
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Re: Possible purchases -- comments?

Bummer on these is they're sold already. Nothing lasts around here grrrr Buy that day or poof it seems.

I have found this one, not much details on it yet. Calling today once work hours start.

Shuttle bus
1995 ford E350 front
15000 GVW, 78000 miles on a 7.3 power-stroke, diesel
New batteries, new injector
Star Trans body with a tag axle
26 psgn, 7 window


Anyone have comments on this one? Would that 350 be strong enough to handle that much weight? I see it has dual wheels on back axel, not sure what a tag axle is though.
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Old 03-01-2011, 04:19 PM   #7
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Re: Possible purchases -- comments?

Seeria, a shuttle bus and a full size school bus are two very different animals. How is it that you are looking at both types of vehicle? Are you willing to settle for something other than you really want due to availability, or just don't care which type of vehicle, or... something else? I know I would never have considered a shuttle bus since I knew that based on my needs a full-on school bus was the only thing that would fit the bill.
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Old 03-01-2011, 06:55 PM   #8
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Re: Possible purchases -- comments?

What I need is a functional bus that has 17' to 20' interior usable space and is not a flatnose. Yeah, I'd prefer a conventional schoolie but won't pass on a shuttle that operates great. Four months to go... if I don't have something to fit that before then AND have it converted enough to live in then I'm buying a minivan and tent to live in until I can find a bus that size.
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Old 03-02-2011, 11:34 AM   #9
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Re: Possible purchases -- comments?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seeria
What I need is a functional bus that has 17' to 20' interior usable space and is not a flatnose. Yeah, I'd prefer a conventional schoolie but won't pass on a shuttle that operates great. Four months to go... if I don't have something to fit that before then AND have it converted enough to live in then I'm buying a minivan and tent to live in until I can find a bus that size.
Wow, you are on a tight timeline! It's been well over a year since my bus purchase and I don't consider my bus "liveable" yet! Of course I work full time, have a family, and tend to work slowly. I do hope you find something that works out for you. I would imagine the shuttle bus would be easier to drive, and probably get better fuel economy, and some parts (like tires) would be cheaper and easier to replace. The downside is I think the shuttle bus would have more limitations in terms of what you could do with the conversion. Less under-carriage space, limited capacity for weight on the roof, less capacity for hauling/towing, etc. Basically the shuttles are more "car-like" than "truck-like" in comparison to a bus. For me, I needed the size of a bus for my family, and also wanted to have a "sky-is-the-limit" attitude towards the conversion and what I could potentially do with it. Plus, with all due respect to the shuttle owners, converted school buses are just cool looking!
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Old 03-02-2011, 11:50 AM   #10
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Re: Possible purchases -- comments?

In RV terms... A Shuttle bus would be similar to a Class B or a small Class C. Bear in mind David & I have been in living full-time in a 22 ft (bumper to bumper) Class C since fall 2006. Our daughter has been in here with us since summer of 2009. After our first year in the Class C, we decided we didn't need a 40 ft bus. We did want something about 30 ft (Class C has 19 ft not counting the cab section). Mostly so I could squeeze a washer/LP gas dryer stack unit in there. But living in such a small space taught us what we needed, wanted and what we could do with out.

And then we ended up buying a 40 ft bus! If small buses/shuttles are what's being put in front of you... someone/something may be trying to tell you something. I'm a firm believer in "fate" putting things in your path... sometimes repeatedly.
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