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Old 01-14-2012, 11:35 AM   #81
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Re: Green Energy Project

Glad to see y'all finally found a warm climate... or at least some warm water to soak in. There are a lot of natural hot springs in the northwest if you're heading out that way. Enjoy!
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Old 02-06-2012, 11:41 PM   #82
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Join Date: Jun 2011
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Chassis: Chevy Van G30
Engine: 6.2L
Re: Green Energy Project

We finally found a host in CA and had planned to leave this past Saturday, but a new mechanical problem has developed. The last week or so I noticed the bus lurching when shifting gears, then an ominous clank sound when shifting into overdrive. The lurching is barely noticeable if I let off the gas while it shifts, but the clank remains... over the past few days its grown louder. Saturday I decided it was too risky to try and make it through the mountains heading to San Diego, so we're hanging out in AZ a little longer while it gets inspected. Should know whats wrong tomorrow (hopefully). Right now just hearing the word transmission makes my stomach turn.. so wish me luck!

On a lighter note, Phoenix has been awesome! We have made some really great friends and I found some really cool art gigs. I renewed my license when we got here (because VA is dumb and wanted me to fly back for a vision test! no really... apparently there are no exceptions.. ) and now I don't need to renew until 2052! 40 YEARS!! compared to every 6 in VA thats crazy. Here are some highlights in picture form:


Thats me with vinyl toy artist Huck Gee at one of his book signings, if your not familiar you should visit his site: http://huckgee.com/ He makes some really cool art toys.


Mural job for my new friend Kevin, among other paintings I did here he also is setting me up with some work when we get to CA which is awesome!!


We're riding our bikes everywhere now and have mastered hanging them in the light rail trains which are so cool! I wish we had one in Richmond.


This is a power station we toured at Stara Technologies who are researching alternative energy sources for the military among others.


Another art gig, painting logos..


I've managed to get some more paint time on the bus.. she's about half way covered now.


Celebrated my 25th birthday with new friends!


My dad came to visit one weekend between work meetings in CA and took Angie and I up to Sedona, beautiful! This is a picture of a giant sinkhole we came across near coffeepot rock.

The only other news is that our scooters for sale. Partly in anticipation for the enormous maintenance bill I'm sure is coming, and partly because we really do bike everywhere now and haven't driven the scooter since Albuquerque. However, this has raised yet another problem.. I don't have a title for it. The guy I bought it from didn't have one, and in VA you don't need to register or have a license for anything 50cc or under so I didn't bother. However, AZ (and CA) requires registration so everyone that calls about the ad asks if I have a title. I drove the scooter over to the MVD today just to see what it will take to get one but I got there too late for the inspection. Most likely when I go back they'll tell me I have to do a bond title, which will probably be more money than its worth for me but I'll post what I happens next time.
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Old 02-07-2012, 06:47 AM   #83
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Re: Green Energy Project

Thank you for the update,great pics and stories...one question...what does the tag art on the nose wrap say?I don't speak inner city

You are very talented,good luck in Ca...when you get there
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Old 02-08-2012, 12:23 AM   #84
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Re: Green Energy Project

Bansil- It says 'living sustainably' but its mostly just letter practice for me. I'm pretty new to can work, and while I find graffiti lettering interesting I don't use it much in my own work. I've always seen this bus as canvas space for me to practice can work, and it will undoubtedly get covered again and again. If you would like to see more of my art you can visit my website @ http://www.johnsondaniel.com

Igloo- Yea I wondered what they would have done if I just neglected to mention I was from VA because they ran the VIN through AZ database and obviously it didn't come up as stolen. If I had left that out maybe they would have been satisfied.. who knows. As it stands, I called VA DMV and they said I will have to submit a form that gets them to do a search for the last known title holder, then DMV sends that person a letter requesting that they come to DMV and transfer the title. The odds of the person actually being located by itself are unlikely.. they could have moved out of state, not forwarded their new address, they could have died, or more likely than anything lost the original title. Even if they thought they MIGHT have the title somewhere in some box... would they bother tearing apart their house looking for it for some random kid in AZ? So unless someone wants it for parts or is moving to another state that doesn't require registration then im probably just going to keep it till I get home. We'll see.

I haven't received the actual bill yet, but Aamaco called earlier today and told me the transmission is shot. They gave me two options: Rebuild with a 12month warranty for $2600 or 'Re-manufacturer' it for a 3year warranty $2900. The difference in price seemed minimal for the warranty range difference and supposedly they will upgrade any parts that have been updated since the original transmission was installed 20years ago... So thats what I went for. Its going to mean some frugal spending in the months ahead... probably for the rest of the trip... but as long as I can still find side work and make all my payments we'll try to soldier on. If anyone is interested in some artwork... I can paint a really cool Skoolie portrait for you!!!!!
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Old 02-08-2012, 06:47 AM   #85
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Re: Green Energy Project

That seems awful $$ doesn't it have a TH400(TH350 same R&R) in it? they should be able to have it out and on the table in less than a 1/2 hr(driveshaft,1 nut for shifter,6 crossmember bolts,4 dust cover bolts,3 or 4 torque conv bolts,2 lines and speedo); tear it apart,clean and have back together and reinstalled in 1 day
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Old 02-08-2012, 10:02 AM   #86
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Re: Green Energy Project

You can easily rebuild a turbo 400 or 350 transmission yourself, but you need some bushing drivers or make your own, and a clamping device to release the snap rings, and some good snap ring pliers, n torque wrench.

I started doing my own for my street rods because a few years ago i paid a shop to do one, and they had 3 things wrong with it when it wouldnt work in a street rod, and i tore it down...
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Old 02-08-2012, 11:52 AM   #87
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Re: Green Energy Project

They said the transmission had a Jasper tag and was one step down from an Allison, I don't know what that means really.
If we were home I might attempt to fix it myself, although I'm not confident I could. I have zero mechanical experience except the few minor things I've managed to fix along the trip so far. But since I have no tools, and I'm staying on someone else's property passed the agreed upon time, and I didn't want to risk be stranded in the mountains crossing into CA I really didn't have much of a choice. However, the shop also mentioned a slightly leaking injector and a coolant leak somewhere near the back of the engine... perhaps when we make it to CA I will call upon the collective knowledge of skoolie.net and try to fix those myself.
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Old 02-09-2012, 11:01 AM   #88
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Re: Green Energy Project

first you need to know the exact transmission you have... should be listed on the data plate..
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Old 02-09-2012, 07:08 PM   #89
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Re: Green Energy Project

Your bus is on the Chevy G30 Van chassis.
More likely you have a 4L80E "diesel" programmed trans in it.

This trans is used in allot of vehicles at one ton size. Chevy P-30 vans etc..
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Old 02-10-2012, 10:48 AM   #90
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Re: Green Energy Project

those are good transmissions, but you should replace some of the stock parts with the good stuff on rebuild...
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