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Old 07-14-2019, 09:21 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jul 2019
Posts: 2
Short Bus Music Bus

I’m looking to build an open-concept short bus.

Desired Uses:
* Sleep space for 1-2 while urban, suburban, and rural “camping”.
* Festival home base. Totally minimalist needs.
* Jamming & recording space for 1-4 musicians. Shore power or lithium bank.
* Tour bus for band of 2-4 people.

With a thoroughly stripped-down interior, something like:
Air mattress, 400 lbs of music equipment, 3 passengers. Goal Zero 3000, water, etc.

Nothing built-in (bedding, storage, kitchen, bathroom).

I figure I can improve the performance of the vehicle by hauling less.

This looks promising:

https://reading.craigslist.org/rvs/d...933519623.html

A few questions to the community:

Is this engine as desirable as advertised?

* With this minimalist of a setup, will I get better than 8-10 mpg?
Removal of ADA lift should strip significant weight as well.

* Is rust a concern with this being a PA sale?

I"ve been a long-time lurker here, and have learned so much. I'm so thankful to this community already.

-Tim
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Old 07-17-2019, 08:57 PM   #2
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Location: Biggest Little City
Posts: 30
Year: 2003
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Ford E450
Engine: 7.3L Powerstroke
I've had really good experiences with the smaller 5.3L vortec's of similar era. I had a 01 Suburban that went well over 250K mi and my 03 Silverado has 220K and counting. I don't have any actual experience with the 6.0L sorry.

If gas mileage is major concern you might want to look at diesel. I have an 03 Ford E450 with 7.3L powerstroke and I can get 14mpg on the freeway when i keep the speeds below 65, above that and mpg drops off.

I think a minimalist approach is great way to start, see how much you use it and then go from there. We did the same thing, basically very minimalist approach at first, slowly converting it while using it at the same time.
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Old 07-17-2019, 09:07 PM   #3
Bus Geek
 
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Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Dawsonville, Ga.
Posts: 8,553
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Genesis
Chassis: International
Engine: DT466/3060
Rated Cap: 77
Yes, Pa. is centered in the rust belt, look much further south or west. Surprisingly the PNW, with all it's snow and rain, have relatively rust free buses also. I doubt you'll notice much difference in performance adding or deleteing anything.
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Old 07-17-2019, 09:17 PM   #4
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Feb 2019
Location: New Hampshire
Posts: 588
Year: 1990
Coachwork: Thomas 4 window w/lift
Chassis: G30
Engine: 350 Chevy
Rated Cap: 10K
x2 on looking outside the Rust Belt.
The 6.0 is a great motor and some call it bulletproof. Don't know if anything is actually bulletproof, as a .44 Magnum will do catastrophic damage to almost any engine block its fired into!
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Old 07-18-2019, 07:34 AM   #5
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Join Date: Jul 2019
Posts: 2
Is rust really going to be such an issue without doing wood built-in's?

Re-insulating and patching would mean some welding and intense removal work.

If the bus is headed for the rust belt, why bother worrying about it?
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Old 07-18-2019, 10:39 AM   #6
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Feb 2019
Location: New Hampshire
Posts: 588
Year: 1990
Coachwork: Thomas 4 window w/lift
Chassis: G30
Engine: 350 Chevy
Rated Cap: 10K
If you're not planning on keeping it long, you could throw caution to the winds and buy a rust belter.
The one thing that could come back to bite you though would be if your state does safety inspections that look for rust intrusion.

In my state a dime sized rust hole through an interior floor will need repaired before being allowed back onto the roadways.
So starting with a relatively rust free base is critical IMO, and many others as well. Especially if you'll be operating year round in the rust belt!
Good luck in your search...
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