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Old 10-07-2016, 06:00 PM   #1
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Looks big but is still short?

I'm wanting to purchase a short bus but one with higher clearance and a handicap lift on the front pretty much like this: Public Surplus: Auction #1696664
I'm wondering though are these short big boys still only 17 feet? Also, does anyone know if there is any chance that some were made with gas engines? I really want one that's gas because in my travels it's inevitable that somewhere sometime we're breaking down and I've had better luck finding help in random towns when it comes to that kind of engine. I would rather have the engine out front like this instead of inside right next to you like the traditional little ones. A couple of friends of mine just finished their short bus and drove across the country and got in a double head on collision. The driver was crushed by the engine being so close to him. He lived but it's pretty bad. Maybe these are things people don't normally think about..
I assume they have a little more headroom like 6 foot 4 inches in comparison with a regular short bus. Honestly, if I could find one just like my E450 shuttle bus but short and not fiberglass that would be the best of both worlds. The headroom on that one that I currently have has to be about 8 feet but not being able to build and drill into metal presents its own problems.
Someone tell me that a 17 foot long metal shuttle bus with eight feet of headroom exists!
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Old 11-21-2016, 03:33 PM   #2
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I believe this is what they call a Type-B school bus. I could be wrong.
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Old 11-21-2016, 04:01 PM   #3
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It's a type C shorty. Type B buses are built on medium truck chassis (think bread truck), while A's are the pickup/van chassis with bus bodies on them. And to round out the list, the transit-style buses are type D.
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Old 11-21-2016, 04:06 PM   #4
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Never heard of 8' of headroom in a skoolie...but I could be wrong. (?)
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Old 11-21-2016, 04:10 PM   #5
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Only if you raise the roof. 6.5 feet is about the most you're gonna get on a factory build.
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Old 11-21-2016, 04:13 PM   #6
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Well for me, fiberglass body is what I have and what I seek. I live in the pacific NW and not having to worry about rust on the body is a huge advantage, I see people sometimes critical of fiberglass bodies, but for many reasons from structural integrity to lack of rust it is all superior to me, but to each his own.
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Old 11-21-2016, 05:04 PM   #7
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Fiberglass body isn't my thing, but the fact it doesn't rust is a major advantage of having one, and the lighter weight is another.... but it isn't gonna have the strength of a steel body.

If fiberglass is what you want, then all power to you, not gonna say you're wrong or right since if it's what you want it's right for you. After all you're doing it to please yourself, not other people.
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Old 11-21-2016, 05:37 PM   #8
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The problem with fiberglass bodies that I've seen is that they have lots of wood or cardboard cores that can rot and lots of them have plywood floors with nothing underneath.. They seem to be quite a bit more under built than the normal school buses.

It you find a bus with a T444e you'll have help anywhere there's anyone, especially in rural areas. It's 90% similar to the 7.3l Powerstroke found in late 90s to late 00s Ford F250s and up.
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Old 11-21-2016, 07:35 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jazty View Post
The problem with fiberglass bodies that I've seen is that they have lots of wood or cardboard cores that can rot and lots of them have plywood floors with nothing underneath.. They seem to be quite a bit more under built than the normal school buses.

It you find a bus with a T444e you'll have help anywhere there's anyone, especially in rural areas. It's 90% similar to the 7.3l Powerstroke found in late 90s to late 00s Ford F250s and up.
I have owned a short fiberglass bus since the 80s in the rainy seattle area and never had the problems you describe.
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Old 11-21-2016, 08:06 PM   #10
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depends on the fiberglas..corvettes are 'real' figberglass, many boats are not - there is a wood core. And where you have a hole (bolt for mounting anything) water can get in and rot the core.
Very common on transoms of power boats and decks of sail boats- the wood core is there for strength.

I've not examined a bus body but would think they'd be like corvettes - all fiberglass.

As for strength, school buses are way stronger than just about anything else on the road. More like they're overbilt that to say other things are underbuilt.
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