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Old 10-21-2016, 03:16 PM   #1
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Join Date: Oct 2016
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Searching for a bus to call home

I'm looking for a bus to convert into my next home. Does anyone have any guidelines about engine, transmission, mileage to look for etc? I've been online looking and prices range from a few thousand up to numbers with too many commas for my bank account. I'd like to open an account at Home Depot and convert it myself.
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Old 10-21-2016, 04:05 PM   #2
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Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 156
This is the big question and only you an answer it. What do you want? How big do you need? Buses come in front engine and rear engine, flat front or conventional, gas and diesel, and lengths up to 40 feet long.
Do you want to full time RV in it, weekends only, Tiny house that gets parked in one spot and stays?

So, I am working on 2 buses right now. One for my wife and I, one for my daughter. Ours is a vacation RV, weekends, long weeks traveling, but not full time. We own a decent house we can afford.
My daughter just got a bus to convert into a tiny house. She plans to park it on some land and live in it full time. Our needs are different.
Hers has a 366 gas engine and a AT545 trans, it will be parked, so who cares. Mine has a DT-466 with MT643, I will be driving mine.
I paid $1500 for my 1985 66 Passenger Blue Bird International, she paid $825 for her 1991 GMC Ward 66 passenger. Both are about 38 feet long and both conventional style. But, different uses.

You need to figure out you final plans for the bus and then see what works for you. I like front engine buses, some like rear engine. Its your bus, you tell us what you want and we can better help you.

Where to buy? I got one off of Craigslist from a Church north of Seattle Wa. The other I got off of Public Surplus Auction site out of Idaho. You can get from dealers too, but will pay more.

Let us know how we can help
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Old 10-21-2016, 09:12 PM   #3
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Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Fairfield Bay, Arkansas
Posts: 150
Year: 1990
Coachwork: Chevy
Chassis: Ward?
Engine: 8.2 liter ?
Rated Cap: 24 Passenger
Search Craigslist away from northern salt prone states. I got one in Oklahoma... not a spec of rust on it. Arkansas, Kansas, Arizona, Texas... lots out there.

Ros
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Old 10-22-2016, 07:30 AM   #4
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Join Date: May 2009
Location: Columbus Ohio
Posts: 12,109
Year: 1991
Coachwork: Carpenter
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: DTA360 / MT643
Rated Cap: 7 Row Handicap
I just got a second one from Houston area... and pretty much no rust.. my other one is from ohio and while its not a rust-bucket, its frame is solid, there is some under-floor rust...

Florida and georgia tend to beat the hell out of their busses mechanically it seems... so might want to stay away from those states.

-Christopher
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Old 10-22-2016, 10:06 AM   #5
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Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: KANSAS CITY
Posts: 690
Read every thread in the MECHANICAL and Drivetrain section.and the Conversion and the Conversion How TO section every day for about 3 months . You will learn a massive amount and know why you need this or that. You will learn things you would never think of to ask.

You will save your self lot's of money and headaches.
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1998 Ford B700 Thomas body 65 passenger. 5.9 Cummins 12 valve with MT643 Transmission 123,000 miles.
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