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Old 11-21-2015, 11:47 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Oakland, CA
Posts: 66
Year: 2002
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Ford E-450 Super Duty
Engine: PowerStroke 7.3L Turbo Diesel
Rated Cap: 14,000 lbs
Low's Moto Hauler

Just got home with my new project! Like I need another one, but this one will haul some of my other projects!

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Old 11-22-2015, 12:27 AM   #2
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Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Oakland, CA
Posts: 66
Year: 2002
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Ford E-450 Super Duty
Engine: PowerStroke 7.3L Turbo Diesel
Rated Cap: 14,000 lbs
I don't know much about these and will have to study up on some of the specialized lingo. What I do know so far is:

2002 Ford E-450 w/Thomas shell
PowerStroke 7.3liter Turbo Diesel
119,000 miles

It was still in service in San Diego, CA as of 4/2015. It was operated by both First Student & LaidLaw. A couple months ago the guy I got it from bought it and moved it up to Lake Tahoe, but his landlord was not happy about it.

Overall plan is to turn it into a moto hauler and support vehicle. I ride just about any kind of moto I can get my hands on. I recently started getting more into dirtbikes. The idea with this thing is to be able to put (3-4) dirtbikes the back portion (maybe a small trailer one day) and load 4-8 of us in the front. It will also hold our support/camp gear. Im thinking afold down counter in the back that will be used for a large campstove or rebuilding a carburator. Nothing too fancy, very functional, but I do get caught up in my toys/projects. Thank goodness my girlfriend is supportive, encouraging and love to ride on her bikes as much as I do on mine!

Its also likely to take on the look of an apocalypse survival vehicle.

My to be fixed list is short, so far:
-replace all dash bulbs(half are out)
-replace driver door lock cylinder(ignition key doesnt fit)
-secure passenger load door
-secure rear door
-replace headlights/maybe upgrade
-replace all running/turn/brake bulbs
-swap out right side run/brake lens to match the left side
-right side mirror electrics
-remount passenger door mechanicals(tons of vibrations & noise)

To be removed:
-all but (4) double seats
-half wall behind driver seat
-front quarter dome mirrors
-Stop Sign
-lettering

Additions/upgrades/etc
-moto wheel chocks (auto locking type)
-tye down points
-Stereo & speakers
-(3) ProComp 8" 130watt Off Road lights (already owned)
-Limo tint bottom half of rear side windows (to hide the motos)
-folding service/cooking counter
-rear view camera
-front Bull Bar style bumper (like on the big rigs in Mexico, not the soccer Mom style)(DREAM LIST)
-roof rack/race viewing platform(roof escape hatch access)(DREAM LIST)
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Old 11-22-2015, 02:28 AM   #3
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Oakland, CA
Posts: 66
Year: 2002
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Ford E-450 Super Duty
Engine: PowerStroke 7.3L Turbo Diesel
Rated Cap: 14,000 lbs
Funny thing is, I used to play alot of paintball and even founded a team....
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2002 Ford E450 SuperDuty 7.3L PSD Turbo 5window Shorty
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Old 11-22-2015, 09:48 AM   #4
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Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: ...little north of Toronto Ontario
Posts: 341
Year: 2000
Coachwork: Thomsass
Chassis: Freightshaker
Engine: 5.9 cummins 5 speed
Rated Cap: 6 passenger 2 ATV's
Welcome, building a toy hauler myself for ATV's. Check out "Whitey the toy hauler" these guys did a great build [to me anyway] for haulin' road/dirt bikes.

I've got got family in LA, Whittier and Desert Hot Springs, haven't been there since the early 70's....

I've got got buddies that play in a garage band called "SHORT BUS"
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Old 11-24-2015, 01:07 AM   #5
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Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Oakland, CA
Posts: 66
Year: 2002
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Ford E-450 Super Duty
Engine: PowerStroke 7.3L Turbo Diesel
Rated Cap: 14,000 lbs
Quote:
Originally Posted by REDD View Post
Welcome, building a toy hauler myself for ATV's. Check out "Whitey the toy hauler" these guys did a great build [to me anyway] for haulin' road/dirt bikes.

I've got got family in LA, Whittier and Desert Hot Springs, haven't been there since the early 70's....

I've got got buddies that play in a garage band called "SHORT BUS"
Thanks REDD! I definitely like whats been done on Whitey, but wish it wasnt a recap, but as it was being built
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Old 11-24-2015, 01:28 AM   #6
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Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Oakland, CA
Posts: 66
Year: 2002
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Ford E-450 Super Duty
Engine: PowerStroke 7.3L Turbo Diesel
Rated Cap: 14,000 lbs
Most of yesterday was spent at "church", in other words, riding with good friends. But towards the end my buddy and I headed home and spent a couple hours on the bus. Not much was actually done, but we looked alot of stuff over, measured things and just poked around. The big thing we discussed was the ramp for loading bikes, we now have a few ideas on hinging it to the rear bumper. That was it will not take up storage space inside and will add a level of security to the back door.

Today, after work I got it insured and registered. Once I got home, I did alot of stuff.
-Removed front 1/4 dome mirrors and brackets
-Removed Stop Sign
-Removed old front license plate (stripped bolts)
-Painted the grill Satin Black
-Moved front/top red lenses to the rear
-Moved rear/top amber lenses to the front
-Cleaned windshield & driver door windows w/ Windex and razor blade
-Removed some of excessive stickers from the cabin area
-Fitted a moto grip to the Pass Door Handle
-Cleaned garbage and misc hardware out of the cupholders

Tomorrow, I plan to remove the drivers door lock cylinder and get it to the locksmith for a new key, then I can work on making the rest of the doors secure. Probably give the doghouse and dash a good cleansing, cause its pretty nasty! I also hope to take the heatgun to the lettering and have that gone.

Its shaping up real good! On Thursday morning, Im taking it from Oakland to Redding to see my Grandpa. its a bit over 250 miles each way.


A friend who had a 30something foot bus a few years back told me that California requires you to repaint the bus any color other than yellow. Can anyone confirm this? I really dont like the yellow, but Im not looking forward to repainting it either. If I do, it will probably goto a Satin Tan/Desert, but a Satin Medium Grey is also a possibility.
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Old 11-26-2015, 01:11 AM   #7
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Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Oakland, CA
Posts: 66
Year: 2002
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Ford E-450 Super Duty
Engine: PowerStroke 7.3L Turbo Diesel
Rated Cap: 14,000 lbs
Last night, I did alot of general cleaning on the cabin area, removed old stickers, mounted a RamMount phone holder to existing holes in the dash, got rid of the noises in the access panels above the cabin.
I also stopped by an auto parts and got new Taillight and dash bulbs, cause I like knowing those are new! I also got the Drivers Door Lock Cylinder, so I can actually lock it, finally.

Today, I spent hours on the phone with many insurance companys, but finally got that resolved. Installing new headlights, but ones that allow me to use any H4 bulbs. As well, they are blacked out and have LEDs that can be used as DayTimeRun, Turn Signals or any other 12volt powersource, $45 on Ebay. The smoked front corners should be here on Friday.
When I was driving home from Tahoe on Saturday, the volt gauge was reading a bit high and had me a little concerned, but I put a meter on the battery and its got 14.5 volts while idling, so no more worries!

I will try and get some pics soon, cause I know how much most of us want to see pics. Its just ben too dark for my camera/phone.
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Old 11-26-2015, 11:14 AM   #8
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Stony Plain Alberta Canada
Posts: 2,939
Year: 1992
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: TC2000 FE
Engine: 190hp 5.9 Cummins
Rated Cap: 72
Did you have a bunch of fans or other electrical running in the bus?

14.5 is a overcharge, meaning you have a power drain somewhere.

This will burn up your alternator, and boil your battery to death.

Nat
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Old 11-26-2015, 11:27 PM   #9
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Oakland, CA
Posts: 66
Year: 2002
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Ford E-450 Super Duty
Engine: PowerStroke 7.3L Turbo Diesel
Rated Cap: 14,000 lbs
Quote:
Originally Posted by nat_ster View Post
Did you have a bunch of fans or other electrical running in the bus?

14.5 is a overcharge, meaning you have a power drain somewhere.

This will burn up your alternator, and boil your battery to death.

Nat
Hmm, not sure where your info is coming from. I was taught in automotive school 25 yrs ago and worked as a mechanic for a number of years. But I doubted myself and looked at a few sites, which backed up my memory. Less than 14 is not charging, above 14.7 is cooking the battery.

I did take my measurement on the cold engine during fast warm up, so it is more likely to be down near 14.3 during a warm idle.
But what I really wanted to know was that it wasnt up at the 16volts that the dash gauge was showing
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Old 11-27-2015, 02:22 AM   #10
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Stony Plain Alberta Canada
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Chassis: TC2000 FE
Engine: 190hp 5.9 Cummins
Rated Cap: 72
14.3 is the threshold I was trained to be correct.

Only if under high load should it be over that.

Sounds like you got it under control. Carry on.

Nat
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