I'm not sure if my bus would be a short bus or a full sized bus, so I figured maybe I'll call it a short bus conversion?
I've lurked around this forum here and there for awhile, but have been too shy since there seems to be such a high quality of work everyone does on their busses. However I figure now is a good time to begin logging my progress.
A little bit about myself: I'm an impulsive idiot who doesn't know what I'm doing most of the time. I don't think things through, and I will frequently abandon a project I start after the boredom kicks in. It's also worth noting, I don't know a lick about carpentry or mechanics.
I bought this bus around November of 2013, I'm ashamed to say that I don't have any of the before pictures, my wife does but she can't get them off icloud. I'll get them on here eventually.
I was trying to explain to a coworker at my old job doing Japanese food sales over lunch about my dream to live inside a bus. I was searching craigslist for buss's to show her and stumbled across an ad with a bus with a deck on the roof, and hardwood inside. Without looking into the engine, transmission, or any other fine details, I drove up to Everett WA and bought this bus for 1700 and a 30 pack of Nattie Ice beer. We all enjoyed a beer while they explained to me how to use the airbrakes and I drove the bus home.
Anyway here are some pictures I took after some work I did around spring of 2014.
Here's a picture my wife took when we took the bus down to the redwoods, there's a funny story to this, but I'll wait until I can get my wife's picture before sharing.
My 2014 Accomplishments
I painted the bus, and leveled the back. (I'll get pictures for you guys soon), the bus was leaking heavily, I did not really resolve this issue for a long time.
My 2015 Accomplishments
I waterproofed the majority of the bus, using a lot of caulk and roof sealent. I have coated the roof with some cheap rustoleum paint from home depot, and stripped out the wall and ceiling insulation.
I'm currently managing a restaurant in Federal way WA, and my boss and I recently negotiated an hour decrease from 62 hour work week down to 54 Hour. To celebrate this, I bought myself a shoplight, angle grinder, and decided to strip the bus down. I have now engaged in a ritual for about 4 days where I come home and get a few hours of work in. Since last Thursday, I have stripped out most of the floors, and I am hoping to tackle the rust within the following week.
My current schedule looks something like so,
February: Complete stripping the bus down as much as possible: Get it as close as possible to a metal box. Clean the rust, and give everything a good scrub.
March: Finish waterproofing (currently about 98%) Insulate the floor of the bus, and reapply new plywood flooring, map out rough living plan.
My first few questions for you guys are:
1. I would like to cover some of the windows with sheet metal, from reading online it seems that 18-20 gauge metal is an acceptable gauge, is this something I can get on this spring? Or is it within my best interest to do this when it's hotter outside?
2. I still can't decide if I should try to replace the bus windows with RV windows, I was thinking about making some sort of insulating covers for the windows with wall insulation that would fold down from somewhere, or maybe just velcro onto the windows, would this provide reasonable insulation assuming I cover the uninsulated space adequately?
I just asked my wife to send me some pictures of the bus today, I hope to update this again before I get off work today.