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Old 02-06-2008, 08:51 PM   #1
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Questions about Raising the Roof

Hi All,

You guys have peaked our interest in raising our roof, but we have a few questions. We've been talking about either A. cutting above/below the window line or B.Cutting a hole in the roof and building a structure on top.

Do either of these methods hurt the structural integrity of the bus? Has anyone been in an accident with a modified bus? I realize that Carpenters have a tarnished name due to poor riveting, but is a bus from factory any safer (or less safer) than a altered one?

Does having a raised roof cause enough drag to lower mileage?

We found a really great site with some vintage bus and truck homes: http://www.housetrucks.com/

Thanks for your help!
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Old 02-06-2008, 10:54 PM   #2
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Re: Questions about Raising the Roof

structural..well if done as Millicent was I would say his is as strong if not stronger than before, and his is pretty much the way I plan on doing mine this year. Well I plan on less of a forehead look to mine.

mileage... again this would depend on just how you do it...I plan on curving mine backwards, sorta like a semi..that should keep it the same or better.
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Old 02-07-2008, 03:27 AM   #3
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Re: Questions about Raising the Roof


Somebody rang?

The only way I would consider your Plan B -- cutting a giant hole and adding a second structure -- would be if the second structure had a special value in itself. What I've been thinking about, to confess, is an airplane. If you could find an old airplane fuselage that is exactly as wide as the bus, slice it in half horizontally lengthwise, and set the upper half of the airplane onto the top of the bus, almost seamlessly, then you'd have something. But to slap a bunch of lumber, or a VW microbus, or some such, on top of a bus, seems... so... so...

Structurally, if you did this "airplane thing", you would be cutting away most of the roof bows, replacing that strength with whatever the airplane, and its fastening, might provide. Anything is doable with enough skill and iron, but odds are you would be driving around in a "cracked Carpenter", to some extent.

Conversely, with a plain roof-raising like on Millicent, the bows remain intact across the top, and can be spliced very well at window level.
On Millicent, I also added a couple of stout diagonals inside that tall forhead, to keep the roof from racking sideways in a roll-over. And there are fore-and-aft diagonals to keep the roof from racking rearward.

Obviously, fuel milage will be affected, but I doubt any of us have numbers. I read somewhere that a very large part of a vehicle's wind resistance comes from the underside -- the turbulence under the floor, among all the parts down there. That's why and AIR DAM ("snow plow") works so well, by keeping air from going under the bus. I'm pretty sure you would burn more fuel by increasing your speed from 55 to 60, than a two foot raise would -- just guessing, mind you.

I still feel that cutting thru the window pillars is best, since you can overlap the splices. In my humble monday-morning-quarterbacking opinion, the biggest fault with those Carpenters isn't the welding, but the fact that the roof is butt-attached to the window pillars, so it lacks the inherent integrity of the one-piece window-pillar-roof-hoop of other brands.

Now go find an airplane that is exactly 8' wide!
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Old 02-07-2008, 05:59 AM   #4
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Re: Questions about Raising the Roof

Quote:
Originally Posted by Elliot Naess

Somebody rang?

The only way I would consider your Plan B -- cutting a giant hole and adding a second structure -- would be if the second structure had a special value in itself. What I've been thinking about, to confess, is an airplane. If you could find an old airplane fuselage that is exactly as wide as the bus, slice it in half horizontally lengthwise, and set the upper half of the airplane onto the top of the bus, almost seamlessly, then you'd have something. But to slap a bunch of lumber, or a VW microbus, or some such, on top of a bus, seems... so... so...

Structurally, if you did this "airplane thing", you would be cutting away most of the roof bows, replacing that strength with whatever the airplane, and its fastening, might provide. Anything is doable with enough skill and iron, but odds are you would be driving around in a "cracked Carpenter", to some extent.

Conversely, with a plain roof-raising like on Millicent, the bows remain intact across the top, and can be spliced very well at window level.
On Millicent, I also added a couple of stout diagonals inside that tall forhead, to keep the roof from racking sideways in a roll-over. And there are fore-and-aft diagonals to keep the roof from racking rearward.

Obviously, fuel milage will be affected, but I doubt any of us have numbers. I read somewhere that a very large part of a vehicle's wind resistance comes from the underside -- the turbulence under the floor, among all the parts down there. That's why and AIR DAM ("snow plow") works so well, by keeping air from going under the bus. I'm pretty sure you would burn more fuel by increasing your speed from 55 to 60, than a two foot raise would -- just guessing, mind you.

I still feel that cutting thru the window pillars is best, since you can overlap the splices. In my humble monday-morning-quarterbacking opinion, the biggest fault with those Carpenters isn't the welding, but the fact that the roof is butt-attached to the window pillars, so it lacks the inherent integrity of the one-piece window-pillar-roof-hoop of other brands.

Now go find an airplane that is exactly 8' wide!
Well Elliot, good luck in finding an airplane that is 8 foot wide, most are about half of that. Oh, unless you're planning on getting a Boeing 707 or an SR-71 . boy, can you imagine an SR-71 sitting on top of your bus?

Robert
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Old 02-07-2008, 07:15 PM   #5
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Re: Questions about Raising the Roof

don't tempt him
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Old 02-09-2008, 01:25 PM   #6
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Re: Questions about Raising the Roof



Lockheed SR-71 "Blackbird".
They let me photograph it, but I don't think they would let me take it home!

I'm thinking 707, DC-9, DC-3.... Actually wouldn't need to be exctly eight feet, since it could be sliced a bit above the middle to fit.

Yes, we enjoy playing with ideas -- and once in a while one of them pans out!
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Old 02-09-2008, 06:39 PM   #7
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Re: Questions about Raising the Roof

You know, Elliot. My mother recently told me of a program she watched on tv where a woman bought the fuselage of a 747 and turned it into her home. And she paid.....drum roll please...for this fuselage..........more dum roll.....a whopping $1200! I'm going to google it. Maybe Elliot we can go in together and buy 2 for $800 a piece...what do ya think?
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Old 02-09-2008, 08:03 PM   #8
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Re: Questions about Raising the Roof


Thru the years, all sorts of things have been turned into homes, including airliners. Every time I drive thru Terrebonne, Oregon, I see the cockpit of an airliner sitting in some farmer's yard -- perhaps as a play house for his kids? There are junk yards full of them. Sometimes they come up on eBay. Once, on eBay, there was half a DC-9 mounted on a trailer, previously used for some sort of training. (You'd just need a Wide Load permit to move it on public roads.)
Just a matter of how much time and talent we have. Life is good.
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Old 02-09-2008, 08:17 PM   #9
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Re: Questions about Raising the Roof

you guys are going to need a control tower to drive downtown in those babies roger roger
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Old 02-10-2008, 11:50 PM   #10
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Re: Questions about Raising the Roof

I know you've got talent, Elliot. I'll try and supply the time! Your right. It's a wonderful world.
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