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Old 12-21-2010, 06:48 PM   #1
Skoolie
 
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Year: 1995
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Skoolie Advice

So those of you who are on here have probably seen my bus conversion in the short bus section (RU Tailgate Bus) Well we took it out West Virginia road tripping 2 weeks ago. It was about 25 out and freezing. Long story short, about 4 hours in, the bus starts skipping as I'm driving, it felt like my foot was stuck on the gas and brake at the same time. Eventually we had to pull over and the bus stalled out and died right there. I got a truck mechanic out to take a look and he told me it sounded like the rod bearings. I did a little research and basically it seems that when the vehicle sits for a long period of time and then goes a great distance (exactly what transpired) it can cause the bearings to almost bend and melt lol. The guy basically told me I needed an entire new engine and it was a pain in the ass to fix because the engine is kind of buried in the back. Guy told me about 2k. My friend and I left it out there not knowing what to do. So I so I ask you guys for advice. Do I sell it for scrap (got ripped off) or do I pay to get it towed 300 miles (not sure how) then try to get it fixed or maybe 2k? Any and all advice welome from a upset skoolie owner
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Old 12-21-2010, 08:13 PM   #2
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
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Year: 1995
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Chassis: International
Engine: 466DT
Rated Cap: 65
Re: Skoolie Advice

So did it start to have a knocking sound when you started having problems? Do you know what the oil level was? Usually when you run an engine low on oil, it is when you will spin a rod/main bearing. But the lifters usually make some noise first. Then if you keep driving the bearings will go. Will the engine still run? The times I have seen the bearings go, the noise is a little bit quiter when the engine is cold, then as it warms up it gets louder(knocking noise). Either way it probably wouldn't make a 300mi trip back home limping it there. If it is the bottom end of the engine, that really suxs . You would have to decide for yourself if you want to put in the extra money for the tow and the repair. But if you did, you would know what you have. Rather than buying another bus with lots of unkowns.
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Old 12-21-2010, 08:24 PM   #3
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Re: Skoolie Advice

I don't remember a knocking sound but we really couldn't get it running for more than a minute or so when we re-started it. It didn't sound good that's all I remember. The oil was fine, we checked it, as a matter of fact all the levels were topped off before we left. I am guessing this happened because we pushed it so far in cold weather but it only had 41k miles on it. The guy did say it was at the bottom of the engine. Just said it was bad news, I don't pretend to know what this stuff means.
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Old 12-21-2010, 08:34 PM   #4
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Re: Skoolie Advice

I had an old plymouth once that spun a rod bearing. I decided to drop the oil pan a take a look. It was pretty obvious by moving the rods which one had the extra play. It was a real pain in the ass, but I ended up pulling the rod apart and slipping in a new bearing. Everyone told me how stupid it was to do that, but the damn car ran another couple years around town that way. I never felt good about driving it a long distance after that though. So I guess it would be how mech. inclined you are and the patience to try it. You have to drop the oil pan and look everything over.
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Old 12-21-2010, 09:39 PM   #5
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Location: Montana
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Year: 1995
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Re: Skoolie Advice

I wouldnt sell it. Someone will come up with an idea. 300 miles isnt that far.
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Old 12-21-2010, 11:01 PM   #6
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Location: mid Mo.
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Year: 1976
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Engine: 427 chevy
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Re: Skoolie Advice

Well lets see. You have 3 somewhat independent systems in an internal combustion engine, the cooling system, the oiling system and the power system (carburator ignition, camshaft, etc). Each one works independently from each other and usually doesn't affect the other until they trespass on each other. You can have a rod knocking and the engine runs great. The cooling system overheats but it runs great till it gets hot and messes up the fuel delivery system. Or the oiling system and cooling system work great but the engine runs like ****. So the first question is does the block or oil pan have a big hole in it? If so then it will not run well because it's got a broken leg and it's created so much damage it's affecting the whole family. If your engine won't run well then it may not be a rod but something else. You need another opinion, it could be just a timing chain or ignition problems. If a rod was out it would sound like a sledge hammer trying to get out and if it gets out it will take all it's brothers out with it (engine replacement). If the chain jumped a few teeth then it would barely start and would not want to run long but it won't bother it's other brothers (sometimes). A couple of guys next to me bought an old Dodge pick up and it just wouldn't run very good and had no power. The timing chain had jumped 6 teeth because it was so stretched and after putting in a new chain it runs great. You need more information to make an intelligent decision. Sportyrick
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Old 12-22-2010, 07:20 AM   #7
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Engine: Chevy 292 I-6
Re: Skoolie Advice

Sounds more like a fuel supply issue to me, very probably the fuel pump. Check your fuel pressure at the engine. If there is none, remove the fuel filter and turn the key to "run" and look for fuel flow. If there is flow, the filter was clogged, replace it either way. If there is no flow, time for a new fuel pump and sock.
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Old 12-22-2010, 10:05 AM   #8
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Location: Portland OR area
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Year: 1983
Coachwork: International
Chassis: Carpenter
Engine: 8.3
Re: Skoolie Advice

A question on topic, How often do most of you start your rigs when you not on the road? I tend to start mine up no less than once a month and let her warm-up and run a good 30 minutes then usually take a cruz around the neighborhood every 2 months. Any advice on keepin' things fresh and lubed?
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Old 12-22-2010, 11:59 AM   #9
Skoolie
 
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Re: Skoolie Advice

5.7 liter motor, gas, 3500HD series made by Chevy. I heard a re-built one with a warranty is about 2k. A guy quoted me 2k for labor, I told him I simply can't pay that. I'm not near the bus now, I need it towed home since I took my ass home. However, when we did re-start it it didn't want to run long and it sounded bad. It took a while to start it, but I remember it starting. It shutdown that night and the next morning it started when I guess the engine cooled. Maybe it was just a chain (fingers crossed) I know nothing about motors but I just cannot believe a rod bearing means an entire new engine. BTW - got a quote to tow it 240 miles for about $900. Seems like a good deal, keep the advice flowing fellas, I need it lol.
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Old 12-22-2010, 12:19 PM   #10
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Re: Skoolie Advice

Sorry to hear man that is not a nice situation. Keep us posted. Engines have their issues and I suppose were all at risk of loosing out on the road. Did you have any kind of AAA or Good Sam help? I do the Good Sam thing and their awesome about helping out and getting you deals. I have used them once and it was worth the small investment.
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