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Old 03-08-2010, 07:23 PM   #1
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The ideal bus find for my dream conversion

The ideal bus for my dream conversion would be a full size conventional, with an inline 6 cyl wet sleeve mech injected non turbo engine, 5 speed manual, split rear. Thomas high top body. Year unimportant, but of course rust free. Hydraulic brakes and hydroboost, unless there has been any development that improved on that far from perfect system. I like the simplicity of 6 cylinder engines, less moving parts to break than V8's. Wet sleeve for cheaper rebuild if it is ever necessary. Would consider air brakes but would have to study how they work, and find out about stuff like icing in northern climes and consider how many extra parts they have like compressors and filters and valves etc. how difficult or expensive to service. Oh yeah, if you drive through a puddle just before parking, and the temp goes way down below freezing, do you have to wait till spring to move again? Would like a wheelchair lift for those heavy things, and just extra access.

Does anyone know about the reputation of Bus and Chassis Llc. of Brentwood, N.H. ? They sell quite often on ebay. I was gonna email them a spec list of what I'd like in a bus and see what they come up with, unless someone has had unfortunate business dealings with them. Their pics and descriptions are quite good, but I don't know how accurate. http://www.busandchassisllc.com
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Old 03-08-2010, 08:16 PM   #2
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Re: The ideal bus find for my dream conversion

Strange you ask. Me and my buddy bought our skoolies from them. Talk to Terri or his son Aaron. Very nice people and good to do business with! Tell them the "2 Dan's said hi" . LOL

I live about 40 minutes from them, and have gone up there a few times.
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Old 03-08-2010, 08:25 PM   #3
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Re: The ideal bus find for my dream conversion

They recently had an 88 Chevy Thomas on eBay (didn't sell), Detroit 8.2 with a 5x2 and air brakes. I considered buying it, but my partner wasn't thrilled with the idea of a Chevy or a stickshift. I'm also not thrilled with the idea of a Thomas body, as it was my ex's favorite model. Nice bus, but just didn't feel like the right one for us. High headroom, some rust but not too bad. You could probably get it for $1,500 or less.
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Old 03-08-2010, 09:23 PM   #4
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Re: The ideal bus find for my dream conversion

Chassis brand really shouldn't be a concern of yours. Unlike smaller vehicles you're not going to see big differences between one chassis and another as medium duty truck parts are pretty generic.

Why wouldn't you want a turbo? They make a ton more power and they're reliable. If you want a wet sleeved inline six you're probably going to be looking at a DT466 which isn't all bad.

I'd also recommend you reconsider your choice of juice brakes over air.
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Old 03-09-2010, 11:25 AM   #5
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Re: The ideal bus find for my dream conversion

Quote:
Chassis brand really shouldn't be a concern of yours. Unlike smaller vehicles you're not going to see big differences between one chassis and another as medium duty truck parts are pretty generic.
True, with a couple of BIG exceptions: one is Lucas-Girling hydraulic brakes. While GM used them (though I've never actually seen a BUS with them, only trucks), they were USUALLY found on Fords. Another is engine choice: while the 8.2 Detroit was used in many trucks (I have actually seen several in Fords), it's most common in Chevys/GMC's. Gassers, obviously, are from the chassis manufacturer (Ford, GM, International). The New Holland 6.6 and 7.8's are exclusive to Ford. The 9.0 seems exclusive to International.
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Old 03-09-2010, 06:47 PM   #6
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Re: The ideal bus find for my dream conversion

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Originally Posted by Jarlaxle
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Another is engine choice: while the 8.2 Detroit was used in many trucks (I have actually seen several in Fords), it's most common in Chevys/GMC's.
This is true. I have to say...it's a bit odd flipping the hood open on what is clearly a Ford and seeing a big "GM" stamped in the valve covers. It's a step in the right direction I guess.
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Old 03-10-2010, 01:32 PM   #7
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Re: The ideal bus find for my dream conversion

The 8.2 is a step in the WRONG direction. Yuck.
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Old 03-10-2010, 07:01 PM   #8
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Re: The ideal bus find for my dream conversion

Haha...for the first time in my life I own more Ford vehicles than other brands (I'm down to only 2 Fords, one Chevy powered Toyota, and a Chevy pickup), but I would tend to agree on the 8.2 thing...still though...I'm more bowtie than blue oval...at least until I can afford an all-Toyota daily driver.
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Old 03-12-2010, 03:50 AM   #9
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Re: The ideal bus find for my dream conversion

Make sure your Toyota doesnt have any of those failing electronics... ^.^
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