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Old 08-24-2016, 09:52 AM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Miami Fl
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Year: 1998
Engine: 7.3 International T444E
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What is your ideal platform for conversion?

For those who have been around and down the conversion road, what would you choose as an ideal platform and why?

I ask because I am gearing up to start my 1st conversion, and I want to make sure I have made a good decision (While it is still relatively easy to change). Thank you for your input!!
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Old 08-24-2016, 10:20 AM   #2
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Location: Houston, Texas
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Welcome to the Madness --- "Ideal" is strictly a relative term. First determine how you want to use your rig then read and research the build threads for ideas that match your needs. There are no two buses being built the same here...the whole idea of building is to make it your own and to fit your personal needs.

Many here insist on a diesel engine...but...if you only plan on occasional trips to local events, you can get by with a gasser. Likewise the age & size. Mine is 70 years old, barely 21 feet bumper to bumper with a very low roof. Great for me and my plan but most would want a newer, larger, taller rig. Some prefer standard transmissions while others insist on an auto. Given that the option possibilities are just about infinite...almost any bus could be perfect for one person and a dismal choice for everyone else.

Best of luck. Read up, make a plan and go for it.
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Old 08-24-2016, 10:43 AM   #3
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tango has it right..

its first and foremost all about what you plan to use the bus for...

if its going to be a Home, parked 99% of the time then drivetrain doesnt matter much but ceiling height and length do..

if you are planning on a roof raise then ceiling height doesnt matter

a rocky mountain vacationer requires a different drivetrain than someone running up the flat country...

and you got it right.. its easiest now before you have a bus to decide what you may want and need rather than get the wrong bus...

if you are making an RV, kid hauler, party bus, etc where it will be driven alot I would suggest also driving your bus quite a bit before you begin its conversion.. in effect to make sure it is mechanically sound as you think it is when you get it..

as well as is it comfortable for you to drive...

-Christopher
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Old 08-24-2016, 11:38 AM   #4
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Yup. Mountain guy here. Need a shorter bus that meets with length restrictions and power to go up a hill full of gear.
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Old 08-24-2016, 01:07 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GarageYourself View Post
For those who have been around and down the conversion road, what would you choose as an ideal platform and why?

I ask because I am gearing up to start my 1st conversion, and I want to make sure I have made a good decision (While it is still relatively easy to change). Thank you for your input!!
Some questions you may like to answer for everyone to help!

1. Where are you located? And, where do you intend to travel? (this will help with ideal engine/gearing)
2. What is your intended usage?Full timing, weekending, vacations, or events? (this will help with the best length/layout)
3. How many people/animals will be with you during any of these? (again, layout and your wants and necessities)
4. Do you "need" air conditioning? (depends on area, and if your wife's with ya!)
5. What do you plan on powering electrical and/or air conditioning with? (proper planning for battery storage/generator storage/ or solar set up, or anything else)
6. Do you need a bathroom with toilet/shower? (where to place water tanks, bathroom, and other components)

One thing is try to keep your layout somewhat balanced weight wise, no biggie if it's not perfect though.
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Old 08-25-2016, 09:25 AM   #6
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Miami Fl
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Year: 1998
Engine: 7.3 International T444E
Rated Cap: 72
Thank you all for your input!!!

I am asking what is/was ideal for YOU and why?? Like CaptainHooligan's and Tang's response, what works and why. I may have very well over-looked details or features. What of these features/characteristics do you just love about YOUR own rigs!

To answer the questions above, I want it all
-I will be diesel for sure (With diesel/electric hybrid on the radar), planning a very segmented North American tour.
-I will be running significant solar and air conditioning that incorporates water generation.
-Motorcycle lift and motorcycle storage in the back that will double as a workshop when the bikes are out (Lighter dual sport bikes, 250-300 lbs max)
-Toilet, shower, kitchen and a deep freezer (Plan of some hunting too) Potable water storage, as well as wash water and the dump tank. (We will be fabricating the potable water tanks out of stainless, no taste of plastic)
-It will usually be two of us and a small dog.
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Old 08-25-2016, 09:52 AM   #7
Skoolie
 
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Location: Hempstead Tx
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Engine: t444e
Sounds like you need a front engine handicap bus, preferably with basement storage.
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Old 08-25-2016, 11:27 AM   #8
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
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Engine: 7.3 International T444E
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiliChzPoopTart View Post
Sounds like you need a front engine handicap bus, preferably with basement storage.
Basement storage? Would that be like charter bus luggage storage?
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Old 08-25-2016, 03:03 PM   #9
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Hempstead Tx
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Year: 2000
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Chassis: International
Engine: t444e
Yeah, activity buses haves for instruments, pads, etc. They also tend to have highway gearing.
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Old 08-25-2016, 04:55 PM   #10
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
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You will definitely need a front engine bus if you want to haul motorcycles and work on them. I went with a rear engine bus because the longer wheel base gives you a somewhat smoother ride on the highway. and I decided to either tow my bike or use some sort of rear mount to carry it.

Are you related to the DIY Garage Yourself in Miami (NW 77Ter)?
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