Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 03-06-2015, 12:06 AM   #1
New Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 4
1960 Mercury short bus w/ 48 Dodge sedan welded to roof

Hi Y'all, i figure it's about time i start a thread to show yas how my fun bus project is going.
First some history: i've owned the bus for almost ten years, using it as a 'spare room', towing it when i moved to another house (did that 3 times)
The interior has a bathroom, couch/bed and full kitchen. the conversion was done in the eighties i'm guessing.
A couple lived in the bus in Whistler, BC for 6 yrs. When i bought the bus off them, they told me how the condensation would be dripping off the ceiling when they'd wake in the morning. There was considerable wood rot around the windows.
We are installing a hobbit woodstove (should be here next week), a stock tank bathtub, new toilet, we'll build a new bed, and install another captains chair. Also putting in new flooring, new wood on the walls, and the ceiling, and kitchen counters .... a Full Resto!
We plan on travelling far and wide , and hope to live in the bus one day. (kids will be done school in about 5 years)
I'm 6'5" tall, and i wanted to give myself some head room in the bus. i considered a few different roof raising techniques, but i kept coming back to the idea of welding a vehicle on top of the bus. i'm an artist by trade, my usual medium is glass, ... but metal working couldn't be so different, right?? ha. i had some learning to do!
my neighbour's helped me out a ton(he's a retired upholsterer, who worked in body shops and hot rod shops his whole life) He's taught me to weld, (wire feed mig) and helped me figure out what and how to do it. (Thanks Harvey!!)
the car i chose for the top is a 1948 Dodge 4 door sedan (yes suicide doors).. i was looking for a nice body line, a sloped roof to match the bus. I found the dodge at a friend of Harv's, and the car has given life to two projects. the fenders, hood, dash and bunch of other stuff is going to a another friends' truck project. (so don't give me too much heck over cutting the dodge in half!) ha
i cut the dodge in half with a sawzall and grinder, removed the glass, and stripped the interior down to metal., welded the doors shut, then blocked it up and up and up and slid it over on a couple ramps onto the top of the bus.
my line was fairly close, but the gap varied somewhat between car and bus, so next i scribed a line all the way around the car and cut it again. i had to nip and trim a few more bits to get it to sit nice and flat. (not so easy with a curved bus roof!)
We wanted to have the doors open up top, but i quickly realized that was just too tricky/ too much work for my first project. same with the rolling windows. The four vent windows are all functional, as is the cowl vent.
Harv helped me at this point, welding the car to the bus. I wire brushed and ground it all to metal to prep, and he 'stitch welded' it, with the welds being every few inches in the end. (my welds were pretty good, but i thought Harv better do this part). He would tack weld it every 12 inches or so, then slowly fill in the gaps, so the roof metal wouldn't warp.
After it was welded i filled all remaining gaps with long-strand fibreglass filler, let it sit a day, then came back to sand it down. (i rough sanded it with a grinder with sanding discs)
Next day (yesterday as i type this) i applied bondo, and today i sanded that off. what a dusty job that was! i felt like Michelangelo looking for the beauty within the block of bondo haha

now i'll try to load some pictures.

as soon as i'm done the bondo work, i will put a some heavy duty brackets inside the car, bolting right thru the roof of the bus (probably don't need this, but i want it to be very very strongly attached!)
then the glass goes back in, and we can really start work on the interior

Attached Images
File Type: jpg 10599437_10152274568345633_5585610644355379697_n.jpg (47.5 KB, 15 views)
File Type: jpg 10665162_10152300193280633_9065602300360545712_n.jpg (52.5 KB, 10 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_7629.JPG (305.3 KB, 12 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_7631.JPG (326.8 KB, 11 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_7635.JPG (274.2 KB, 10 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_7640.jpg (541.9 KB, 16 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_7665.jpg (183.4 KB, 11 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_7667.jpg (193.1 KB, 12 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_7675.jpg (185.3 KB, 11 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_7680.JPG (290.2 KB, 21 views)
redbeerd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-2015, 12:12 AM   #2
New Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 4
more pics!
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Photo on 2015-03-03 at 8.35 AM.jpg (130.1 KB, 13 views)
File Type: jpg Photo on 2015-03-03 at 8.36 AM #2.jpg (112.9 KB, 13 views)
File Type: jpg Photo on 2015-03-04 at 4.02 PM.jpg (101.8 KB, 12 views)
File Type: jpg Photo on 2015-03-04 at 4.02 PM #2.jpg (107.8 KB, 11 views)
File Type: jpg Photo on 2015-03-04 at 4.03 PM.jpg (91.7 KB, 14 views)
redbeerd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-2015, 12:17 AM   #3
Bus Geek
 
EastCoastCB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Eustis FLORIDA
Posts: 12,197
Year: 1992
Coachwork: Ward/AmTran
Chassis: International
Engine: dt466
Rated Cap: 78
Very nice to see some variety!
EastCoastCB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-2015, 06:55 PM   #4
Bus Geek
 
Tango's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 6,174
Year: 1946
Coachwork: Chevrolet/Wayne
Chassis: 1- 1/2 ton
Engine: Cummins 4BT
Rated Cap: 15
Welcome --- A "Mini-Further"! Excellent! Keep the pix & progress coming.
Tango is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-2015, 10:55 PM   #5
New Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 4
replaced in the last year: all brake components, suspension, gas tank, top end of engine (which then promptly sh*t the bed)...
now i have the 390 off to a machinist friend, who's stroking it out to 445, putting fuel injection and electronic ignition on it, he'll also rebuild the 4 spd manual trans.
That should get me up and over the mountains!

and the most often given answer : the bus will be 12'6" tall, well under legal.
redbeerd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2015, 06:01 AM   #6
Site Team
 
bansil's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: MNT CITY TN
Posts: 5,044
Sweeeeeet

Welcome and that is awesome......of course the bearded explorer crossing the river......ugh....yard is cool too
__________________
Our build La Tortuga
Accept the challenges so that you can feel the exhilaration of victory.
George S. Patton
bansil is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2015, 06:02 AM   #7
Site Team
 
bansil's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: MNT CITY TN
Posts: 5,044
How about a few pictures further away in the next week or so?
__________________
Our build La Tortuga
Accept the challenges so that you can feel the exhilaration of victory.
George S. Patton
bansil is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2015, 10:02 AM   #8
Bus Nut
 
REDD's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: ...little north of Toronto Ontario
Posts: 450
Year: 2000
Coachwork: Thomsass
Chassis: Freightshaker
Engine: 5.9 cummins 5 speed
Rated Cap: 6 passenger 2 ATV's
Cool! Nice body lines indeed, keepin' the trim or filling and smoothing? You have a paint theme picked out?
REDD is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2015, 10:37 AM   #9
Bus Nut
 
PDBreske's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Ocala, FL
Posts: 593
Year: 1995
Coachwork: Bookmobile body by Farber
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: Navistar DT466/Alison MT643
Rated Cap: 1
This is so cool!
__________________
.
Read about the "Camel" RV Conversion project!

My first passion is photography. Visit my website to see some of my work.
.
PDBreske is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2015, 10:37 AM   #10
New Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 4
trying to keep the trim on the car, have some extra piece to fit in where needed (where door handles used to be)
as for paint, we used Tremclad on the bus, rolled and brushed on. "Recreational White" and we mixed the brown and red 1:1 to get this 'burgundy'..
the car will be mostly 'recreational white' with a thin stripe of 'burgundy' on either side of the trim
roof of the car will be covered in solar panels

--this is my first bus project. i'm having so much fun! and i have 2 more buses in the yard! (1951 & 1980 internationals)
redbeerd is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:05 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.