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Old 02-03-2018, 10:42 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: North Carolina
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ISO Bus with manual transmission

Hey guys,
As the title says I'm looking for a bus with a manual transmission. There are a few other things I'm looking for but I feel like I'm looking for a real unicorn. However, a thousand sets of eyes are better than just mine. If you see anything close to these specs and remember this thread or are selling one similar, please let me know!

Looking for:
Manual Transmission
Cummins 8.3/DT466 Preferred but 5.9l Cummins is fine too
I'm looking for around 30ft long. Longer is better, shorter not so much.
NO RUST
Air brakes
Belly storage
Side door lift

Not all of these are demands. Simply if all of these options were in one bus.. I'd buy it!

I'll be hauling a family of 6, including myself, and our boat occasionally so safety is of the utmost concern.

Looking to keep the price around 5k or less for the bus itself.

Totally aware that there are many good automatic transmissions out there and I'm not opposed to them. I just thoroughly enjoy driving a stick and if I could have one in my bus, well that'd be just great.

Thanks guys.
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Old 02-03-2018, 11:48 PM   #2
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I'm to far away from you most likely anyway, but about a month ago there was a 35 or 40' conventional bus with a 466 and 5 speed manual with a 2 speed rear end. I think it was listed for $6k. I've looked for it for a while but it's not listed anymore. Like I say, it was likely to far away from you anyway. I don't think it had a chair lift. Oh well, but the do exist.
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Old 02-03-2018, 11:57 PM   #3
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Robin, thanks for the info!
I know that I will not get exactly what I listed in one bus (but can build it in later if I'm gonna be that stingy about it) but the big thing for me is driving experience. It's either got to be a stick or a super smooth auto.

Nothing is too far away from me! Except overseas. Been there too much and I don't do sharks anyway ;)

I'll make sure to continue including the west coast in my searches since y'all seem to have quite a few setups that I really like.

Thanks again!
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Old 02-04-2018, 12:00 AM   #4
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Check these guys out......not too far away, they usually have a good selection, prices are decent, and they're easy to talk to and helpful.....called them a few times while looking for my bus.

Welcome to M and M Service and Salvage Yard Inc.

Also, this is the site for the NC Surplus Bus System.....direct sales from the school bus garages. You'd have to call about specific buses (you can decode the engine from the VIN but not the trans). You'd also have to factor in a differential swap as NC buses are gear-limited to 45 mph. I've found a lot of the manuals are located in the mountain counties.

North Carolina School Bus Surplus System

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Old 02-04-2018, 12:10 AM   #5
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Don,
Thanks for the information, that was super helpful and I'm really not sure how I missed it when searching for NC buses. Those buses being limited to 45mph is the bane of my existence on the commute to and from work at times. I've considered just pulling over and catching a nap lol.

A differential swap isn't that bad, labor wise, but I'll definitely have to look up the cost of the gears for it.

Noticed your screen name.. You still in?
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Old 02-04-2018, 12:19 AM   #6
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Here ya go......low miles, DT466, 5 speed, 2 spd rear, no lift.

You didn't specify what color you wanted.

https://charlottesville.craigslist.o...465641285.html

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Old 02-04-2018, 12:23 AM   #7
Mini-Skoolie
 
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What kind of magic do you possess?!?! It took you about 5 minutes to find what I've been looking for for about a month! Your googlefu is amazing, sir.

Yellow is just about right ;)
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Old 02-04-2018, 12:33 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Medico89 View Post
Your googlefu is amazing, sir.
Took me two years to find mine.....I learned some stuff.

Quote:
Noticed your screen name.. You still in?
Gave it up about 10 years ago when i got married.....made my wife too nervous. Now that we've split, I'll get back into it......but gotta finish this bus first.....can't afford TWO big hobbies.


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Old 02-04-2018, 12:34 AM   #9
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wish you had posted last week, there were 4 for sale on public surplus that ended last week, and the one he posted in VA is also a manual pump DT466 it looks like
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Old 02-04-2018, 12:50 AM   #10
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and the one he posted in VA is also a manual pump DT466 it looks like
I wondered about that. A mechanical 466 with 150K would be a pretty nice find.


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Old 02-04-2018, 05:19 AM   #11
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Tampa Bus market has a conventional with manual tranny. I don't remember much else about that bus as I was not interested in the manual. I want to say it is dt466 but really not sure.
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Old 02-04-2018, 12:50 PM   #12
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In my opinion? You should be looking at coaches but stick shifts in a bus? As for as I know you are going to have to look at the 80's models which will include rust unless you find an aluminum coach.
Where are you at in NC?
There is a huge bus barn around MEBANE on I 85/40.
They may have some buses that fit most of your specs but the stick shift.
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Old 02-04-2018, 12:57 PM   #13
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I hope you don't mind me saying, but the one area where a compromise would bring the greatest reward, is compromising on the stick-shift.

I get your preference. I was brought up on manual gearboxes and miss them more than I care to think about ... but ...

There is no advantage to a manual in a bus (except maybe over the AT545).

The bus will be easier to drive, less fatiguing and more reliable with a good auto, and as it can pick the best ratio to be in, will probably get better fuel mileage too.

Get one of the better Allisons and you can have a decent compromise. A fully auto box with locking torque-converter, overdrive and the ability to pre-select the gears you want it to use.

Even the latest supercars have auto-transmissions. They just fool the driver into thinking he/she is changing gear, when what is really happening is that the driver is simply indicating a preference
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Old 02-04-2018, 01:06 PM   #14
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There is a bus on Craigslist in Portland OR you may like. 466 5+2
I'm not smart enough to include a link.
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Old 02-04-2018, 01:13 PM   #15
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What you are looking for now is about what I was trying to find when I was looking for a bus.
They are rare in your part of the world but I think you would like a Crown or a Gillig. Everything you want plus the engine is in the back where it belongs.
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Old 02-04-2018, 01:43 PM   #16
Skoolie
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Twigg View Post
I hope you don't mind me saying, but the one area where a compromise would bring the greatest reward, is compromising on the stick-shift.

I get your preference. I was brought up on manual gearboxes and miss them more than I care to think about ... but ...

There is no advantage to a manual in a bus (except maybe over the AT545).

The bus will be easier to drive, less fatiguing and more reliable with a good auto, and as it can pick the best ratio to be in, will probably get better fuel mileage too.

Get one of the better Allisons and you can have a decent compromise. A fully auto box with locking torque-converter, overdrive and the ability to pre-select the gears you want it to use.

Even the latest supercars have auto-transmissions. They just fool the driver into thinking he/she is changing gear, when what is really happening is that the driver is simply indicating a preference
I bet if he finds a bus with a manual 6 speed he won’t have to ask the mfg to unlock 6th gear.
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Old 02-04-2018, 01:46 PM   #17
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IDK about other manuals, but the 5 speed spicer is a pretty big letdown. The gears just aren't as useful as I'd like and no OD.
2 speed rear are almost always low and super low.
I buy my cars with a manual if one is available but a bus is a whole other ball of wax. It would seem to me to be a pretty punishing transmission in traffic.
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Old 02-04-2018, 02:23 PM   #18
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I bet if he finds a bus with a manual 6 speed he won’t have to ask the mfg to unlock 6th gear.
There is that
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Old 02-04-2018, 02:31 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Twigg View Post
There is that
I like Allison transmissions, I have one behind the 6.6 (I like it a lot)in a dually but that “giving it to you but not letting you have it”is a load of doo doo.
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Old 02-04-2018, 04:31 PM   #20
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Somebody wanted a 5 speed??

Converted School Bus for Sale (Dhayzey) - Make an offer - $1 (Eugene)

https://eugene.craigslist.org/rvs/d/...482692893.html
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