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Old 07-29-2011, 07:52 AM   #11
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 124
Year: 1999
Coachwork: ElDorado
Chassis: Chevy P30
Engine: 7.4 liter 454 Chevy
Rated Cap: 24
Re: 1999 Chevy Escort FE Bus Conversion

info sent about the wiring diagrams.
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Old 09-04-2011, 07:02 AM   #12
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 124
Year: 1999
Coachwork: ElDorado
Chassis: Chevy P30
Engine: 7.4 liter 454 Chevy
Rated Cap: 24
Re: 1999 Chevy Escort FE Bus Conversion

Hi, Sorry for the delay. Work kicked me out of state for a while and I bbbaaaccckkk.
The wife was giving me the stink eye from the large pile of goodies that arrived while I was gone - WOW like Christmas all over and early too.
I got the seats out this weekend - neighbors thought a tire shop opened for business next door with all the compressor and air wrench noises; BUT love those high torque air wrenches. If it won't unscrew it shears them off.
They are really cool about it though and keep watching what goes on.

I swear I thought I had cleaned the bus out really good from the junk from the previous owner:

But I had to put on a dust mask from the flour like dust being raised. Also a very good Idea to use knee protectors. With them on you can crawl around like a crab running from a pot on your knees and that protruding bolt won't poke holes in your knees.

I lost the light and light on cell phone camera didn't work well so here's some bad pictures of the cleaned out insides:

I have my priorities straight; the new GE frig on the right all stocked up with beer; I hope the wife doesn't find it LoL.
BUT it makes a good bribes for friends to come over to help; I have to remember to lock the frig first though.


Here is some pictures where I bought the bus from the previous owner - it had sat for five years.
I thought I would get tetanus just looking at it; but the bus grew on me.





What I have also found out the Chevy P30 chassis is used on allot of motor homes like the 1995 Winnebago.



7.4 Liter or 454 Big Block Fuel Injected Chevy Motor. In the left upper you can see it has not one but two AC compressors - one for the front and one for the rear of the bus.



I am looking at installing Solar cells on the roof and want as much wattage I can get. The Thin film ones are great; peal and stick but the bus is too short for the six 134 watt ea I wanted. they are 15 plus feet long and 16'' wide. The store bough solar panels in the 230 watt range are stupid expensive and I bought 200 4 watt 6x6 cells from ebay. That should give me 600-80o watts output. I do electronics and plan to assemble the panels. I returned the 8D batteries after I found out they weren't a good choice and went with 6 volt deep cycle golf cart batteries. I am going to start out with six and see what happens; maybe go to 8 or ten. I bought a MSW inverter rated at 2000-2500 continuous watts and surge to 5000 watts and will be thrashing it under a load from an AC unit to see what happens. The thing was a little over $100.00 and will see if it holds up; if it does I plan on buying another and setting them up in parallel; run one one one circuit and another on another circuit. I am working to run as much as everything I can on 12v and use the inverters when I have no choice. 12v appliances are stupid expensive. I found out an inverter will pull at a minimum of 90 amps per 1000 watts output.
In the plans is to make a pedestal on the right side of the doghouse for the co-pilot, using one of the removed bus seats with seat belts and looking at extending the frame in back out about 4-5 feet for a cargo deck; to carry my motorcycle and two 100lb propane tanks and gen-set 6000/7000 ( already have that for running the house for power outages ).
I kinda wish the bus had been about ten feet longer but at $1,000.00 price I got a deal. I got all to stupid wangling done with the DOT for a commercial exemption on the bus and have the permit for that, insurance and registration- the nice lady at the DMV wasn't really nice and despite the exemption stated I still had to pay the commercial registration on the bus 700.00.I asked where it stated that in the law and she refused to show me ( I haven't given up; wrote a letter to the Director of the DMV for the statues ) That was a Friday; the following Monday the new Gov. ( I didn't vote for that ahole) raised the weight tax by 100% so next year the reg. will be double at a minimum. Yea they know how to fix the economy-NOT..
Everybodies registration about doubled. Weight tax went from 1.25 @ Lb. to 2.25 @ Lb.
Tomorrow I back at it breaking things so I can build things.
Aloha
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Old 09-30-2011, 09:05 PM   #13
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 124
Year: 1999
Coachwork: ElDorado
Chassis: Chevy P30
Engine: 7.4 liter 454 Chevy
Rated Cap: 24
Re: 1999 Chevy Escort FE Bus Conversion

I haven't been able to do much on the bus for the past few weeks. Had an accident and right foot is busted. Doc says NO WEIGHT ON IT. I hope it heals; if not they are gonna slice and dice and drill to put pins in it.
The bus is full of goodies just waiting to be installed; but can't at this time.
NOW the landlord is starting to gripe about the bus even though everything is nice and neat; nothing strewing around the outside of it.
I'll try doing some things where I can sit there and work.
Maybe assemble all those 1KW worth of 6x6 4 watt solar cells I bought into panels.
Assemble them into 72 cells per panel; makes about four panels at around 1KW rating.
Realistically I expect an average of around 800 watts per day where I am or more..
I was looking at Dows slygard and WOW it is expensive.
There is a similar product and not much cheaper either.
I am reading on people using marine 300 as an encapsulate for the cells on the panel?
Epoxy Resin that is clear and UV resistant. Way cheaper than the silicone mentioned.
There is a laminate process that uses a film called EVA; BUT that is also expensive for some reason.
THAT uses a vacuum oven, etc.
I thought to make an air tight solar oven big enough to hold a panel and use an AC vacuum pump which I have to pull the air out and let it cook to the laminates adhesion temp with a flat weight on the film over the cells then a backing on the cells.You would have to sandwich the cell array between the EVA and set it down then the weight on them - very careful though cells are as fragile as light bulbs.. I've seen people doing it on youtube and will make a test panel to see what happens.
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Old 11-01-2011, 11:12 PM   #14
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Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 1
Year: 1997
Coachwork: Chevrolet
Chassis: P30
Engine: Chevy 454 V8
Re: 1999 Chevy Escort FE Bus Conversion

I just bought a 1997 Chevy Escort FE Bus and would love it if you could shoot me the wiring diagram for this bus. Thanks so much!

Gary McFarland
mykeljordan@gmail.com
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Old 12-19-2011, 08:51 AM   #15
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 124
Year: 1999
Coachwork: ElDorado
Chassis: Chevy P30
Engine: 7.4 liter 454 Chevy
Rated Cap: 24
Re: 1999 Chevy Escort FE Bus Conversion

Well still have the cast on my foot and leg; x-rays show fracture worse and Doc. still messing around. HMO's screw around and won't fix a problem while it is small and will maybe finally fix it when it is way way worse.
So with the wife as a helper I did a check as previously mentioned on the buses AC system. Pump it down to 30Hg vacuum for an hour to boil out any water.
Charged it with a test charge of R290 ( propane ). Yes took precautions with a number of fire extinguishers present and a charged water hose; nothing happened. What blew my mind was the AC compressor ran way more quiet; Hssss and not that 134a growl you get. The head pressure was way lower and it blew like a freezer.
There is allot of controversy over using HC - propane and similar types of refrigerants and HF or HFC's. As for 134a when exposed to heat like on an exhaust manifold it breaks down into some very very bad gas. Lethal type of gas.
The refrigerant Freeze12 and other similar types are in reality "purified" PROPANE and or Propane Butane mix.. Read up on it.
The system will be recharged with 134a to be "legal". Propane has almost ZERO greenhouse effect and is used by ALLOT of countries for refrigerant gas R290.
I know all the arguments about "propane" flammability and "explosive" nature 134a will also do that. You will get that when combined with air. As for me and me only using 12-16 ounces compared to the many many gallons of gasoline in a tank in my bus doesn't scare me.
it mixed with the pag oil and I had no problems.
If it is ever used in vehicle in the USA I would see a propane leak detector in the vehicles passenger compartment; propane is heavier than air and will seek the lowest point to collect.
My opinion is EPA and politics. 134a a 30lb jug now costs in the region of $300.00 when about two years ago it was 90-100. DuPont is the sole patent holder of 134A.
You have to construct a 100 million dollar plant to make 134A. Propane nada zip on plant construction.
I am aware this is getting off topic some what; but I am mentioning what I did and I AM IN NO WAY TELLING YOU SHOULD DO THE SAME.
I did this due to the very high cost of 134A and used an "alternative" R290 just to test my AC for leaks - found a bad hose and replaced it. Got the system all tight and pumped it back down and charged with 134A.
I have decided to keep the buses AC; two separate systems and use it while driving. The thing blows an incredible amount of cold air from the back unit. Factory lists 32,000BTU or at 70,000BTU unit and I think I got the 70,000BTU unit. I will still install a "window" unit in the back center window to use while parked.
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