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Old 10-09-2014, 11:13 PM   #1
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Replacing the front door

I'm looking into buying a 1998 Carpenter bus at the moment. 5.9L diesel engine, automatic transmission, 98K miles.

It's already been converted into a hunting lodge but lacks any insulation whatsoever and still has all the windows and the original doors.

I'm planning on replacing the glass with steel and replacing the concertina door with a real door. Any ideas on how to do that and where to get the door/parts? I don't have a machine shop, sadly so things have to be easy to adjust.

I'm going to have to do insulation but that's another topic.
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Old 10-10-2014, 05:08 AM   #2
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Re: Replacing the front door

most folks either

1)keep door factory

2)make door 1pc non folding using a few pcs of metal and original hinge

3)frame out like a house (bolt wood to bus, and use a house door

pick your poison, plenty of pics here
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Old 10-10-2014, 06:23 AM   #3
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Re: Replacing the front door

4) Go to the local Rv supplier and buy a door kit.
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Old 10-10-2014, 10:22 AM   #4
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Re: Replacing the front door

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ponyracer
4) Go to the local Rv supplier and buy a door kit.
Interesting ideas.

With the door hinges, I'm concerned that somebody might be able to knock the pins out and simply lift the door off its hinges to gain access. Are there any hinges such as those in car doors that can't be accessed from the outside?

I'm all new to this as you can gather from my beginner questions.
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Old 10-10-2014, 11:11 AM   #5
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Re: Replacing the front door

Pins can be welded into the hinge. Car door style hinges can be made ($$$$$$$$)

But you have a whole bunch of windows people can break to get in if they want. anything you do to the door only keeps honest people honest.

I am more worried about a door that seals properly to keep the weather out than one that locks to keep intruders out.
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Old 10-10-2014, 12:27 PM   #6
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Re: Replacing the front door

You're right. As far as security goes - even a big thing like a bus can be jacked up and lifted onto a dolly then towed away.

I'm with you regarding keeping the weather out.

I had a look at one guy's method of turning the concertina door into a solid door.

Has anybody tried just using the back door to get in and out and putting a sliding "deadbolt" bar across the inside of the concertina door? Obviously the bar would have to be round with a rotating steel sleeve around it (to defeat the bright spark that things they can use a power saw to cut through the bolt.
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Old 10-10-2014, 12:30 PM   #7
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Re: Replacing the front door

we "lock" our front door when we leave for the day and at night

We then use the back down as entry/exit until front is "un-locked"

no pictures, it's too ghetto and way down on list to fix
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Old 10-10-2014, 12:57 PM   #8
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Re: Replacing the front door

There are so many variations in doors--open in the middle, hinge in the middle, open in, open out, manual, air, electric. There isn't a one-size-fits-all.

Simple crossbar barricade arm works in many manual doors but could destroy an auto opener. Deadbolts or garage door locks going up and down work. The surface mount locks (same as is usually used for back door) work for some. You can get factory option locks for some buses.

The old activity buses we had had what looked like an old garage door latch mounted just above the mirror mount in the corner of the pillar. It had a shaft that went to the manual opener and popped it open.
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Old 10-10-2014, 01:11 PM   #9
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Re: Replacing the front door

Drop in doors for RV's are simple, just adjust your opening and rivet it in.

As far as hinges, you can spot weld the pin in place, also they make higher security hinges that are pressed together, the pin can't be knocked out.

I wouldn't really worry about the hinges if you use a house door, more than likely anyone who wants into a converted schoolbus will be an amateur thief and will prob just break a window.

If you want to SECURE it, for instance if it will be alone on a remote hunting property, install 16 gauge "hurricane shutters" with a top piano hinge and a bottom hi security hasp and padlock, same for the door, just use a metal security door or a piece of sheet with side hinges.
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Old 10-10-2014, 04:11 PM   #10
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Re: Replacing the front door

We turned our two piece door into a one piece door. http://www.freewebs.com/aluminumasylum/bluebirdfe.htm
Since I posted all that, we have replaced the door handle with a lever style. Changed the weather stripping to a thinner one will allows the door to latch. We will need to finish trimming the interior and add the accordian door we will be using to keep the cold down from all that glass. It works for us and isn't for everyone.
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