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Old 07-25-2006, 03:41 PM   #1
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Roof Deck - New Owner

Just bought my first skoolie and can't wait to get started on the conversion.

First question, and I apologize if I missed a previously posted thread, is does anyone have any suggestions/input on construction of a roof deck ?

My initial thought is this : have a welder I know weld "brackets" to the bus to hold aluminum decking. I also would like to have removeable or more preferably "fold down" railings.

The railing issue is not so much a concern at this point. I'm just wondering what I tell the welder he needs to do to give the deck adequate support. I looked at many pictures, but suggestions are obviously more helpful than guessing at a photo.
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Old 07-25-2006, 04:22 PM   #2
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don't know if you've seen this yet or not:

http://www.skoolie.net/forum/viewtopic.php?t=951
http://seanf.smugmug.com/Bus%20Conversion

particularly here, starting April 3 pictures:

http://seanf.smugmug.com/Bus%20Conversion/130659

Not sure i'd have done it that way (roof centerline partly supporting the load, bolts on brackets in partial shear), but it does look good.
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Old 07-25-2006, 06:38 PM   #3
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Single shear should be more than sufficient in this application. I fully intend on having the roof bows support some of the load of my roof deck simply because I want it to be lower profile. If you look at some of my pictures you'll see that atleast in the case of the Wayne Lifeguard buses, the roof is capable of supporting PLENTY of weight.

http://photos.yahoo.com/the_experience3006

and more specifically....

http://pg.photos.yahoo.com/ph/the_ex...e2.jpg&.src=ph


BTW....Country Fest in Cadott, Wisconsin is a great time
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Old 08-04-2006, 11:18 AM   #4
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I have some pretty good shots of the deck I'm installing now, but don't know how to host them online... I'm happy to share them here or can send a few to you on e-mail if you'll provide that.

In short, we've put the deck supports through the ribs on the side of the bus (between the window frames) so we wouldn't have to pierce the roof and deal with leakage--especially as the bus bends and flexes. It's made us get creative with masking the supports, but I'm hoping it's a good long-term decision. We also used the Choice decking (Lowe's version of Trex) 1x12s....
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Old 08-07-2006, 06:07 PM   #5
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my email is mailto:cdidonato@cox.net
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Old 08-07-2006, 10:41 PM   #6
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how sturdy do u want it ??

How sturdy are you wanting your deck to be ??? I have had between 30 to 40 people on my deck before with no problems (other than putting a stop to them seeing how much they could rock the boat while up there). While I agree that my deck is TOTALLY overengineered I do love it for that very fact.

I wish I hadnt lost my digi camera before I took a team on RAGBRAI this year. I could have gotten pictures of no less than two dozen different ways in which folks have done their decks. Oh well, theres always next year...

Have you thought about how you are going to gain access to your deck?

TonyC in Iowa
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Old 08-08-2006, 10:13 PM   #7
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As far as the sturdiness, I only require that it be able to hold up 6 adults and a cooler, about 50 lbs of ice and 3 cases of beer - or the equivalent weight in equipment while on the road.

As far as access, I figured a standard RV ladder would be the easiest, but again, the reason for this thread is to let those who have done this before guide me.

I gather that welding the supports is NOT the way to go, as it appears from photos I've seen that bolting on the supports seems to be the way to go. Does that sound accurate ? What type of bolts, how doe you handle the "nut" side on the interior are all questions that I have.

Again, I'm a newby, any help is appreciated.

Another issue is what the heck to do with the wheel chair lift that came with the bus. I don't really want it and I'm having a heck of a time trying to find someone who wants it.
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Old 08-08-2006, 11:22 PM   #8
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I'd KILL for a wheelchair lift. The means a big access door and a means of lifting heavy barrels like WVO or heavy coolers or kegs, etc inside. Of course my bus doesn't have one and the layout doesn't allow for one
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Old 08-09-2006, 02:45 AM   #9
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inside...

...give me a day and Ill get some close ups of how mine is all done if you would like.

TonyC in Iowa
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Old 08-09-2006, 06:33 PM   #10
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I see no reason why a person couldn't weld, but I doubt welding to the skin of the bus is going to give the kind of strength you're looking for so you're still looking at some sort of hole cutting project. As for the RV ladder. I thought they were a good plan too until I got my 6'5" 300 lbs knuckle dragging ogre hulk up one. I was not impressed with the strength to say the least. Of course I'm a big fan of that industrial angle iron look so to each his own.
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