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Old 12-26-2011, 04:23 AM   #11
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Year: 2009
Coachwork: Bluebird
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Re: 2009 Bluebird Coach conversion/Build

Quote:
Originally Posted by lornaschinske
Quote:
Originally Posted by morefire
So where did the pretty "bird's eye" birch go?

This is a good example of "expensive shell, expensive conversion". After all how many of us would put a 12K+ Aqua-Hot into a 2K shell? It's pretty and all.
It's all birch except for those panels in the pic you quoted. The walls, floors and cabinets are all birch. I donít remember why I didnít use birch for those few inside partition walls..... I think it was because my local stores didnít have it when I needed it.
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Old 12-26-2011, 04:29 AM   #12
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Re: 2009 Bluebird Coach conversion/Build

Quote:
Originally Posted by Accordion
Golly, that is a big bus. Thanks for all the pictures. It is hard to understand that your bus is a Blue Bird. Mine is a 1973. It is so different than your's.

It appears that you are a professional bus converter. Your bus reminds me of a Prevost.

You did an awesome job of putting it together. I really like the picture of the eight golf cart batteries.

I have never done anything like this before, but I am just a handyman. I learnt allot from just lurking on forums, then decided to take a crack at it
Mind you, the pictures of the coach in the "shop" where most of the bodywork was fabricated is a friend of mines shop, and he did the welding and stuff........... I did everything else myself. He is now doing most of the engine swap for me as well.
With the 8 batteries (actually designed for a Genie Sky jack), running a Xantrex 4000 watt inverter, I can power the coach for about 2 days including the all electric fride etc..
And when I need to charge it, I can just start up the Onan diesel Gen and run it for a few hours

It's an all electric coach. No propane
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Old 12-26-2011, 11:24 AM   #13
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Re: 2009 Bluebird Coach conversion/Build

YOU WIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 12-26-2011, 11:53 AM   #14
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Re: 2009 Bluebird Coach conversion/Build

Quote:
Originally Posted by Accordion
Golly, that is a big bus. Thanks for all the pictures. It is hard to understand that your bus is a Blue Bird. Mine is a 1973. It is so different than your's.
That's because it's NOT a BlueBird like you think. In 1994 they became Blue Bird Motor Coach (BMC). They are not built to the same standards as a schoolbus chassis. They will not take the same rollover as a schoolbus. It's not even a really BlueBird ...
Quote:
From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blue_Bird_Wanderlodge
In 2007, the Wanderlodge line and the production facility was sold to Complete Coach Works, a California-based company specializing in bus refurbishing and remanufacturing. In April 2009, the last Wanderlodges were produced, as the closed down the Georgia production facility.
Read the Wiki article. It's good reading then visit http://www.vintagebirds.com/ and go thru their website. Great info and great ideas for conversion. Especially if you have an All American Bird and want to make more "acceptable" for campgrounds.
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Old 12-26-2011, 12:54 PM   #15
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Re: 2009 Bluebird Coach conversion/Build

Lorna, Thanks for writing the info about BMC. I went to the Wanderlodge site. It looks like I could see a bunch of cool stuff there. However, I am NOT sending them $30 to participate in their forum.

The Skoolies forum is free. I have put a lot of information and photos on this forum. I have not asked a dime for it.

I will stick to reading the threads on this site.

I do indeed have an All American chassis. I think my Blue Bird is cool looking. I bet that no one on that "pay to view" site has the cool exhaust stacks that I have.

I am actually insulted that I would have to pay $30 to view that site.

Thanks for the info, though.
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Old 12-26-2011, 01:43 PM   #16
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Re: 2009 Bluebird Coach conversion/Build

I don't go to the forum. But I do check out the History page (pics & specs of the vintage ones). Fixes (I may have found the cure for the splash back we experienced the two times we have refueled). Harvey's Column has some interesting info as well.

I'm frugal and will not pay for a website to read a forum for owners of things that I do not have nor afford. But I can look at the free sectionss and see what things I can adapt to my needs & wants (like the Wanderlodge styling). I like to see the tank sizes for a bus similar to ours. But let's face it... my pockets aren't deep enough to run with the Wanderlodge owners. But skill wise all the interior cabinets can be built as well or better by us. Let's face it, David is a better cabinet builder than his cousin was (cousin used to build cabinets for the Wanderlodges).

But I can look at the stuff and see what is used, why it's used and find a way to build a similar item to suit us for less. I have all the plans & parts lists to build an Hydronic heater (info from Aqua-hot) for about 30% of the selling price (I priced it ALL out when I first got the info). But for us, we will "tweek" the plans to use the stuff we feel would suit us better (ie; instead of a diesel boiler, we will use an LP/AC water heater and the rear heat exchanger from the bus plus I have no desire to heat the domestic water with a diesel boiler and we don't need the preheat since we have discovered we have an electric block heater... among other stuff). We will know how to fix much of the "systems" used in our bus since we will be the ones who put them together. As we all know, that stuff breaks down on holiday weekends or other times when every thing is closed or you are in the middle of nowhere and have no cell phone service or wi-fi available!

But that is the appeal of converting a "blank canvas". We can customize the whole thing to suit our needs and wants. We will have a custom RV that suits our somewhat different taste in style and amenities. The closest I can come to describing it is... "Old 20's-30's Beach Cottage"
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Old 12-26-2011, 03:43 PM   #17
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Re: 2009 Bluebird Coach conversion/Build

Quote:
Originally Posted by Accordion
Lorna, Thanks for writing the info about BMC. I went to the Wanderlodge site. It looks like I could see a bunch of cool stuff there. However, I am NOT sending them $30 to participate in their forum.

This is the Wanderlodge Forum. It's Free.

http://www.wanderlodgeownersgroup.com/forums/index.php
It's not really a conversion forum like this one is, it's more about "Bluebirds"
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Old 12-26-2011, 04:02 PM   #18
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Re: 2009 Bluebird Coach conversion/Build

Had to have a custom bracket fabricated for the twin Alternators, to fit the Cummins.
This coach has a very powerful electrical system, probably because of the HUGE Thermo King Roof Air system that came with the coach.


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Old 12-26-2011, 04:06 PM   #19
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Re: 2009 Bluebird Coach conversion/Build

Thanks for the info. I am looking at the Wanderlodge pics.

I have a question. What are those things on the roof in the front on most Wanderlodges? It looks like a small radiator.
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Old 12-26-2011, 07:28 PM   #20
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Re: 2009 Bluebird Coach conversion/Build

I've noticed that in the pics but I've never seen a Wanderlodge up close with one except for one that looks just like "Ole #1" that we saw at Bleckley sales outside of Ft Valley. All the ones that I have seen didn't have one. Looks like an oil cooler or tranny cooler.
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