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Old 11-14-2005, 03:19 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eric von Kleist
If there's one single thing that I can think of that would have made things easier for me, it's an additional drill (or a quick change chuck on my drill). It was very cumbersome to have to drill holes (or a hole) and then change from a drill bit to a driver bit. If you have an additional drill (or quick change chuck), you can work faster.
self tapping screws decrease the need for changing from drill bit to driver bit... That's why they make such good friends!
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Old 11-14-2005, 11:31 PM   #12
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Thank you all for your sage advice! I have made notes. I think most of these things are doable. The welding issues are the ones I am worried about! How often are people welding?
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Old 11-14-2005, 11:33 PM   #13
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Griff:

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I got the demo of Home Plan Pro off http://www.download.com and liked it so much, I bought the program for $40.00. Worth every penny! I've used it for other projects, too. This link will take you to the page where you can download the demo: http://www.download.com/3120-20_4-0.htm ... earch.y=12.
I downloaded this version and am trying it. I am having challenges getting the walls to size right?

Oh well, I will keep fiddlin!
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Old 11-15-2005, 05:27 AM   #14
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Are you having trouble with the thickness, or the length, or. . .? If you select "Preferences" from the top menu, you can set wall thickness, framing thickness & spacing defaults, i.e. I set my wall thickness to 2", framing thickness to 1-1/2" and framing spacing to 28-1/2" to match the ribs in the bus wall.

There is a lot on that Preferences menu that you can pre-set to make actual drawing easier. The program, like any other, will take a little time to get used to. I was used to AutoCad, and it took me a little while to familiarize myself with HPPro and all of its capabilities.

Have fun!
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Old 11-15-2005, 10:28 AM   #15
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Tools

I would highly suggest a good shop vac. There will be times you have such a mess (saw dust, wood chunks, metal shavings from using the sawz-all, stripped wire insulation, Jack-in-the-Box wrappers, dirt, rust dust, paint chips, small pieces of insulation) in the rig that you can't work. You will have to clean up just so you can find your buried tools and continue.
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Old 11-15-2005, 04:46 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fankhaj1
The welding issues are the ones I am worried about! How often are people welding?
welding makes alot of things easier and faster, but where there's a will, there's a way..... meaning you can improvise alot of things without welding if you're creative. I think eventually, you'll find something you will need to weld, you can always farm it out or buy a new welder, we all love new tools, don't we?
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Old 11-16-2005, 07:34 AM   #17
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I’ve found a really good quality Dewalt construction grade drill to be a necessity for my work….
They have enough intestinal fortitude to make it through bus walls, roofs and floors using a hole-saw without bogging down.

Another great tool to have is a good grade miter saw….I couldn’t believe how much time my Dewalt miter saw saved me in making cuts for cabinets and such in our bus.

Like other folks here mentioned, you really need a Sawzall and angle grinder if you’re going to do any major cosmetic work on the bus….stuff like taking off the roof or cutting out side panel sections for installing necessary bits and pieces.
A few days ago I cut off approx. 8 feet off the roof and yesterday the sides of our bus and couldn’t have done it so quickly without the sawzall.
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Old 11-16-2005, 07:46 PM   #18
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A heat gun ins't a bad thing to have for removing the decals of the bus. Heat them up and peal them off, and for any adhesive left over I like to use carb cleaner and a old wash rag/towel. I used about 3/4 can for the "SCHOOL BUS" on the front.

Something that I like to do when drilling into thicker metal such as the frame is to use some oil on the drill bits. The drill bits cut so much better this way. What the oil does is helps cool the bit helping it last longer. Now a good cutting oil works best but I don't have any so I just use some 10w30 oil or what I happen to have.

Anyone else use this method when drilling?
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Old 11-16-2005, 10:24 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wmah
Anyone else use this method when drilling?
Yep! All the time. . .same viscosity, too!
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Old 11-16-2005, 11:19 PM   #20
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The shop vac is an excellent idea - plus I plan to have one perma-installed anyways
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