Time has just about come to choose our bus, our adventure vehicle.
I am torn though, between a forward control front engine bluebird style (above), or a standard style, like the one shown below. Sorry for the huge pics!
The standard style is plentiful, and I wonder if it's quieter when rolling down the road, because the engine is not "inside". Could be easier to work on too? I guess it would be, with the flip up front clip. Easy deer repair too.
I have only ridden in one bus, and it was as yet uninsulated, and crazy loud. It was something between the two, an unusual Thomas built unit. It has since been upgraded, and I am told it's much quieter than it used to be. In any case, this doesn't help me decide.
Overall, I like the exterior appearance of the bluebird FC style, though I will only purchase a front engine bus, because I have plans to load bikes and gear into the back, plus I am pretty well settled on a 5.9 cummins for reliability and parts availability, etc. Also, it looks less like a school bus when it's cleaned up. That's a big plus to my wife.
The only problem is that they are definitely less available in the configuration I want. My list of desires looks like this:
Mid bus length
Not rotted out badly (this is Michigan, eh?)
Excellent or very good tires (my budget won't let me spend too much on these just yet)
Not banged up
I am leaning more towards the Bluebird flat front style, as it is more appealing visually, but if the right sized and appointed bus came along at a good price, I wouldn't be too hung up about it being a standard.
Suggestions to help me choose? I am willing to travel to pick it up, for sure. I am almost counting on it.