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Old 12-27-2017, 10:26 AM   #11
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Before you close the window deletes off on the inside, I would strongly recommend you get some urethane sealant and lay a heavy bead all the way around them. Silicone should not be used as a seam sealant. Does not hold up well at all.
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Old 12-27-2017, 05:02 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tango View Post
Before you close the window deletes off on the inside, I would strongly recommend you get some urethane sealant and lay a heavy bead all the way around them. Silicone should not be used as a seam sealant. Does not hold up well at all.
This is good advice!
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Old 12-28-2017, 10:50 PM   #13
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Join Date: Jul 2017
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Day 2

I took the advice of Tango and put urethane sealant along the inside edge of the metal window coverings. We also replaced the broken window in the back with metal (see the picture below), and though we had a bit of an issue with tack welding it, it is in place and sealed up. Strange, I really liked the smell of the sealant.

I ran into an issue that I should've known about, but somehow you don't always pick up on obvious things when you go through build threads--the chair rail support on the bottom of the wall. I was going to take an angle grinder and just get rid of it, but then I noticed it was welded to the frame, so I took an angle grinder to the rail in order to make it flush to the wall. This was a task... Probably two hours spent on this just in order to make the framing a touch easier. I cut it off, then I took a grinder to smooth it out the whole way down. I'm not doing this on the other side.



I finished removing all the wall paneling and took out all of the fiberglass "insulation" from the walls, cleaning the adhesive off with acetone. Once I had everything looking clean, I turned to the floors. Removing the old rubber and wooden floors was worse than I thought it would be. The screws would either spin or be completely frozen. The rubber was not glued down, but it was pretty well stuck on the wood due to age, and was really brittle. Once the fir piece of wood came up, the next one was much easier.

I have to admit, the floor does not look like I expected it to look. In other build threads, I've seen corrugated floors and I've seen flat floors, but these have these weird flat pieces welded to the top of the corrugated floor to support the seats. I think the floor is aluminum and the flat pieces are steel, but there is noticeable rust on these plates. The actual floor is in surprisingly good shape for a 26 year old bus, though the bad photo quality and dirt make it looks a bit worse than it is.



I am not sure what I want to do to make this subfloor. I am thinking of taking a wire wheel to the rust on the flat pieces all the way around, then putting down some wood to make it the same level as the metal. Alternatively, I could just grind these steel plates off and then take a wire brush to any remaining rust. I was originally going to do a 1/2" rigid insulation and 1/2" wood, but with this new discovery, I am not sure what I want to do. Ideally I would like to lose as little headspace as possible, since I am 6'0 and the bus is 6'1.

I am going to mull over that (hopefully long enough for someone smart on here to make a better suggestion than me.) In the mean time, I need to remove the back piece of floor wood, and figure out how exactly I need to deal with the gas tank link on the right, and the generator on the left. I did not put the generator in place, so I am not sure exactly how it is currently in place. At worst, I can just cut the floor around it and frame around the generator.



Tomorrow, I am going to get the fuel line run for the generator and make sure I can get it operational. I need to get a spare battery to hook it up to until I get my battery bank for back there. After that, I will start insulating and framing the walls. I still haven't fully fleshed out how I am going to do this, but I am leaning toward just bulking it up and mounting furring strips along the length of the bus. I also want to put some angle brackets in to hold my lofted bed, but I am going to figure this all out tomorrow once I have a clear head to get it going.
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Old 12-29-2017, 12:40 AM   #14
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You got it going on. I kind of like how your generator is mounted. It would beat going outside on a cold morning.
It's always interesting to see how someone else puts their bus together. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 12-29-2017, 12:44 AM   #15
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Year: 1993
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Your porch looks like my garage currently. Lol

Nice project!

What engine/trans does you bus have? I was reading your mechanical to-dos and saw that you were going to have the transmission flushed. I strongly suggest that you don't as power flushing (hooking up to a flush machine)typically causes more harm then good.

If I had to guess, the trans is probably a 4l80e? If so, swap the pan for something with a drain plug. Change the filter and then drive it. Get a few gallons of fluid and drain/fill the pan every few days until the fluid stays clean. Change the filter again and go with it. Now if you want to toughen it up a bit (assuming its an 80e)... pick up a transgo hd-2 shift kit and a longs tru-cool 40k cooler. The shift kit will double the power handling of the transmission and the cooler will keep it much happier pushing your bus up grades and such. Getting ready for the same treatment for my E4OD in my bus.

Anyways.. keep up the good work! Looking forward to more progress.
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Old 12-29-2017, 11:48 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr4btTahoe View Post
What engine/trans does you bus have? I was reading your mechanical to-dos and saw that you were going to have the transmission flushed. I strongly suggest that you don't as power flushing (hooking up to a flush machine)typically causes more harm then good.

If I had to guess, the trans is probably a 4l80e? If so, swap the pan for something with a drain plug. Change the filter and then drive it. Get a few gallons of fluid and drain/fill the pan every few days until the fluid stays clean. Change the filter again and go with it. Now if you want to toughen it up a bit (assuming its an 80e)... pick up a transgo hd-2 shift kit and a longs tru-cool 40k cooler. The shift kit will double the power handling of the transmission and the cooler will keep it much happier pushing your bus up grades and such. Getting ready for the same treatment for my E4OD in my bus.
I'll have to get back to you on the engine/trans. I had looked this up after buying the bus and had it written down, but I have no idea where it went off to. The engine is a Chevy G30, and from a cursory Google search, it should be a 4L80E. The previous owner had left a drain pan in there which had a plug just a screw) so that might have been his plan. I had planned on doing what you're talking about by dropping the pan and replacing the filter. I did not realize I needed to keep flushing fluid, but that seems better than just doing it once.

I looked up the shift kit and cooler, and these definitely seem outside my mechanical comfort zone. I am assuming I could find someone doing these upgrades on a similar transmission (or maybe you'll have a thread on it by then :P) and get by without any specialized tools. My brother has much more experience on real car work, so maybe I will try to bribe him to come help.

Thanks for the suggestions!
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Old 12-29-2017, 03:43 PM   #17
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By flushing the fluid, I assumed you meant changing all of the fluid in the transmission via using a "flush machine". If you planned on just serving the trans (filter and pan fluid change), then multiple changes aren't needed. The way I change ALL of the fluid (pan only holds ~1/3 of the fluid) is by doing multiple pan drain and fills (with driving in between) until the fluid stays clean. Hooking up to a machine has a tendency to plug up valve bodies and shift solenoids, etc with debris that otherwise would have stayed put.

As far as the shift kit and cooler goes.. the cooler is pretty easy. The shift kit is rather involved. If you can service the trans yourself (filter and pan fluid change), then you can install the cooler. The shift kit doesn't require special tools, but does require removing the valve body for some spring/shim changes and some drilling. A transmission shop would probably charge an hour or 2 of labor to do the install. It certainly makes the transmission more robust.. doubles the holding power of the direct clutches, firms up the shifts and makes the shifts quicker (meaning less time to slip between gear changes).
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Old 12-30-2017, 12:28 AM   #18
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I mostly took the day off from work, but I did spend a bit of time with the generator. I connected it to my car and a gas tank, and it still works. I looked into running the gas line. Unfortunately it is an electric fuel pump on the tank, so I can't just tap into the line.

I am toying with the idea of creating a port about 20% from the bottom of the fuel tank or on the fill port then running a hose, but I could not find any good resources documenting this. I'm going to get under there and figure out if there is a drain port on the tank or any other good way to mount a line, but figured I would post here in case anyone with more experience has any insight.

Still haven't decided on how I want to do this subfloor, but I do plan on creating the subfloor before insulating/framing the walls. Hopefully will get a work day this weekend
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Old 02-02-2018, 09:57 AM   #19
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Day 3

Been a bit busy (and it's been really cold for the south) but finally got another weekend to get some work done. The subfloor took a lot longer than I thought it would, and I'm getting flashbacks of coughing up rust looking at these pictures.

So where were we?Oh yeh... floor mostly up, rusty plates everywhere, and just a mess everywhere. There were still two places where there was wood, under the generator and by the fuel line cover. I thought I would be able to get all of this wood out, but unfortunately the generator was mounted in such a way that the wood is not coming up. There is a hole in the floor where the generator was mounted to the chassis, but it seems to be welded well enough to essentially serve as an exterior wall. I ended up just cutting the wood as close to the generator box as possible.



Apparently, I did not get any pictures of the rust removal process, but let me tell you it was rough. An angle grinder and some 40 grit flap discs were the eventual tool of choice. Even though they're more expensive than a wire wheel, they work really well. And the 40 grit held up well enough to get through the entire bus. We removed nearly all of the surface rust from the floor, and just grinded the edges of the plates a bit so they are not as sharp on the subfloor insulation.

To prep for painting with Rustoleum rust reformer, we cleaned the floor really well with soap and water. We started with a bucket of soapy water (I don't have a hose in front of my house. ), but it was just way too much nastiness for a bucket. So we parked in front of the neighbors house while they were gone, borrowed their hose, and let all the soapy water drain into the street. I feel a bit bad about that, but it would have taken forever otherwise. After letting it dry, we painted the floor. (not the best picture. I was obviously too tired to care about documenting at this point)



This was a long day, where it seemed like we did not do much. Face masks did not do all that well at preventing rust, and I had black cones along my face showing nasty air entering my nostrils. But it's done now, which is a huge relief.
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Old 02-02-2018, 10:22 AM   #20
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Day 4

Next step, putting down hard foam insulation and tongue-in-groove plywood. Originally, I was going to go with 1/2" of each, and the wood was going to be pressed plywood. But they did not have exactly what I needed, and I was feeling cheap so I went with 3/4" tongue-in-groove OSB. We pieced the pink stuff down on the floor, trying to make sure no seams were on uneven places of the floor. The tricky areas were the front, the generator, and the gas line cover, but I will get to these later.






Once all this was cut, time for the wood. Because the wood actually goes further front than the insulation, 3x4' sheets were too short. We knew we'd be piecing some spots without tongue in groove, but the back is just storage, so I did not really have any issue with that, mainly concerned about high traffic areas. First board was the hardest around the stairs, doghouse, drivers seat, and a corner. We made used about 3' of the board to not waste a tongued edge, and made sure to leave enough room to have strength on the side of the stairs. I'm pretty happy with how it turned out in the front, matching the shape of the doghouse.



The space at the stairs is still weird. It is not sloped, so we put pink stuff down to the bottom of the slope, and ran wood the entire length. This causes the wood to have a gap along this slope. In the below picture, it is actually resting on the bead of silicon , but you can see how I have to figure something out to make it sit a little better since this is going to be somewhere that's walked on.




The next board was easy. Oh man, what a welcome relief to just be able to cut the width off a board and have it go right down after that first board. Next board was a bit of an H shape around the wheels. There were only about 3 inches on the tongue side in front of the wheels, but this is not going to be walked on, so I'm not that concerned.

The back was pieced together, but nearly all of it had enough tongued edge from that first piece. It's a bit hard to see from the picture, but the pink is about flushed with the wood that the generator is on. The wood I put down sits on top of this wood. Pretty weird right here, and I just realized I probably need to do something to assure that's well-sealed.



The area around the gas tank is pieced together, but pretty solid back there. I still need to actually cover this with metal (I think welding it), but I plan on framing it and insulating it after covering it, which would add even more strength. The wall was not remotely square in the back, which made cutting all this fun, but I think it looks pretty good in the end.




I still need to ensure that generator is not too open, put down liquid nails under the insulation, and put down liquid nails under the wood (or should I just let it float?) but I want to make sure the gas tank is taken care of before I back myself into a corner. I lost a half inch of height, but I'm pretty satisfied by my subfloor.
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