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Old 11-18-2019, 03:34 PM   #1
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Location: California, Bay Area
Posts: 104
Cutaway vs Conventional Dognose & interior usable space

Space is obviously at a premium on these short buses.



From just looking at pictures its hard to tell which style is more efficient.. Which body style is more efficient when it comes to usable interior space for a given exterior length. Do you gain interior space with a 20ft cutaway van compared with a 20ft conventional bus? are they pretty much equal? Any subtleties to be aware of?
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Old 11-18-2019, 03:55 PM   #2
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Sep 2018
Posts: 789
Year: 2007
Coachwork: Thomas Built
Chassis: Minotour
Engine: Chevy Express 3500 6.6l
In my 5 window Thomas I have 14 feet behind the driver’s seat. It’s 90 inches wide and has a 6’2” ceiling at it’s center.

I think that you might find some variation of course, but don’t count windows. A 6 window Mudbus is only 6” longer.

The Collins cutaway is preferable IMO for its flatter more uniform ceiling height.

One aspect that I didn’t consider and probably gets overlooked is under body space for tanks and other things. In a short bus it’s tight and will affect tank capacities and toilet choices that will ultimately limit time untethered. Some of this can be solved with engineering, but expect to spend lots of hours examining and measuring for placement and then searching for the right size thing you need.
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Old 11-18-2019, 04:45 PM   #3
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Location: California, Bay Area
Posts: 104
Thanks Danjo, its useful to hear some actual specifics. People tend to always talk in windows/passenger capacity which to me doesn't seem like a very useful indicator when measurements are so much more precise/relevant.


Assuming your are talking about a Thomas cutaway, I'm surprised about the ceiling height, that is quite good, Thomas cutaways always struck me as lower profile compared with collins and bluebird buses.


Do you know what the overall exterior length of your bus is? Do you have a flat floor or wheel wells?
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Old 11-18-2019, 05:59 PM   #4
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Sep 2018
Posts: 789
Year: 2007
Coachwork: Thomas Built
Chassis: Minotour
Engine: Chevy Express 3500 6.6l
Quote:
Originally Posted by dzl_ View Post
Do you know what the overall exterior length of your bus is? Do you have a flat floor or wheel wells?
21 feet. It was a wheelchair bus so no wheel wells.
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Old 11-18-2019, 07:47 PM   #5
Bus Geek
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Eastern WA
Posts: 5,774
Year: 2002
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: All American RE (A3RE)
Engine: Cummins ISC (8.3)
Rated Cap: 72
I bought a Thomas cutaway on the E450 chassis. I loved driving it. It has a shorter turning radius and rides better than my pickup.

Then I had to turn a wrench on it. Then I sold it.

They can be a bit challenging to work on. I talked to the gent that oversaw the fleet for the local power company. He told me that for service that required good access to the engine they would lift the cab off of the chassis.

I wanted a short bus and still do. I sold the cutaway and am looking for a 5-6 window CE bus.

Good luck.
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Old 11-18-2019, 09:15 PM   #6
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Join Date: Jun 2016
Location: N.C.
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Year: 1997
Coachwork: Bluebird
Engine: DT466E
Rated Cap: 34
For comparison, my 6 window 3800 is 24' exterior, 15' rear door to back of driver's seat.

Beefier suspension than a cutaway, and more room to hang things underneath.
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