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Old 05-27-2016, 05:51 PM   #11
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Wow, thank you everyone for the thoughtful replies!

Yes, we have a place to park it during conversion, complete with hookups if we chose to stay. However, in the town we'd love to eventually check out, no idea where we would park except state parks 2 weeks at a time.

Also that is a great idea- to salvage parts off of an RV!

Yeah that is what worried me the most- one thing could go wrong with the moving parts and it could be the rest of our savings.

http://www.skoolie.net/forums/f11/mo...00-a-9810.html

This is actually the bus we are looking at. Asking $4500 and it has new(er) tires, 3 brand new batteries, and 152xxx miles. Seems like a good deal but we're scared to make the leap.
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Old 05-27-2016, 07:32 PM   #12
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Mechanical everything (I presume), 6'6" ceiling height, does 65-70 easily, and a decent paint job already? Those are pretty desirable features. And are those air conditioners in the ceiling?

Has the person selling it done much to it? (As in, seats/floor/insulation?)
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Old 05-27-2016, 08:42 PM   #13
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Mechanical everything (I presume), 6'6" ceiling height, does 65-70 easily, and a decent paint job already? Those are pretty desirable features. And are those air conditioners in the ceiling?

Has the person selling it done much to it? (As in, seats/floor/insulation?)
Yes, that is what we thought too! It started up fine, lights work, and she says the A/C works too. But she hasn't done anything to it, she decided to build a tiny house on her property instead. :/
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Old 05-28-2016, 04:40 AM   #14
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Hello all! After much lurking on this forum my husband and I started looking seriously into conversions and have even looked at a couple buses in the area, particularly a nice '91 International (72 seater?), DT360 that we can't stop thinking about.

We are in our mid-20s and are tired of throwing many thousands into the wind for rent. We move often, yet we want a place to call our own, many rentals in don't allow dogs, etc etc, so we feel like this is a good alternative living situation until we are settled ~5 years. We have savings to do this project, but the budget would be tight and I'm worried it will be a black hole of unforeseen expenses. We are looking in the ~$6-7k range.

Although that may not seem like much to some of y'all, we have a talented family who are willing to help not just with labor but also materials: carpenters, furniture builders, mechanics, etc.

Thus I am asking you honest people of skoolie, is this a realistic venture? Or are we being hopeless romantics?
I will give you my costs at where i am at right now no BS, just upfront real prices.

I spent $4k on a 30ft IC CE 2003 skoolie(that included taxes, registration, NO plates)
I have spent about $300 on tools, as i already had most of what is needed already. I assume most of your friends will have a lot of what you'll need. Make sure you have an angle grinder or 2.

I have spent close to $200 on assorted grinding angle disks and other assorted items.

I am still in tear down phase of the bus, i just started to expose my metal floor and have found rust. (i suggest you pull the flooring too). I have found rot in the floor and will have to remove the sections over both wheel wells. I expect that to cost me about $100-200, maybe more

Then another $100 to rust convert and paint the floor.

my skoolie is in good running conditions with no issues. so i didn't need anything fixed as of yet. i was lucky and had a mechanic friend who works on semi's check mine out.

Assuming i can scavenge scrap 2x1's for a floating floor with . it will cost me about $150 in insulation $175 in sub-flooring 1 board being marine grand(shower and bathroom area).

the insulation for the roof and side i suspect will cost me $350-400 more based on my measurements

that will be a total of about $5,400 before i add any framing, before i add any appliances, before adding any electrical, before any solar or battery banks, a generator, plumbing, heating/cooling, or a finished floor. those items can range depending on what you can get for free, what you can scavenge from CL, and a lot of other things. If you want all brand new items add at least another $5k. that's not including a sizable "well F, that just broke" fund. And if you plan to tow a more economical car behind your skoolie, that will be another $500-2,000 for the tow kit and instillation.

the real question is this:
Do you want somewhere you can live comfortably for the next 3-5 years, or do you want to live somewhere in which its ok, but not great and you have most of what you need. one will feel like your camping and one will feel like home.

It really depends on your tastes in the end, but my guess is unless those friends and family are super awesome. You will not be able to get by on $6-7k and have everything you want. However, i think you could get to everything But solar, battery bank and composting toilet. I suspect my cost will be between $8-10k by the end of it all. with everything i plan to have for myself and my travel companion(s).

So here is what i suggest, make a list if everything you want, EVERYTHING, all the bells and whistles and price that out. after your shell shock is over, then make a second sheet and see what you can and cannot live without. segment each phase of the build and estimate costs. remember your not only investing money but a sizable amount of time as well. Also be willing to accept the fact that for the most part it will be just you and your partner doing all the work. This isn't to scare you or anything but its to be straight forward an honest. I notice not a lot of people put prices up on any skoolie sites. so i figure this would give you an idea what a project skoolie could cost.
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Old 05-28-2016, 07:27 AM   #15
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DANG! $200 on Grinding discs?? Are they diamond??
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Old 05-28-2016, 07:51 AM   #16
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DANG! $200 on Grinding discs?? Are they diamond??
They wear out pretty frequently in my experience
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Old 05-28-2016, 08:07 AM   #17
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that what i was wondering. or did they come with grinder?
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Old 05-28-2016, 08:10 AM   #18
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They wear out pretty frequently in my experience
I've had the same disc on my angle grinder for two bus ceilings and two full seat removals. Its a $3 disc.
Not trying to flame or start an argument or anything, but yall are doing something drastically wrong if you need anywhere near $200 in discs.
See my thread- ALL those rivets and seats.... One disc. I did have to buy a few abrasive paint removing discs for the tar under the roof.
Of course, your mileage will vary.
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Old 05-28-2016, 08:23 AM   #19
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So I'm guessing that goes to show that the right tool is worth its weight in gold! I guess I won't be putting my dremel to work on this project!
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Old 05-28-2016, 09:32 AM   #20
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So I'm guessing that goes to show that the right tool is worth its weight in gold! I guess I won't be putting my dremel to work on this project!
I've been using the same angle grinder since my first bus back in 03' or 04'. Its a semi-cheap Hitachi.
I have a local friend here who was using their angle to get the seats out. He said they kept going through discs. Turned out he wasn't using it at an angle but was grinding with the flat part of the disc!
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