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Old 05-06-2016, 07:09 AM   #31
Bus Geek
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Columbus Ohio
Posts: 2,589
Year: 1991
Coachwork: Carpenter
Chassis: International S3800
Engine: DT360
Rated Cap: 7 Row Handicap
in my own opinion there a lot of low-cost busses that drive just fine.. drivetrains, brakes, wipers, defrosters, etc are often kept up to be able to pass state inspections..

when a bus gets too rusty and the state fails to pass it then it gets dumped.. or it ages out, or the district has money to spend, etc..

I do see bus on the auction sites that say they dont run, but I think alot of busses are in pretty good running condition even though the bodies are falling apart...

seems to me that finding a bus that "will run and drive" for low cost seems to be the easiest part of the search.. vs a bus that has the Correct drivetrain for the owner's use and the bus that fits the size, height, body condition, etc...

busses with highway gears, overdrive, higher horsepower engines, etc command higher prices as often do RE busses since those are the most desirable..

I wasnt aware the OP was planning to live in his bus, I was thinking it was simply a mobile office.. I would sooner take the time to Gut and re-insulate that bus knowing he is nearly full-timing in it... I totally agree with the adive of others to gut when full-timing or over-nighting for extrended periods...

now to keep the feel of a Bus inside.. it was brought up to me to use wall protector sheets as a ceiling if I gutted my bus.. so to the OP.. I came up with the idea that you might be able to use these inserted into HVAC S-channel.. you would then rivet or screw the S-channel to the ribs of the bus.. you try not to rivet through the panel too much as this way the panel can move with the flexing of the bus...

1/16 in. x 4 ft. x 8 ft. Plastic Panel-63003 - The Home Depot

Speedi-Products 48 in. x 30-Gauge ESS Cleat Duct Connector-AC-ESS 48 - The Home Depot

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Old 05-06-2016, 07:24 AM   #32
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Eustis FLORIDA
Posts: 5,844
Year: 1992
Coachwork: Ward/AmTran
Chassis: International
Engine: dt466
Rated Cap: 78
If you're persistent and vigilant, you can score an awesome bus for next to nothing. If you get in a big hurry you end up with less bus for more money.

My first bus was a free mid 80's Thomas with a gas Ford and 545. Ran and drove good. Wouldn't want another one though.

When I saw a 40' with a DT466, 643, air ride, and storage bays I got excited. I get really excited when I won for a bid of $2050.

After that first gas bus, I decided to find out what I really wanted in a bus. I lurked here and at School Bus Fleet forum for maybe a year before buying this one.
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Old 05-06-2016, 07:36 AM   #33
Bus Nut
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Virginia
Posts: 446
Originally Posted by Hypnobus View Post
In terms of living in it, the idea has been that it will be where I sleep and store things, and I'll get a membership to a YMCA or something for showering, so what I've pictured in the space is a comfortable armchair or somesuch, two more standard-sized chairs, a chest of sorts for storage and a small table. My bed would probably be a tri-fold foam mattress that can be folded into an ottoman. So it would all be a combined, versatile space. It wouldn't be apparent that I was living in it to anyone who didn't already know.
So you're going to live in it full time AND use it as an office for clients. As soon as anyone steps inside they'll know you're living in it.....just no way to hide it. If you're trying to start a serious, legit therapy business you need to quit wasting time with the dream of having an "all-in-one" vehicle and focus on finding a dedicated, professional looking space to meet clients. Sorry, but a school bus won't cut it on the low budget and quick time frame you're talking. Might work if the only clients you're looking for will be at Burning Man and other festivals, but as a normal, professional clinical therapy office it just isn't the right space to be taken seriously and be successful.
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Old 05-06-2016, 10:07 AM   #34
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Location: Willamina, Oregon
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Chassis: '97 BB TC1000, 5.9l
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If you get that bus working you could come around and hypnotize us to make us into more positive thinkers.
I think you could do what you're planning in a larger bus. A medium size bus at a minimum.
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Old 05-06-2016, 11:05 AM   #35
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Location: EHT New Jersey
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Year: 2003
Coachwork: AmTran
Chassis: International 3000RE
Engine: T444E/AT545
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Originally Posted by Robin97396 View Post
I think you could do what you're planning in a larger bus. A medium size bus at a minimum.
Or go full-on motor coach. Plenty of space to hide the living area from the "office" area.
Hey! That's not an RV, that's a school bus.
Well thank you for noticing, Captain Obvious

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Old 05-06-2016, 12:55 PM   #36
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Location: Virginia
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Originally Posted by Scooternj View Post
Or go full-on motor coach. Plenty of space to hide the living area from the "office" area.
Agree, motor coach is ideal for what you want to do. Think of blood mobiles and mobile Dr's offices, they are all built on coach platforms. Once again, will cost lots of $$$$$$$ and take lots of time to build. Look up OffGrid1 build, she is doing an awesome build on a VanHool Coach!
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Old 05-06-2016, 03:32 PM   #37
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Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: North carolina
Posts: 484
Year: 1986
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Ford
Engine: Detroit 8.2
Rated Cap: 60 bodies
Originally Posted by Azuleslight View Post
No flame, but buying a bus especially in nc you are runninh a risk with odds against you. However if he does have covered or interior storage he can get away with not gutting the bus completely. The seats will obviously have to go. You can pull the roof partially down and replace the crap insulation. But that is double the work. As for the rest, its up to them. I just dont see it even without gutting the interior, putting in electric or plumbing. If they had a budget of 6-8k(total) they could make the interior look great but i wouldnt drive it anywhere.
Easy now on the N.C. bus thing? There are 2-different climates in N.C. And my bus might be under powered (built for stop-go-stop) but even on the coast I had minimal rust with no ospho required? And the only body rust I found was from the BS rubber gaskets behind the warning lights I guess onslow county took care of there busses. but no matter what my 86 slept outside until I bought him in 2011 and he still sleeps there.
I do have damage at the front door/step bottom from it not being locked tight every night in his years
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