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Old 05-26-2018, 06:16 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Location: Central Idaho
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Need help making reasonable offer! 98 Cummins Diesel

Hey wonderful skoolie community--

I have recently acquired a bus that has started me on my journey. I very roughly gutted it and got it ready to live in, in between my week-long working trips all summer and start playing with my floor plan, however I quickly realize d it wouldn't quite be the right bus for me because it was too old and had split rims.

Long story short, I've been keeping my eyes out for a slightly larger mid-sized and found one in my home town. I called about it and it had been sold but through a series of serendipitous events I ran into the person who purchased it and he's been trying to sell it and thankfully so far there have been no takers that have thrown him a price he's happy with.

Here's the scoop on the new one:

*1998 12 Valve Cummins Diesel Engine
*87,000 miles
*Good tread on tires, no known flat spots
*working handicap lift/side door
*Starts right up-- just needs new battery
*Nine window (exactly the midsize I'm wanting)
*Brakes look good
*I'm pretty good friend with his wife


I'm looking to see if:
1) there is anything else I should ask about, and
2)what a fair offer for this guy would be. (He said most people poking at the bus have offered about 3k and that he was hoping for quite a bit more)


My younger cousin is pretty solid with vehicles and said $4500 might be a good number to toss at him to give him more of what he wants but not to screw myself out of too much money.

Any thoughts and advice would be greatly appreciated!
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Old 05-26-2018, 06:22 PM   #2
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Find out what transmission is in it, if it's an AT545, probably, it's a $3k at best. If his wife is good looking and comes with the bus, it's worth his asking price.
School just got out this week and there are going to be a flood of buses hitting the dealers and auctions. You'll be able to find that bus for $2K.
They're only worth what someone will pay. If everyone is offering $3K, that should tell you something. IMHO, it's not worth $4500
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Old 05-26-2018, 06:33 PM   #3
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Haha, I'm a girl and I thus have no use for his wife. But she is the nicest human on the planet so if I got to hang out with her and she was included I might be stoked on that.

Thank you for the advice, I'll ask him about the transmission. Is there any particular transmission that I should actively avoid or be excited about?


Also, here's a pretty close pictures of what it looks like on the outside for reference.
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Old 05-26-2018, 06:47 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dagnythedoodle View Post
Haha, I'm a girl and I thus have no use for his wife. But she is the nicest human on the planet so if I got to hang out with her and she was included I might be stoked on that.

Thank you for the advice, I'll ask him about the transmission. Is there any particular transmission that I should actively avoid or be excited about?


Also, here's a pretty close pictures of what it looks like on the outside for reference.
Depending on your planned use of the bus. The most common engine and trans in buses for regular routes is a Cummins 5.9 with an Allison AT545 transmission. It's a suitable combo for what it does. It is not conducive to extended highway speeds or mountain passes for a number of reasons I can explain later if needed. So if you plan on parking it and living in it, or not driving far or often, that combo is fine.
Anything with a motor bigger than a 8.0 with a highway tranny is something to get stoked about.
There are some other motors I'm not familiar with that some will tell you to stay away from, they will have to chime in.
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Old 05-26-2018, 06:54 PM   #5
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by o1marc View Post
Depending on your planned use of the bus. The most common engine and trans in buses for regular routes is a Cummins 5.9 with an Allison AT545 transmission. It's a suitable combo for what it does. It is not conducive to extended highway speeds or mountain passes for a number of reasons I can explain later if needed. So if you plan on parking it and living in it, or not driving far or often, that combo is fine.
Anything with a motor bigger than a 8.0 with a highway tranny is something to get stoked about.
There are some other motors I'm not familiar with that some will tell you to stay away from, they will have to chime in.
Awesome! Thank you so much for the tips.
I both fortunately and unfortunately live in only places that can be traveled to and from by mountain passes. So that will be the majority of my driving. However, I am a seasonal worker and dont really anticipate using my bus for travel as often as a home, but will need to move it effectively semi-regularly.
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Old 05-26-2018, 07:06 PM   #6
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Avoid the AT545 search the forum here for threads on drivetrain combos and you'll learn what you'll need for your application.
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Old 05-26-2018, 07:52 PM   #7
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The bus you posted has the dreaded drivetrain, as does this one, but use it for price comparison.
https://atlanta.craigslist.org/eat/c...598858404.html
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Old 05-26-2018, 08:11 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by o1marc View Post
The bus you posted has the dreaded drivetrain, as does this one, but use it for price comparison.
https://atlanta.craigslist.org/eat/c...598858404.html
Awesome! Thank you! You've been super helpful.
The problem is, I'm in a very isolated part of the west where comparable busses are really more in the 6k range because I'm so far away from everything. All the busses in the PWN and SLC area have been incredibly expensive.

But I think these comparisons are really helpful in helping me talk my price down to him and making sure he knows I've done a lot of research on it.
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Old 05-26-2018, 09:50 PM   #9
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Like 20 new busses have hit the auction sites in the last few days, a couple about that size.

They are at an auction so you get what you get, may be worth it to you to spend a bit extra and know a bit more about the one you are getting
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Old 05-26-2018, 09:56 PM   #10
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Go to your User CP (upper left here) and fill out your profile so we can better geographically help you get your questions answered. I have found buses from the PNW to be reasonable priced, no worries of rust, and no shortages of them
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